Who We Are

Akins-Brewer is an independently owned and operated building supply store located in Shakespeare, Ontario, Canada.

In August of 2017,  Akins-Brewer Lumber was purchased by the owners of Allen Building Centre, another member of Castle in Woodstock, Ontario.  In combining our efforts, we have significantly increased our volume, expertise and experience, and are continually working toward enhancing our service and product offerings. 

Akins-Brewer has been and continues to be a staple in the Shakespeare community. We are a full service supplier of lumber and building materials to both large and small contractors, DIY'ers, and farmers.  Akins-Brewer remains proud of its small town roots, and we continue to grow to better serve the needs of our community. 

Stop in and visit our yard and let the knowledgeable sales staff assist you with any project, big or small. 

Enjoy the benefits of a small town atmosphere. Outstanding customer service. Quality products. Competitively priced. 


In the late 1940's, Bill Akins, who was running a lumber yard in Monkton, Ontario, decided to move his enterprise to the quaint village of Shakespeare to be closer to the city of Stratford. He quickly joined forces with a Listowel businessman by the name of George Brewer who was operating a hardware business at the time and the two formed Akins-Brewer Lumber. As the name implies, they sold mainly lumber ranging from spruce and pine from Ontario, and fir and cedar from British Columbia, as well as rough hemlock from Barry's Bay. Plywood, along with numerous products we have today, were nonexistent at the time. The business did quite well supplying the residential, commercial and agricultural needs of Southwestern Ontario.

In 1960, the business was sold to a group of Stratford businessman who carried on with the same determination as the original owners, expanding inventory, opening up new markets and increasing sales.

In 1977 the company changed hands again when it was purchased by the employees who became shareholders and the name Akins-Brewer Lumber (1977) Limited was formed. Maintaining their independence and still trying to compete with the national chains proved to be somewhat difficult. In January 1985, Akins-Brewer, while still remaining independent made the decision to join the Castle Building Centre Group who, at the time, had a large number of retail outlets throughout Canada. Akins-Brewer was now able to combine their purchases into bulk buys, resulting in much lower prices and staying competitive with other lumber yards.

Today, Akins-Brewer still operates in Shakespeare and has become a staple in the community. Operating as a full fledged lumber and building supply yard, Akins has been able to retain the business of many large home builders and agricultural contractors while fighting off competition from big box stores.

Stop in and visit our yard and let the knowledgeable sales staff assist you with any of your projects, big or small.

Come and enjoy the small town atmosphere!

We're a member of Castle,  Canada's premier buying group.

Since 1963, builders, contractors and consumers have been relying on Castle as their building supply partner.  Whether you're looking for lumber, building materials, hardware or advice, hundreds of Castle dealers across Canada are trusted to deliver quality products and value.

Castle dealers are independent.  They run their own stores and businesses.  They know their communities, their customers, and their needs.  That's why Castle members are growing and succeeding across Canada - they live in the communities they serve. At Akins-Brewer, we are your trusted building supply partner.