Old Buildings of Sligo Andersons Brewery

In 1834, the firm of Davy & Cochran built a brewery on a site at Old Shambles Street now Kempten Promenade off Bridge Street. The business was named Lough Gill brewery and operated until 1842 before closing due to bankruptcy. It was then acquired by Charles Anderson. Anderson operated a brewery on Water Lane and transferred his business to the larger site. After Anderson’s death in 1882, the brewery continued to operate for a time.

For a short period, O’Connor, Walsh & Company operated a Sawmills and timber warehouse at the site. By 1889, the buildings were bought by Edward Foley who returned the buildings to brewery use and later mineral drinks production until it closed in 1972. 

In the late 1970’s the Rehabilitation organisation took over the building and used it as a training centre. By 2000, Rehab had moved to new premises and the building was left empty. The building was bought and renovated into The Velvet Room nightclub in 2006 by Philip McGarry. It was also for a short time the HMV sound garden music venue. Today, it is run as Anderson’s restaurant bringing the old name back into use.

 

Andersons Brewers 1875 Sligo
Anderson’s Brewers in 1875 – Somerville Collection

 

O'Connor Timber warehouse Sligo
For a short period, the former Anderson’s brewery site was used by O’Connor’s & Walsh as a Sawmill & Timber warehouse. Circa 1880’s – NLI

 

Sligo history Brewery
Sligonians on Cockran’s Mall with the large complex of brewery buildings in the background. Circa 1920’s at the time run as Foley’s brewery (Tadgh Kilgannon Collection)

 

Andersons Lough Gill Brewery building Sligo
Former 19th-century brewery building and in 2015 a Nightclub.

 

Old brewery building in Sligo
Velvet Nightclub in Sligo (2015)

 

Foleys brewery Sligo postcard
Foley’s Brewery in the 1960’s – John Hinde Postcard – Author’s own

 

Foleys Lemonade mineral drink Sligo
After competition from the Guinness brewery, Foley’s began producing mineral drinks. Old bottle label circa 1950’s – Author’s Own.

 

Anderson's Brewery Sligo

Stainless steel rods on the Garavogue River outside the former brewery site. It is an art installation by Scottish artist, Donald Urquhart, the public artwork is entitled Lines/Plane: Larus/Cygnus. The artist explains his work ‘The polished rods reflect in the water and in turn, reflect the surrounding environment, including the play of light through the work, thus creating an ever-changing visual and poetic dialogue with the elements.’

Cygnus is a northern constellation lying on the plane of the Milky Way, deriving its name from the Latinized Greek word for swan, while Larus is Latin for gulls.

 

 

 

Sources:

Wood-Martin, Abraham, History of Sligo, Vol. 3 (Dublin, 1892).

O’Rorke, Terence, The History of Sligo: Town & County (Dublin, 1890).

Gallagher, Fiona, Streets of Sligo, (Sligo, 2008).

Newspaper Archives

National Library of Ireland < nli.ie >

Public art < publicart.ie >

Tadgh Kilgannon Collection

Somerville Collection

Other images – Author’s own

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