Welcome to our website, set up to encourage further research, archiving and accessibility to the history of the H&G Simonds Ltd Brewery of Reading, its business at home and abroad, its estate, beers, memorabilia and of all the people associated with them throughout the nearly 200 years of its existence.

I have also included a little about the ‘J&C Simonds Bank’ that was founded in Reading by Charles Simonds and others in 1791 and was sold to Barclays in 1913.

This is and will remain my hobby and as such will also remain very much ‘work in progress’ with consequential inconsistencies and maybe even errors! So – if you have any constructive comments, relevant historical information, images or documents to share, it would be great to hear from you through the ‘Contact’ button att he bottom of each page.



12,000 Searchable pages added!

I am delighted to announce that our library of Hop Leaf Gazettes & Staff Newsletters from 1926-1964 has just been posted in fully searchable format! A unique record of the Social History of Reading. 1st section HERE 

VE Day, Family Tribute

Our family suffered many casualties of various wars, but on this special day I would like to honour 2 sets of brothers. Click on their names to see their stories:

My mother’s 2 brothers, Raymond  Stevens & Edwin Stevens:.  There is a video memorial  HERE:

My father’s 2 cousins, twin brothers Gavin & John Simonds: Just before he died, John wrote an extraordinary letter to his stepson HERE: later published by his wife Barbara.

New image of Drays

Chris Gould sent me this lovely image!  We did extensive repairs to the image and he used a microscope to decipher the words ‘Southern Railway’ on the sign.  So we now know it is a delivery to the Bonded stores at Reading Station. Thanks to the ‘sleuths’ out there!