History

  • 1861

    James Kirby begins trading as a cowkeeper from Chatham Street in Leicester city centre

  • 1868

    The business becomes Highfields Dairy and moves to new premises in Andover Street

  • 1900

    Mr West takes over the dairy

  • 1920

    Mr West retires and his partner Frank Smith sets about a plan to expand and modernise the company

  • 1933

    Sales of 2,500 gallons per day are achieved, increasing tenfold from 1916

  • 1934

    The dairy moves to bigger premises on Western Boulevard after consolidating eight other Leicester businesses over the previous few years

  • 1956

    Following the death of Frank Smith, the company is passed on to his two sons Leonard and Harold

  • 1959

    Leonard Smith retires form the business, around this time Harold Smith's children join the company

  • 1960

    17,000 gallons of milk are being produced each day

  • 1980

    The business moves to a new purpose built dairy on Richard III Road, where it still operates from today

  • 2005

    Graham Smith, current managing director of Kirby & West and great grandson of Frank Smith, joins the company

  • 2007

    Kirby & West ceases production of its own milk but continues doorstep delivery to over 25,000 households in Leicester and Leicestershire

  • 2014

    Pensworth purchases a stake in Kirby & West and the company begins wholesale food delivery