B&B and brewery behind ‘Gunner’s Daughter’ and ‘Blonde Bombshell’ gets new owners

PUBLISHED: 10:18 22 November 2018 | UPDATED: 10:19 22 November 2018

From left to right new owners Chris and Fiona Gerard of Innventure and Old Cannon managers Julie and Craig Nichols. Picture: Judith Shallow

From left to right new owners Chris and Fiona Gerard of Innventure and Old Cannon managers Julie and Craig Nichols. Picture: Judith Shallow


This week, the keys were handed over for micro brewery in Bury St Edmunds with a 20-year history in the town.

The Old Cannon in Bury St EdmundsThe Old Cannon in Bury St Edmunds

The Old Cannon Brewery has a new operator, Innventure Ltd, a family company owned and run by Chris and Fiona Gerard from Cambridge.

Bury’s original micro brewery has long had a reputation for its beer, which is uniquely brewed in the bar of the pub. Their Best Bitter, Gunner’s Daughter and Blonde Bombshell real ales along with other seasonal and special brews have won awards and accolades since the Old Cannon was established in the former St Edmund’s Head pub in 1999.

The brewery’s freeholders Michael Shallow, whose former job was as finance director of Greene King, and Judith Shallow say they are “delighted” that their brewing, bar and bedroom business now joins an independent family of award-winning bars, hotels and country restaurants including the Cross Keys in Saffron Walden and dArry’s in Cambridge.

Innventure also owns The Wellington in Welwyn and The Rusty Gun at St Ippolyts both in Hertfordshire.

The Bar and Mezz at The Old CannonThe Bar and Mezz at The Old Cannon

The Old Cannon has been brewing a bespoke ale for the Rusty Gun for the past nine years and with the new owners, Old Cannon beers will be found across the six-strong collection of pubs and restaurants.

Mr and Mrs Gerard are keen to reassure regular customers that there will be no interruption to ‘business as usual’, but reveal that changes will also be afoot.

“The business is busy with lots of Christmas party bookings in December and the team are fully focused on making these amazing - so no time for lots of change,” says Mr Gerard.

“The seven bedrooms will be our first priority to refresh and ensure that our customers have a fabulous overnight stay, followed by a delicious breakfast. We shall quickly be introducing some incredible new wines from wine maker friends d’Arenberg from Mclaren Vale in South East Australia and freshly made coffees and teas to provide contrast to the already brilliant beers.”


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