the place to be
Sunday December 17th 2017

Bletchingley Pubs of the past

The small village of Bletchingley has managed to support a large number of pubs over the years, of which 5 still survive today as follows:

Prince Albert: Dated back to the 19th century and was named after Victoria’s Consort, Albert. The building itself is a medieval Hall House still with many original features. Recently closed (2013).

Cottage of Content: A small pub once part of the cottages positioned on the main road just below what is now Howard Cundey.

The Fox and Hounds: Situation in Workhouse Lane (now Church Lane). The building is now gone but at one time a public footpath went in one side of the building and out the other!

Coach and Horses: Now Closed. Just down from the current Post Office and in recent past years was known as the King Charles Restaurant . It is also thought that this pub was known as the Angel and Crown and the Green Dragon.

The Three Tuns: Now Tun Cottage in the High Street.

The Plough: Actually quite old though it currently has a modern feel and has kept the same name throughout. First mentioned in local records in 1704, the pub had stabling for 8 horses and 8 lodgers and used to have a minature railway in the garden. When the Fair was held in the village High Street, the itinerant stall holders used to camp at the Plough and, on the given mark, would rush up the street to set up their stalls on the morning of the Fair.  Still Open.

The White Hart – has for centuries been a pivotal element to the life of the village but there is a degree of doubt over the claim on the pub sign that it dates from 1388. When Bletchingley was a ‘Rotten Borough’ the Parliamentary elections took place at the pub with promises of free beer in return for votes. Still Open.

The Bell:- At Outwood but which until recently came within Bletchingley Parish. It is said that some of the wood within the bar came from a ship and the whole place dates back to 1390. Still Open.

Spotted Cow: Once frequented at Warwick Wold but even the land it stood upon has now gone replaced by the bridge crossing the M25. It was pulled down in 1972. It was described in 1892 as being a place for the labouring classes and by all accounts had some colourful landladies behind the bar.

The Angel, The Maid, the Flanders Mare – All names for what is now the Red Lion. Again a claim to great antiquity but there is a real possibility that it was indeed known to both Anne of Cleves (who lived at Bletchingley Place) and her ex-husband Henry V111. The nearby main route to London led down Sychens Lane so the Pub was in a good position for passing trade. In 1859 there was a accidental homicide when Mrs Brown (the landlady and a person of intemperate habits) died of a mis-directed kick to the abdomen, courtesy of Mr Brown who had ordered her to bed! Still Open.

William IV:- Named after the monarch. There are several pubs of this name, believed to be as an homage by sailors who took their Navy pensions after the Napoenonic Wars and used them to set up public houses. Still Open

The above information was taken from the August edition of the Bletchingley Magazine on a talk by Daphne Constable, of the Conservation and Historical Society.