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The Excise Service in Brentford

Whilst researching the career of Nathan Woodroofe, who was the Excise Collector for the Surrey Collection, and who was based in Old Brentford in the 1820s and 1830s, I found out other information that it seems a shame not to include.

Other pages which may be of interest: the life and work of Nathan Woodroofe and the Excise Service structure, career path and sources.

Surrey Collection

The Excise Office was responsible for collecting duty on goods manufactured or processed in the UK and the country was divided up into a number of Collections for this purpose. Brentford, although in Middlesex, was part of the Surrey Collection and was headed by the Collector.

In 1840 the Surrey Collection included the towns of Staines Chertsey Woking Kingston Southwark Bromley Croydon Ewell and Brentford. It was subdivided into six Districts: Battersea, Brentford, Chertsey, Croydon, Kensington and Kingston. Each District was further divided into a number of Divisions and Rides.

Brentford had 4 Divisions and 2 Rides in 1840, the former could be covered on foot, the latter required a horse.

In 1852 Brentford District had 5 Divisions (Strand on the Green was the 6th) and the Brentford District Supervisor was responsible for collection of excise duty from 1 distiller, 14 maltsters, 1 soapmaker, 5 brewers and 6 'Other growing Duties'.

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Names of Excise Officers in Brentford

The Surrey Collector was based at Brentford during the latter part of the 18th Century and into the mid 19th Century (and may have been there much earlier - the records I have used only go back to the 1790s).

By 1866 the Surrey Collection had been re-organised and a Middlesex Collection created: I assume this included Brentford.

The names that follow are in chronological sequence and are not a complete list of all those who worked in the Excise service - they are just those that I came across in the course of research.

Working

Edward Edwards, Collector, 1797 (Royal Kalendar)
James Hiscutt, Collector, 1813, 1817-1823 (Royal Kalendar and original research)
Thomas Matthews, Star & Garter (& Excise Office), Kew Bridge (1826 Pigot Directory)
William Todhunter, Collector, 1825 - 1828 (Royal Kalendar)
Nathan Woodroofe, Collector, 1828 - 1840 (Royal Kalendar and original research)
William Mountford, Excise Officer, 1841 (Census, 294 High Street)
Joseph Boraugh, Excise Officer, 1841 (Census, 47 High Street)
George Clements, Collector, 1852 (Excise Manual, Joseph Bateman)
Alfred Avery, Excise Officer, 1855 (PO directory, Drum Lane)
Samuel Parsons, Collector Middlesex Collection, 1866 (Royal Kalendar)
William Reeves, Exciseman, 1881 (Census, 3 Walnut Tree Place, age 66, born Cambridge)
John Laycock, Surveyor of Customs & Excise for Brentford, 1911 & 1913 (Trade directories, 214 High Street)
Francis Kelly, Customs & Excise Officer for Brentford & Hanwell, 1911(Trade directory, 214 High Street), Customs & Excise old age pensions & national health insurance for Brentford & Hanwell, 1913 & 1914 (Trade directories, 214 High Street)
L C Glass, Surveyor of Customs & Excise for Brentford District, 1928 (Trade Directory, 214 High Street)
Bertram Munn, Customs & Excise for Brentford, Ealing & Isleworth, 1928 (Trade Directory, 214 High Street)

Retired

These are in surname sequence
Thomas Dredge, Pensioner Excise, 1851 (Census, 261 High Street); Thomas Dredge, Excise on the Superannuation, 1861 (Census, 261 High Street)
Benjamin Gosling, Superannuated Excise Officer, 1851 (Census, 396 High Street); Benjamin Gossling, Superannuated Officer of Excise, 1861 (Census, 1 Autumnal? Cottage Orchard Road, Brentford, age 83, born Harbridge Hampshire)

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Page published August 2010; updated September 2012