The Buildings of the Malting Industry

The production of malt from prehistory to the 21st century

By Amber Patrick

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Malt is one of the main ingredients of beer, yet the buildings in which it was and is now produced have received very little attention, although most towns and many villages had their own malthouse and kiln.

This is the first book to address the paucity of detail on maltings which historically were to be found in all English counties. Today evidence for a malthouse may just be a name on a building or street. However, where they survive the pyramidal roofs clearly demonstrate the presence of a malthouse as do other less recognisable features.

This book gives details of early malt kilns and shows how they changed over the centuries. Early buildings were essentially vernacular ones but by the mid-19th century, some firms were using specialist architects. Then in the 20th century, there was more engineering input to new maltings, in particular with the development of the pneumatic process. This once widespread industry is now mainly confined to the eastern side of the country. Elsewhere surviving maltings have been converted to other uses and examples of these are given.

There are illustrations of the exteriors and interiors of malthouses and kilns which show some of the developments and how some buildings have been reused.


  • Acknowledgements
  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: The early evidence for maltings
  • Chapter 2: The development of malthouses and malt kilns to the end of the 17th century
  • Chapter 3: The 18th century and the survival of recognisable kilns
  • Chapter 4: The 19th Century to 1870
  • Chapter 5: The 19th Century from 1870
  • Chapter 6: The Twentieth Century up to 1960
  • Chapter 7: The Twentieth Century from the 1960s and Modern Malting
  • Chapter 8: The Reusing of Maltings – throughout their History
  • Postscript
  • Glossary
  • Weights and Measures
  • Appendix 1: The Malting Process
  • Appendix 1A: Malthouse Layouts
  • Appendix 2: Patents, Architects and Engineers
  • Bibliography
  • Notes

The Buildings of the Malting Industry

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Additional Information

  • Publication Status: Completed
  • Pages: 272
  • ISBN: ISBN:9781837644285 (Hardcover) | eISBN:9781837642717 (PDF)


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