LATE NIGHT DRINKING HANGOVER FOR LOCAL BREWER

Fuller Smith and Turner P.L.C, the Chiswick based brewers and retailers announced huge write-offs recently after a venture into a chain of late-night bars went disastrously wrong.

The Broadwalk chain of late night bars had been performing significantly below expectations and since September 11th the hotel assets owned by the group have been seeing tough trading conditions.

Profits before exceptionals fell 11 per cent to 6.4m in the six months to September, while sales increased marginally from 63m to 65.3m. But after tax and a £3.8 million write-off on the disposal of the Broadwalk chain the company was loss-making.

Anthony Fuller, chairman, said: "Our brands, and the high quality of all of our continuing operations, stand us in good stead for the future. Despite the uncertain trading outlook for the time being, our longer term growth prospects remain strong."

The company issued a profit warning in September but the results still disappointed the market with the shares falling on the news. A locally based analyst described the results as "dismal" and said the company would have been better advised in "sticking to its knitting."

He added, "the brewing and pubs side performed really well with 21% profit growth from the former. The company has some great assets in terms of both brands and land. If it wasn't for the share-holding structure it would have a much higher rating"

The possibility of the company selling the Griffin brewery site was considered "unlikely" but he said "camembert isn't always made in Camembert and cheddar isn't always made in Cheddar so Chiswick bitter doesn't always need to be made in Chiswick."

The implementation of the Chiswick Mall CPZ is likely to give the company's employees some parking problems.

Fullers win Pub Company of the Year