Researching Brewery and Publican Ancestors

Simon Fowler, BHS member, former editor of various family history magazines and employee at The National Archives (TNA) for many years, tells me he has unearthed some nice new material relating to our passion and will be giving a talk on the subject at:

The National Archives, Kew TW9 4DU details at Date: 13 October 2-3pm. Free. “You are supposed to get a ticket on the day, but I can’t imagine it will be over-subscribed, so just turn up.”

I copy the flyer below and hope to see you there


“Brewers and Barmaids”: Researching Brewery and Publican Ancestors

There is perhaps nothing more English than the public house. Once every village had an alehouse, while towns offered licensed premises to suit every taste and pocket. The trade employed large numbers of workers in a variety of roles. In 1901 the number of licensees alone peaked at more than 100,000. As a result many of us have ancestors who worked behind the bar or made the beer which was enjoyed by all social classes and travelled around the world. Using material at The National Archives and county record offices this talk will tell the story of Britain’s pubs and breweries and describe the key sources which can be used to trace ancestors who ran pubs or worked in breweries.

Simon Fowler has worked at The National Archives on and off for over thirty years and is now a freelance writer and historian and recently wrote a guide to pub and brewery records for the Family History Partnership. At present he is organising the annual conference of the Pub History Society which will take place on 26 November.

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