Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Morland and Company, brewers of Abingdon

1711 John Morland, a farmer, set up a brewery at West Ilsley in Berkshire

1860s Morland acquired the Abbey Brewery in Abingdon and then the Eagle Brewery also in Abingdon.

1880 operations transferred from West Ilsley to Abingdon.

1885 limited company

1889 took over O. B. Saxby & Co of Stert Street, Abingdon and Field & Sons Brewery in Shillingford.

1890s Thomas Skurray joined the business and was responsible for many initiatives and expansion.

1899 Acquired the Angel Brewery of Ferguson and Sons in Reading

Acquired the Wantage Brewery

1927 Acquired Dymore-Brown and Sons of Queens Road, Reading, and Hewett and Co of Shurlock Row near Maidenhead

1928 Acquired The Tower Steam Brewery together with their public houses in and around Abingdon.

1944 Morland became a public limited company, Morland and Co Ltd; all the previous brewery names were dropped except for Ferguson's Ltd, which was retained for the wine and spirits business.[

c.1974 Old Speckled Hen beer is rumoured to have been first brewed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the MG car factory. Named after an old MG car which was used as the factory run around which was parked outside the paint shop where it would get spattered in paint and so became known as the ‘Owld Speckl’d Un’. This became ‘Old Speckled Hen’ when the beer was unveiled.

1997 Morland and Co took over Ruddles Brewery. Morlands moved Ruddles production to Abingdon

1999 Acquired by Greene King

2000 Brewery closed

See Also


Sources of Information

  • Old Speckled Hen [1]
  • Wikipedia [2]