Posts Tagged ‘brewery’

A Name Stamp

September 5, 2012

The name ‘Neate’ has featured many times in this blog. James Neate came to Market Lavington as a wine and spirit merchant and brewer back in the mid nineteenth century, spurred on because a proposed railway would pass right through the village. That railway never materialised, but James stayed and weathered financial difficulties to become an established member of the Market Lavington community. In fact, he died in the village in 1920, aged 90, and is buried in Market Lavington churchyard. James would have needed to mark many wooden objects with his name. He used a name stamp for this. A name stamp looked like a small cold chisel.

A mid nineteenth century name stamp at Market Lavington Museum

Instead of a cutting edge, the business end of this device has the name carved so that the letters stand out.

The name on the stamp is J Neate – a Market Lavington wine and spirit merchant as well as a beer brewer

They are in reverse, of course, so that when placed against the wooden item to be named, and hit with a hammer, the name gets marked in the wood. A quick digital fix can turn the image round so we can read the name.

Digitally mirrored image to make the name readable

We can also see a name (in this case that of Charlie Burnett, the wheelwright and carpenter) as stamped into one of his planes.

C Burnett stamped the plane with his name – his mark of ownership

We think James Neate’s name stamp dates from around the time he came to Market Lavington, in the 1850s.

A Neate Barrel

June 2, 2012

James Neate has featured before on these pages. We have looked at his life and some of his earthenware bottles (click here). We have seen his rather splendid helmet box (click here). We have seen the pub he ran – later run by his son, Norman Neate (click here).

The Neates were brewers as well as wine and spirit merchants. It is no surprise to find wooden casks that bear the Neate name. We have a couple of them at Market Lavington Museum. They can be found in our ‘Trades’ room. Here is one of them.

A small cask which can be found at Market Lavington Museum

We can see that this barrel is not in tip-top condition for one of the metal hoops has clearly slipped. As it is probably more than 100 years old this isn’t surprising.

It is a small container. Perhaps it should be called a firkin.

The manufacture of wood casks was and remains a highly skilled task. These simple items had to hold precious liquid securely. No wonder the barrel maker or cooper was a revered worker. Casks are still made in Devizes at the Wadworths Brewery. Those interested can take a tour of the premises and processes involved in making fine ales.

Our cask shows its Market Lavington provenance on its top or head. The number was probably for stock recording, but the name J Neate of Lavington Wilts is clear to see.

The cask head is inscribed J Neate Lavington Wilts

We do not know if the Neates employed a cooper or whether they acquired casks from elsewhere. Certainly the surname, Cooper, was and is common in the Lavington area.

James Neate of Market Lavington

May 10, 2010

James Neate was a brewer and retailer of alcoholic drinks. He was born about 1829 in Oxfordshire, but by 1861 he was married to Martha and living on High Street in Market Lavington where he had a brewery.

Over the years, the family grew. One of his children, Norman, took over the business and became the last commercial brewer in the village.

The censuses from 1861 to 1901 show that James had become a long term Market Lavington resident. He became a member of the Loyal Volunteers and had his own trade tokens made. We have examples of these in Market Lavington Museum.

In fact, the museum’s newest acquisition is one of James Neate’s 2-gallon stoneware jars.

James Neate wine jar - new to Market Lavington Museum in May 2010

This jar joins a little collection of very similar jars for we already had two James Neate jars, not to mention a couple of barrels, in the museum.

Another James Neate jar at Market Lavington Museum

Third of a trio of James Neate wine jars at Market Lavington Museum


Martha died in 1898, but James lived until he was aged 90, in 1920. Both are buried in Market Lavington churchyard.

Sadly, we do not have a photograph of James at Market Lavington Museum although we have a good collection of items associated with him and his business. We’d love a photo. Can you help?

Who was Edward J W Neate?

April 3, 2010

Whilst seeking information to help an e-mailer from California, our curator came upon this certificate in Market Lavington Museum and now it presents an enigma.

Edward J W Neate certificate in Market Lavington Museum

So just who was Edward J W Neate who managed to win this certificate for his writing of the 23rd psalm?

A Neate family were well known in Market Lavington. James Neate and his wife Martha came to the village in about 1860 where they ran a brewing business which was continued by their son, Norman, Market Lavington born and bred, until the 1920s. But they do not appear to have had a child called Edward.

No Edward Neate turns up on censuses in the Lavington area at any appropriate time.

If you can help us identify Edward Neate then please contact the curator who would love to hear from you.