AN Ulverston brewer has won a coveted national award.

Paul Swann, 58, who owns Ulverston Brewing Company, brought home a bronze in the Bitters category for his beer Laughing Gravy.

Mr Swann, who works with his partner Anita Garnett, 58, was crowned the UK-wide award on the opening day of the Great British Beer Festival at Olympia London.

Mr Swann said: “To be awarded with bronze is great.

“There are around 25,000 beers in the UK, and this category was whittled down to 70 finalists.

“So to finish in the top three is incredible for us.”

The brewery serves a range of beers mainly to Cumbrian pubs, but has ventured to the North Wales area in the past.

Since the award, Mr Swann said he had been contacted about the bronze-winning bitter.

“I’ve had a lot of interest about Laughing Gravy from across the country, but I want to be patient at this time,” said Mr Swann.

The brewer started the company in December 2005 when he and his girlfriend were based in Lindal and had to use his car’s headlights to make beer with because they did not have a premises.

The two-person team, along with their part-time driver, eventually opened their current operation on Lightburn Road in 2010.

Miss Garnett said: "An overwhelming gratitude to all the people that had voted for us locally, nationally and the pub landlords and lady’s that have supported over the years.

"If it wasn’t for them we could not have achieved this award."

With Ulverston Beer Festival around the corner starting on September 5, Mr Swann revealed he will officially launch the brewery’s new beer, Ulversteiner.

“We’re bringing in a new 2000-litre brewing vessel to increase production and we’re launching our new Pilsner, the Ulversteiner at the festival.”