Secret of success: small is beautiful!

Two Marlpool brothers who founded their own brewery say business is booming – but they won’t let success go to their heads.

Andy and Christopher McAuley founded the Marlpool Brewing Company in 2010 and in January this year opened their own pub and beer-off as an outlet for the microbrewery.

But despite both firms doing extremely well, they say they will not leave their modest premises – probably the smallest pub in Derbyshire - and are content with the way things are.

Andy, 50, said: “The pub was originally a butcher’s shop at the turn of the century and then a barbers in the 50s and 60s. I used to get my hair cut here!

“The brewery is in an old slaughterhouse. We’ve replaced it with beer, which is nicer than killing pigs!

“My background is in printing reprographics, but I got a bit tired of that. I had done all right out of it and I like real ale.

“We only shop locally and only use British hops; we like to source local beers and ciders for our guest beers; we don’t sell lager or spirits here; we support local businesses wherever possible.

“We opened the pub to provide an outlet and keep it local. The ale moves about 50 yards and then you’re drinking it - you can’t get any more local than that.”

The pub on Breach Road is only open at the weekends, but the brothers are now applying for a license to extend opening hours from 9pm to 11.30pm.

Andy said: “We want the option to stay open - it will give us a bit more flexibilty. We get a lot of local custom in the pub and it’s a nice, civilised place to have a drink and a chat.

“I’m keen on my ale so we always make sure the beer is good. We’re quite content the way we are – we’re not going to leave these premises.”

He added: “I’ve never classed myself as a businessman but I know what people want.

“We keep a nice atmosphere. On Sunday afternoons, we have a resident guitarist so we often have musicians come up and play acoustic sessions. It’s all off the cuff and never planned.

“If there’s any swearing we ask people to leave – we don’t want folks upsetting other people.

“The secret is good quality ingredients and no additives. We don’t cut corners and I think people appreciate quality.

“We’re doing very well and it’s satisfying.

“We’ll never make a fortune - as long as we’ve got enough to pay our bills.”