Railway engineers John Baldock, Pete Nash and Martin Roden decided in the autumn of 2005 that they wanted to set up a micro-brewery in Derby. Initially premises were found in the Little Chester area of the city, but it quickly became apparent that these would not be suitable for the intended set up. However the name of the brewery was taken from this area, the Roman fort built in Little Chester around AD52-57 was called Derventio Coritanorvm. The actual name Derventio is Celtic in Origin from the words dyr “Oak Tree” and venta “market settlement” and literally means “The Market in the Oaks”. This Roman theme has been reflected in the naming of the original beers produced by the brewery.
Suitable premises were found at the end of 2005 just outside Trusley, to the west of Derby city centre. In March 2006 a six barrel brewery was installed by Porter Brewing Company with the first brew off the plant being Centurion (4.3% Best Bitter). This was shortly followed by Venus (5% Pale Ale), Aquilifer (3.8% light bitter) and Caesar (6% premium bitter).
In December 2007 the brewery diversified from the cask market by purchasing bottling equipment, with Winter Solstice (5% Spiced Bitter), Venus and Caesar being bottled. Due to the growth in the bottled beer market a year later the brewery started contracting the bottling of the beers out to an outside firm due to the production volumes required. This lead to a change in the standard range of bottled beers produced, Cleopatra (5% Apricot Fruit Beer), Emperor’s Whim (4.2% Golden Hoppy Bitter) and Venus.
In September 2008 the brewery increased in size with the addition of the brewery tap facility. This enabled the brewery to offer an increased range of services including brewery tours, private parties, and our successful “Day with the Brewer” package.
During the five years of trading these beers, Vesuvius, Barbarian and Cleopatra have been recognised with the following awards. Vesuvius - Silver SIBA Midlands competition 2008, Beer of the Festival at Bulls Head Repton 2008, Barbarian - Bronze SIBA Midlands competition 2008, Cleopatra Bronze SIBA midland competition 2008 and 2009, Gold SIBA Midland competition 2010, Derby Camra Summer beer festival 2010 “Beer of the festival”. .