The John Charrington who was born in 1856 was trained with F. Green & Co., Shipbrokers. He became the Chairman of Charringtons and of the Association of Private Owners of Railway Rolling Stock. He also held the position of Honorary Secretary, Treasurer, and, finally, Chairman of the Society of Coal Merchants, London, from 1895-1915 and was Justice of the Peace for Hertfordshire.
By the beginning of the 20th century, Charringtons had expanded their coal selling operations into coal transport. Included in their fleet were ships named The Lady Charrington and The John Charrington. Charringtons railroad cars and coal delivery trucks became a common sight in Britain.
By the 1960s, Charringtons also was involved in mechanical engineering, designing a barge that moved the American Wind Symphony Orchestra along the Thames through London.
The company seems to exist today as Charringtons Solid Fuel, but I believe that it is owned by a larger conglomerate that keeps the familiar Charrington's name for marketing reasons.
-submitted by Paul Green