Christchurch developer and business owner Alasdair Cassels dies

Alasdair Cassels, owner and developer of The Tannery and founder of Cassels Brewing Company, has died.

A post on Cassels Brewing’s social media pages, posted on Monday, said the 71-year-old died on Saturday.

Talk to Thing earlier this year, Cassels said he hoped his name – and that of his world famous beer brand – would one day be as synonymous with the city of Christchurch as Guinness is with Dublin.

Cassels intended to double Cassels Brewing’s production capacity, open a brewery tour, and associate its brand with the Garden City.

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The brewery had come a long way since the February 2011 earthquake, when the newly opened premises lay in ruins.

They moved downtown for a few years, opening the CBD Bar and Pizzeria on Madras St until the building was purchased to make way for the city’s new stadium in 2016.

Cassels has invested heavily to rebuild his original space, The Tannery in Woolston, which he originally purchased in 1994, and opened a boutique shopping centre.

Cassels was born in Northern Ireland and moved with his family to England when he was 4, then to Wellington when he was 8.

He moved to Christchurch in the late 1960s to study engineering and made the city his home.

“Wellington was not my home…I loved Christchurch from the start,” he said Thing in an interview.

Property developer Alasdair Cassels ran Cassels Brewing and The Tannery shopping center in Christchurch.


Property developer Alasdair Cassels ran Cassels Brewing and The Tannery shopping center in Christchurch.

Cassels used his engineering knowledge to open Airless Spray Painting, a contract sign painting and sandblasting business he ran successfully for 25 years.

During this time he married Bridget and had five children: Maddie, Pippie, Zoe, Mia and Zak.

In 2008, he enlisted his son Zak and son-in-law Joe Shanks to turn his beer-making hobby into a full-time business venture, Cassels Brewing.

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