Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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Sale of the Eagle Brewery

Beer Bottling

On a Wednesday afternoon, 22nd August 1877, at Yelf’s Hotel, our townsman, Mr. W. H. Wallis, the well-known auctioneer, brought under the hammer the Eagle Brewery, and a number of public houses, including the good will of the business carried on by the firm of the late W. and H. Lake for upwards of 50 years.  Such a large sale as this had not been held in Ryde for some years, and as a consequence no small amount of interest was taken in the competition, which was occasionally very keen.

The greatest excitement was over Lot 1, which consisted of the Eagle Brewery, at Ryde, with all the plant and machinery as then in use, the double dwelling-house, bar and offices, in the High Street;.  The two dwelling-houses called Hill Villa and Stoke View, in Star Street, and the tap in Dore’s Row; all forming one block of property.  The Atlantic Tavern, in High Street, Ryde; the Partlands Hotel, Swanmore Road, Ryde, with piece of land adjoining; the Lake Huron, at Haylands, near Ryde; the Weeks’ Hotel, Weeks’ Road, Ryde; the Falls of Niagara, Oakfield, near Ryde; the Lake Superior, Elmfield, with piece of land adjoining; the Fleming Arms, Binstead; the Eagle Tavern, Ventnor; and the Robin Hood, beer-house, Brading, with piece of land adjoining.

The Eagle Brewery, Star Street, Ryde, c1972

All of the above properties were leasehold, for terms exceeding 900 years, excepting a portion of the last mentioned, which was freehold.

With Lot 1 was included the goodwill of the business of the said firm, and also the beneficial interest in the tenancies of the following houses, viz.:  the Wellington Tavern, Pier Street, Ryde; the Bedford Inn, St John’s Road Ryde; the Rose and Crown, High Street, Ryde; the Royal Albert, Warwick Street, Ryde; and the Commercial Inn, Sandown.

There were several London gentlemen who bid rather perseveringly, but they soon gave way to local men to whom the real worth of the concern was after all better known.  The lot was started at £10,000, and advanced by thousands till £17,000 was reached, when Mr. Thomas, the London broker who had been bidding gave in.  Mr. Urry, of Ventnor, bid £20,000 for a client, but dropped out after that sum was reached.  Mr. John Meader, jun., and Mr. E. Sweetmen were then left to bid against each other, but the lot was eventually knocked down to Mr. E. Sweetman for £20,900.  It would of course be more valuable to Mr. Sweetman than to anyone else.  The remaining part of the sale was not so interesting – when the brewery was disposed of the greater part of the business was finished.

(More about Mr. George Lake here)

(More about Mr. Edward Sweetman here)

Sources: IW Observer & RSHG Archive
Image: Roy Brinton Collection
Article: Ann Barrett