Hedges & Butler was one of the oldest wine merchants in England, established in 1667 during the reign of Charles II by Edmund Harris at the Strand in London.

The company initially operated as a grocery business, but soon expanded into a magnificent emporium that sold fine wines, spirits, liqueurs, condiments, and Russian Caviar. Hedges & Butler was owned continuously by family members, and in 1819 William Hedges relocated the company to Regent Street. On 19th July 1821, Hedges & Butler supplied champagne, port and fine wines for the Coronation dinner and banquet of King George IV.The company’s first major development occurred when when it was 

granted a Royal Warrant by King William IV in 1830. Since then, Hedges & Butler was an official supplier to successive monarchs, both British and foreign, including Queen Victoria, the King and Queen of Spain, Edward VII, the Emporer of Japan, the King of Portugal, George V and George VI.

Frank Hedges Butler

(From Wikipedia)

Early life

He was born in London on 17 December 1855, the fifth son of the wine merchant James Butler and his wife, Frances Mary, the eldest daughter of Butler’s business partner, William Hedges. He was educated a preparatory school in Brighton and a boarding school in Upper Clapton, and then studied in France and Germany in order to learn the languages.

Career

Butler became a partner in the family business, Hedges and Butler, in 1882. He was one of the first people in Britain to own a motor car, buying a Benz in 1897,

and was the first honorary treasurer of the Automobile Club of Great Britain. With Charles Rolls, he helped to organize races from 1898, including the RAC 1000 mile Challenge, in which he took part, accompanied by his daughter.

He was introduced to ballooning by Charles Rolls, and during an ascent accompanied by his daughter, Rolls and Stanley Spencer made on 24 September 1901 in a balloon named City of York, he suggested forming an aero club within the Automobile Club. This, the Aero Club of Great Briain, later the Royal Aero Club, would become the regulatory body for aviation in England, responsible for issuing pilot’s licenses and also playing an important part in the development of military aviation in Britain. By 1907 he had made more than a hundred balloon ascents, including the longest solo flight made in England in 1902, and what was then the longest cross-channel balloon voyage, from Wandsworth in London to Caen in 1905. This flight had not originated as an attempt to fly the Channel: the intention had been to observe an eclipse of the sun. In 1907 he published an account of his ballooning career, entitled 5000 miles in a Balloon.

Butler was the second English passenger taken by Wilbur Wright during his demonstration flights in France during 1908. He later became the first person to take a flying lesson at the flying school established at Hendon by Louis Blériot, although he never gained a pilot’s license.

He was an enthusiastic traveller, not only frequently visiting France, Spain and Portugal in connection with his business, but also travelling to the Far East, North and South America, Lapland and Russia. An account of his trip to Lapland, Through Lapland with Reindeer and Skis, was published in 1917, and other travel books include Fifty Years of Travel by Land, Water and Air (1920), Round the World (1925) and Wine and the Wine Lands of the World (1927). He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in 1877.

Personal life

He married Ada Tickle, the daughter of a wool merchant, in 1880: the couple had two daughters, Frances, who died in infancy and Vera. Ada died in 1905.

Hedges Butler was an able amateur violinist and played as one of the first violins for the Imperial Institute Orchestral Society, which he founded in 1894. He was also a keen golfer, yachtsman and big-game hunter. He died in a nursing home at 29 Wimpole Street, London, on 27 November 1928 and was buried in Norwood cemetery.

Hedges Club

Hedges Club is one of the most famous London’s private clubs, is bringing a new trending concept of private members clubs to Spain starting with Barcelona. Having been inspired by the mysterious spirit of British history, the company introduces an invitation-only Hedges Club, the real representative of British temperament.

Our motto is:

SERVICE, PRIVACY, NETWORKING…

In addition to entertainment, Hedges Club strives to offer its services in different areas, such as accounting, legal advice, tax advice, notary express Service, startup, IT and business advice and more. Th e whole vibe of the club is aiming to create a unique space where the members could feel secure, just like home.

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