Worksop: New book explores the history of town’s brewing heritage

The half-forgotten story of Worksop’s great brewing heritage has topped the Kindle charts.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 28th January 2014, 9:00 am
The Worksop &  Retford Brewery soon after the formation of the company in 1881
The Worksop & Retford Brewery soon after the formation of the company in 1881

A detailed and probably definitive history of The Worksop & Retford Brewery Company and brewing in Bassetlaw, produced by CAMRA heritage specialist, Dave Pickersgill has just been published.

The book was written as a companion piece to a novel, Beer Balls and the Belgian Mafia co-written by two local authors.

The novel, set partly in Worksop and featuring the local brewing industry, the Worksop Guardian and the Tigers will be released shortly.

Dave’s book tells the story of the towns malt, which was ‘exported’ to Sheffield and Manchester, before focusing on the history of the brewery.

“I think readers will be surprised to discover the size and scale of the operation,” said Dave.

“For almost 80 years the brewery was critical to the sporting and cultural life of the town.”

“Readers will also enjoy spotting the signs, sites and symbols of the brewery. It is a story that can easily be explored on foot, perhaps with the odd refreshment stop to sample one of the fine ales from the current brewing renaissance.”

“The Grafton, Dukeries and Welbeck breweries are doing their best to revive the old traditions of real ale brewing in Bassetlaw. The Grafton Arms for example is now the tap for the Worksop-based Grafton Brewery.”

The book is currently available on Amazon Kindle for £1.53. Visit or, then search using beer Worksop.