2010 News

Famous Grouse's Top 100 Pubs

The Barton Arms is a symbol of triumph over diversity. It is the most magnificent Victorian boozer in the UK. The snob screens to hide the important from the riff raff exemplify the wonderful interior.

It stands as a proud symbol of Birmingham Victorian pride in an area that has been beaten into submission socially and architecturally.

It is one of the few grade 2 listed pubs in the country and is still living and breathing thanks to Oakham Ales who took it over in 2002 and restored so much of the interior that was sadly ageing.

Many of the great variety performers appearing at the neighbouring Aston Hippodrome stayed and drank here. Rumour has it that there are several comedians still walking the ancient boards!

The beef roasts may have gone to be replaced by modern Birmingham Thai. Nonetheless anyone with an interest in the pubs of England must make a pilgrimage to the Bartons, taste the ale, take in the designs - the coloured glass, the tiles, the woodwork and imagine the rooms packed with with all the classes of Victorian Birmingham - it is a marvellous treat.


Laurel & Hardy return to the Bartons

Saturday 31st July saw the return of Laurel and Hardy to the Bartons Arms.

A photograph of the famous comic duo was presented to the Bartons Arms by the Birmingham branch of the Laurel and Hardy Appreciation Society, known as The Laughing Gravy Tent. The photograph which shows the icon pair standing outside the venue was taken when the pair stayed at the Bartons whilst appearing at the Aston Hipprodome and dates from May 1954.

The photograph was discovered by a member of the society about 10 years ago and Society Member John Ullah has been looking after the treasured picture and using it at group meetings.

The society are delighted that the photo is now in it's rightful place. It was a great day as two look-a-likes from the society presented the framed copy of photograph which will now take pride of place in the Oakham Ales venue.

Bartons Arms Receives National Recognition


Bartons Arms Receives National Recognition

Birmingham, finest Victorian pub, The Bartons Arms, has been listed as one of a National Newspaper, Top Ten Best Pubs. On Friday 19th February the Guardian released its Top Ten Best Pubs list with The Bartons Arms described as one of the most spectacular pub interiors in the land. The venue is very proud to have been awarded such a highly reputable accolade. The list showcases ten of the most pleasant and distinctive drinking dens in the UK, from Dorset to Tayside.

The Bartons Arms which was saved from dereliction in 2002 by Oakham Ales, an award winning brewery based in Peterborough, is one of the finest examples of Heritage Victorian pub architectural grandeur with palatial archways, original snob screens, a grand staircase, and Minton Hollins tiles.

The Bartons boasts an impressive list of famous drinkers such as Laurel and Hardy, Charlie Chaplin, and Enrico Caruso who were all frequent visitors to the venue when appearing at the Aston Hippodrome. In more recent years Birmingham, legendary rocker Ozzy Osborne has been known to drink in the pub.

Today, the Barton, prides itself on serving real ale and traditional ciders alongside a great range of bottled Belgian and continental beers, which can be enjoyed whilst sampling some of the fantastic Thai cuisine which is prepared by a team of Thai Chef.

The venue is a 'must-see', and plays an important part of Birmingham, heritage. The Bartons also offers conference and function room facilities making it the perfect choice for a business or social gathering. click here to read the Guardians article www.guardian.co.uk


Oakham Ales are delighted to announce the appointment of Adrian Posnett to the newly created position of Sales and Marketing Director. Adrian brings with him a wealth of experience having spent the last 17 years working as a Regional Director at national drinks distributor WaverleyTBS . These are exciting times for Oakham Ales and this new development outlines the intention and ambition of growth that the company has in moving forward and building on what is already a successful award winning operation.

Adrian has spent his entire working life working in the licensed trade, having started his career at the age of 17 working for his father at local soft drinks wholesaler Adcocks Wholesale Ltd in 1980. The company was subsequently sold to The Beer Seller in 1993 which is when Adrian first developed his passion for cask conditioned ale. From the moment he tasted his first pint of JHB his passion for Oakham Ales beers !

Leading the team of 12 people already employed at Oakham Ales, Adrian intends to use his experience to build on the success of the multi award winning brewery by taking an over view of existing practices and improving productivity and efficiency. He is no stranger to working in a smaller environment from his early days at Adcocks and having worked for The Beer Seller during it, rapid growth in the 90, is no stranger to growth either. The all round knowledge and skills he has gained over the years will prove fundamental to his plans at Oakham which are to drive sales and boost production at the Peterborough based brewery to ensure the plant fulfils its potential capability and continues to build on what have proved to be very popular brands throughout the UK. The Oakademy of Excellence was launched just over a year ago. This is an initiative where outlets stocking Oakham brands on a permanent basis are invited to join the Oakademy which will strive to achieve excellence by providing a top quality service and ensure quality of product to the highest possible standard throughout member outlets. There are already around 70 members which the brewery are extremely proud of and Adrian aims to increase this number 120 within the next 12 months, to provide more flagship venues serving quality Oakham products including a monthly special ale brewed exclusively for Oakademy member outlets at the company, own brewpub, The Brewery Tap in Westgate, Peterborough.

Adrian, appointment is encouraging news for Oakham Ales and the brewing industry in general in these troubled times of economic downturn, reflecting the sentiments of CAMRA, Good Beer Guide Editor Roger Protz who was quoted back in September 2009 as saying "This is an exciting time for real ale. Craft brewers are growing their sales at a time of economic downturn and falling demand for big beer brands. It's a major success story......". (CAMRA.org.uk, 2009).

(Picture attached Adrian Posnett, Sales & Marketing Director of Oakham Ales pictured outside the brewery at Maxwell Road, Peterborough.)