Pubs of Royal Leamington Spa.

Leamington Spa has always had a good selection of pubs with a variety of breweries involved in the trade in the town.  Old established names such as Phipps, Ansells, Phillips and Marriotts, Mitchells and Butlers, Hunt Edmunds, Flowers, Watneys, Atkinsons and the two local firms of Thornley and Kelsey at Radford Semele and Lucas in Lillington Avenue have all had a presence in the town at some time.  Mergers and takeovers led to some changes in the 1950s and 1960s as the conglomerates of Allied Breweries, Bass Charrington, Watneys and Whitbread Flowers came into being.  However, in the 1960s there remained a nominal choice of Ansells, M & B, TK, Marstons, Watneys, Whitbread and Flowers spread throughout the town.  With the takeover of TK by Davenports, a new name was added to the variety of beer available.  The later infiltration of Wolverhampton and Dudley Breweries was to add the Banks's name to some of the local pubs.

 

The old pattern of pubs tied to breweries was changing in the 1980s as new chains developed and the separation of pubs and breweries began.  The photographs shown here were mainly taken in 1987 by Bill Bigley, at a time that the changes in the Leamington pub scene were starting to take effect and, sadly, some of the old pub names were being altered.  Leamington could boast a range of interesting and evocative pub names to accompany the variety of beers on sale.  Names such as the Chair and Rocket, the Jet and Whittle (since disastrously renamed before returning as the Jet) and the Fox and Vivian are part of the uniqueness of Leamington. 

 

There are more then 50 photographs in the original collection.  Not all the photographs are displayed here and the page will be changed from time to time to show different pubs.  This is not a comprehensive history of Leamington's pubs, more a glimpse of the situation in 1987.  It is known that pubs changed use over time and some of these shown here have since had a change of use or been altered in some way.  Also there are other buildings around the town that have been used as pubs in the past.  At one time it seemed that there was a pub on every corner and certainly in the Clemens Street/High Street area, a pub crawl could have been exactly that!

The Greyhound

The Greyhound

Changed in the 1990s to the Cask and Bottle.

The Hope and Anchor

The Hope and Anchor

At one time this was a pub owned by the local Lucas brewery and was taken over by Ansells of Birmingham.

The Green Man

The Green Man

An old established local pub dating from the 1920s.

The Jekyll & Hyde

The Jekyll & Hyde

The building has a chequered history with a variety of businesses having occupied it. The pub itself opened in the 1980s and closed in the 1990s. It is now The Clarendon.

The Hope Tavern

The Hope Tavern

At one time a Thornley and Kelsey, of Radford Semele, outlet it became a Davenports pub when the TK pubs were sold off.

The Shakespeare Inn

The Shakespeare Inn

Once owned by the noted Flowers Brewery of Stratford on Avon.

The Coventry Arms

The Coventry Arms

A substantial building, it was at one time owned by the local Lucas Brewery.

The Coach & Horses

The Coach & Horses

Another TK house taken over by Davenports in the 1960s.

The Joiners Arms

The Joiners Arms

Another ex-TK pub which was taken over by Davenports in the 1960s.

Memories (Britannia)

Memories (Britannia)

At one time a pub belonging to the local brewers Lucas & Co.

Birch & Billycock (Warwick Hotel)

Birch & Billycock (Warwick Hotel)

Another pub which has undergone changes over the years, at the time of the photo in the 1980s it was known as the Birch and Billycock, having previously been the warwick Hotel.

The Tavistock Inn

The Tavistock Inn

Another TK pub taken over by Davenports in the 1960s.

The Stoneleigh Arms

The Stoneleigh Arms

Sadly boarded up and empty now.

The Stoneleigh Arms

The Stoneleigh Arms

Advertising uncovered during restoration work.

The Stoneleigh Arms

The Stoneleigh Arms

Plough & Harrow

Plough & Harrow

Located in Whitnash it brings back memories of visits to the beer garden on a summer's evening.

