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Our recent work with Fenwick and Sons

We are incredibly lucky to have recently worked with the well-known company, Fenwick & Sons. Fenwick were in need of some new packaging for their Traditional Range, which needed to be able to comfortably hold four bottles, each bottle needing a viewing window to display the company branding. The packaging needed to be easy to carry and hold the bottles in place once opened, keeping a good level of presentation, making it a perfect gift for friends or family. 

Showing off the name and brand within this packaging was particularly important as the company has a prominent influence in the industry, having been established since 1885. The company has a rich history, having begun when Mr Thomas Fenwick began making soft drinks at a small plant on Roker Avenue, in Sunderland. Mr Thomas was supplying to local shops and pubs during this time, using a similar sales model to Coca-Cola and Pepsi Cola in the USA.

Most drinks sold at the time were well-known family favourites, such as lemonades, Ginger Ale & Soda Water. The North East in particular also had a penchant for Sarsaparilla and Dandelion & Burdock, which Fenwick saw as an opportunity, making their own products which became incredibly popular.

Back in the 1880s, there were no automatic filling machines, but as time and technology progressed, by 1900 the ‘Codd’ bottle was introduced, which used a marble in the bottleneck, leading the bottle pressure to force a seal. As the business was doing well, Fenwick moved to an old bakery premises within the grounds of the family home, an old Victorian ‘Villa’ in 1910. This later became the inspiration for the company trading name Villa Drinks.

Fast forward to the 1960s, and the now-branded Villa Drinks began marketing their brands in the North East, often using TV advertising to increase awareness. The following two decades saw the company expand rapidly, requiring many factory extensions. Affectionately known as ‘Villa Pop’, the Fenwick’s family drinks were becoming a household name.

In 1982, Villa drinks was now that large it was relocated to a new purpose-built 3.5-acre site in Southwick, Sunderland and started production in 1984. Later in 1990, the company marked another milestone, sinking its first borehole on the site so that spring water could be sourced locally.

During the 1990s and into the 2000s, the Fenwick brand name continued into new formats including large PET and glass. The glass format became one of the early drivers of craft soda in the UK. Since 2013, The Fenwick’s and Villa drinks brands have been owned & distributed by Drink Natural Ltd. The ranges are still made to a classic Fenwick’s recipe with no artificial preservatives, colours or sweeteners. Each drink has a beautiful balance of flavours, rich with history and authenticity. In 2020, the James Fenwick’s Mixers range was launched and is the latest addition to the drinks range.

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