Chopps Scales Up... Four Priests Brewery

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Double check whether you need buildings insurance. We didn't when we rented but do now we own our commercial premises. Obviously insure your stock and equipment.
Thanks Clint. That's great advice, thanks. The buildings insurance is all covered by the landlord and the cost is split between the tenants once a year. But the contents is all my responsibility. I still haven't moved any kit in so haven't done anything, but once we do we need to get some cover in place. Would you recommend a commercial insurer?
 
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Yes great watch good look from me in over 65's subscribers ! You could well need electrical testing certification for insurance. I live a bit to far away for quality control purposes
Thanks for this. At the moment, the 3 phase board has a light bulb and switch connected to it, plus the roller shutter. So no big deal, but when we need to power the kit I'm having an electrician in as otherwise things might get a bit sparky in there. We'll hire a pro and he will sign it off for us. I am a 'competent person' but not that competent :) Cheers
 

ecirpian

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@chopps - excellent! Just seen this thread, I’ll be following your journey as I’d love to do smth similar. Wishing I lived nearer as I’d give you a hand too. The community you’ve helped create with the group buy is great and you get to continue it with this too. Good luck!
 
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@chopps - excellent! Just seen this thread, I’ll be following your journey as I’d love to do smth similar. Wishing I lived nearer as I’d give you a hand too. The community you’ve helped create with the group buy is great and you get to continue it with this too. Good luck!
Thanks! There's so much to do it's ridiculous :)
 

Clint

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Thanks Clint. That's great advice, thanks. The buildings insurance is all covered by the landlord and the cost is split between the tenants once a year. But the contents is all my responsibility. I still haven't moved any kit in so haven't done anything, but once we do we need to get some cover in place. Would you recommend a commercial insurer?
My Mrs has used NFU mutual for years.
 

Clint

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Thanks Clint. That's great advice, thanks. The buildings insurance is all covered by the landlord and the cost is split between the tenants once a year. But the contents is all my responsibility. I still haven't moved any kit in so haven't done anything, but once we do we need to get some cover in place. Would you recommend a commercial insurer?
Am I reading this right...the landlord pays the building insurance then charges his tenants by splitting the cost between them?
So you could be paying a part share of a larger unit? If this is part of the lease agreement then you want to make sure you get a receipt for the part you pay. Also check on the council tax payable. You may get small business relief and pay a reduced amount or none. If your landlord is "paying this" on your behalf or says it's included in your rent ask to see documentation proving this. "Empty" premises are exempt from council tax. This may sound a bit scary and that you might think someone might suspect you don't trust them but trust me..I speak from experience. Just ask.
Regarding "partners"...make sure you are clear,very clear, on who is expected to do what when.
Edit...by council tax I mean business rates and this depends on the premises size.
 
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Hi Clint, yes it’s in the lease and I know upfront that it can’t vary from £80 to £125 per year. There are no empty units and the charge is invoiced seperately by the landlord.

The rateable value of my unit is £5400 but I will be exempt. I am trying to talk to the council currently to agree the exemption and the landlord is leaving that up to me.

The only partner is sat next to me in her pyjamas so I think we’re Ok with who does what. I do what she says, and she does what she wants. :) Thanks for the tips, I appreciate it!
 

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Episode 5, thanks for your comments guys, really appreciate it.
Four Priests Brewery Episode 5
Oh the joys!
I remember setting up my wife's business many years ago then moving it when we bought premises (which needed full renovation...the full hit...floors, electrics,gas etc) .
Regarding your floor drainage....you'll need the whole unit floor resin sealed and maybe screeded/angled to catch the drain.
 
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And talk to the water people in good time about liquid waste permits - organic matter has a considerable oxygen demand if it breaks down in watercourses, so above a certain level it gets considered a biohazard.

Also it's a good idea to talk well in advance to Environmental Health about what they will need, they're usually pretty constructive (and they're more flexible if they trust you) but if you don't talk to them you find that they suddenly need the £6k version when you'd hoped to get away with the £1k version of something.
 
