Whitakers “Cock o’ the North” Brewery Halifax

Whitakers “Cock o’ the North” Brewery Halifax.

Whitaker’s brewery was founded in 1848 and took its name from Richard Whitaker. Richard was born in 1806, in Lancashire, and moved to Yorkshire in 1848. He purchased a cottage in Halifax, and in 1849 started brewing there, his cottage which was eventually called “The Stannary Inn”, this would be the equivalent of today’s brew pub, and this was allowed by the 1830 Beer Act which allowed a householder, on payment of two guineas excise fee, to sell beer. Richard was a successful businessman and in ten years he was able purchase a nearby patch of land called the Seedlings, or Neddy Haigh’s Field on which he built his new brewery. This started production in 1867 and was later to be called the “Cock ‘o the North” brewery, and was situated at 36 Corporation Street, Halifax.

Another branch of the family, headed by George Bedford Whitaker, brewed at Grove Brewery, at Brearley, Midgley, between 1850 and 1906 at which point the branch merged with the main operation in Halifax, this is why there were so many Whitaker inns along the Calder Valley to Todmorden.

Richard died in 1871 and the business was taken over by his sons under whose ownership the business continued to thrive, by 1889 expansion had increased and the inventory was to include malting’s and stabling for 40 dray horses, the main Kilns were added when the brewery was enlarged in 1893. Whitaker’s were registered as a company on 28th April 1890 and by 1898 production exceeded 44,000 barrels per year.

In 1959 Whitaker’s joined the Whitbread “umbrella”. This arrangement was attractive to many breweries who for some reason or other found the going difficult. The agreement meant that Whitbread beers were stocked alongside Whitaker’s in all their pubs, also two Whitbread directors joined the Whitaker’s board.

In August 1968, Whitaker’s planned to merge with Whitbread at their own request, and production at the Corporation Street Brewery ceased in February 1969, 167 people were employed there on closure. Production was transferred to Bentley’s Yorkshire Breweries at Woodlesford, near Leeds. Mr Michael Whitaker, the Executive Director, declined an invitation to join the Whitbread board.
At its closure, Whitaker’s had nearly 140 pubs surrounding Halifax, with outposts at Rochdale, Menston, Wakefield, and Doncaster, as well as a club at Blackpool. The brewery stood derelict for a number of years and was demolished in 1973.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whitakers Cock and Bottle, Southharem 1950.

Whitakers Cock and Bottle, Southharem 1950.

 

The following is a list of all Whitaker public houses that were in existence  in 1968 followed by pictures of some as they are 40 years on in 2008 with a few archive shots.

  1. 1.     Abbey—Newlay, Horsforth, Leeds.
  2. 2.     Albion—Littletown, Liversedge.
  3. 3.     Albion—Pellon Lane, Halifax.
  4. 4.     Artillery Arms—Bowling, Bradford. This house in same family from 1928 for  over 50 years.
  5. 5.     Bavaria—Manningham, Bradford.
  6. 6.     Beehive and Crosskeys—Halifax. One of only two Whitakers pubs with two names the other being 134.
  7. 7.     Belle Vue– Dewbury Moor, Dewsbury.
  8. 8.     Bellets Arms—Dudley Hill, Bradford.
  9. 9.     Bird-in-t-Hand—Walsden, Littleborough.
  10. 10.  Black Bull—Midgeley, Netherton, Wakefield.
  11. 11.  Black Horse—Clifton,nr Brighouse.
  12. 12.  Blue Ball—Soyland, Ripponden.
  13. 13.  Boars Head—Southgate, Halifax. Later a Berni inn now closed.
  14. 14.  Botomleys Arms—Shelf, Halifax.
  15. 15.  Branch Road—Greetland, Halifax.
  16. 16.  Brown Cow—Whitechapel, Cleckheaton. Now called Chapel House.
  17. 17.  Brown Cow—Highroad Well, Halifax.
  18. 18.  Brown Cow—Bolton Brow, Halifax.
  19. 19.  Bull Inn—Staincliffe, Batley.
  20. 20.  Butchers Arms—Staincliffe, Batley.
  21. 21.  Castle—Hanson Lane, Halifax.
  22. 22.  Cherry Tree—Pellon Lane, Halifax.
  23. 23.  Coach and Horses—Boothtown, Halifax.
  24. 24.  Cock and Bottle, Southowram, Halifax.
  25. 25.  Commercial—Northgate, Halifax.
  26. 26.  Commercial—Skircoat Green, Halifax.
  27. 27.  Crown and Anchor— Halifax.
  28. 28.  Crown and Anchor—Mixenden, Halifax.
  29. 29.  Crown Hotel—Horton Street, Halifax.
  30. 30.  Crown and Cushion—Winding road, Halifax.

