Sailor in £240k Forth Bridge Brewery fundraising bid

A FORMER member of the British sailing team has created his own crowd-funding website to raise £240,000 to build a biomass-powered brewery in Inverkeithing.

Website designer Dave Robertson, 35, hopes to attract about 4,000 investors to back his project, which he will call Forth Bridge Brewery, by offering free bottles of beer.

Robertson is targeting the market for lower-alcohol beers, which he said is growing by 50 per cent a year. Chancellor George Osborne cut the rate of duty for beers below 2.8 per cent alcohol by volume in 2011, triggering a rise in lower-strength brews such as Adnams’ Sole Star and Fuller’s Mighty Atom.

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Robertson initially aims to raise £200,000 but will also open a tasting room if he can bring in £240,000.

He said: “I decided to open my own brewery after trying a bottle of BrewDog’s Punk IPA. I liked the taste of it because it was so different, but I thought it was a bit hoppy for me. I did some more research and decided I wanted to try brewing my own beers.”

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BrewDog raised £2 million from fans through its “Equity for Punks” scheme in 2011.

Robertson has identified a suitable site in a former taxi garage near Inverkeithing’s Ballast Bank park for his brewery, which would be powered by a biomass boiler.

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He aims to use local barley where possible and then turn the spent grain into pellets to burn in his biomass boiler.

The would-be brewer has held talks about using the boiler to run a district-heating system, which could use waste heat from the brewery to warm homes.