Cains Brewery

Cains Brewery
Robert Cains Brewery
Industry Alcoholic beverage
Founded 1858
Founder(s) Robert Cain
Headquarters Liverpool, UK
Products Beer
Production output 500,000 UK barrels
Owner(s) Sudarghara and Ajmail Dusanj

Cains is a brewery in Liverpool, England, founded in 1858 by Robert Cain. The company, with its 200 pub estate, merged with Peter Walker & Son in 1921, with the brewery operation being taken over by Higsons in 1923. Boddingtons of Manchester took over in 1985, and shut it down in 1990. It was reopened by GB Breweries, who became part of Bryggerigruppen in 1991, and in 2002 was sold to Gardener-Shaw for £3.4 million.[1]



Cains Brewery in the early evening

The Cains brewery was founded by Irish immigrant Robert Cain in 1858 when he was able to buy an established brewery. Cain had begun his brewing career aged 24 when he purchased a pub and brewed his own ales.

Within 25 years of founding his brewery, Cain had established 200 pubs, including the Philharmonic Dining Rooms, the Vines and the Central Commercial Hotel, which are currently listed as being of architectural merit. His personal mansion had each window arch inscribed with his monogram. In 1887 construction began on a second brewery.

In 1921, 14 years after Cain's death, the Cains brewery merged with Peter Walker and Co of Wrexham, becoming Walker Cains. Then in 1923 the original Stanhope Street Brewery was sold to Higsons, who continued to brew Cains ales.

In 1985, Higsons was bought by Boddingtons of Manchester. Five years later Boddingtons opted to concentrate on pub ownership and sold all its breweries to Whitbread, at which point the Stanhope Street site was closed.

However, not wishing to see the Cains name die, the Danish Brewery Company reopened the site. The new Robert Cain & Co Ltd faced financial disaster in 2002, but was rescued by the Dusanj brothers — the first Asian owners of a British brewery. At the time it had a turnover of £30 million.

A reverse takeover of AIM-listed pub operator Honeycombe Leisure plc was agreed by the company’s board in June 2007, giving Cains access to Honeycombe's 109 outlets and their stock market listing. The company was renamed Cains Beer Company PLC.

On 7 August 2008 the company was placed in administration following problems caused by an unpaid tax bill.[2] Negotiations with its bank failed to reach a conclusion that would have avoided administration.[3]

The brewery and eight original pubs have since bought back by the Dusanj brothers.[4]

Notable achievements

  • Construction of the Philharmonic Dining Rooms, an extravagant public house.
  • First brewery to print responsible drinking advice on beer labels in 2003 in response to government initiatives.
  • First British brewery to be owned by an Asian family.
  • Cains is the official beer of Liverpool's 2008 European Capital of Culture celebrations.
  • Cains wins Red Tractor Mark, 2009
  • 'Cains Export Lager' wins Gold Medal from the British Bottlers Institute, 2009
  • "Cains Finest Export Lager" The Greatest Bottled Lager by GQ MAGAZINE
  • GQ the upmarket Men's Magazine has Voted Cains Finest Lager No2 out of 100 for The 100 Best Things in the World. (You cannot afford to live without them!)[5]
  • Christopher Routledge,Cain's: The Story of Liverpool in a Pint, (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2008). ISBN 978-1846311505


External links

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