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About John Cobbold

JOHN COBBOLD (1745-1835)

3RD GENERATION BREWER

The family brewery was founded in Harwich in 1723 by John's grandfather Thomas Cobbold (1680-1752).

Thomas soon discovered that the water in Harwich was too brackish so in 1727 he started shipping clear spring water down the Orwell by barge from the 'Holy Wells'. The business prospered to the extent that in1746 he decided to move his family and the brewery to a site on the Cliff above the Orwell at Holy Wells. There has been a Cliff Brewery in Ipswich ever since. The founder died shortly afterwards and his son another Thomas Cobbold (1708-1767) took over. The business still flourished but 'young' Thomas died only 15 years after his father and John, the 3rd generation found himself at the helm when only 22 years old. He had been educated at Greenwich and he turned out to be a natural businessman. His granddaughter, Emily Caroline remembers him having fair hair and blue eyes. Contemporary portraits suggest he was a well-built man. He had inherited property in Harwich and Dovercourt and the prosperity of the business provided him with an enviable lifestyle. He married Elizabeth Wilkinson (1753-1790) in 1773 and she bore him 15 children in 17 years before, unsurprisingly dying. Another Elizabeth, this time Clarke nee Knipe (1764-1824) was his next wife who gave him another 7 children in 8 years. With his large philoprogenitive capacity satisfied he turned his attention to banking. Bacon,Cobbold,Rodwell,Dunningham,Cobbold & Co. received a substantial injection of cash from the brewery business which allowed it to survive the 1925 banking crisis and build a profitable banking business which was to trade for another 80 years. His big family raised, his new house built, his duties as a Magistrate completed and his businesses prosperous he died in 1835 at the age of 90. He was certainly entitled to feel that his life was a job well done.

Anthony Cobbold 2006

Other References

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John Cobbold's Timeline

1746
January 27, 1746
Harwich, Essex, England
1774
1774
Ipswich, Suffolk, England, United Kingdom
1775
1775
1776
1776
Ipswich, Suffolk, England, United Kingdom
1778
1778
Suffolk, England, United Kingdom
1779
1779
1780
1780
Suffolk, England, United Kingdom
1781
1781
1783
1783