Gaol Ales Brewery

Gaol Ales was established at the Old Lock Up in Wirksworth in 2015 to brew traditional style ales for local pubs and events. It was started by Mark, Tim and Sam who believed it important to maintain the tradition of brewing in Wirksworth as well as providing a choice of locally brewed beer for residents and visitors in the town and surrounding area.

We are utilising the best of UK grown malt and hops to deliver great tasting beers with the minimum amount of transport. This has included using green hops grown less than a mile from the brewery.

Current Hops in use are : Challenger, Progress, Goldings, Pioneer, First Gold, Bramling Cross

With a 100l brew kit and 400l of fermenting tanks, and utilising my lean manufacturing skills we produce a range of 6 core beers and a number of seasonal and one off beers.

Currently brewing 3-4 time a week, both regular beers and one off specials which in the past have included green hoped beers, spiced beers and a special brew for the annual Wirksworth Festival.

Gaol Ales are available as guest ales in pubs around Derbyshire, and can regularly be found in:

Feather Star, Wirksworth, The Boat - Cromford, Old Oak - Horsley Woodhouse, Burnt Pig - Ilkenston, Tip Inn - Loscoe

Gaol Ales are also available in bottles, from a number of outlets in including, Dips Place - Wirsworth, Cromford Mill, Armitts - Matlock. We are always at at the Wirksworth Farmers Market on the 1st Saturday of the month where we enjoy chatting to our customers and providing tastings.

Photos : by Hippy Hippo Photography

2017 was a good year for our awards, our first ever competition was at Rail Ale in chesterfield where we received bronze for our Porter Black Maria. We then received Light Beer winner for Jailbreak Bitter at the Chesterfield CAMRA market beer festival.

Our Beers


Best Bitter 4.5% abv

A traditional copper coloured English bitter with a dry balanced taste and caramel notes. Best Light Beer at Chesterfield CAMRA Beer festival 2017

This is the first beer brewed, was was based on classic bitters that first introduced me to beer such as Wadworth 6X and Courage Directors.

Hops: Northdown, Goldings and Fuggles.


Pale Ale 4.0% ABV

A traditional style light ale.

This was the second beer we produced, maintaining the use of classic hops Goldings and Fuggles to produce a simple light ale. Fuggles hops were later replaced with the more disease resistance Progress as Fuggles was getting harder to source due to its susceptible to wilt.

Hops : Goldings, Progress

No Prisoners

India Pale Ale 5.7% ABV

A strong IPA style ale made from UK hops varieties to give a pleasant hoppy taste with a hint of spice and citrus flavours.

This was our fist heavy hopped beer using the modern UK hops Pioneer and Minstral. The Minstral have now been replace with First Gold hops which had similar characteristics and better availability.

Hops : Challenger, Pioneer, First Gold

Black Maria

Porter 4.1 % ABV

A traditional porter with a complex dark strong malt taste with hints of wood smoke. An initial bitterness followed by a smooth but complex taste. – Bronze Award at Rail Ale Beer Festival 2017.

This was our 1st dark beer and evolved from our 2016 Festival Ale. It was designed to follow the traditional porter style of a lower strength dark beer which porters could during during the day.

Hops : Pioneer, First Gold

Strong Arm of the Law

Brown Ale 5.1% abv

A dark strong ale, with roasted malts, hints of dark fruit, liquorice and chocolate.

This beer was designed to remember the dark strong ales from the past which are no longer available.

Hops: Challenger, Pioneer, First Gold

On Parole

Stout 5.1% ABV

A traditional stout with added coco nibs to give an extra chocolate bitterness to complement the roasted barley.

Building on the success of the first dark beer, Black Maria, this beer is the first beer to have additions during the boil in the form of coco nib to give a extra chocolate tastes with out the sweetness.

Hops: Challenger, Progress

Contact :

Gaol Ales Brewery

46 North End




Tel : 0798 1220734

e-mail :