31. Church Stille—Sowerby, Halifax.

  1. 32.  Druids Arms—Halifax.
  2. 33.  Duke of York–Shelf, Halifax.
  3. 34.  Dusty Miller—Mytholmroyd.
  4. 35.  Duke of York—Stainland, Elland.
  5. 36.  Exley Park—Exley, Halifax.
  6. 37.  Falcon—Salterhebble Hill, Halifax.
  7. 38.  Fox and Goose—Hebden Bridge.
  8. 39.  Fox and Hounds—Menston in Wharfedale.  The most distant Whitaker pub to the North.
  9. 40.  Fox and Hounds—Todmorden.
  10. 41.  Friendly Inn—Boothtown, Halifax.
  11. 42.  Gaping Goose—Wibsey, Bradfrord.
  12. 43.  General Rawdon—Luddenden Foot, Halifax.
  13. 44.  George Hotel—Cleckheaton.
  14. 45.  George and Dragon—Doncaster.
  15. 46.  George and Dragon—Elland.
  16. 47.  George and Dragon—Westgate, Cleckheaton.  Closed now in use as a cycle shop.
  17. 48.  Globe—Wakefield road, Dewsbury.
  18. 49.  Golden Fleece—Oakworth, Keighley.
  19. 50.  Golden Lion—Highroad Well, Halifax.
  20. 51.  Golden Lion—Ripponden, Halifax.
  21. 52.  Golden Lion—Todmorden.
  22. 53.  Granby Hotel—Dewsbury Town Centre.
  23. 54.  Great Northern—North Bridge, Halifax.
  24. 55.  Greenhill Tavern—Halifax.
  25. 56.  Greyhound—Rastrick, Brighouse.
  26. 57.  Griffin—Halifax Town centre.
  27. 58.  Grove Inn—Brearley, Calder Valley.  Formerley a brewery the name still visible on circular arch near pub.
  28. 59.  Hare and Hounds—Todmorden.
  29. 60.  Hope and Anchor—Halifax road, Kighley.
  30. 61.  Hope Inn—Winding road, Halifax.
  31. 62.  Horncastle—Bradfofd road, Cleckheaton.
  32. 63.  Huntsman—Mytholmroyd.
  33. 64.  Junction—Holmfield, Halifax.
  34. 65.  Junction—King Cross, Halifax.
  35. 66.  Junction—Ripponden, Halifax.
  36. 67.  Kings Head—Buttershaw, Bradford.
  37. 68.  Lord Nelson—Todmorden.
  38. 69.  Lower George—Todmorden. Reputedly disreputable establishment in 1960’s not open to the general public and sold only highly priced bottled beers
  39. 70.  Moodies House, shop and bar—Wakefield.  In 1960’s was a totally pub with sawdust on the floor.
  40. 71.  Neptune—Hebden Bridge.
  41. 72.  New Inn—Charlestown, Baildon.
  42. 73.  New Inn—Walton, Wakefield.
  43. 74.  Old White Bear—Norwood Green, Halifax.
  44. 75.  Ovenden Way—Halifax.
  45. 76.  Old Brown Cow—Hightown, Liversedge.  Now a licensed Indian restaurant.
  46. 77.  Peat Pitts—Ogden, Halifax.
  47. 78.  Pineapple—North Bridge, Halifax.
  48. 79.  Poultry Dealers—Todmorden.
  49. 80.  Prince of Wales—Halifax.
  50. 81.  Punch Bowl—Bailiff bridge, Brighouse.
  51. 82.  Queen Victoria—Northoram, Halifax.
  52. 83.  Railway—Ovenden, Halifax.  Used to have a lot of railway relics from former days of the Halifax-Holmfield-Queensbury-Keighley line.
  53. 84.  Ring o’ Bells—Brighouse town centre.
  54. 85.  Richardsons Arms—Oakenshaw, nr Bradford.
  55. 86.  Ring o’ Bells—Halifax (by parish church). Reputedly haunted, former passage to parish church, gravestone in cellar, from where organ can be heard.
  56. 87.  Rising Sun—Scholes, Cleckheaton.
  57. 88.  Rose and Crown—Todmorden.
  58. 89.  Rondhouse—Brighouse. 
  59. 90.  Rownhill—Raistrick, Brighouse.
  60. 91.  Royal—Brighouse town centre.
  61. 92.  Royal Oak—Sowerby Bridge.
  62. 93.  Royal Oak—Mytholmroyd.
