Batten, Charles William

Charles Batten (1846-1885) was a mineral water manufacturer who co-owned the Bristol company Batten & Co.

Batten was born in 1846 in the village of Timsbury, in rural Somerset. His parents, James and Caroline Batten, were born in nearby villages. His father was a shepherd and thatcher. The family moved to Chew Cottages in Keynsham, Somerset, in the 1850s. Batten’s mother died when he was eleven, leaving his father to raise his sister and three brothers, and by the time he was fifteen, Batten was working as an agricultural labourer.

In 1868, Batten married a Maria Brown in Bedminster, Bristol, with whom he had four sons and a daughter. In 1871, the Batten family are recorded as living in Thrissell Street in Easton, Bristol, by which date, he was employed as a Commissioning Agent.

By 1876 Batten had become a mineral water manufacturer. His company, Batten & Co., was run as a partnership with Francisco Prudencio and Joseph Griffin. Their factory was at Nine Tree Hill in Stokes Croft, Bristol. Griffin retired in 1880, but the remaining partners continued trading under the existing name. In 1881, Batten and his family  were living at 47 Albert Street in St Pauls, Bristol.

Black Horse Stokes Croft

The Black Horse, Stokes Croft, pictured in the 1950s. For details about this establishment see Bristol’s Lost Pubs.

Charles Batten died on the 21st of July 1885 at the Black Horse in Stokes Croft, where he and his wife were living. He left £3,306 to his wife. After he died, Prudencio continued their mineral water company under the name Batten & Prudencio.


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