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(L) Robinsons Brand manager John Robinson, (M) Oxfam Speaker Harriet Roberts and (R) Robinsons Head Brewer Martyn Weeks
(L-R) Brand Manager John Robinson, Harriett Roberts and Robinsons Head Brewer Martyne Weeks

Manchester’s multi-award winning band, elbow and Robinsons Brewery have raised thousands of pounds for the Oxfam East Africa appeal following the unprecedented success of their beer brand, ‘build a rocket boys!’.

The ale, created in partnership with Stockport brewers, Robinsons, was initially expected to be a limited edition release, but six months on from its September 2011 release and it is still going strong. Demand for the brew from the beer’s fans has seen sales of ‘build a rocket boys!’ go into orbit with 130,000 barrels and 24,000 bottles provided to Robinsons outlets and other accounts across the country, in less than half a year.

This is all great news for the Oxfam East Africa appeal. elbow and Robinsons have pledged to donate a significant percentage of all profits raised by the sale of ‘build a rocket boys!’ beer to Oxfam’s appeal – a share which currently stands at an impressive £11,000.

Robinsons Brand Manager, John Robinson, handed over a cheque to Oxfam representatives this week, a sum of money which will make a huge impact as millions of people in East Africa continue to face desperate food shortages following the worst drought in 60 years.

Across the region, Oxfam's emergency response is reaching 2.9 million people, providing clean water, seeds and tools, and the repairing of infrastructure.

The food crisis has shown signs of improvement in recent months. Three of the worst affected areas in Somalia have now been downgraded from famine zones, while rain in parts of Kenya and Ethiopia are leading to harvests being reaped and more pasture available for livestock.

There is still work to be done, and Oxfam is beginning to work with communities to develop more long-term solutions for affected populations.With Robinsons and elbow’s continued support, every bottle and pint of ‘build a rocket boys!’ beer is helping the people of Somalia, Kenya and Ethiopia.

John Robinson explains: “There is a great feel good factor to raising this amount of money for such a worthwhile course. This beer will quite literally save lives and help thousands of people. Let’s hope the sales continue throughout the rest of the year in order to hand over another sizeable cheque in six months time.

Harriett Roberts, speaking on behalf of Oxfam, said: "Oxfam are so grateful for the amazing 'build a rocket boys!' beer and for the support of Robinsons and elbow. It's fantastic to have such a fun and innovative fundraising initiative that not only celebrates great local music, but also raises vital money for the people of East Africa. Thank you to everyone who has supported by buying a bottle of 'build a rocket boys!’."

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