Ebenezer Warburton 1845 – 1929

Ebenezer Warburton largeEbenezer Warburton, founder of Bexhill’s longest surviving business, was born in 1845 in the County of Bedfordshire. He was apprenticed to Mr Heaver of Hempstead mill near Uckfield and married the miller’s daughter, Harriet, in 1870. They had eight sons, two dying in infancy, and three daughters. Ebenezer eventually ran the Hempstead Mill and also Uckfield Mill, purchased in the year of his marriage. In 1887 Ebenezer purchased the old Corn Stores at Belle Hill in expanding Bexhill and then in 1910 the currently still used retail premises in Station Road.

When the large National Millers started to market their own proprietary brands, the Hempstead Mill closed and Ebenezer’s son, George, was left to operate and manage the Uckfield Mill. Following Ebenezer’s retirement, his three sons Ebenezer junior, William and Harold continued the Bexhill businesses in partnership, the latter being responsible for the management of the retail side at Station Road. In 1935 William’s son Ken joined the business. As feeding-stuffs trade increased after the war, the coal and coke sale side operated by the company was sold. With the disposal of the Uckfield Mill in 1950, George’s son, John, came to Bexhill and ran the business in partnership with his uncle William and cousins Lois and Ken. In 1964 William and Lois retired leaving John and Ken to run the business. In 1970 Ken’s son David joined the firm. In 1975 the Belle Hill premises closed down to make way for King Offa Way. David became the manager of the Station Road shop and when John retired in 1980 joined his father in partnership. On Ken’s retirement in 1984 David, great grandson of the founder, took over the business as sole proprietor, since when the firm has seen the extension of the Station Road premises.

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