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Desert Island Beer Labels #3

No prizes for guessing why this is here. The brewery was close to the centre of Bury not far from the Crown Brewery. There are still plenty of reminders of the brewery, the best being the roofboards just down the road at the Dungeon Inn. And there are a few large tiled signs around, I saw one in Rochdale just this afternoon. There aren’t many labels from this brewery around, I have just the three and I have seen one other. Interesting to note the old version Ld. as the abbreviation for Limited is still there. This had fallen out of use by the 1920s for most companies.

Bury Stout

Desert Island Beer Labels #2

In my mid-teen years, I had a Sunday job with a national Ice Cream company. A van took us to Maidstone, where we were dropped off with our ‘Stop me and Buy One’ trolleys. The first stop was opposite the Medway Brewery on St. Peter’s Street. It made only a small impression at the time, but I still remember the smell. Maidstone Pale Ale: there is pride in that name, it is not just any old Pale Ale. There is so much to like about this label, colour, design, name, trade mark.

Style & Winch

Desert Island Beer Labels #1

So here they come, in no particular order. I was born in Gillingham. Best football team in Kent, and lived in Strood until I was 12 years old. My father wasn’t the world’s heaviest drinker, probably 100 units in his entire 96 years, but I can remember him talking about Budden and Biggs Body Building Beverages, pointed out where the brewery was and showed me a pub wall with a faded advert on it. Actually when I thought about it much later Budden & Biggs Body Building Beverages works really well. However, at that age I was strangely unimpressed with the information.  About 15 years ago I acquired my first label and courtesy of an auction house near Nottingham added this label to my collection a couple of years later. Simple use of the belt and buckle, uncomplicated, red/black always good. Love it.

Budden & Biggs

Another label I happened to notice on a well-known internet auction site to go with the one I have had in my collection for a number of years. Like the Carter, Milner & Bird label, this new one will be eventually be added to the featured brewery section. I have concentrated on the Yorkshire Breweries for a number of posts. Still a couple more to add, then I need suggestions as to where we focus next.


I know, it’s not the best title I have ever thought of. After all, if any of us were stranded anywhere, the last thing we would think about would be our 10 favourite beer labels. But I am sure you get the idea. This was suggested to me by longstanding society member Nick in Norfolk and I think he is on to a winner. You all know how much we keep asking for contributions, so this is the chance to give us your 10 favourite labels with a little bit of information about why you picked each one. I am sure we can help with the images if you don’t have access to a digital scanner. Actually this idea would work well with pieces of music! It starts this bank holiday weekend and you will get one a day for ten days. That should add to the tension. I hope you can’t wait.

The requests to extend the Yorkshire series continue to land. So here are the pre-war and post-war variants of the Melbourne Brewery Ruby Ale. I used to think they had changed the entire range of beers after the war, but recently, I have come across the 1930s versions of this and the Gold Cup.

Leeds & Wakefield


As a direct response to the torrent of feedback we are getting about these posts, here  are two labels from Carter, Milner and Bird Ltd of the Hope Brewery, Sheffield. Not hard to see the difference I know, but I am sure many of you just like to know what there is out in the big, wide world. I shall probably add the additional label to the featured brewery section as well. How good is that???


Carter Milner Bird