Brewing on the site in Faversham in north Kent, can be traced back to the 16th century. By at least 1698, Richard Marsh was brewing there and after his death in 1717, the business passed to other members of the Marsh family until it was acquired by Samuel Shepherd in 1742. The involvement of the Neame family can be traced from 1865 and in 1866 the business became Shepherd Neame. It was registered as Shepherd Neame & Co. Ltd. in November 1914 & changed its name to Shepherd Neame Ltd in 1919. The business of E. Mason & Co of the Waterside Brewery in Maidstone was acquired in 1956 and their Serving Maid trade mark appeared on Pale Ale and Brown Ale labels for a short time afterwards. The company is now Britain’s oldest brewer and continues to brew independently as a private limited company.