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Bigland, Ralph (1712–1784), herald and cheesemonger, was born on 29 January 1712 at Stepney, Middlesex, the only son of Richard Bigland (1658–1725) of Wapping, tallow chandler, and his second wife, Mary (1676–1736), daughter of George Errington of Benwell, Northumberland. His father was a native of ...

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Ralph Bigland (1712–1784) by Charles Townley, 1771 (after Richard Brompton) © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bodenham [Bodnam], John (c. 1559–1610), literary patron and grocer, was born in London, perhaps in the parish of St Stephen Walbrook. He was the eldest son in a family of five children of William Bodnam (d. 1580), grocer, and his wife, Katherine Wanton (...

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Brayne, John (c. 1541–1586), grocer and financier, was the eldest child of Thomas Brayne (d. 1562), a tailor (nominally a girdler), and his wife, Alice Barlow (d. 1566), of the parish of St Stephen, Coleman Street, London, who married on 22 January 1541. ...

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Burgoyne, Peter Bond (1844–1929), wine merchant, was born on 7 February 1844 at Dodbrook, Kingsbridge, Devon, the son of John Trist Burgoyne (c.1812–1856), beer and porter merchant, and his wife, Mary Ann Bond (c.1808–1854). Of his early years and education nothing is known, but in 1858, two years after his father's death, ...

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See Burwell family

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See Burwell family

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W. P. Courtney

revised by John Martin

Croft, John (1732–1820), wine merchant and antiquary, was born on 29 February 1732 at Stillington, Yorkshire, the fifth son of Stephen Croft (1683–1733) and Elizabeth (d. 1771), daughter of Sir Edmund Anderson, fourth baronet (bap. 1629, d. 1703). The Crofts were part of a long-established, aristocratic, wealthy landowning ...

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Dickenson, Thomas (bap. 1717, d. 1751), grocer, was baptized in the parish of St Mary's, Stafford, in November 1717, the younger of two sons of Thomas and Elizabeth Dickenson. Little is known of his early life, but in May 1741 Dickenson became a freeman of ...

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Farriner, Thomas (1615/16?–1670), baker, was apprenticed in March 1629 to Thomas Dodson, a London baker, and then served Richard Beaumont before being admitted a member of the Bakers' Company on 30 March 1637. On 9 July that year Farriner, described as of ...

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Forrester, Joseph James (1809–1861), wine merchant and topographer, was born at Kingston upon Hull on 27 May 1809, the only son of Patrick Forrester (1772–1846), jeweller and goldsmith, and his wife, Sarah, née Weddell (1777–1856). Nothing is known of his early years, but in 1831 he went to ...

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Fortnum, Charles (1738–1815), royal servant and grocer, is presumed to be the son of William Fortnum, of Berkeley Street, Portman Square, London. He had a brother and a sister. His grandfather William Fortnum is said to have become a footman to Queen Anne...

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Gilbey, Sir Walter, first baronet (1831–1914), wine merchant and horse breeder, was born on 2 May 1831 at Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire, the sixth son of Henry Gilbey, coach proprietor, and his wife, Elizabeth, daughter of William Bailey of Stansted, Essex. Educated at Bishop's Stortford grammar school...

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Gunter, James (bap. 1745, d. 1819), confectioner, was born at Cross Street, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, where he was baptized on 18 November 1745, the eldest of the three children of Walter Gunter (b. 1717) and his wife, Mary, née Jones. The precise circumstances of ...

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See Gunter, James

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Charles Digby Harrod (1841–1905) by unknown photographer Company Archive, Harrods Limited, London

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Harrod, Charles Digby (1841–1905), grocer and tea dealer, was born on 25 January 1841 at 4 Cable Street, Whitechapel, second child and eldest son of Charles Henry Harrod (1799–1885), grocer and tea dealer, and his wife, Elizabeth Digby (1810–1860). He left school at sixteen, was apprenticed to a ...

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Charles Henry Harrod (1799–1885) by unknown photographer Company Archive, Harrods Limited, London

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Harrod, Charles Henry (1799–1885), tea dealer and grocer, was born on 16 April 1799, at Lexden, Essex, the son of William Harrod and his wife, Thamar, but little else is known about his early life. However, as he became a grocer and tea merchant, it can be presumed he had at least a rudimentary education....

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Jones, Henry James (1812–1891), inventor of self-raising flour, was born in Bristol and baptized there on 23 January 1813 at Broadmead Baptist Church, the youngest son of Robert Jones, a Bristol confectioner, and Hannah Jefferies. Members of the Jones family had been in the bakery and grocery business in ...