Page last updated at 17:00 GMT, Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Timeline: Cadbury's long history

Cadbury's Bournville factory in the 1880s
The Cadbury factory in Bournville was opened in 1879

Cadbury, a brand known and loved around the world, had humble beginnings.

Its story began in 1824 when John Cadbury opened a grocer's shop in Ball Street, Birmingham.

From there it grew and became one of the world's most popular chocolate brands. Here is a timeline detailing the firm's history.

1824: John Cadbury's shop was opened in Bull Street, Birmingham. As a young Quaker, he was against alcohol and so instead sold tea, coffee, cocoa and drinking chocolate.

1831: John Cadbury became a manufacturer, renting a warehouse in Crooked Lane, close to his shop. Here he began producing cocoa and chocolate.

1840s: His brother Benjamin joined the company to form Cadbury Brothers. The firm began renting a factory in Bridge Street in 1947.

1854: The brothers opened an office in London and received a Royal Warrant as manufacturers of chocolate and cocoa to Queen Victoria.

1860s: John Cadbury retired in 1861 and the business was taken over by his sons Richard and George. They were aged 25 and 21. In 1866, the brothers launched a new product, Cadbury Cocoa Essence.

1870s: By the 1870s, Cadbury had outgrown the Birmingham factory and began looking for land outside the city to build its new premises.

Keen to move away from the dirty conditions of the city, the brothers set about building their "factory in a garden" to provide a clean and healthy working environment for employees.

They chose land four miles outside of Birmingham, which they later named Bournville. The factory opened in 1879.

1880s: By the late 1880s, the workforce had increased five-fold and 10 years later, the factory was expanded.

1893: George Cadbury bought more land in Bournville and began building the village which surrounds the factory.

1897: Cadbury launched its first milk chocolate bar.

1905: Cadbury Dairy Milk was launched.

1921: The firm opened its first overseas factory in Tasmania.

1930: Cadbury had become the 24th largest manufacturing firm in Britain. The original 14-acre site at Bournville had increased to 81 acres. More than 100 acres was devoted to recreation, including dressing areas, rest rooms and a concert hall featured on site. The well-being of the workforce was important to the Cadbury family.

1969: The firm merged with Schweppes and became Cadbury Schweppes.

2008: Cadbury and Schweppes demerged, separating its confectionary and drinks business.

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