|Brewing licences issued 1838 - 1900|
|Year||common brewers||private brewers|
|"Journal of the Institute of Brewing, vol 7", 1901, page 64|
Because no licence was required, the number of private brewers before1880 is not recorded. Private brewers included everyone who brewed but didn't sell their beer. Farmers, colleges, country houses and so-called "cottage brewers" (the rural working class brewing for themselves).
Private brewing never completely died out and, right up until their abolition in the early 1960's, private brewing licences were being issued.
Almost 50,000 breweries in 1838. Very impressive. That's far more than the total number of breweries in the world today. It puts the 700 or so in the UK currently into perspective.