History & Heritage

Impeccable Quality Meat UK 

Throughout the history of Walter Rose & Son, we have never lost sight of our core beliefs – supplying exceptional quality meat to our customers with an unrivalled level of outstanding service. From the day we established Walter Rose & Son, in 1847, we have always bought from the best, local, high-welfare farms. We want the Walter Rose & Son name to continue to be held in the highest regard as quality butchers both locally and internationally and we will always go the extra mile to ensure our customers love what we produce.

“It doesn’t matter whether you want a signature sausage or speciality cut, being part of the creative process and applying our discipline to excellence is what we’re all about.” – Jack Cook

Who We Are

Walter Rose & Son have a rare and wonderful business based on superb quality meat supplied from farm to fork. Throughout history, our loyal customers return time and again, having been served by different generations within the Walter Rose & Son family.

Led by Stephen Cook since the 1970s, seven family members are at the core of our business. With a valued team of excellent staff, Walter Rose & Son care about the attention to detail in both our exceptional quality meat and our impeccable level of customer service.

Great Grandad Bob

Wilfred Robert Cook was born to be a butcher. He established WR Cook & Sons in 1928 and never lost his excitement for the farmer’s auctions and abattoirs. He was a much-loved family and a community man of note. He is still remembered for singing in the choir and being a constant road hazard on his bike, come rain or shine. Nothing made him prouder than having his teenage grandson, Stephen, with him at the cattle auctions.

Grandad Cliff

Cliff naturally excelled at everything he did. As a father to Andrew and Stephen, Cliff also loved his sport. A real all-rounder in every sense, he played cricket, football & squash for Wiltshire, which was quite an accomplishment. Cliff spent his whole working life in the family retail and catering butcher business. The only interruption being his enlistment into the Royal Marines in 1945. Through it all, Cliff was a people person and today, customers still remember him with great fondness.


At the age of six, Stephen would often help his father in the butcher’s shop, progressing to make deliveries and then on to sausage production. In 1971 he left for London to study the meat trade for three years at Smithfield College. After that Stephen spent a further three years working in the wholesale trade of the meat industry. In 1976 Cliff informed him that Walter Rose, the only competition in the town was up for sale. Stephen saw this as a massive opportunity and bought the ailing retail shop. Nearly 40 years on, with his sons firmly established in the business, he looks back with pride on how Walter Rose has evolved and grown to be the successful award-winning butcher business it is today.

Jack & Charlie

For Jack & Charlie learning the family business meant being thrown in at the deep end by dad Stephen. They both worked long weekends with no holidays, working very late and very early hours. Passionate about the family butcher shop (butcher shop ranks higher than butcher business) and business, Jack and Charlie aren’t complacent about driving the company forward, they recently completed a huge shop refurbishment and have been a driving force in escalating the sustainability of the online sales, with our modern online butcher shop.

“We try not to take ourselves too seriously, our work is a different matter – that’s serious.” – Charlie Cook

‘Rose and Son’ founded by Mr. John Rose with his sons William and Walter. William later leaves the business to become the personal butler for Lady Rothschild. John Rose is succeeded by his son Walter Rose.

Walter Rose & Son are granted a Royal Warrant by Queen Victoria. Whilst the Queen was residing at Bowood House with the Marquis of Lansdowne, Walter Rose & Son were her butchers of choice.

Bob Cook opens his own butcher shop on Devizes High Street – WR Cook and Son (initially Cook and Wishart). Bob was to be succeeded by his son Cliff Cook.

At just 5 years old, Stephen Cook begins working at his Grandfather/Father’s shop learning the trade.

Stephen leaves Devizes and enrols at Smithfield College, London

Current proprietor, Tommy Cartwright puts Walter Rose and Son up for sale. Stephen Cook moves back to Devizes and purchases the business for £6,000.

The Original shop expands to add a delicatessen in what was previously a children’s clothes shop next door. The former carpentry business situated behind the shop is also purchased by Stephen Cook and joined onto the butchery to become the chiller, cutting room and office space. Over £500,000 was spent on this project.

At the same time, after the death of Cliff Cook, WR Cook and Sons merges with Walter Rose and Son.

Jack Cook joins the company

Charlie Cook joins the company

The opening of our £2,000,000 EU licensed cutting plant elevates Walter Rose & Son to being one of the leading catering butchers in Britain.

Walter Rose and Son becomes a limited company and is awarded ‘Britain’s Best Butchers Shop’.

Stephen Cook is clothed by the Worshipful Company of Butchers and given the freedom of the city of London.

The UK goes into Lockdown and Walter Rose and son create a new website, offering Free delivery to those who need it.

The Cook family are happy to announce that they are expanding the business even more after buying ‘Banda industrial estate’, Devizes. A bigger and better site is coming soon!!