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The Timothy Whites logo on this ventilator grille is still in place in 2009

Timothy Whites was a British chain of dispensing chemist and houseware stores.


The origin of Timothy Whites was a ships' chandlers and general store in Portsmouth, started in 1848 by Timothy White.[1] White himself qualified as a pharmacist in 1869.[2] By 1890, Whites was one of four British pharmacists with over ten branches.[3] Whites sold hardware as well as that which was normally found at a retail chemist's.[4] In 1904 he had his company incorporated as Timothy Whites Ltd.[5]

In 1935, Timothy Whites merged with Taylors Drug Co. Ltd. to form Timothy Whites & Taylors; the shops themselves were named either simply "Timothy Whites"[6] or "Timothy Whites & Taylors".[7] The company was taken over by Boots Pure Drug Co. in 1968.[5] Immediately before the takeover, there were 614 Timothy Whites shops, which had had a combined turnover of approximately £33m in the year before the acquisition. As a result of the rationalisation that followed the takeover, Boots rebranded and absorbed the pharmaceutical side of the business, leaving Timothy Whites with just 196 shops that sold only housewares.[8] The Timothy Whites name eventually disappeared in 1985.


  1. ^ James B. Jefferys, Retail Trading in Britain 1850–1950 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1954), 385. (Here — George Paaswell, Retaining Walls: Their Design and Construction — at Google Books.)
  2. ^ Lesley Richmond, Julie Stevenson, Alison Turton, The Pharmaceutical Industry: A Guide to Historical Records (Aldershot, Hants: Ashgate, 2002; ISBN 0-7546-3352-7), 383. (Here at Google Books.)
  3. ^ Stuart Anderson, Making Medicines: A Brief History of Pharmacy and Pharmaceuticals (London: Pharmaceutical Press, 2005; ISBN 0-85369-597-0), 122. (Here at Google Books.)
  4. ^ Jefferys 435. (Here at Google Books.)
  5. ^ a b Richmond et al. 383. (Here at Google Books.)
  6. ^ Photographic evidence: here, here and here
  7. ^ Photographic evidence: here, here and here; again, see Google Image for more.
  8. ^ "The Boots Company Ltd" (PDF file), chap. 5 of The Boots Company Limited and Glaxo Group Limited (Now a wholly owned subsidiary of Glaxo Holdings Limited): A report on the proposed mergers (London: Competition Commission, n.d.), 25.