Search

Nostalgia: Bid to stop drinking in Romford fell on deaf ears

07:00 13 April 2014

Romford Brewery yard around the 1890s. Picture London Borough of Havering Local Studies

Romford Brewery yard around the 1890s. Picture London Borough of Havering Local Studies

Archant

In 1881, Romford Brewery covered more than 20 acres of the town, and employed around 800 staff.

The Brewery in Romford in the 1980s before it was redeveloped into a shopping centre. Picture: London Borough of Havering Local StudiesThe Brewery in Romford in the 1980s before it was redeveloped into a shopping centre. Picture: London Borough of Havering Local Studies

Ind Coope and Co’s beer was drunk all over the world, even on polar expeditions.

However, the company’s success did not please everyone. In the 19th century, Britain experienced a revival of traditional Christian values such as charity and clean living. Many people now saw alcohol as one of the great social evils, leading to the formation of temperance associations.

Many charitable organisations such as the Salvation Army adopted temperance as a key principle.

In February 1881, the Salvationists marched into Romford for the first time – to a frosty reception. Their journal The War Cry branded Romford a “brewery-blighted town”, and reported that whilst a few residents were persuaded to give up alcohol, “the people generally are hard and unbelieving”.

Matthew AbelMatthew Abel

The situation soon worsened. On February 16, the Salvationists were marching through Market Place and found their way blocked by a crowd watching a Punch and Judy show outside the Lamb pub.

The crowd hissed at the parade, and refused to move.

A fight then broke out, and local carpenter Job Durrant was pushed into the mud. The parade leader “Captain” John Wood was found guilty of assault at Romford Petty Sessions, and fined 20 shillings plus 18s 6d costs.

Despite their hostile welcome to Romford, the Salvation Army established a church, known as a “corps”, in North Street in October 1881. The November issue of The War Cry shows how the Salvationists believed alcohol was corrupting Romford: “The respectable church and chapel-going man, with wife, dressed in silks, furs, and feathers on one side, going to worship could not even get there without passing, every few yards, a mother with unwashed face and uncombed hair, surrounded by several little shoeless children, the father slowly strolling away, with his short pipe and unlaced boots, to the back way of the nearest public house.”

Today the Romford Salvation Army corps is located in High Street, just a few metres away from where the brewery once stood.

For more information on the Romford Brewery exhibition call 01708 766 571 or email exhibitions@haveringmuseum.org.uk.

0 comments

Latest Romford News Stories

Yesterday, 20:32
The Havering Show. Families having fun

There was something for everyone on day two of this year’s Havering Show, including mad scientists and soul legends of the 1970s.

Yesterday, 11:46
Reporters Ann-Marie Abbasah and Hayley Anderson with soul legend Jocelyn Brown.

With a hit laden set list, there was no mountain high enough to keep veteran singer Jocelyn Brown from rocking the crowd at the Havering Show, yesterday.

Yesterday, 09:35
Mayor of Redbridge Cllr Gurdial Bhamra, chairman of Morden Cllr Peter Elliot, Bedrock Hospital Radio's mascot, mayor of Havering Cllr Philippa Crowder and mayor of Brentwood Cllr Noelle Hones.

Day two of the Havering Show kicks off from 11am today at Harrow Lodge Park, Hornchurch, with a line-up featuring something for everyone.

Yesterday, 07:00
Amplify founders Tom Murch and Jack Withing

A pair of music lovers are making some noise across the borough as they launched their own T-shirt brand.

Sunday, August 28, 2016
Reporters Hayley Anderson and Ann-Marie Abbasah at the Havering Show.

From wrestling and BMX tricks to star acts and fair ground rides, the first day of the Havering Show had it all.

Sunday, August 28, 2016
Romford playwright Dan Murphy will open a festival in Havering with a performance of his play Skinny Legs. Picture:Arnaud Stephenson

The thought-provoking work of a young playwright will open a festival of fresh and innovative plays in Havering.

Sunday, August 28, 2016
40-years-ago

A look back at the biggest local stories from this week 20, 40 and 60 years ago.

Sunday, August 28, 2016
Jocelyn Brown will be headling at the Havering Show. Photo: PA Archive/PA Images

The Havering Show kicks off from 11am today at Harrow Lodge Park, Hornchurch, with a line-up featuring something for everyone.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

You could win £15,000 to spend on either their mortgage or a deposit towards the home of their dreams

Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a period of time when you simply don’t have to worry about finding the money each month to pay your mortgage? When you don’t have to put money aside from your monthly income, or worry about having to afford other essential outgoings?

Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now