Patrick Bewley, a former managing director of Bewley's has died aged 77.
Patrick was a great grandson of the founder of Bewley's, Joshua Bewley, and had been involved in the business for 53 years. He was the last member of the Bewley family to be part of the business, according to the Irish Times.
Online tributes have been paid to the businessman, including from Fairtrade Ireland who have named him "Ireland's original coffee man" and say that Bewley's were the first Irish company to support Fairtrade.
It’s with great sadness that we have learnt of the passing of Patrick Bewley - Ireland’s original coffee man.
Bewleys were the first Irish company to support Fairtrade 1/
Former Bewley’s managing director Patrick Bewley dies aged 77
— Fairtrade Ireland (@Fairtrade_ie) December 27, 2021
According to the Irish Times, Patrick is credited with importing the first Fairtrade certified coffee to Ireland in 1996, in keeping with the sustainable and responsible ethos already practiced within the company.
According to RTÉ News, Patrick's work at the company began at age 21 when worked behind the counter, later moving to front of house to serve beans and ground coffee to the public at the Westmoreland Street branch. He then managed the Westmoreland Street Bewley’s before serving as managing director of the company from 1977 to 2003.
Paddy Campbell, whose family acquired the Bewley’s business in 1986, said about the late Patrick:
In his own quiet, determined way, Paddy Bewley made an immense contribution, not just to the success of Bewley’s over the past 35 years, but to improving the lives of others in need. Paddy did tireless work for the Hospice Foundation and the Mendicity Institution, among others.
Jason Doyle, the managing director of Bewley’s Tea & Coffee Limited said:
When people speak to me about Paddy, I’ll always think about the question he used to ask people in the business; ‘What value did you add today?
Patrick died following a long illness, and is survived by his wife Shirley.
Header image via Instagram/Al_higgins