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Not Brentford


The following two paragraphs are from the British History Online website, which has published the Victoria County History of Middlesex: link to read more.

Most of New Brentford's malthouses were attached to inns, including ones at Catherine Wheel Yard in 1679, at the Royal Oak, Market Place, in 1702, and at White Horse Yard, off Market Place, in 1702 and 1738. The latter was disused in 1768 and many malthouses operated only briefly, since four were vacant in 1741 and three in 1750. Some families managed several malthouses: the Lowe family had three c. 1690-1705; the Banks family had one in 1743 and two, probably south of High Street, between 1772 and 1812, besides four at Old Brentford between 1790 and 1817; and the Jones family's coal, corn, and malting business, based on Catherine Wheel Yard until 1821, included at least two malthouses from 1779, one at Plough Yard and another at the Black Boy and Still inn. In 1791 Thomas Jullion, jeweller, and Thomas Whitbread ran distilling and rectifying businesses.

In 1790, besides the premises south of High Street, Roberts, Smith, and Harrington also had land to the north, where their principal distillery stood. Considerable by 1791, the distillery was the fourth largest in England in 1802. In 1817 it was sold to Messrs. Booth of Clerkenwell, who by 1819 had also acquired Moses Banks's four malthouses and other property from Smith and Harrington. Despite a major fire in 1837 the distillery in 1845 was described as one of the most complete in the world, producing nearly a million gallons of spirit every year. Sold in 1851 to Messrs. Haig, it was still operating on a large scale in 1855 but apparently had ceased production by 1859. From 1864 parts of the site were used for housing.


The site has several references to Moses Banks, including his will of 1824.

Research into The Hollows, at the eastern end of the High Street, shows a malthouse and premises were located on ground between the High Street and the Thames, in the 1840 tithe, owners William and Henry Jupp. The plot included a house which was occupied by maltsters (or similar) in the 1841 and 1851 censuses.

The OS Map scale 1:1056 (one inch to 88 feet), revised 1893, published 1894, shows four malthouses in Brentford:

  • between Thames Row and High Street, around 3,100 square feet or 290 sq metres (this is the one noted above from the tithe map ove5 50 years previously)
  • on the western side of Goat Wharf
  • on the eastern side of Ferry Lane (near to the one above, they shared the same area of ground)
  • the Bee Hive Brewery, on the south-western side of Catherine Wheel Yard, had a malthouse on site

This and other maps can be viewed for free on the Scottish National Library website.


Page published January 2021, updated January 2022