From the discovery of alluvial gold in the Bendigo area in late 1851, it took only two years for the earliest breweries to be established in the rapidly growing town.
By 1853, James Lawrie and Company was operating the Sandhurst Brewery from this site which, at the time, extended to Bridge Street, but in August 1854 it was purchased by Charles and James Sayer and renamed the Norfolk Brewery. In 1858, prominent Bendigo architects Vahland and Getzschmann designed a new building for the Norfolk Brewery, which appears in a series of photographs taken by Benjamin Pierce Batcheldor in 1861.
In 1874, William Bruce, who had been involved in brewing in Bendigo since arriving in 1852, purchased the Norfolk Brewery and renamed it BB Brewery, although it appears to have been known as Bruce's Brewery. The operations of the brewery were merged with the City Brewery in 1894 and the Bridge Street site closed soon after.
By 1911 Reed Brothers had moved to the old Bruce cordial factory in Bridge Street, Bendigo. After Joseph Reed died the business became known as J. L. & P. Reed Pty. Ltd. The company grew rapidly and they bought out Darby Brothers of Shepparton in 1946. Reed Brothers continued until they were bought out by Cohn Bros in 1966. During this period, the three storey brewhouse was demolished and new buildings constructed along the Uley Street side of the site.