THE beer has started flowing at the region’s newest microbrewery.

Nine-gallon casks of craft ales from the Sonnet 43 Brew House, next to the Kicking Cuddy pub, in Coxhoe, County Durham, are headed for bars and pubs across the region.

Production currently stands at around 20 brewers’ barrels per week of Steam Beer (ABV 3.8 per cent), India Pale Ale (4.4 per cent), Brown Ale (4.7 per cent) and American Pale Ale (5.4 per cent).

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The brewery is named in honour Sonnet 43, which was penned by the lovestruck 19th Century poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning who was born and raised at nearby Coxhoe Hall and which begins: “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.”

Owner Mark Hard, managing director of Tavistock Leisure, has spent £200,000 creating the brewery.

He said: “I hope that the development of the Sonnet 43 Brew House will mark the start of a new venture for me which will eventually include microbreweries and traditional brew pubs across the North-East.”