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Thomas Lavery (born 1845 in Dromara) is the son of a publican, farmer & magistrate. In 1870 he walked to a burgeoning Belfast to meet his twin sister Mary ‘Ma Guinea’, who had already established her own wholesale business in Cromac Sq. With her help, Thomas began to build his company starting with a pub in a bustling Corporation Sq. His success relied heavily on the shipbuilding industry and shipyard workers were a good customer.


Kinahan’s Spirit Grocers, a popular spot for a drink in Shaftsbury Square, also had stable facilities to the back of the building in Stable Lane and so it became a popular stage coach stop for the returning Dublin to Belfast horse-drawn passenger coach.

In 1854 it is bought by The Kinahan brothers and named Kinahan’s and remains until 1918…