Waverly TBS, the wines and spirits wholesale subsidiary of brewer Scottish and Newcastle, has incurred “significant asset losses” as a result of Sunday’s blast at an oil depot in Hemel Hempstead.

S&N said that although it had not been able to access Waverly TBS's main distribution centre, which is near the oil depot, all asset and subsequent trading losses would be fully recovered from its insurers.

The brewer added: “Our principal concern is to support our customers at this critical time. Already enormous efforts have been made to minimise the inevitable disruption.”