The Sheffield bottle shop that has been five years in the making

A Sheffield bottle shop and off-license that opened earlier this year has been in the works for over five years.

Friday, 28th May 2021, 11:31 am

When pub owner James Birkett bought The Wellington on Henry Street, Shalesmoor in 2016, he also hoped to buy the adjoining land that included an end terrace property and space that once housed the Cask and Cutler brewery.

He says the owners of the land, who also owned the brewery and The Wellington when it was called the Cask and Cutler up until 2005, did not want to give it up because they hoped to move back to Sheffield from France and pursue a new venture with it.

But in October last year, James, who also owns Neepsend Brewery, finally had his request granted and he was sold the land.

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L-R: James Birkett; Jo Doyle and Carol Birkett

After spending months clearing out debris and fitting out the shop, with the help of wife Carol, he finally opened the Roscoe Road Liquor Store in March this year.

"It’s been a long time coming,” said James.

When the Roscoe Road Liquor Store first opened it acted as a brewery shop, selling Neepsend cans and kegs, but has subsequently expanded its offering and today boasts a wide selection of craft beers, real ales, wines and spirits.

James said: “If you want a drink and you can’t find something you like in here, I think there’s something wrong!”

The shop boasts a wide selection of craft beers, real ales, wines and spirits

In addition to stocking beers from British breweries such as Crouch Vale Brewery; Roosters; Anthology and Sheffield’s Lost Industry, customers can also pick up brews from international firms such as Mikkeller from Denmark; Moersleutel Craft Brewery from the Netherlands and Novo Brazil Brewing from California.

Every piece of furniture in the shop has been reclaimed and has its own history, from shelving units from the Blackpool area that date back to the 1930s, to the 1960s-era Nottingham Odeon Cinema clock which now bears the shop’s initials of RRLS, to the incredible antique till that dates back to 1898.

The historic furnishings help to give the shop an eclectic and homely feel.

James says the shop did a “phenomenal” trade when it first opened in March, and while sales have slowed slightly following the easing of restrictions and the reopening of pubs, the Roscoe Road Liquor Store still has plenty of customers.

The antique shop till, which dates back to 1898

As James’ brewery and family of pubs, which includes The Sheaf View in Heeley and The Blake in Upperthorpe, continue to get busier, staff member Jo Doyle is preparing to take over the day-to-day running of the shop.

Looking ahead, James says he hopes to add a seating area outside the shop where customers who have bought beer can “sit down and wait for their tram,” with the Shalesmoor tram stop conveniently located less than a minute away.

He also plans to apply for a licence to allow customers to drink on the premises, and has earmarked a section of the shop in which to build a bar if his application is granted by the council.

The shop is open Wednesday to Sunday, and for more information please visit: https://www.facebook.com/RoscoRoadLiquorStore/

The exterior of the Roscoe Road Liquor Store

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The reclaimed clock is from the Nottingham Odeon Cinema and dates back to the 1960s