Robin Hood and Nelson are coming to the rescue of Bombardier Ale, in the latest ad campaign for the brand aimed at emphasising its English heritage.

Shakespeare and Henry VIII will also feature in the poster campaign, which launches on Monday across 2,000 sites. The campaign is the first element of a £4m marketing spend Wells & Young's has planned for the beer in 2008.

"Our Bombardier campaigns have always given a humorous identity and character to the beer," said Chris Lewis, director of marketing at the company. "This new work associates Bombardier with English icons, which conjure up amusing images."

The brewer intends to roll out the campaign further in the New Year and in the run-up to St George's Day in the spring. "Bombardier is the most English of ales and this work cements its position as the 'Drink of England'," said Lewis.