Starter lactic acid bacteria in Cheddar cheese face physico-chemical stresses during manufacture and ageing that alter their abilities to survive and to interact with other bacterial populations. Nonstarter bacteria are derived from milk handling, cheese equipment and human contact during manufacture. Probiotic bacteria are added to foods for human health benefits that also encounter physiological stresses and microbial competition that may mitigate their survival during ageing. We added probiotic Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus paracasei and Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis to full-fat, reduced-fat and low-fat Cheddar cheeses, aiming to study their survival over 270 days of ageing and to determine the role of the cheese matrix in their survival.