  63. 94.  Scarborough—Thronhill, Dewsbury.  One of four such named pubs in Dewsbury.
  64. 95.  Shannon and Chesapeake—Todmorden.
  65. 96.  Shears Inn—Paris Gates, Halifax.  Virtually impossible to find – hidden away by canal amongst mills.
  66. 97.  Shepherds Rest—Hubberton, Sowerby Bridge.
  67. 98.  Shepherds Rest—Sowerby Bridge.
  68. 99.  Shoulder of Mutton—Hebden Bridge.
  69. 100.      Shoulder of Mutton—Hightown, Liversedge. Closed and demolished 2000.
  70. 101.      Shoulder of Mutton—Mytholmroyd.
  71. 102.      Shoulder of Mutton—Clayton West.
  72. 103.      Sir Robert Peels Arms—Dewsbury.
  73. 104.      Smiths Arms—Halifax.
  74. 105.      Sour Milk Hall—Claremount, Halifax.
  75. 106.      Sportsman—Midgley, Halifax.
  76. 107.      Stafford Arms—Scholes, Cleckheaton.
  77. 108.      Stafford Arms—Huddersfield road, Halifax.
  78. 109.      Standard of Freedom—Skircoat, Halifax.
  79. 110.      Stannary Inn, Seedlings Mount, Halifax.  This Was the site of the original Richard Whitaker brewery.
  80. 111.      Star Inn—Littletown, Liversedge.
  81. 112.      Star Inn—Sowerby, Halifax.
  82. 113.      Star Inn—Orange Street, Halifax.
  83. 114.      Station Hotel—Manchester road, Bradford.
  84. 115.      Station Hotel—Elland Bridge, Elland.
  85. 116.      Stubbing Wharfe—Hebden Bridge.
  86. 117.      Stump Cross Inn—Stump Cross, Halifax.  This and the nearby museum had to be rebuilt at a higher level when the Godley cutting and embankment were constructed in the late 1820’s.
  87. 118.      Sun Inn—Lightcliffe, Halifax.  Clearly dated 1730 above the porch door.
  88. 119.      Sun Inn—Rastrick, Brighouse.
  89. 120.      Swan with Two Necks—Rochdale.
  90. 121.      Talbot Hotel—Cleckheaton.
  91. 122.      Town Hall Tavern—Sowerby Bridge.
  92. 123.      Trafalgar—Hough Shaw road, Halifax.
  93. 124.      Walkers Arms—Scholes, Cleckheaton.  Jim Aspinal was landlord here for well over 40 years from 1938.
  94. 125.      West End Hotel—Halifax.
  95. 126.      Wharf Hotel—Sowerby Bridge.
  96. 127.      Wheatley Bridge—Ovenden, Halifax.
  97. 128.      White Horse—Deighton, Huddersfield.
  98. 129.      White Horse—Great Horton road, Bradford.
  99. 130.      White Horse—Rastrick, Brighouse.
  100. 131.      White Lion—Hebden Bridge.  Lower storey (dated 1657) older than upper and of different style.
  101. 132.      White Lion—Heptonstall, Hebden Bridge.
  102. 133.      William the Forth—Sowerby Bridge.
  103. 134.      Wilton Arms and Bridge Hotel—Batley.  One of only two pubs with two names, the other being number 6.
  104. 135.      Woolpack—Manchester road, Bradford.
  105. 136.      Woolpack—Halifax road, Keighley.
  106. 137.      Woodman—Bradley, Huddersfield.  Only Whitaker pub to have lightening conductors.
  107. 138.      Victoria—Bradford.
  108. 139.      Victoria Tavern—Mill Lane, Brighouse.
  109. 140.      Druids—Thwaites Brow, Keighley.  This pub was opened by special demand as the large village of Thwaites Brow was formally “dry”. The pub was converted from a nineteenth century house in 1968 shortly before the brewery was taken over by Whitbread, hence this was the last Whitakers pub.