Old Riverview Inn, Earith Beer Festival

…and the closed pubs of Earith

UPDATE: The Riverview and Crown closed for a short period on 18th Feb 2012 (Notice to customers) but apparently the Riverview reopened on 24th Feb under new ownership.

The Old Riverview Inn, Earith is a 19th century coaching inn on the High Street with a beer garden on the banks of the river Great Ouse. Earith is about 12 miles north of Cambridge by road, just over 20 miles by river.

Riverview Hotel, Earith
Riverview

The Riverview held a beer festival from 23rd to 25th September. We visited at noon on the Sunday (too early for the conker championship held later that day) and all 15 beers were on. We only tried a few halves but wished we could have stayed for more (should have brought a tent), the Wychwood Bountiful and Ilkley Stout Mary particularly good. It’s a very welcoming place and there’s a lot to recommend this pub – great beer from the cask, a riverside view (we even saw a seal pop it’s head up) and friendly staff.

Earith Conker Championship
Earith Beer Fest
Earith Beer Fest

The Crown:
There is one other pub in Earith, the Crown, sister pub to the Riverview Inn and just a few footsteps along the High Street or a few boat lengths upstream; there is a toy duck race on the stretch of river between the 2 pubs held on the last Sunday in July.

Crown, Earith

Closed pubs:
Several other pubs used to exist in Earith including the George and Dragon, a 17th century inn. Part of the building, which may date to the 1620s, still exists as George House, a listed building with original wooden panneling inside, now a private dwelling.

George and Dragon, Earith George and Dragon, Earith (2011)

The other part of the George and Dragon (also known as the George Inn) was demolished in the 1960s to widen the road at the corner of Colne Road; the village sign now marks the spot.

George and Dragon, Earith George and Dragon, Earith

Next door stands the Old Brewhouse from the late 1700s.

Old Brewhouse, Earith

Other closed Earith pubs include:

  • Anchor – near River and Colne Road (and chapel pond?)
  • Angel – High St, east end. Existed from at least mid 18th to early 19th century
  • Boat – west of the Angel on the High St, a thatched pub that appears to have burnt down in 1955
  • Black Bull – demolished 1934
  • Cock – existed in early 1800s
  • Dog and Gun – West End, High St, still existed in 1916
  • Game keeper Inn – existed in 19th century
  • George and Dragon – 77a High St (see above)
  • Hardwick Arms – Hermitage Lock. Demolished, formerly stood on the opposite side of the lock to the lock keeper’s cottage
  • Red Lion – High St, near to George and Dragon (on opposite side, near New Lode?), outbuildings included Blacksmith’s shop
  • Wheatsheaf – shown on back lane of Chapel Lane (now Chapel Rd) on 1888 map
  • Windmill – possibly Chapel Road area near where a windmill once stood.
  • There was also another brewery and malthouse near Kingfisher Lodge and what is now West End Marina. They were disused by the beginning of the 20th century and no longer exist.

    10 responses to “Old Riverview Inn, Earith Beer Festival

    1. It Just Goes To Show My Husband Works bloody Hard To make a Great Day and Event Happen. Its Just A Shame Some Earith Locals Don’t See it. Saying That We Have Noticed alot of New Folk In The Village Who Appriciate What We Are Doing Throughout This Tuff Time The Country Is Having. We Fight To Keep 2 Village Pubs Open, Sorry Earith Locals Who Just Cannot See That But Your Missing Out.. Pluck Up Courage and COME AND HAVE A PINT! Before Its Too Late! .. ‘SAVE YOUR LOCAL BRITISH PUB’!

    2. Well, he’s gone then. Maybe we’ll get a new landlord, or landlords, with a bit more sense. It will be good to have a pub to go to in the evenings without having to put up with the ‘silliness’ from the former landlord.
      He has upset so many villagers it was time for him to depart.

    3. Or maybe the pubs will close permanently?

      When we’ve visited we were met with a warm welcome and the beer festival was certainly a great event that I’m sure required a lot of effort. I can’t comment on your grievances, but I get the impression that some people were willing the landlords to fail. Now those people have what they wished for – a village without any open pubs. That doesn’t sound like a good outcome for anyone does it?

    4. The landlord brought all his misfortunes upon himself.
      It is even alleged that one person who booked in for a night stay found mouse droppings in his bed, so he checked out and went somewhere else. The bedrooms are a disgrace.
      He even barred the ladies from the Earith W.I.
      Most of the regulars from those pubs who used to drink there until Jones arrived now drink at the Swan in Bluntisham or the Green Man in Colne – both excellent pubs with welcoming landlords and good food.

    5. Great to see the Riverview has now re-opened with a new boss. It was packed on Friday and the atmosphere was excellent, according to a newly un-banned lady from the W.I.
      Jones really was a ‘very odd and foolish person’ indeed. Thank goodness he’s gone.

    6. I visited Earith yesterday, and I won’t be visiting the Riverview Inn again in a hurry. Hopefully the new owner is working on improvements to both the building (which smells like stale beer & cigarette smoke) & the beer selection! We’ll check back again next summer perhaps.

      I found this from the previous landlord, alongside the notice linked at the top of this post, it sounds rather grim (if you can wade through the laboured prose): http://www.slideshare.net/2villagevenues/our-time-at-the-pubs-in-earith

      Best of luck to the new landlord…

      Makes one think twice about that old dream of taking up a countryside pub.

      • Graham Smithers

        The winging rant of the previous landlord just says it all. The man was a buffoon who upset so many of the villagers that no-one wanted to drink in either of his pubs.
        He brought all his misfortunes upon himself.

        Graham Smithers

      • Thanks for the update Yvan, interesting to hear that it hasn’t been refurbished. Hunts CAMRA reported “The Riverview, which is privately owned, has reopened under new management but the Crown has remained closed. Owners Enterprise Inns are carrying out repair work at the Crown before re-letting it”. I wonder which pub will fare better, the privately owned one in need of improvements, or the one with a pubco picking up the cost of repairs.

        Yes, the ‘dream of taking up a countryside pub does sound like the extracts I’ve read from “Cows to Corpses – My Life in a Village Pub” http://www.inapubnews.co.uk/index.php/blog/your-shout/1108-alison-archer-top-10-things-i-learnt-about-running-a-village-pub

        “No matter how long you’ve run a pub, your regular customers will consider themselves to be much more expert at it than you. And will tell you at every opportunity.”

        And also it seems, people who are not, and never were, regular customers.

    7. Absolute joke of pub, atmosphere was awkward, felt completly unwelcome.
      Locals are a bunch of drunk inbread scum bags. The whole place needs a complete renovation and a decent landlord to keep the scum out. Maybe one day it could be turned in to a decent friendly local. What a shame! No wonder the last landord did a runner!

    8. What of the aspestos at the riverside view? Thought that’s the reason for jones to do midnight flit?

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