I've always imagined Cannon as a relatively small brewery. I may have to review that after seeing how profitable they were. During the 1920's, their profits were larger than Whitbread's of Barclay Perkins, who brewed around 500,000 and 300,000 barrels respectively. Either they were making a huge profit per barrel, or they were brewing a couple of hundred thousand barrels a year. I'd be inclined to go for the latter.
In the table below I've fiddled slightly with the dividend percentage. This is why:
"Brewery Capital Repaid.
Here is further evidence of the prosperity of the brewery trade. In 1910 the capital of the Cannon Brewery was written down from £3,000,000 to £2,350,000, and now it is proposed to restore to the former figure by the capitalisation £650,000 of undivided profit. This will give holders of the Preferred Ordinary one new £2 10s for every share held, and holders of the £25 Deferred three new £25 shares for each Deferred share held. Profits at £420,930 compare with £352,170, and the available balance is £605,533, against £509,712. The Deferred shares, which are privately held, receive a dividend and bonus of 36 per cent., tax free — the same as for each of the previous four years."
Aberdeen Journal - Thursday 21 March 1929, page 13.
The official percentages given from 1919 to 1928 are on the reduced value of the shares, which was 25% of their original value. I've given then as this figure divided before, so that it reflects the original share capital. It makes the figures clearer.
|Cannon Brewery profits and dividends|
|Year||net profit||brought in||carried forward||dividend Ordinary shares||to reserve||reserve fund|
|Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer - Thursday 09 February 1905, page 10.|
|Gloucester Citizen - Saturday 13 March 1920, page 7.|
|Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer - Tuesday 22 March 1921, page 9.|
|Dundee Courier - Wednesday 22 March 1922, page 2.|
|Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer - Wednesday 14 March 1923, page 11.|
|Dundee Courier - Friday 21 March 1924, page 2.|
|Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer - Tuesday 24 March 1925, page 14.|
|Dundee Courier - Thursday 01 April 1926, page 2.|
|Aberdeen Journal - Wednesday 23 March 1927, page 11.|
|Aberdeen Journal - Wednesday 21 March 1928, page 11.|
|Aberdeen Journal - Thursday 21 March 1929, page 13.|
|Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer - Wednesday 19 March 1930, page 15.|
|Western Morning News - Saturday 28 February 1931, page 11.|
The owners obviously decided to cash in, because in 1930 Cannon Brewery was sold to Taylor Walker. I can see why they'd have been keen. The place was a gold mine. It must have remained profitable because it didn't finally close until 1955, decades after the takeover*.
That's enough financial crap. On with Cannon's Stout. It's a bit weak for an 8d Stout (9d until 1923), coming in about 4 points below the overall average of 1053, and 0.5% below average ABV. How did it score? Take a look:
|Cannon Brewery Stout quality 1924|
|Whitbread Gravity book held at the London Metropolitan Archives, document number LMA/4453/D/02/001|
Not much I can say about such a small sample size. One pretty good one, the other pretty crap. They perfectly cancel each other out, leaving an average score of zero. Which was typical of the overall standard of Cannon Stout? Was it the good one or the bad one.
Time-travelling advice: plumping for Cannon Stout is at your own risk. I can't make any further recommendation.
* "A Century of British Brewers Plus" by Norman Barber, 2005, page 83.