Friday, 22 April 2022

Bute Dock

I was intrigued by malt entries in the Hancock brewing records which were described as what I thought was Butebock. What a strange name for a maltster.

The mystery was solved when I was sent this paragraph about the William Hancock brewery in South Wales.

"The history of the W.H. Hancock Co Ltd. brewery operations in south Wales can be traced back to 1807 when William Hancock, snr built a brewery in Wiveliscombe, Somerset. By the 1870s, Hancocks were the largest brewers in the west of England. By this period Hancocks were also beginning to enter the south Wales market using an agent to distribute casked beer, brewed in Wiveliscombe, out of warehouses in West Bute Dock, Cardiff. In 1883, Hancocks began brewing beer in Cardiff when the firm acquired the North and Low's Bute Dock Brewery. Over the next decade Hancocks bought up a total of eight breweries across south Wales. The rapid growth of the south Wales brewing operation, prompted William Hancock, jnr to set up a separate company called the William Hancock and Co. Ltd, registered in 1887, by which time it had acquired 46 public houses in Cardiff and 31 in Newport. In 1968 the company was acquired by the Bass Charington Group and became part of Welsh Brewers Ltd."
South Glamorgan archives.

Obviously, the brewery in South Wales also had maltings. And these were supplying malt to the original Hancock brewery in Somerset.

With "Wilscombe" clearly meaning Wiveliscombe, it seems that Hancock were brewing mostly from their own malt in 1888. Did they continue to do so? It's difficult to sat, as the 1897 records only record the country where the barley was grown, not who malted it.

In case you're wondering, a lot of the barley was foreign Either Chilean or "Ushak".

1 comment:

Mike in NSW said...

The old Hancock's brewery near the railway station in Cardiff was in full swing when I lived there in the 1970s, when it was owned by Bass Charrington and their HB was a popular session beer.

Later they sold the brewery to Brains who continued to brew HB as a nod to the previous owners. However I believe the brand has been acquired by the Glamorgan Brewing Company.

I worked in the British Steel Corporation steelworks nearby and Bute East Dock was the source of water for the works. One of my weekly jobs was to lift and clean out the filter grates and remove the dead cats, beer cans and condoms.