We thank Lorraine Dalrymple for sending us these photographs and this brief history of her family's involvement with Tate & Lyle.

The following members of Lorraines family were employed at the Tate and Lyle factory. William Dalrymple (Snr), William Dalrymple (Jnr), John Dalrymple - Union Secretary Married to 2nd wife Chrissie (Brown) Dalrymple, James (Jimmy) Dalrymple - Small Packets married to Eileen (Atherton) Dalrymple First Aid Post.

Lorraine writes, my dad William Dalrymple Jnr worked for Tate's for 33 years until the factory closed, the others were there longer. Most people who worked at Tate's know my Uncle John, who until his death in April 2008, continued to be active with the Tate's pensioners, having been the Secretary of the Union for many, many years.

Unfortunately, all of the above named have passed away, except for John's wife Chrissie. The "First Aiders" photos feature my mum, Eileen Dalrymple in April & June of 1957. I was born in the August. I think one of the other 1st Aiders might be Louise Edwards who became my godmother and another might be called Josie Remakus - I'm not sure. Perhaps one of your readers might know. The "social event" pictures show my grandad, William/Billy Dalrymple senior, and I think it may have been taken in the Crystal club. The colour photo shows my dad, Uncle John and another Tate's worker, Pat Hoban.

Lorraine Dalrymple.

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Long time readers of the Scottie Press Community Newspaper will remember how the paper was the first journal to print news that the Tate & Lyle Sugar Refinery, Love Lane, Liverpool was going to close. It sent shock waves through the Scotland Road and Vauxhall areas and indeed across Merseyside.

Our archived issues from March 1980 recorded the month by month announcements regarding the future of the factory and its closure on January 22nd 1981.

There are plans to acknowledge the 25th Anniversary of the Sugar Refinery's closure. Amongst these are a Party on Friday 28th April 2006 at the Eldonian Village Hall, which is built on the former factory site. About 250 ex-workers will meet up to recall the days when sugar cane was king in Liverpool.

There are other smaller events and get-togethers planned and the Scottie Press would like to hear from former Tate & Live employees who may wish to provide memories and photos, which we can add to this web page.

Please email ronformby@scottipress.org


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Our thanks go to Ray Gillies for providing this issue of the Scottie Press with a photo taken of former employees of Tate & Lyle. Pictured are Tony Winrow, Phil Woods, Ray Gillies, Jimmy Vance, Norman McAlinren, Billy Boyle, Joey Downess, and Brian Cusak. According to Ray the photo was taken in either 1966 or 1967 at a 'farewell drink' as one of the lads was off to Zambia. We welcome hearing from readers who may have memories about the photo and welcome other 'Sugar Time Memories and Photos' of Tate & Lyle's.

Julia Carder (Curator of Collections - Liverpool Culture Company) would like former employees of Tate & Lyle to contact her with regards to any factual information about Tate & Lyle that they may have and or their memories of working for Tate & Lyle. You can contact Julia by emailing Julia.Carder@liverpool.gov.uk


The History of Tate & Lyle Liverpool is more than dates it's about the people who worked there. This Tate & Lyle webpage has recently been able to assist the BBC with their Legacies website.

The BBC Legacies website(www.bbc.co.uk/legacies/work/england/liverpool) now features photographs and memories of women who worked at Tate & Lyle. The stories on the Legacies website span the last 50 years of the Tate & Lyle factory.
To access the website now Click Here


Sugar refining businesses started in Britain in the middle of the 16th century with just 2 sugar-houses. In Liverpool the first sugar house was established in 1667 by an Allyn Smith (a notable sugar refiner of London). From here on there was an expansion in the sugar refining business in Britain and across Europe.

John Wright & Co had a sugar refinery in Liverpool from about 1809. In 1859, Henry Tate, a successful grocer in Liverpool joined the firm as a partner. Henry Tate realised that a more efficient production on a much larger scale was needed if British sugar refining was to survive European competition. He set up his own refinery in 1862 and expanded this business by moving to Love Lane in 1872. Future expansion was achieved by buying out major competitors, partly to eliminate competition and partly to acquire their sites for extensions. In 1921 Tate’s amalgamated with Lyle’s of Greenock. Production at the Love Lane factory reached a peak of 550,000 tons in 1972 and stood at 300,000 tons per year when the factory closed.

The Last Day at Tate & Lyle

Despite strong efforts to keep the Tate & Lyle factory in Liverpool open, it closed down in 1981. It was claimed that the reason for closure was a surplus capacity in cane sugar refining caused by the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Community.

The historic links that the Vauxhall community had had with the refining of raw sugar cane were terminally severed in 1981. The loss of the Tate & Lyle factory and subsequent loss of jobs to the Vauxhall area of Liverpool had a widespread affect on the community.

We would like to acknowledge the historic links between the Vauxhall area and sugar refining. We welcome hearing from past and present residents of the Vauxhall area who may wish to share their memories (and photographs) of working for Tate & Lyle’s.

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