James Young, deputy chairman and director of production and distribution at Young's Brewery, is to retire from his post in March.

He has worked at the brewery for more than 30 years, been on the board since 1984 and has been deputy chairman since 1989.

He has also been heavily involved in the transfer of Young's brewing activities from Wandsworth to its Wells & Young's joint venture with Charles Wells in Bedford.

"The completion of this has led James to decide now is the time to retire," said chairman, Chris Sandland. The board said a new deputy chairman would be appointed in due course.