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There was plenty to sing and dance about when a taproom opened in Clare



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It was colourful and it was musical and there was lots of real ale to be had when a microbrewery opened its taproom - on the same day that the cyclists in the Women’s Tour raced past its front door.

The taproom was opened by Roughacre Brewery last Saturday morning at an event labelled ‘Beer & Bicycles’ by dint of the fact that the final stage of the Women’s Tour, from Haverhill to Felixstowe, sped past its Cavendish Road premises at about 11.45am.

Roughacre has been based at the Clare Hall Barns since February - having begun its life in Castle Camps in 2018 - but has had to wait for all the planning and licensing issues to be resolved and the taproom and shop to be finished, before being able to open.

The opening of the Roughacre Brewery taproom, with owners Mark Jackson and Sarah Hide with Clare town crier Andrew Parkhurst and the Boudicca Borders Morris. Submitted picture
The opening of the Roughacre Brewery taproom, with owners Mark Jackson and Sarah Hide with Clare town crier Andrew Parkhurst and the Boudicca Borders Morris. Submitted picture

The business is owned by Mark Jackson and Sarah Hide, and is, as Sarah explained a “small batch, traditional, real ale microbrewery”.

Saturday’s opening was heralded by the Clare town crier Andrew Parkhurst and made even more fun by the presence of the Boudicca Borders Morris group, based not far away in Hadleigh.

Food was provided via a truck from Temperleys Street Food (which has an offer that includes fish and chips, global street food and gourmet burgers), an arrangement that Sarah hopes to repeat once a month on a Friday on a regular basis.

Clare town crier Andrew Parkhurst in the brewhouse at Roughacre Brewery. Submitted picture
Clare town crier Andrew Parkhurst in the brewhouse at Roughacre Brewery. Submitted picture

Sarah said: “We have six taps which will have all of our own ales on them.

“We have a range depending on our season. At the moment we have a range of 11 which includes a Halloween beer.

“We really are a truly small batch brewery which means we can be really flexible and which means we can offer a range of beer which can come and go.

“We are not after a massive economy of scale.

Some cyclists taking a break for refreshments outside Roughacre Brewery's taproom. Submitted photo
Some cyclists taking a break for refreshments outside Roughacre Brewery's taproom. Submitted photo

“People always ask us what our intentions are and for Mark and I it is to remain this nice family-run brewery where we can enjoy experimenting with our real ales.”

The taproom is open Friday and Saturday, midday to 9pm and the shop is open from midday to 6pm, Wednesday to Saturday.

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