The Heathcote Inn

The Heathcote Inn

This pub dates from the 1940s and was originally a Thornley Kelsey owned establishment. Its prominent position in Whitnash means that it is handily placed to serve the new estates that have been built in the area.

The Newbold Tavern

The Newbold Tavern

Handily located for the Jephson Gardens.

Bulldog Inn

Bulldog Inn

The Bulldog was built in the 1950s and was originally a Thornley Kelsey pub before being taken over by Davenports when the TK estate was sold off. There was originally a small walled garden island at the front of the pub which was later removed to create more car parking space.

The Great Western

The Great Western

Now closed but had what must have been the smallest bar in the area.

The Fusilier

The Fusilier

A modern pub on the Sydenham estate.

The Chair & Rocket

The Chair & Rocket

At one time known as the Vaults but now, for some unfathomable reason, renamed as The Old Library.

Prince of Wales Inn

Prince of Wales Inn

New Inn

New Inn

Kellys (The Leopard)

Kellys (The Leopard)

Another pub lost to development.

The Avenue Hotel

The Avenue Hotel

A pub with a chequered history of ownership, at the time this photo was taken in the 1980s it had a most uninviting appearance.

The Jet & Whittle

The Jet & Whittle

This was the original name of the pub in recognition of Sir Frank Whittle, jet engine pioneer, who was educated at Leamington College. It was later to become the Brunswick Tavern before returning as The Jet.

New Binswood Tavern

New Binswood Tavern

Now sadly gone, it had been handily placed for 6th form students from Leamington College.

The Carpenters Arms

The Carpenters Arms

Pictured, deserted by the houses which once surrounded it due to redevelopment, the pub itself has undergone a change of use.

The Carpenters Arms

The Carpenters Arms

The Haunch of Venison

The Haunch of Venison

The idiosyncratic Mock Tudor frontage was added in the 1930s at a time that the pub was owned by the Leamington brewer Lucas & Co. Although totally out of keeping with the surrounding buildings it did at least stand out.

The Black Horse

The Black Horse

Tucked away up a side street this was nother pub that could truly be called a "local", serving local residents. Unfortunately it is now closed.

The George

The George

This substantial building once served as a small hotel. Sadly it is a pub no more, being converted to residential accommodation.

The Holly Bush

The Holly Bush

The Bedford Inn

The Bedford Inn

The Royal Exchange

The Royal Exchange

The Wheatsheaf

The Wheatsheaf

Sun in Splendour

Sun in Splendour

A pub dating from the 1960s but now demolished and replaced by a block of flats so that the view is now totally altered.

Talbot Inn

Talbot Inn

The Talbot Inn

The Talbot Inn

View of the mural which once adorned the pub.

Cassis

Cassis

Was The Willoughby Arms

The Railway Inn

The Railway Inn

Woodland Tavern

Woodland Tavern

The Star & Garter

The Star & Garter

At one time the only Marstons pub in the area.

The Queens Head

The Queens Head

The Cricketers Arms

The Cricketers Arms

Handily placed for Victoria Park and the English National Bowling Championships which take place on the greens each year.

The Somerville Arms

The Somerville Arms

A good old traditional pub with live music sessions.

The Kings Arms

The Kings Arms

Pub closed around 1988.

The Ranelagh Tavern

The Ranelagh Tavern

A real old-time unpretentious pub, now closed.

The Golden Lion

The Golden Lion

Believed to be the oldest pub in Leamington at the time that this photo was taken. No longer a pub.

Bowling Green

Bowling Green

Refurbished a few years ago with photos of Old Leamington on display it now appears to have gone the way of many other pubs featured here and closed.

The Windmill

The Windmill

Red House

Red House

Now closed and converted to residential accommodation.

The Fox & Vivian

The Fox & Vivian

Oak Inn

Oak Inn

Now converted to a convenience store.

The Grist Mill

The Grist Mill

One of the newer pubs in the area, built on the Sydenham estate, it opened in 1985.

The White Horse

The White Horse

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