W. J. Cooper


Although times were hard during the early years after the War, Mr Cooper was not put off and recognised that milk and poultry were a good standby. So he began building poultry houses. He soon took on his first employee Horrace Samwell a carpenter.

In 1924 he was looking round for a suitable premises and he came across the Old Newport Pagnell Brewery. His father went with him when he went to look over the place and was reported as saying "What do you want this barn of a place for." It resembled a burnt out factory and had blackberry bushes and ferns reaching to the first floor of the premises, hence he named it the Phoenix Works.
Mr. Cooper was not discouraged and he first arranged to rent the premises. On the 24th October 1924 Mr. William James Cooper commenced his tenancy of the old Brewery. It was on the 8th November 1924 that an agreement was signed between the Newport Pagnell Brewery Co. Ltd. and Mr. William James Cooper. For the hire of the Old Mineral Water and Bottled Beer Factory, Newport Pagnell. The rent was for £45.00 per annum, and was payable quarterly. The agreement was signed by Mr. H. B. Wells a Director for and on behalf of the Newport Pagnell Brewery Co. Ltd.

Shows an advertisement in the local paper on 22nd November 1924 to advertise his move.