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Our Brewery and its links to the heritage of the area:
Blaydon, Beer, Firebricks, Racing, and Industry.

Old Cowen Brickworks (Low Yard)

Baydon Burn

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Alistair Head Brewer/Director (left), in Strangers Bar at the House of Commons with Blaydon MP Dave Anderson and Blaydon Brick!

Dave has been an enthusiastic supporter of our developing business and we thank him.

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Joseph Cowen statue - The original "Blaydon Brick"

Newcastle city centre

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Roche Harbour Walkway, San Juan Island

- made with Blaydon (Cowen) firebricks.

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Thomas Bewick's Blaydon Races engraving depicting the original horse race event.

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Current 10k Blaydon Road Race

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Iconic Strawberry pub, Strawberry Place, Newcastle.

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Pint to Brim Tyne 9 glasses

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With Dave Anderson at Blaydon Station celebrating increased train timetable there.

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Cowen Brick and iron slag in Blaydon Burn.

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Great beer locally brewed

About the brewery

Firebrick Brewery finds inspiration for its beers in the heritage of Blaydon on Tyne and the North East of England.

The brewery is on Cowen Road, named after Joseph Cowen Junior, MP for Newcastle in the late 19th Century; he was quite a character and a global political figure in his time. His father Joseph Cowen Senior was also an MP and was knighted for his work on the Tyne Commission, improving that river for industrial shipping. Their Blaydon brickworks exported Firebricks around the world and you can read more about all that here...
In summary then: Good blokes who made good bricks and tried to improve the quality of life for people in general – that seemed like a good theme to link our beer to!

Our first beer was brewed in January 2013 and Blaydon Brick a 3.8% ABV golden ordinary bitter made its way into a handful of local pubs. Coalface a 3.9% ABV dark mild followed. Elder Statesman a 4.5% ABV best bitter was next and in August 2013 Tyne 9 a black cask lager celebrating Newcastle United Football Club’s renowned centre forward shirt number, was launched at the iconic Strawberry pub opposite NUFC’s St James’ Park.

The first seasonal beer Tormit Heed (turnip head) was brewed as an autumn ale with a Halloween theme in October 2013; and the first “Special” in April 2014, a 5.2% ABV spiced spring beer (Root'n'Branch) brewed especially for the 2014 Newcastle beer festival complying with a set theme around Northumberland and Tyneside’s 40th anniversary as a CAMRA branch.

A superb new 12 barrel (barrel = 36 gallons) brew plant was ordered from Malrex specialist brewery manufacturers from Burton on Trent at the end of 2013 and the brewery doubled in size expanding into the industrial unit next door during the first two months of 2014. The first gyle produced on that plant was Blaydon Brick on 23rd March 2014.
The original 2.5 barrel brew plant is now used for seasonal and special brews and has just produced a new beer, Stella Spark which we would like to see become part of our core range as its American West Coast influence and citrusy hoppiness add a bit of zing to the line up!

That brings things up to date so please look out for Stella Spark this summer and let us know what you think.


Our Beers


3.8% ABV golden session beer


"The Blaydon Brick" was the "nick-name" for the popular cloth capped 19th century MP for Newcastle, Joseph Cowen Jnr. A son of Blaydon; he was a friend to Garibaldi, Mazzini, the working man, and anyone at that time whose rights were suppressed!

A well rounded and gentle golden session beer, slight sweet spice is balanced by clean pine bitterness.









4.5% ABV a rich and worthy best bitter

It seemed correct to name our Best Bitter "Elder Statesman", after 19th Century MP Sir Joseph Cowen Snr. Founder of the brickworks that gave our brewery its name; he was knighted for his work on the Tyne Commission, straightening and dredging that river, allowing shipping and industry to flourish in the area.

A substantial but not overpowering best bitter, deep coloured with flavours of malt biscuit, plum fruit and a pleasant bitterness.

