Workers at Scottish & Newcastle's brewery in Tadcaster, North Yorkshire, are likely to know by the end of next month the impact on jobs of the UK brewer's sale of its Courage ales portfolio.

The UK's largest brewer has started talks with around 20 employees who could be affected by the sale, which was announced earlier this month.

Two weeks ago, S&N sold the rights to the Courage portfolio to regional brewer Wells & Young for an undisclosed sum. Under the deal, S&N will keep a minority stake in Courage Brands, a venture set up to handle the Courage business.

A spokesman for S&N's UK arm said talks are "ongoing". The brewer would have "a much clearer idea" of the impact on jobs by the end of February, the spokesman said.

He added that the affected employees would be given the chance to relocate to the Wells & Young brewery in Bedford.

S&N employs around 200 workers at its Tadcaster site. Earlier this month, the brewer announced that all of the bottling for flagship brand Newcastle Brown Ale would move to Tadcaster following the closure of its bottling operations in Gateshead.