Whitbread & Co. Ltd
Whitbread & Co. Ltd, Chiswell Street, London EC1
Founded in 1742. Registered in July 1889.
Brewing ceased at Chiswell Street in 1976. Many buildings remain. The site has been converted to other uses, including a posh hotel. The Porter Tun Room is now a conference centre.
The company ceased brewing and now concentrates on its leisure business including hotels, restaurants and coffee shops.
Takeover and closure trail:
- H & V Nicholl Ltd, Anchor Brewery, London SE13 were acquired in 1891. Converted into a bottling and distribution centre.
- In 1896, they acquired Gripper Brothers of the Bell Brewery, Tottenham, and used it as a regional depot until the mid 1980s.
- Matthews & Canning of Chelsea amalgamated with Whitbread in 1899 and closed in 1907.
- They acquired part of the tied estate of the Notting Hill Brewery Co Ltd in 1920 when that company ceased brewing.
- Forest Hill Brewery Co Ltd of Lewisham were acquired in 1924.
- In 1927, they acquired Frederick Leney & Sons Ltd, Phoenix Brewery, Wateringbury with 156 public houses.
- Jude, Hanbury & Co. Ltd, Ash & Co and Mackeson & Co Ltd were acquired in 1929. The Mackeson brewery in Hythe survived until 1968, brewing a famous sweet stout.
- Flitton's Brewery Ltd, Stotfold Brewery, Bedfordshire, was acquired in June 1948 and was closed.
- In 1951, Amey's Brewery Ltd of Petersfield, was acquired with 20 public houses and 12 off-licences and brewing ceased.
- In 1953, they acquired Kirkstall Brewery Co Ltd of Leeds and closed the brewery in January 1983.
- Dale & Co Ltd of Cambridge, Cambridgeshire were acquired in 1954 and brewing ceased there in 1958.
- In 1961, they acquired Flowers Breweries Ltd (Luton and Stratford-upon-Avon). The Stratford brewery closed in 1968 and the Luton brewery (ex J W Green) in 1969.
- Tennant Brothers Ltd of Sheffield were acquired in 1961 with 700 tied houses to become Whitbread East Pennines. Whitbreads closed the brewery in 1993.
- They acquired John R Fielder & Son Ltd, Titchfield, Hampshire in March 1961 with 12 tied houses.
- Norman & Pring Ltd of Exeter were acquired in April 1962 with 102 tied houses and Starkey, Knight & Ford Ltd in 1962 with 400 tied houses.
- West Country Breweries Ltd, Cheltenham were acquired in 1963 and became known as Whitbread Flowers Ltd.
- In October 1963, they acquired J. Nimmo & Sons Ltd of Castle Eden with 202 tied houses, although they later sold the brewery back as a management buy-out.
- In 1964, they acquired Dutton's Blackburn Brewery Ltd with 784 tied houses. Name changed to Dutton’s Brewery Ltd in 1966 and was operated as Whitbread West Pennines Ltd until closed in 1978.
- Lacon & Co. Ltd, Falcon Brewery, Great Yarmouth was acquired in December 1965 with 354 public houses. The brewery was closed in 1968.
- Rhymney Breweries Ltd were acquired in January 1966. Closed in 1978.
- They acquired James Thompson & Co Ltd of Barrow-in-Furness in 1966 with 47 public houses.
- Evan Evans Bevan Ltd's Vale of Neath Brewery was acquired in 1967 and brewing ceased in May 1972.
- In September 1967, they acquired Fremlins Ltd of Maidstone with 714 public houses. Brewery closed October 1972 but used as a depot until 2003.
- In October 1967, Isaac Tucker & Co. Ltd, Turk's Head Brewery, Gateshead was acquired with 50 tied houses.
- Threlfall’s Chesters Ltd (Threlfall & Co Ltd) of Liverpool and Salford were acquired in 1967 with 800 licensed houses.
- Archibald Campbell, Hope & King Ltd of Edinburgh were acquired in 1967. Brewing ceased there in 1970.
- Lonsdale & Adshead Ltd's Macclesfield Brewery was acquired by Ind Coope Ltd in 1950. Brewery offered for sale in 1967 and was bought by Whitbreads. Depot later closed and demolished.
- In January 1968, Cobb & Co. of Margate were acquired with 40 public houses. The brewery closed in October 1968 and was demolished in July 1971.
- Gardner & Co. Ltd of Ash, and Tomson & Wotton Ltd of Ramsgate were acquired by Whitbread in June 1968.
- They acquired Bentley's Yorkshire Breweries Ltd of Woodlesford in August 1968 with 380 houses and brewing ceased there in October 1972.
- Richard Whitaker & Sons Ltd of Halifax was absorbed in September 1968 with 135 tied houses. Brewing ceased early in 1969.
- John Young & Co, Ladywell Brewery, Fisherrow, were acquired in November 1968 with 11 tied houses and brewing ceased on 31st January 1969.
- Strong & Co Ltd of Romsey were acquired in 1969 with 940 public houses. Brewing ceased there in 1981. This includes Strongs' subsidiary breweries: Wethered & Sons Ltd (brewing ceased 1988) and Mew, Langton & Co. Ltd (brewing ceased 1969).
- They acquired Brickwoods Ltd, Portsmouth Brewery in 1971 with 675 public houses. Brewing ceased there in 1983 and the brewery was demolished in 1990.
- Boddington's Breweries Ltd of Manchester were acquired in 1989.
The company constructed three major green-field breweries:
- Whitbread Luton in 1969
- Whitbread West Pennines Ltd at Samlesbury, Lancashire in 1972
- Whitbread Magor in South Wales in 1979
The brewery features in The Noted Breweries of Great Britain and Ireland by Alfred Barnard published 1890.
The brewery was in the fore front of steam technology and ordered their first engine in 1784. For more information:- []
An assortment of images of the brewery
An assortment of images of the brewery stables
An assortment of images of the brewery bottling stores
The Chiswell Street brewery in 2011. Courtesy Steve Peck