Established in 1856 by a local farmer, Thomas Altham, who opened a butcher’s shop in Poulton-le-Sands now known as Morecambe. A second shop was later acquired in Heysham. He had two sons.
Thomas’s second son, John Carr went into the business but then died at a relatively early age leaving his widow Mrs. J.C.Altham who took over the business and opened two more shops in Morecambe and Heysham with her sons Thomas and Robert.
As a natural development of the existing business a chandlery outlet was set up in a warehouse on St. George’s Quay, Lancaster which provided victualling to the increasing number of vessels sailing in and out of Heysham harbour.
During the 1950’s the abattoir in Morecambe was sold to FMC.
1965 saw a move of the chandlery to larger premises in Morecambe to accommodate the ship stores.
Early 1974 due to the butchery business expanding a large extension was built at the chandlery premises.
In 1974 the running of the farming and butchery business was taken over by Thomas and Val Altham. Thomas being the great grandson of the founder and Val his wife. The directors seeing a decline in the retail market decided to expand into the catering sector moving further afield to service hotels/restaurants in the Lake District and surrounding areas.
In 1984 the development of the catering business was so successful that the Company moved the butchery business to larger premises, which consisted of a factory and office, on the White Lund Industrial Estate, Morecambe where it has remained since.
At the same time the chandlery business became a separate entity.
In 1993 James Carr Altham was appointed a Director and was joined on the Board by his brother, Richard Charles Altham, in January 1996.
In 1993/94 the factory underwent major refurbishment to comply with EC regulations and directives to meet the demands of our ever increasing and discerning customers.
In the year 2000 the Company grew extensively embracing a delivery area from the North West to the Midlands. This growth continued. In 2003/4 the Company purchased additional land and a substantial extension was constructed. The factory can still justifiably be considered ‘state of the art.’
The Company is now run by Mrs. Val Altham and her two sons James and Richard, thus maintaining the Altham tradition.