Brooke, Thomas C.

Thomas C. Brooke (1830-1898) was a mineral water manufacturer who founded the mineral water company T. Brooke & Co. and co-founded Brooke & Prudencio Ltd.

Thomas Brooke was born in Bath in 1830. His father, Charles Brooke, was a druggist and mineral water manufacturer; his mother was a local woman named Mary Ann Clarke. In 1851 Thomas Brooke was working as an assistant at his father’s business Brooke & Co. The family lived and worked at 44 Walcott Street, Bath. Later that year he married Mary Ann Leigh from Winford in Somerset at St Thomas a Becket church in Pucklechurch. They then moved to Bristol.

By 1860, Brooke was living at 44 Merchant Street, in Bristol city centre, from where he ran his newly founded soda water company T. Brooke & Co. By 1870 he had moved his home and business to a property on the west side of Captain Carey’s Lane in Old Market, Bristol. In 1871 his factory employed ten men and eleven boys.

6 Sydenham Road, Stokes Croft

6 Sydenham Road, Stokes Croft

Brooke’s business was a success, and by 1881, he and his wife had moved to a more salubrious residence at Spring Villa, 6 Sydenham Road, Stokes Croft, where they remained for the rest of their lives. The mineral water manufacturer Francisco Prudencio also lived on Sydenham Road, and in 1889 the two men amalgamated their companies to form Brooke & Prudencio Ltd.. By 1889 Brooke’s father had given him the family business, Brooke & Co., which was based at 20 Grove Street, Bath. His father died the following year.

Thomas Brooke died at home on the 15 January 1898 and, having no children of his own, left £17,697 to his cousin, William Pearce Tapp, who then sold Brooke & Co. to the mineral water manufacturer Frederick Mathew Millard.

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