The Peter Walker brewing company was founded in the nineteenth century and had breweries in Warrington and Burton. Walker's pubs were a common sight in Liverpool, Southport and West Lancs. In 1921 the company merged with the original Cains of Liverpool under the name Walker Cains, which in turn merged with Tetley in 1960 to form Tetley Walker. My uncle ran a pub in Bootle and he always referred to the brewery as Walker Cains, even after it became Tetley Walker. My grandmother used to be his relief manager on his day off. I've still got a pair of pumpclips for Walker's Bitter and Mild that he gave to me in about 1963.
The Walker's beers were rebranded as Tetley’s and although the Walker’s recipe continued into the 1970s, without promotion, it was difficult to track it down; my friends and I much preferred Walker’s. In the early 80s, the company revived the Walker’s brand, restyled selected pubs as Walker’s and created a new range of beers: Mild, Bitter, Best Bitter, Warrington and Winter Warmer. The last two were particularly good. The Old Ship in Eastbank Street, Southport, was one of the new Walker's pubs, and we regulars waited every year for the arrival of the Winter Warmer. After a few years, the company must have become bored with the enterprise and the Walker’s name was allowed to lapse permanently and the beers were discontinued.
In 1961 Tetley Walker became part of Allied Breweries, which was acquired by Carlsberg in 1992 (which meant the end of the Walker name), and the Warrington brewery was closed four years later. Locally, the Cheshire Lines in King Street still displays the old Walker’s trade mark above its pub sign, as you can see in the picture.