…and the closed pubs of Neatishead and Barton Turf.
An 18th century pub, perhaps earlier than 1744, with two bars, “the public bar on a lower level is virtually unaltered for 80+ years with its red quarry tiled floor… and impressive black-leaded range. The upper room has a hatch-style bar counter and bench seating” (CAMRA Regional Inventory).
We enjoyed a Woodfordes Wherry while talking to Ted, a regular who moved here from London when he retired, who raised whisky to his white beard.
According to Ted, the Eagle Tavern on Irstead Road had closed by 1987. It is now a private house called The Old Eagle.
We were sad to find that the Barton Angler Hotel closed in 2005. When we visited several years ago, there were bench seats next to a small hatch-style bar and mounted on the walls were specimens of large fish caught locally. It seems that this popular pub then changed hands and was turned into a fine dining pub – lack of success was enough grounds to change the use back to a private dwelling. Originally Irstead Rectory, only becoming a pub in the late 20th century, it is now called The Old Rectory.
Trowel and Hammer
A pub called the Trowel and Hammer existed nearby, at least as early as 1841 when an area was listed in the census as ‘Trowel and Hammer Common’. By the 1851 census it was known by its present name of ‘Three Hammer Common’.
Hole in the Wall
The church at Barton Turf had a display which mentioned the former brewery and beerhouse at the Staithe. It had a license from at least 1846 and was one of the last beerhouses in the area when it closed in 1966.
Sometimes called the ‘Eel’s Foot’ but best known as the ‘Hole in the wall’… as an off-license, beer was obtained through a wicket (opening window) at the rear, and not to be consumed on the premises, which means that many gallons of beer have been drunk on a seat placed along the flint wall, and in the nearby area
Now called Staithe House, originally the building had been three cottages.
John Yaxley’s A Jam Round Barton Turf mentions a ‘hard old country character’ called Dank who lived locally:
Dank of Pennygate had been known to bang on a down pipe at 4:30 in the morning to waken the landlord to get him a gallon of beer. It is said Dank used to wear a clean shirt for a week, then turn it inside out for a second week. He walked the footpaths almost daily, past the Church to Neatishead Street and the White Horse and Eagle Tavern.
Update: The White Horse reopened in May 2014 after closing a couple of times – first at the end of September 2012, then earlier this year for the refurbishment.