John Lovibond & Sons History
Many thanks to FPF Edwards for supplying his book, "Lovibonds Family Brewers and Wine Merchants a History", published February 1997.
Today the Lovibond name is known throughout the brewing and food science industry because of the invention of the Tintometer, by Joseph Williams Lovibond.
The Tintometer uses a series of coloured glass slides to measure and classify colours in liquids. The system was widely adopted across a large number of industries, including brewing.
Today, brewers around the world still classify the colour of their beer and buy their malt using the Lovibonds colour scale.
||John Locke Lovibond started brewing beer in the west country.
||Brewing moved to Greenwich with the purchase of the Nag's Head Brewery on Bridge Street. At this time the majority of the business was with public houses and direct to private households.
||New brewery built on Greenwich High Road from land purchased from the London and Greenwich Railway.
||Partnership set up between four sons of John Locke Sr., namely John Locke Jr., Joseph Williams, Edward and Thomas Watson Lovibond, trading as John Lovibond & Sons, Greenwich and Joseph Williams Lovibond, Salisbury. Business started to expand by increasing the number of 'depots'. These 'depots' acted partly as shops but were essentially stores from which deliveries were made locally, thus expanding the area of coverage.
||Limited company formed, trading as John Lovibond & Sons Ltd.
||Frederick Williams Lovibonds was made the manager at the Cannon Brewery, Fulham - though closed in 1909.
||The list of branches increases to 35 with the purchase of Ives Bros in Henley-on-Thames.
||Number of shops increased to 71.
||Greenwich site damaged by doodle bug bombs as well as several other London shops, with the brewery out of operation for a short period of time.
||Traditional family brewing under pressure by large brewing companies. Lovibonds brew its last batch of beer, the company choosing to focus on being a quality wine merchant and retooled the business accordingly.
||Lovibonds were purchased by Wine Ways Supermarkets Ltd - a wholly owned subsidiary of London Rubber Co. (makers of Durex condoms). At the time of purchase there were 104 shops in the Lovibond portfolio.
||The Greenwich premises were closed and sold to John Davy & Co.
||Lovibonds Brewery Ltd formed in Henley-on-Thames.
Find out more about the present-day Lovibonds.
Do you have a story?
We have been very fortunate to have been contacted by many that recall the Lovibonds brand, here in the Henley area and further afield. If you have a Lovibonds story, please don't hesitate to send us an email.
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Joseph Williams Lovibond, inventor of the Tintometer
A bottle top showing the Lovibonds logo
John Lovibond & Sons sign - one of the artefacts on display at the present-day Lovibonds Brewery
A Lovibonds delivery van arriving at the Greenwich Brewery Yard
Lovibonds Greenwich Site damaged by bombs during WWII