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Butler's Molineux Ale

Springfield Brewery, Wolverhampton   (Latitude: ,  Longitude: )
Contributed by: Wayne Straight US332   |   22 Aug 2017

Butler’s Molineux Ale, named for the Molineux’ of Wolverhampton.

The brewery first opened in 1873 when the William Butler and Company needed bigger premises than their existing site in Priestfield. Springfield had an abundance of water and the land had remained fairly undeveloped as the ground was quite marshy in places. The company acquired the seven acre site, partly bordering Grimstone Street and built a new brewery with maltings, cooperage and stables. Production started at Springfield during the following year. With the new brewery located close to the canal and railway lines, the company could begin to trade outside of the local area. The good communications also made the acquisition of public houses in other areas a viable proposition. This opportunity was improved when the Great Western Railway extended a siding into the site which was continually expanding to cope with the success of the company. Between 1881-3 a new brewing tower was constructed, enabling William Butler and Company to increase production from 400 to 1,500 barrels a week. In 1960 Mitchell's and Butler's acquired the company and the Cape Hill brewery kept the Springfield Brewery open. Brewing stopped around 1990 and the site was used simply as distribution centre. In 2006 a fire destroyed much of the site.

The site on Grimstone Street, which closed in the early 1990s as a brewery for Mitchells & Butlers, is undergoing a £60 million redevelopment and will be home to the university's school of architecture and the West Midlands Construction University Technical College from autumn 2016.

But university chiefs say they are keen to maintain the traditional aspects of the site, and are planning talks for a micro-brewery to move in once building work is complete.