Booths History

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Our founder Edwin Henry Booth had one simple aim, “To sell the best goods he could buy in shops staffed with first-class assistants”

There’s a good reason why we describe ourselves as a family at Booths. And it’s not just because we’re a close, happy team of people. It’s because Booths has always been, and always will be, a family business.

Our story began in 1847, when Tea dealer Edwin Henry Booth, then aged 19, opened The China House in Blackpool with a loan of £80 in goods. Just three months later, he repaid the debt and made a profit of £50. As he extended his stock he became even more successful, always searching for the best goods he could find – just as we still do today!

Changes in the licensing laws allowed us to move into the wines and spirits trade in 1863, and new branches of EH Booth & Company were opened in Lytham in 1879 and Blackburn in 1884.

Under his eldest son John’s leadership, the business expanded and cafés were added in 1902. John Booth knew even then that enthusiastic people are vital to a successful business, rewarding all his assistants with a bonus and in 1920 inviting them to become shareholders.

Since then, the Booths family has continued to grow and develop the business, expanding into logistics and distribution, and creating the well-loved stores we know today.

“To sell the best goods he could buy in shops staffed with first class assistants” is still the philosophy at the heart of our business. We remain a family based Company, and we like to think that everyone who works here is part of that family, valued and cared for. You’ll notice the difference the minute you walk through the door.

Because Booths has always been, and always will be, a special place to work.