Thatchers Cider has appointed Rupert Thompson as a non-executive director in the UK.

With around 30 years experience in the brewing industry, Thompson was previously brand director for Carling, and has also developed the bottled ale Old Speckled Hen for regional brewer Morland, the company said yesterday (21 September).

Managing director Martin Thatcher said: "There are not many people who can offer such impressive industry knowledge as Rupert. We are delighted that he has agreed to join us at Thatchers."

In 2000, Thompson set up Refresh UK which took over the Ushers beer brands, and subsequently the Wychwood Brewery and the Brakspear brands. It went on to become a supplier of speciality premium ales in the UK. After selling Refresh UK to Marstons, Rupert established his own independent consultancy.

Thatcher added: "We are extremely fortunate to benefit from the knowledge and experience that Rupert brings. With consumers continuing to look for innovative and exciting products, like the new Thatchers Katy Rosé, and with some further interesting ideas in the pipeline, we are looking forward to developing our portfolio of premium ciders for both the on and off trades."

Back in March, Thatchers rolled out pink cider Katy into the UK market. Katy Rosé is made from English Katy apples and has a lower ABV (5.4%) than the traditional Thatchers Katy at 7.4%.