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Records of Beaufoy Grimble & Co Ltd, vinegar brewers, Leith, Scotland

GB 1127 G.
Records of Beaufoy Grimble & Co Ltd, vinegar brewers, Leith, Scotland.
Dates of Creation:
0.01 metres (1 file).
There are no physical characteristics that affect the use of this material.
Held at:
Scottish Brewing Archive.
Name of Creator:
Beaufoy Grimble & Co Ltd (vinegar brewers: fl. 1928–1983: Leith, Scotland).
Level of Description:
  • Revised by Wiebke Redlich, Archive Assistant (Hub), 22 January 2002
  • 8 June 2005 Catalogue record converted to EAD2002, May 2005
Published by:
Scottish Brewing Archive, 31 October 2001.

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Administrative/Biographical History

Vinegar Brewers
Cumberland Market, Regent’s Park and Jane Street, Leith, Scotland.

In 1840 William Grimble of Albany Street, London, a gin distiller by trade, decided to embark on producing vinegar from spirit left over from his distillery. He went into partnership with another distiller, Sir Felix Booth, and they set up premises in Cumberland Market. The venture was unsuccessful, and so they turned to the more orthodox method of vinegar brewing. The brewery burnt down in 1864 and was rebuilt and extended soon after.

In 1861 control of the business passed to Rothwell Pouncett, a nephew of William Grimble, and he was joined in the business three years later by Captain John G Malcolmson, William Grimble’s son-in-law. In 1878 Captain James G Malcolmson followed in his father’s footsteps, as did James’ younger brother, Ivor Forbes Malcolmson, in 1898. Ivor would become head of the business a few years later. From 1869 the company supplied the armed forces, and they continued to supply them throughout the First World War. Furthermore, Grimble & Co was said to have supplied Captain Scott on his ill-fated expedition to the North Pole.

The company was doing sufficiently well to open a Scottish branch at Leith in 1903. Grimble & Co originally bought over the Edinburgh Malt Vinegar Co Ltd, with the premises in Ballantyre Road, Edinburgh, but they moved to larger premises in Jane Street in 1917. Grimble & Co merged with fellow vinegar brewers, Beaufoy & Co, London, England, in 1928 to form Beaufoy Grimble & Co Ltd. The company became part of British Vinegar Ltd in 1931. In 1981 the company closed the Edinburgh bottling plant, and then in April 1983 all sides of the Scottish business in Leith were closed, in order that production be concentrated upon in England.

McMaster, Charles, Edinburgh’s Forgotten Brewery, Scottish Brewing Archive Newsletter, No. 8, (Winter 1986/87).

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Scope And Content

  • Production Records, undated
  • Promotional material, 1950s
  • Public relations, c.1920–1970
  • Photographs, 1950s
  • Historical notes, 1986
System of Arrangement:
The material is arranged according to the Scottish Brewing Archive classification scheme used within all SBA collections.
Custodial History:
The collection was previously stored with the rest of the Scottish Brewing Archive at Heriot-Watt University. It moved to the University of Glasgow in 1991.
Immediate Source of Acquisition:
Deposited in 1984 by Scottish & Newcastle plc. Beaufoy Grimble & Co donated publicity material.
Appraisal, Destruction and Scheduling:
This material has been appraised in line with standard GB 1127 procedures.
None expected.
Access Conditions:
Copyright / Reproduction:
Applications for permission to quote should be sent to the Scottish Brewing Archivist.
Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use & condition of documents.
Existence of Copies:
No known copies.
This material is original.

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Finding Aids:
File level list available in searchroom.
Related Units of Description:
GB 74 B/BFY: Records of Beaufoy & Co, vinegar manufacturers, London (London Metropolitan Archives: City of London – see contact details)
Publication Note:
The House of Grimble. A History, (c.1920).
McMaster, Charles, Edinburgh’s Forgotten Brewery, Scottish Brewing Archive Newsletter, No. 8, (Winter 1986/87).

Fonds-Level Description Compilation Details

Fonds level description compiled by Natalie Milne, Archives Assistant (Hub), 31 October 2001.

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