Cheers! Parks raise the bar for real ale lovers

Michael Holgate (centre) with (left) Robinsons' area manager Alex Lowe and the brewery's MD Oliver Robinson

Michael Holgate (centre) with (left) Robinsons’ area manager Alex Lowe and the brewery’s MD Oliver Robinson

Glasses were raised this month to two historic northern family firms which have joined forces in order to offer holidaymakers the ultimate in Lancashire hospitality.

Stockport’s 180-year-old Robinsons Brewery will now be supplying its award-winning ales to the Holgates group of holiday parks which also began life in Lancashire.

Although comparatively youthful at just 60 years old, Holgates – like Robinsons – is still run by the same family which originally founded the business.

The supply agreement has finally put an end to the search started almost a year ago by Holgates to find the ideal ales for its thousands of holidaymakers each year.

They are welcomed at the group’s flagship park of Silverdale, based near the north Lancs village of the same name, and its five sister parks in Lancashire and Cumbria.

Sixty years young, and still meeting modern holiday needs

Sixty years young, and still meeting modern holiday needs

Robinsons is also being served up at The Royal dining pub in Silverdale which recently marked its first anniversary after being bought and re-opened by Holgates after years of locked doors.

Michael Holgate, the third generation of his family to be at the helm of the business, said that the companies shared a similar approach to keeping customers happy:

“Although we are celebrated for parks and Robinsons are famous for pints, we have both built our reputations on the quality of our products,” said Michael.

“We got through a lot of tastings over the past year, but our quest was to find a brewery which did more than create a range of beers which customers loved.

“The idea was to find a supplier which shared our philosophy of constantly reinvesting and reinventing in order to ensure that it stayed at the top of the game.

“Robinsons are always striving to raise the bar, and that’s why our bars are a perfect fit!” he added.

The Holgates first came to Silverdale in 1956 from the Blackburn area in Lancashire where Michael’s grandfather, Billy, had started a successful caravan manufacturing business.

On what was formerly just over 100 acres of grass and scrubland, the park took shape and has since grown into one of the area’s most popular holiday destinations.

A winner of multiple awards, it provides holiday homes to rent and buy together with a raft of facilities including a swimming pool and leisure complex, plus restaurant and bar.

Robinsons has similarly enjoyed decades of growth under the Robinson family’s ownership, and today owns around 280 pubs, inns and hotels across the North West.

“Family-run firms take a very special pride in what they do, and place great value on the customer loyalty that they have built up over many years,” said Michael.

“That leads to successive generations constantly striving for perfection, and now we can offer a taste – quite literally – of what both we and Robinsons have achieved!” he says.

There is more information about the group’s parks at www.holgates.co.uk

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