Amos Hinton & Sons / Hintons

Amos Hinton & Sons / Hintons

Hintons was the trading name of Amos Hinton & Sons, a supermarket chain in the North East of England from 1871 to 1984.

Amos Hinton was born in the Hertfordshire market town of Tring in 1844 and moved to Middlesbrough in the 1860s where he worked at John Birks’ grocery store in South Street. Hinton & Birk went on to become partners in the business, though this union was short-lived and Hinton took sole charge of the store in 1871. By 1876 Hinton had opened two more grocery stores, one in South Eston and another in Linthorpe Village.

Amos Hinton was a Methodist and a staunch supporter of the Temperance Movement. In keeping with his beliefs, and in order to popularise the drinking of tea and coffee, he opened the Oriental Cafe on the corner of Albert Road and Corporation Road in 1890. The cafe would remain in business until 1967. Hinton was also involved in local politics. In 1886 he was one of the first tradesmen to become mayor of Middlesbrough.

By the time of his death in 1919, Amos Hinton’s business had expanded to seven stores in Teeside. The company went on to acquire a chain of off-licences called Winterschladen.

In 1984 Hintons was purchased by Argyll Foods for £23.3 million. At the time of the acquisition Hintons had 55 supermarkets and 30 off-licences in the North East of England. Hintons own brand products were quickly replaced with Presto brands, although the supermarkets continued to trade under the Hintons name for a short time before they were all converted into Presto stores.