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Published on March 4, 2019 | by Alastair Gilmour

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History in the making

This July will mark the 20th anniversary of the closure of Vaux, the iconic Sunderland brewer that had produced beer on the banks of the Wear for 213 years. Now its history is being told via a documentary film produced by County Durham-based Lonely Tower Film & Media along with Maxim Brewery (Houghton le Spring) which was created – in the most part – by former Vaux employees to keep the famous names alive.

The documentary is to be shown across Sunderland, available on DVD, and via the streaming service Amazon Prime and will feature Vaux Breweries’ chairman Sir Paul Nicholson and his brother, managing director Frank Nicholson, along with brewery staff, publicans and others who were involved in the Vaux story.

Marie Gardiner from Lonely Tower Film & Media said: “No-one can forget its dominant presence in the centre of the city and the sound of dray horses on their rounds. We want to tell the story of Vaux via the people who were there, the people who lived it and worked through its sad end. This film will obviously tell the history of the brewery business, but more than that, we hope it will be a tribute to everyone who loved the place so much.”

Former Vaux finance director Mark Anderson – now of Maxim Brewery – said: “We are incredibly proud to still be producing the famous Vaux beers, along with our own distinctive and innovative creations. The history of our brewery business is intimately aligned with that of Vaux and all that it stood for, so to be involved in telling and sharing this poignant Sunderland story on the 20th anniversary of its closure is perfect. We all know it will be a moving tribute.”


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Alastair Gilmour



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