Summary of a Research Paper by Martin Ellis, May 2016 (updated July 2017)
The Leamington Brewery was founded in 1839 after, London textile merchant, Stephen Lewis purchased a block of land in Lillington Avenue from Thomas George Skipwith, Glynne Welby and Christopher Wise. Stephen Lewis’ original partners were Everitt Allenby and a Mr. Sandeman, and in December 1839 the Leamington Spa Courier announced the opening of ‘Lewis’s New Brewery, Leamington – Lewis, Everitt & Co.
In July 1840 Robert Walton was appointed as the company agent and an office opened at 20, Bedford Street. By 1841 the brewery was trading as Lewis, Everitt & Sandeman [Ale & Porter Brewery], but following Sandeman’s departure in 1842 the company briefly reverted to Lewis, Everitt & Co – pending the appointment of John Haddon, who took over the running of the business as Lewis, Haddon & Allenby in 1843.
In January 1866 the brewery advertised as Lewis, Haddon & Co, indicating that Everitt Allenby had already retired. In 1868, William Wells Ridley joined the company and a new partnership – Lewis, Haddon & Ridley – was formed. When Stephen Lewis died in 1871 his two sons inherited his share of the business and one of them, Arthur James Lewis, took his father’s place in the partnership.
Following John Haddon’s death in September 1875, Lewis & Ridley would continue to run the business until the partnership was dissolved in 1885. In December 1884, the Leamington Spa Courier had announced the forthcoming sale of the brewery and in June 1885 it was purchased by Morton Peto Lucas, Frederick Murray Lucas, Arthur Herbert Blackwell and Herbert Robert Arkwright.
The new partnership was Lucas, Blackwell & Arkwright and by 1891 the brewery was producing 15 different brews. In 1896 it was re-configured and a new four storey high, 60 quarter plant was built and installed – also in 1896 the company acquired Dutton & Hudson’s Warwick Brewery [Wallace Street, Saltisford] and transferred its production to Leamington.
Most likely during the third quarter of 1896, the business name was changed to Lucas & Co and in July 1897 Lucas & Co Ltd was registered to acquire the company’s properties and assets. Also in July 1897, the directors held their first meeting in London, when Morton Peto Lucas took the chair alongside Percy Allen Leaf and Gordon Lyon Bland. In October 1928 it was reported that Ansells Brewery Ltd had purchased Lucas & Co Ltd but that the ‘finer points’ were still being negotiated. The sale was finalised in November 1928 and the registered office moved to Aston Brewery, Park Road, Aston [Birmingham]. Leamington Brewery ceased operation in 1934 and was sold by auction in July 1934 – conditional on the premises not being used to brew beer products or distil spirits. It was purchased by estate agents acting on behalf of the [then] ‘Borough of Royal Leamington Spa’ who considered the buildings ideal for use as a town depot. In January 1985 Leamington’s town planners decided that the brewery – still being used as a Warwick District Council depot – would be redeveloped residential, and its building were subsequently converted into apartments; the development is now known as ‘The Maltings’.
An extended version of this Research Paper is available CLICK HERE.
Martin Ellis – May 2016 [updated: July, 2017]
Acknowledgements. Please refer to the Research Paper of the ‘Leamington Brewery’ for a listing of acknowledgements and research sources.