Diageo, maker of Guinness, has announced plans to invest £73m in Guinness at Old Brewer’s Yard, a new microbrewery set to open in London’s Covent Garden in autumn 2023.
The new venue at the historic brewing site will include a microbrewery producing limited-edition beers and offering guests tours, event spaces and a restaurant and open-fire kitchen.
The 50,000 sq ft venue will create up to 150 jobs and will also become the southern UK hub of Diageo’s Learning for Life Bartending and Hospitality Programme, which has so far trained more than 5,500 people across the UK. The ambition is for more than 100 London-based students to graduate from the Guinness at Old Brewer’s Yard programme each year, with a proportion of employment opportunities to be ring-fenced for graduates.
Guinness sales in Great Britain have grown by over 30% in the last six months and one in every 10 pints sold in London is now a Guinness.
Dayalan Nayager, managing director, Diageo Great Britain, said: “We’re excited to create a new home for Guinness in the heart of London. ‘Guinness at Old Brewer’s Yard’ will strengthen London’s hospitality community and be a must-visit destination for thousands of visitors to enjoy.
“Government support over the last two years has been vital for pubs and bars. Coming out of the pandemic, the long-term vitality of the trade will be significantly helped by the alcohol duty review and continued freezes in duty.”
The site will be carbon neutral by 2030 and accessible, with a community programme, details of which will be designed following a consultation period with locals.
The project remains subject to planning permission and consultation period. Old Brewer’s Yard is owned by the Mercers’ Company.
Rob Abernethy, chief executive of the Mercers’ Company, added: “We are delighted to welcome Guinness to our Covent Garden estate. We have worked closely with Diageo to develop proposals which will restore Old Brewer’s Yard’s historic origins in a contemporary context. The significant level of investment is a major boost to London’s recovering economy and will provide a one-of-a-kind immersive experience, shining the spotlight on Covent Garden as a global visitor destination.”