The figures come from the Campaign for Real Ale, which has just published the 2012 edition of its Good Beer Guide.
Editor Roger Protz said: “To see one shy of 100 new brewers coming on stream in Britain in just 12 months is totally unprecedented, particularly during a time of economic downturn.
“Even for the most dedicated real ale drinker, the rate of new commercial breweries is becoming almost impossible to keep up with. This truly is a golden era for British brewing, and it’s little wonder more consumers than ever are getting acquainted with real ale in the face of so much choice.”
Camra reports that in Cheshire alone 12 new breweries started out in the past year, bringing the total to 26. Yorkshire now has 98 breweries.