Tormit Heed

4.9% ABV agreeable autumn ale

Tormit Heed is a special edition autumn beer Tormit is19th century northern dialect and old Geordie for turnip. Tormit Heed or turnip head is meant to conjure up, images of autumn evenings, warm fires and the excitement of making turnip lanterns at Halloween. As turnip lanterns are written about from late 18th century onwards in Ireland, Scotland, England and the USA I'm sure the term Tormit Heed would have been used in Blaydon in the 1800s. The artwork on the pump clip of Tormit Heed is the fantastic Turnip Keepers Lantern by Wylie Beckert who kindly gave me permission to use it on a limited basis for seasonal small cask batches. It tells the tale of Jack O' Lantern, a sinner and trickster who in life tricked the devil out of claiming his soul. On his death he has sinned too much to go to heaven but hell is closed to him. Destined to wander the world forever in darkness, looking for somewhere to rest his soul; the devil mockingly gives him an everlasting ember of hell to light his way; which is set in a hollowed out turnip. Wylie has given jack a bike to speed him on his search - nice touch!

Tasting notes... toffee and warm maltiness give way to a well rounded clean bittering and spice in a strong dark amber ale.

Stella Spark

4.4% abv Citrus Blonde Beer

Stella Spark uses some of the best hops in the world from the American West Coast and combines them with light malts to create a very refreshing citrusy blonde beer of medium strength. Ideal for any time of year but recommended throughout the British Summer to generate a spark of energy when the sun hides.

Stella Power Station (south) was built on the former Estate of Stella Hall the birthplace of Joseph Cowen Jnr which was also on the route of the famous Blaydon Races. It was modern and efficient in its time using the very best of world leading technology and construction from local companies C.A. Parsons, A Reyrolle & Co. and Clark Chapmans.

Such heritage and the amalgamation of world beating technology to ensure a supply of light and power to the region was inspirational in our brewing of STELLA SPARK , a bright and zest filled beer.

Tyne 9®

3.9% ABV black cask lager

Tyne 9® is best served in its presentation glass to deliver a black and white pint sensation, and allow the drinker to celebrate the football heritage and theatre; from Milburn to Shearer and on to present day; of the magnificent Newcastle United Strikers' shirt and number.
Background pilsner maltiness and a hint of coffee are balanced by restrained resinous hopping and a smooth feel.


3.9% ABV refreshing black beer

"Coalface" is a modern take on the Milds that washed coal dust from the throats of miners for generations.

A bit of a rarity being a dark session beer at only 3.9% ABV, Coalface has a delicate blackcurrant taste and light coffee notes with no harsh bitterness or astringent bite; a tasty refreshing pint!


Elder Statesman, Coalface and Blaydon Brick were selected for the CAMRA National Winter Ales festival 2014

Tyne 9®



  • Tyne 9® is a black lager and this has caused some confusion with drinkers' expectations. It will not taste or present  like a dark version of a fizzy pint of keg lager. Tyne 9® is a traditional lager beer, more akin to a Munich Dunkel lager or a Schwartzbier. De-husked dark malt has been used sparingly to give the colour and introduce some coffee notes as delicately as possible, a small proportion of medium kilned grain adds maltiness; it is these flavours and the colour that convince some that it is a light stout or porter; however those tastes are also desirable in this style of lager and are intentional - we are delighted that this cask lager has created so much healthy discussion and interest.


    Tyne 9® is best served in its presentation glass to deliver a black and white pint sensation, and allow the drinker to celebrate the football heritage and theatre; from Milburn to Shearer and on to present day; of the magnificent Newcastle United Strikers' shirt and number.

    Tyne 9 is selected for the CAMRA 2014 Great British Beer Festival in Olympia in August.

    Units 10-11, Blaydon Business Centre, Cowen Road, Blaydon on Tyne, NE21 5TW


    Want to say hello? Want to know more about us? Give us a call or drop us an email and we will get back to you as soon as we can.