Our story

Our heritage dates back over 100 years and Ragus’ founder invented golden syrup.

Our heritage

Follow the history of Ragus, from our beginnings as an analytical laboratory,
to the global operation we are today.

Play heritage film

Our timeline

Explore our interactive timeline to see how our business has evolved to
the global business that we are today.

  • 2013

    2013

    Benjamin, James and Peter have developed today’s Ragus from a UK-based refinery into a full-service global operation. The new multi-million pound state-of-the-art factory supplies hundreds of tonnes of pure sugar products to customers all over the world every day.

  • 1990

    1990

    Ronald and Barry retire with the great grandsons of Charles Eastick, James, Peter and Benjamin continuing their great grandfather’s hard work.

  • 1978

    1978

    Ragus is now the UK’s last independent sugar refinery; we celebrate family ownership with our golden jubilee.

  • 1970

    1970

    Ragus begins to sell large quantities of Refined White and Raw sugar and as a result the workforce almost doubled.

  • 1961

    1961

    Bernard and Fredrick sell their shares in Martineaus and Manbré & Garton take over.

  • 1950

    1950

    A period of intense change as the demand for sugar soars. Grandsons Barrington and Ronald take over Ragus and introduce crystallised candy feed for apiaries and crystallised animal feed for farms.

  • 1940s

    1940s

    Douglas serves his country in WWII, his role in charge of the RAF air balloons over Felixstowe docks where the sugar is making its way into the port.

  • 1939

    1939

    WWII is brewing and fruit, now the cornerstone of Charles’ refinery, is no longer available. This sparks invention, with a honey alternative made from crystallized golden syrup.

  • 1930s

    1930s

    Sugar continues to run in the family. Charles’ two sons join him: Douglas at Ragus and Fredrick as MD at Martineau, where Charles remains involved.

  • 1930

    1930

    Charles merges the factory with another of his companies to produce inverted sugars: a sweeter, moist sugar perfect for baking. This merged operation will become the Ragus we are today.

  • 1928

    1928

    Charles’ enthusiasm and invention never wanes; he begins to make specialist sugars and fruit-based goods in a dedicated factory
    he has built in Slough, west of London.

  • 1919

    1919

    Sugar refineries are struggling and fast becoming part of history. Yet Charles and his family’s 11 sugar refining patents, along with their hard work, allow theirs to thrive.

  • 1914

    1914

    Britain edges closer to war. Charles’ attention is drawn to helping others and he devotes his time to sugar rationing. Later he will receive an MBE for services to his country.

  • 1890

    1890

    The brothers seek new adventures. John leaves to oversee the Bundaberg sugar cane plantations in Australia; Charles runs production at the Martineau refinery, at the heart of London’s sugar industry.

  • 1885

    1885

    Golden Syrup is packed into the first metal tins.

  • 1883

    1883

    Tough times bring sugar production to a near-halt. But Charles begins to experiment with the by-products of the sugar refining process. Golden Syrup is born.

  • 1882

    1882

    Impressed by their ground-breaking work, Abram Lyle invites the Eastick brothers to set up a lab at his new Plaistow Wharf refinery.

  • 1880

    1880

    Brothers John and Charles Eastick, excited by sugar’s recent rise into ubiquity to British life, begin a sugar analysis and consulting practice in the centre of London.