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And talk to the water people in good time about liquid waste permits - organic matter has a considerable oxygen demand if it breaks down in watercourses, so above a certain level it gets considered a biohazard.

Also it's a good idea to talk well in advance to Environmental Health about what they will need, they're usually pretty constructive (and they're more flexible if they trust you) but if you don't talk to them you find that they suddenly need the £6k version when you'd hoped to get away with the £1k version of something.
Cheers!

'Consent to discharge' has been requested from the water company
What a form that was to fill in! They want maps and detailed calculations of what you're chucking down the plughole.
Good job I'm dead gud at maffs.

I contacted Environmental Health the day I took the unit over and asked for them to please help me with some early input. I am happy to pay them for a pre-business visit that they offer on the website. I wanted to work with them before spending money on un-necessaries or not spending money on necessaries. They're too busy to talk to me. Just like planning who point blank refused to even have an informal chat on the phone about my plans. I spoke to a few local breweries that have been in business for years and they have never seen or heard from an EHO round here.

So I'm making decisions based on common sense. Do the food hygiene course, do the HACCP training and make the plan, don't put up a vent stack outside, don't have noisy cooler heat dumps, get proper pest control, first aid kits, fire extinguishers on contracts. Be invisible, inaudible and non-smelly. Everything stainless steel and scrupulously clean. Log everything. And wash your hands :)
 
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Oh the joys!
I remember setting up my wife's business many years ago then moving it when we bought premises (which needed full renovation...the full hit...floors, electrics,gas etc) .
Regarding your floor drainage....you'll need the whole unit floor resin sealed and maybe screeded/angled to catch the drain.
Yep, floor under much debate today here.
I'm running the drain at the low end now, with a little bund wall along the tin-edge of the building and the drain on the partition wall side. Got to wait for some warmer weather before we resin the floor. But it's in the plan and not as expensive as I thought. Cheers.
 

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I did a quickie video of todays activity too.

Hi m8, Our 30m2 brewery gully drain discharges into a 190l foul sump outside with a pump that can shift up to 50mm solids. https://www.drainstore.com/pumping-stations-pumps/mini-micro-small-sewage-pumping-station-for-extensions-and-garden-rooms-190-litre-capacity/ then into two 240l drums as settling tanks the overflow discharges to the drain to our septic as approved by SEPA This also allows me to limit debris blocking the drains as that is a big issue with commercial brewing friends. Been working for about a year now. The only issue is the tanks stink though so, lids would be better, but PH is 7-8 and I also pour it on the garden as liquid fertiliser for my hops.
 
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Hi m8, Our 30m2 brewery gully drain discharges into a 190l foul sump outside with a pump that can shift up to 50mm solids. Mini Micro Sewage Pumping Station - 610mm x 635mm 190 Litres - up to 10m head plus 2 year warranty on pump - Drainstore then into two 240l drums as settling tanks the overflow discharges to the drain to our septic as approved by SEPA This also allows me to limit debris blocking the drains as that is a big issue with commercial brewing friends. Been working for about a year now. The only issue is the tanks stink though so, lids would be better, but PH is 7-8 and I also pour it on the garden as liquid fertiliser for my hops.
That's very interesting - thanks!
I don't think we're going anyway else soon (2 years), but there are more lower cost rural options that I had taken off the table after some advice from the boffins at Severn Trent Water. It was along the lines of 'Don't do it unless you want a shower of sh*t over Cheshire'. I guess it's all about the pre treatment.
 

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Just catching up and subscribing to your channel too - thought I'd help with that demographic diversity you said was needed 😄 . What is so good about these videos is a sense of the effort, detail and time required before getting anywhere close to brewing. I am full of admiration for you and your family to take this on and build up a business literally from the ground up. Thank you for taking the time to document and share your progress and I'm really really hoping it all works out as planned 😍
 

Griff097

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Loads of good advice here, on the subject of business insurance, I have used Lloyd's for years and talking about drainage, make sure the landlord is on board before, cutting, scrabbling or resigning his floor, I am sure you have but worthy of a mention.
 

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