A THWAITES cask beer has taken a top award in a worldwide competition for the second year running after transferring production from Blackburn to its new Mellor Brook brewery.

Its 13 Guns India Pale Ale took the top prize in its category at the International Brewing Awards.

It won the class for cask ales of between 4.9 per cent and 6.9 per cent alcohol by volume (ABV).

It is now in the mix for the title of overall international beer to be revealed in May.

The competition earlier this month saw more than 850 different beers tasted by a judging panel of 40 professional brewers.

Thwaites has been brewing the American-style IPA 13 Guns for about five years.

They brew it in cask format to sell exclusively in their own pubs, hotels and inns.

Andrew Buchanan, Thwaites director of pubs and brewing, said: “We are delighted that 13 Guns won a gold award.

"This is the second time in a row that it has taken the top spot.

“It’s a really important competition for us, because the judging is done by experts in the industry and we were up against beers from around the world, so competition is fierce.

“It is particularly fantastic news for our brewers, as it is the first year they have entered this competition with beer brewed at our new brewery in Mellor Brook.

"We are incredibly proud of them.”

The competition had a range of categories, including lager, cask ale, dark beer, low-alcohol beer and speciality beer.

A total of 118 beers were judged in the cask ale category.

Judges have each voted for their favourite in each class and the overall winners will be named at a special event in London on May 1.

Head brewer Brian Yorston collected the award.