1899 – Stall opens in Bradford Market
It was in 1899 that egg and butter merchant William Morrison, the father
of our current Chairman, Sir Ken Morrison, began work to create the
company we know today. From a stall in a Bradford market came the
inspiration to innovate and lead the way in supermarket retailing.
1958 – First town-centre shop opens
After moving from market stalls to counter service, progress was such that in 1958 a small town-centre shop was opened. With three checkouts it was the first in Bradford to offer self-service and have prices on its products.
1961 – First supermarket opens
The company's first supermarket, "Victoria" opened in Bradford in 1961. An old cinema was converted into 5,000 sq ft of retail space selling fresh meat, greengrocery and other provisions, with free parking available.
1967 – Morrisons becomes a public company
Ongoing expansion and plans for further growth led the company to
go public in 1967. The share offer was 174 times over-subscribed as
more than 80,000 investors tried to purchase shares.
1971 – New Head Office in Bradford
Hilmore House office, warehouse and factory complex opens in
1976 – New produce depot opens
Cutler Heights produce packhouse opens in Bradford
1978 – Takeover of Whelan Discount stores
Following the takeover of Whelan Stores, Morrisons operates in
Lancashire for the first time
1980 – Fresh food production begins
In August the Farmers Boy purpose-built fresh food factory began
trading as a wholly owned subsidiary of Morrisons.
1988 – New purpose-built distribution centre
The first distribution centre, Wakefield 41 (situated close to the M1
motorway) goes into operation.
1990 – New fresh food warehouse and distribution site
Wakefield 41 is extended to include chilled storage and an ambient
storage area for produce.
1997 – Second distribution centre
Gadbrook Park in Cheshire becomes operational
1998 – First store opens in the South
In October 1998 Morrisons opens its first store in the south of England
in Erith, Greater London.
1999 – 100th store opens in centenary year
Centenary year is celebrated by opening the 100th Morrisons store
January 2000 – Morrison awarded a Knighthood
Ken Morrison was awarded a Knighthood in the 2000 New Year's
Honours List, for services to food retailing.
November 2000 – First store opens in Wales
Store opens at Rhyl
2001 – Morrisons joins FTSE 100
Following a 35 year record of sales and profit growth since going public
in 1967, Morrisons joined the FTSE 100 for the first time in April 2001.
February 2004 – First store opens in Scotland
In February the company’s first store in Scotland opened successfully at Kilmarnock.
March 2004 – Safeway becomes part of the Morrisons family
In March 2004, Morrisons completed the takeover of Safeway. This
created the UK's fourth largest supermarket group with more than 400
stores across the country, welcoming more than 10 million shoppers each
week. The enlarged group's share of the UK's grocery market is over 15 per
cent and currently employs more than 150,000 members of staff in stores,
factories, distribution centres and head office administrative functions.