Catalogue description BRYANT & MAY: RECORDS

This record is held by Hackney Archives

Details of D/B/BRY
Reference: D/B/BRY

Bryant and May grew from its roots in a firm of wholesale provision merchants to the largest of the United Kingdom match manufacturers trading in many countries throughout the world. The range and diversity of the Company's activities are reflected in this list. Short histories of each part of the Company are given in the appropriate sections of the list. Since the initial deposit of records was made at Hackney Archives Department the Company has formed part of the US firm of Allegheny International, who acquired Wilkinson Match in 1980. Bryant and May had merged with Wilkinson Sword to form this group seven years earlier. In 1987 Wilkinson Match was acquired from Allegheny International by Swedish Match.


The records were deposited at Hackney Archives Department through the Business Archives Council and the Company employed an archivist based at the Department, who did the bulk of the listing, although staff of the Department have also worked on the records. In 1984-85 the Department prepared a major travelling exhibition on the Company which was seen in many museums. A history of the Company, The Match Makers by Patrick Beaver was published in 1985 and a copy is available for consultation in the Department's searchroom.

Date: 1840 - 1978
Held by: Hackney Archives, not available at The National Archives
Language: English

Bryant and May Limited, 1884-1974

Physical description: 14 m³
Access conditions:



The following documents are closed to the public until the expiry of the number of years shown in the column on the righthand side. In all cases the expiry date of closure has been calculated from the last date shown on the list.


Closed records may be inspected by the Company or its designated agents or employees subject to consent being granted in writing.


Documents Closed for 30 years:


D/B/BRY/1/2/100-101, 105, 173-201, 223-224, 255, 262, 278-285, 303-312, 321-323, -31, 340, 351-352, 354-356, 367, 507-508, 512, 525-526.


Documents Closed for 75 years:


D/B/BRY/1/2/528, 530-533.


Documents Closed for 30 years:


D/B/BRY/1/2/535, 537, 604, 735-739, 741-753, 756-762, 764, 767-768, 773-774, 779-780, 789-790, 798, 800, 803-813.


Documents Closed for 30 years:


D/B/BRY/1/5/ 11-12, 14-16, 19.


Documents Closed for 30 years:


D/B/BRY/1/6; 1/7; 1/8 (except 11-13).


Documents Closed for 30 years:


D/B/BRY/2/14/ 1-2, 4-7, 10.


Documents Closed for 30 years:




Documents Closed for 30 years:


D/B/BRY/4/5/ 30-38, 42.


Documents Closed for 75 years:




Documents Closed for 30 years:




Documents Closed for 75 years:




Additionally D/B/BRY 1/2/529 will only be produced if searchers undertake to sign an undertaking not to disclose personal information.


D/B/BRY 1/2/445/1-3 will only be produced to reputable researchers when there are adequate staff at the Department to provide extra supervision.

Immediate source of acquisition:

Acc 1980/8; 1984/56

  • Bryant family, matchmakers, of Bow, Middlesex
  • Match industry
Link to NRA Record:

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