Gatehouse Brewery

Business: Brewery Company of Gatehouse

Location: Gatehouse of Fleet

Type: Brewery

The Gatehouse Brewery was built as part of an ambitious plan by James Murray to create a planned, industrial village on his Cally estate in the late 1760s.

He formed a partnership with John Bushy and James Davitts, which traded as the Brewery Company of Gatehouse and commissioned the building of the brewery, which was completed in 1771.

The brewery was offered for sale in 1781, but was unsold and the partners were bought out by James Davitts.

A number of proprietors and tenants were associated with the brewery thereafter, including:

Mr Archibald, who was recorded there as a brewer in 1822

John McWilliam junior, who was recorded there as a brewer in 1825

Andrew Kirk, who was a tenant in 1841, and bought the brewery in 1847 for £425

James Hunter, who bought the brewery in 1857 for £1,150

David Hunter, who was assigned the brewery in 1860 for £1,150

Thomas Campbell McKean, who bought the brewery in 1869 for £2,000

Horatio Granville M Stewart, who bought the brewery in 1874 for £2,200

William Tomlinson, who was a tenant from 1874 to at least 1878

The brewery was described as empty in 1884 and there is no evidence of brewing after that date. The buildings were sold to Alexander Stewart Campbell and William Black Campbell in 1904.

The Gatehouse Brewery was described as "a large 3-storey brick and rubble building on an L-plan, with a 2-storey dwelling-house at one end". The buildings survive and are now used for a mix of residential and commercial purposes. The well is believed to have been in what is now a builder's office.

A model of Gatehouse in about 1800 shows the brewery facing the street, with the tannery and the cotton mills to its rear.  In 1851 the artist R G Kelly painted a view over Gatehouse.  A detail from the picture indicates the brewery chimney to the left of the large cotton mill.  The brewery chimney can be seen in the photograph of the brewery brae about 1900, looking towards the house known as the wine house.  The former cellars can be seen below the wine house building.

Map of 1849 showing the layout of the Gatehouse Brewery

Active: 1771 - 1878

Address: High Street

Status: Converted

Current Use: Residential and commercial property


Gatehouse Brewery
This picture shows part of the brewery buildings on the right hand side, just beyond the houses with the double stairs, in the 1930s.


The former brewery buildings are now used by a mix of commercial and residential purposes.


Other Sources of information

Web resources

Canmore has a number of records relating to he Gatehouse Brewery. Last accessed 19th July 2016.

Gatehouse folk - then and now. Last accessed 17th January 2016.

Books and Periodicals

Donnachie, I. A history of the brewing industry in Scotland. Edinburgh: John Donald Publishers, 1979.

Donnachie, I. Industrial archaeology of Galloway (South-west Scotland, including Wigtown, Kirkcudbright and adjoining parts of Dumfries). Newton Abbot: David & Charles, 1971.

Hume, J. R. The industrial archaeology of Scotland, 1: The Lowlands and Borders. London: B. T. Batsford, 1976.