managing director Brian Hickman has left the company
and his role is being taken over by his predecessor, Paul Baker, who is now a non-executive director of the brewery.
The brewery said Hickman left "by virtue of a mutual agreement between both parties". "The company thanks him for what he has done in the past and gives him their very best wishes for the future," Thwaites said in a statement.
A former master brewer, Hickman had been in the role for less than two years. He headed the company as it celebrated its bicentennial this year, which saw it grow pre-tax profits by 9.5 per cent to some ú12.7 million.
Earlier this year Hickman spoke out against the off-trade,
criticising supermarkets for loss-leading lager deals and backing suggestions that the off-trade should be banned from advertising alcohol deals outside shops. He also condemned the amount of packaging used for take-home drinks compared
"Supermarkets regularly hinge advertising campaigns on too-good-to-be-true price offers, and consumption is impossible to regulate as the drink immediately leaves the premises," he said. "If price could not be used as the advertised reason to visit, then supermarkets would charge a realistic market rate for the products, meaning people would be more likely to purchase for quality and enjoyment purposes as opposed to the potential binge implications."