Marstons has overhauled its beer range with a striking new look in a bid to attract a new generation of drinkers.

The Burton-based brewer is investing more than £1m over the next 12 months on new positioning, designed to be “100% Burton”, rooted in its past but with a keen eye on the future.

Lee Williams, marketing manager, said: “The harsh reality is that as a brewer we are not responding with the next generation of drinkers who are attracted to the authenticity and simplicity of the new beer scene. For them it’s real and it resonates.”

The range, which includes the iconic Marston’s Pedigree and the newly created 61 Deep, will boast new packaging and POS materials for the off-trade. It will also have a younger tone of voice to convey a compelling meaning behind each of the brand’s stories.

In addition to a new beer range, Marston’s Burton-on-Trent brewery will develop its new NPD pipeline in DE14, which is a new 600-pint innovation brewery inspired from the company’s postcode.

Williams told OLN: “Retailers will always be turned on by ‘new’, ‘different’ or ‘exclusive’ but you can’t just rotate for the sake of trying to be different. Retailers need innovation and compelling brands that engage with their customers and DE14 will be another string to our bow as we compete for space on shelf.”

And Patrick McGinty, head brewer at Marston’s, added: “These small-batch beers will turn up at national festivals and events and in bars a bit closer to home initially. Every member of the brewing team want to show what we can do on DE14 – as well inviting some special collaborators to join us too.”

Alongside this, a new consumer campaign, ‘From Burton With Love’ shot by Skins’ photographer Gavin Watson, will depict the brand’s proud Burton roots and brewing back-story using local people, locations and everyday situations.

“You could say this is just about us presenting ourselves in a new and honest way, as only a true Burton brewery can. We need the next generation to consider our beers, perhaps for the first time and discover that they love the taste too – just as generations before have done and still do.

“This is a great brewing town and Marston’s story is Burton’s story. It’s pretty compelling and this is us just telling how it is.”

The beers:

Marston has put the unique story about Burton being world-famous for its gypsum-rich water (used to brew its beers) at the front and centre of its new campaign, supported by the newly-created 61 Deep.

The beer, which will be launched early next year, is described as a refreshing 3.8% abv (4.1% abv in a bottle) fruity pale ale. The name 61 Deep simply refers to the depth of one of the brewery’s own fresh water wells.

The brewer has also renamed two beers in its range: Oyster Stout, the 4.5% abv beer, will become Pearl Jet; a name drawn from the stout’s style and its jet black colour. And inspired by the last ever railway engine at the brewery – a Saddle Tank No. 3581 – that is used to bring the hops and malts in and deliver the beer casks out, Burton bitter 3.8% abv has the new name of Saddle Tank.

Richard Westwood, managing director of Marston’s Brewing Company, said: “This is an important move for us and signifies a bold and fundamental change in the way we celebrate our heritage and location. It’s about banishing prejudices; being exciting and intriguing to new drinkers; and putting Burton front and centre.”