Hall & Woodhouse

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Hall & Woodhouse
Badger Brewery
Industry Alcoholic beverage
Founded 1777
Headquarters Blandford St Mary, Dorset
United Kingdom
Products Beer
Owner Woodhouse family

Hall and Woodhouse is a British regional brewery founded in 1777 by Charles Hall in Blandford Forum, Dorset, England.[1] The company operates over 250 public houses in the south of England, and brews under the name Badger Brewery.


Woodhouse family legend has it that, in 1752, a young Charles Hall arranged a bet with his neighbours that he could dance for twelve straight days and twelve straight nights. They, unaware that Parliament had arranged to adopt the Gregorian calendar in September that year, eagerly took the bet sneering at the young man's over-confidence. After over 25 guineas had been wagered Charles Hall started dancing on the night of the 2nd September and stopped the next day, now legally the 14th September. His neighbours were outraged and the County magistrate was called. After much debate the magistrate finally decreed that Charles Hall had, legally, won his bet.[citation needed]

It was this money, invested wisely, that allowed him, 25 years later, to start his brewery. In 1777, Charles Hall founded the Ansty Brewery (Ansty being a village near Blandford). The Hall & Woodhouse partnership dates from 1847, when Charles' son and successor went into business with George Woodhouse.

In 1875, the firm's logo of a Badger was first introduced, and in 1900, when a new brewery was built to replace the original, it was named after the logo. The logo has evolved over the years.[2] The firm remains a family firm.

In 1991 the brewpub Gribble Inn was acquired. Though it was sold back to the landlord in 2005, Hall & Woodhouse retained the rights to the brand name Fursty Ferret, the brewpub's most famous beer.

In 2000 the King & Barnes brewery business in Horsham was acquired. The brewery was sold off for housing, though Hall & Woodhouse retained the King & Barnes chain of pubs and the rights to the brand names of the King and Barnes beers.[3]


Tanglefoot beer


Tanglefoot is a premium bitter, 4.9% as a cask ale, and 5% as a filtered beer in bottles and cans. According to a story presently written on the bottle, it was given its name when the Head Brewer drank "several tankards" and "fell on" a name for the beer.[4] The cask version is widely available in the south of England, and a pasteurised version is available in bottles or cans in supermarkets nationally.

Fursty Ferret[edit]

Fursty Ferret is a 4.4% abv bitter, originally brewed at the Gribble Inn, which was bought by Hall & Woodhouse in 1991. The pub was sold back to the landlord in 2005, with Hall & Woodhouse retaining the rights to the brand name Fursty Ferret.

Other brands[edit]

  • England's Own
  • First Gold - a fairly dark ale with orange and spices
  • Flyer (formerly Blandford Fly) - a dark bottled ale flavoured with ginger and spices
  • Golden Champion Ale - with an aroma of elderflower
  • Hopping Hare - a light coloured cask ale available between February and May
  • Long Days - a bottled raspberry flavoured summer ale
  • Pickled Partridge - a spicy seasonal winter ale which comes in cask and bottle
  • Poacher's Choice - a very strong (5.7%) bottled dark ale with an edge of liquorice
  • Golden Glory - a premium ale with a peach and melon flavour
  • River Cottage Stinger Organic Ale - a beer made with stinging nettles, branded by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's River Cottage


  • Badger Original
  • Pumpkin Ale
  • Harvester - a low alcohol ale
  • Wandering Woodwose
  • Long Days
  • Ansty


Soft drinks[edit]

The company also markets soft drinks known as Rio (formerly Rio Riva) which are canned drinks made from fruit juices and sparkling spring water. Hall and Woodhouse also used to manufacture Panda Pops, but sold the brand to Nichols plc in 2005.[5]


  1. ^ "Hall and Woodhouse - Independent Family Brewers - Hall and Woodhouse - Our Company - Heritage". www.hall-woodhouse.co.uk. Retrieved 2008-05-31. 
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ "Realbeer.com: Beer News: King & Barnes sold". www.realbeer.com. Retrieved 2008-05-31. 
  4. ^ "Tanglefoot - The Beer". www.tanglefoot.co.uk. Retrieved 2008-05-31. 
  5. ^ Mesure, Susie (2005-01-22). "Vimto group toasts £5.5m deal for Panda Pops maker". The Independent. Independent News and Media. Retrieved 2008-10-14. 
  • A Taste of Life (Hall and Woodhouse Celebrating 225 years), David Boag and Nick Wilcox-Brown, Hall and Woodhouse (2002), ASIN B000UTOJCG

External links[edit]