Building on proud tradition stretching back 900 years
THE Joule's story began in Stone in the 12th century, when Augustinian monks started producing pale ale in their priory.
According to tradition, the monks blessed each barrel and marked it with a cross to identify its superior quality.
Although brewing at the priory ended with the Dissolution of the Monasteries, beer production in the town continued.
In the 18th century Francis Joule moved to Stone from Derbyshire and soon became a successful brewer.
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In 1780 he established the expansive Joule's brewery in the centre of Stone, alongside the Trent and Mersey Canal.
Francis's son John took over the business in 1813, and the company went from strength to strength and was famed for its pale ale.
John, an early pioneer of branding, adopted the Red Cross symbol as a way of building on the tradition of the Augustinian monks.
This brand, the sixth oldest beer mark in the world, became known throughout the globe, as Joule's ales became popular across Europe and America.
But this success ended in 1974, after Joule's was taken over by Bass. Production in Stone ceased and the brewery was demolished.
For 36 years the brand lay dormant until Steve Nuttall and his wife Chrissie bought it from Coors, which had since taken over Bass.
The couple established a new brewery behind the Red Lion in Market Drayton, and started producing Joule's pale ale once more.The resurrected Joule's now runs 17 pubs including the Glebe in Stoke and the Leopard in Nantwich.