A NEW craft brewery is set to open at a historic mill in the area, founded by a former BrewDog beer expert.

Amity Brew Co has signed a ten-year lease at Sunny Bank Mills in Farsley and can now get its craft brewery and tap room set up after plans were passed by the council.

Co-founded by Russ Clarke, who has worked at top craft brewers such as BrewDog, North Brewing Co. and Beer Hawk, it will be based in the Festoon Rooms at the famous mill site.

The tap room is set to open by the end of this year and will also feature an outdoor beer garden which overlooks the recently redeveloped £2 million Weavers Yard.

Amity’s core selection of beers, including a bitter, American pale ale and ‘helles’ lager, is already up and running and named after Farsley landmarks.

It will be the latest addition at Sunny Bank Mills which has been extensively refurbished and renovated in recent years and is now home to around 70 small and medium-sized businesses.

Russ Clarke, who has always dreamed of running his own craft brewery, said: “We are a group of friends who met on the craft beer scene having worked in the UK’s best breweries, so we know our stuff.

“We are inspired by the US model of a brewpub, making limited batch beer on-site and getting it into the hands of the community fresh and fast.

“Launching a business post Covid-19 really adds the pressure on but we’ve been heartened to see how the local community has rallied together and we feel the brewpub is exactly what the community will embrace at this time.

“We are adaptable and nimble enough to make sure that our plans can quickly change according to any government restrictions that might be passed in the future as we all adapt to the world with Covid-19.”

John Gaunt, joint managing director of Edwin Woodhouse and Co, which owns Sunny Bank Mills, added: “We have always been interested in having a micro-brewery here at the mill, and we have looked at many options over the years.

“When Amity Brew Co came to us, we immediately knew they would be the perfect fit.Amity will enhance what Sunny Bank Mills has to offer and further cement Farsley as a great place to live and work.

“We are about to start work and we hope that the brewery and tap room will be open before Christmas.

“Amity plan to create a relaxed and pleasant tap room and The Festoon Rooms is a great location right in the heart of the mill complex, with a newly created outdoor terrace area.”