What does Middlesbrough mean to you?
Middlesbrough and the Teesside area holds a very special place in my heart. I am originally from a town in the North West called Northwich. Around 8 years ago I met my now wife and would drive up to Middlesbrough every other weekend. I would look forward to coming up and we made so many great memories that I decided to relocate up here less than a year later. My late granddad worked for ICI and would travel from Northwich to Teesside when he was younger, a journey I followed many years later.
Middlesbrough is where I have chosen to live, to work, to raise a family and is now home. Definitely consider myself an honorary smoggy!… and I do love a parmo.
Whats your story behind your business?
Anyone who knows me, knows how much I love craft beer. It is something I am extremely passionate about. Middlesbrough has some amazing local breweries and I think more people need to discover how grate craft beer is, and what awesome beers there are right on our doorstep.
Salt Steel started, to join the crusade and fight back against crap commercial lager. We want more people drinking great craft beer and supporting local breweries. #CraftNotCrap
Why do you think independent businesses are so important to an area like Teesside?
Teesside has a thriving business community full or incredibly passionate, talented people. I have never known an area like Teesside. People just want to help each other. There is a real sense of community and everyone just wants to support and see people do well. There’s no rivalry or resentment… With this comes opportunity, jobs etc which of course then supports the area and the local economy. People chose to support local businesses here and put back into Teesside.
Whats peoples reactions been in the area to your Business?
So far its been great. We are still in our early stages but the support as been fantastic. Plenty of local bars, restaurants etc are supporting us and I am getting lots of messages and requests asking when we’ll be ready. I think people identify with our brand and what we’re trying to achieve, and genuinely want to see us do well. It’s really exciting!
Where can people find you online?
Our website is www.saltsteelbrewing.com and most of our social accounts are @SaltSteelBeer – we have also recently launched a YouTube channel which can be found by searching for Salt Steel Brewing Co.
Why do you believe Teesside gets such a bad reputation in the media?
I think the media often focus on the negatives. Yes, unfortunately Teesside often tops the lists that you don’t want to be top of, and it fits in with the mantra that “its grim up north”. But in most cases, the people who write these articles have never stepped foot in the area. They’ve never walked along the beaches at Saltburn and Redcar enjoying a lemon top. They haven’t been to Roseberry Topping or Captain Cook’s Monument, and enjoyed the glorious countryside, and they never will. It’s their loss. Up the Boro!
How did you come up with the name Salt Steel Brewing Co?
I wanted something that would combine the two towns that mean the most to me. Northwich where I am from, and Middlesbrough where I now live. Both towns have a rich industrial history which I wanted to show. Northwich is famous for its salt mines and Teesside for its steel. I felt Salt Steel Brewing Co., and its logo, would give people something relatable and to be proud of.
Whats your advice to anyone in Teesside wanting to start there own Business?
Do it. Right now. Stop what you’re doing and do it. Sometimes it can be scary to create something and share it with the world, but in Teesside there are so many businesses and people that can support you and guide you. There is an amazing business community that will want you to succeed, and you might even have some fun along the way.
Can you tell us a bit about the products you are selling offering customers?
We are in the final stages of developing our flagship beer. It’s a West Coast IPA and will be available really soon. It will be the first of what we hope will be many craft beers and we can’t wait to share them with the people of Teesside and beyond!
Interview By Chloe Tempestoso