Regional brewer Wolverhampton & Dudley said off-trade sales of its Marston’s Pedigree beer have jumped 27% on the back of increased distribution to the multiples.

For the year to September 28, the maker of Bank's and Mansfield beer posted a pre-tax profit of £66.8m down from £67.8m in 2001. Sales dropped 11% to £505.6m from £565.4m last year.

During the year the brewer said it had returned £126m to investors, cut debt and sold one of its four breweries after avoiding last year’s hostile takeover bid by Pubmaster.