Pagden Ltd

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Label courtesy Keith Osborne

R. & F. Pagden Ltd, Hope Brewery, Church Street, Epsom, Surrey.

Founded 1769 as Keeling's Brewery. Sold by William Cobbold, later of Colchester, to Trayton Peter Pagden on 23rd April 1824.

Acquired by Barclay, Perkins & Co. Ltd. September 1921, registered 1925 and was resold to Mellersh & Neale Ltd. June 1931 with 16 houses.

Brewery since demolished but brewer’s house remains.

List of Pagden Ltd public houses

PAGDENS HOPE BREWERY EPSOM - an unpublished essay by Richard Symonds ©

Richard Parker was a brewer in Church Street, Epsom, in 1711 - see The Residential Copyholds of Epsom by H L Lehmann published by Epsom and Ewell Borough Council in 1987 and available through Surrey Libraries LOC 333.3 particularly items 8B1 & 9C1, the latter taking one up to Trayton Peter Pagden and Stephen Pagden in 1847.

The siting of the Epsom Brewery in the forecourt of St Martin of Tours Church is curious but may be explained by the availability of a good water supply on the spring line - an earthbourne used to rise in the vicinity. A comprehensive list of deeds relating to the Church Road (and other sites) may be found for the Surrey History Centre's Collection 831. There could be some confusion between three generations of Robert Parkers and long leaseholders but I think that the succession of brewers on the site is as follows: - 1714 Robert Parker 1, 1734 Robert Parker 2, 1741 Robert Parker 3, c. 17.5.1724, with his widowed mother Sarah nee Cock (Robert Parker 3 was declared bankrupt in 1747 and there seems to have been some manoeuvring over title), 1766 Langley Brackenbury, already in occupation, 1800 Henry Webb, 1803 Partnership between Henry Webb and John Rutter, 1805 Rutter sole, 1811 William Cobbold and 1817 Trayton Peter Pagden and Peter Pagden formerly of Brighton, drapers.

A photograph of "Ye Old Brewery of Epsom" being demolished around 1922 used to be displayed in St Martin's church - part of the buildings survive as Church House.

Brewery dates back to 1769 when in the hands of the Keeling family; traded as T P & S Pagden in 1839 but by 1874 the style had been altered to R & F Pagden; business purchased by Barclay Perkins & Co Ltd in September 1921; incorporated as a limited company in 1925; resold to Mellersh & Neale Ltd of Reigate on 22nd June 1931.

Trade Mark: Epsom Grandstand

The following is extract from “A Brewing heritage: The Story of Brewing in Reigate & Redhill by Richard Symonds, pp. 27-28. ISBN 0-9540487-0-9. (2001) ©

On 22nd June 1931, the business of R. & F. Pagden Ltd., of Epsom, was acquired together with 14 pubs. The deeds to the Epsom brewery go back as far as 1769 when it was in the hands of the Keeling family who were also brewers in Clerkenwell, and the property was Copyhold of the Manor of Ebbisham [26]. Trayton and Stephen Pagden were listed in Piggot's Home Counties Directory for 1839, and an indenture dated 5th November 1841 exists [27], drawn up between an Edward Whitmore, a bankrupt, and Trayton Peter Pagden of Ebbisham, brewer:-

"...The said Edward Whitmore hereby demises, and covenants to the said Trayton Peter Pagden, the Copyhold messuage, coach house, wash house, brewhouse, stables, and garden of half an acre, abutting on Church Street, on the south western part; of land then late of Lord Baltimore, on the north eastern part; of Tom's Lane on the south eastern part; and of a copyhold tenement on the north western part....”

Sometime between 1855 and 1867, ownership passed from Trayton and Stephen Pagden to Robert and Frederick Pagden who conducted the business for many years thereafter. The famous Epsom racecourse grandstand became the trademark of the concern and was registered on 5th September, 1896, the address being given as R. & F. Pagden, Hope Brewery, Epsom (TM. 197. 737).

Pagdens was registered as a Private Company in July 1925, as reported in the Brewers' Journal for 15th August of that year, "...with a capital of £18,000 to adopt an agreement with E.Pagden, C.F.Cope, and F.W.Butler and to carry on the business of brewers and beer retailers in all its branches as formerly carried on by E.Pagden and others at Epsom as R.&F.Pagden, and that of maltsters, Hop Merchants, etc….”

There was no public issue of shares which were set at £1 each, and the directors were A.S. and L.K.Pagden, J.W.Neale, and C.F.Cope.

The subsequent acquisition of the concern by Mellersh & Neale in 1931 led to the substantial gain of a further 14 pubs, mostly in or around Epsom [28]. Among them were The Queen's Head, The Old King's Head, and the George, Epsom; The King's Head, Leatherhead; The Harrow, Cheam; The Bonesgate, Chessington; The Fox, Kingswood; and the Whyte Harte, Bletchingley, in which latter village it was reported that in the Parliamentary elections of 1832, the cobbles "...ran with beer….”

With the acquisition, Lionel King Pagden joined the Mellersh & Neale board of Directors, where he remained until 1938.

Entry in the Trade Mark Registry

Registration No  : 197,737
Description  : Epsom grandstand
Date of Application  : 05/09/1896
Used Prior to 1875?  : NO