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The Falcon Public House Eversholt

The Falcon about 1960 [WB-Flow-4-5-Ev-F1]
The Falcon about 1960 [WB/Flow/4/5/Ev/F1]

The Falcon was one of Eversholt’s older licensed premises and was earlier known as the Red Cap. The present yellow-brick building, however, does not look any earlier than the turn of the late 19th century.

The Falcon is first mentioned in the countywide licensing register for the county of 1822 [CLP13]. It was then listed in the inventory of properties of Ampthill brewers John and Joseph Morris in 1827 [Z1043/1]. The description tells us that the property had with timber built stables with lofts over, a wood barn and a building formerly used as a brewhouse, with a garden and a skittle ground.

In 1851 a man was arrested at the Falcon for stealing a bag of silver totalling £15 [QSR1851/1/5/35]. This man was Thomas Taylor and he later confessed to his crime. At the time of his arrest he was too busy drinking his ill-gotten gains and was “the worse for liquor and refused to give his name”. The register for Bedford Gaol tells us that he was 22 years old and was given three months’ hard labour.

The Falcon remained in the ownership of Morris & Company (Ampthill) Limited, as John and Joseph Morris’ company became, until 1926 when the firm was taken over by Luton brewer J W Green.

The Rating and Valuation Act 1925 specified that every building and piece of land in the country was to be assessed to determine its rateable value. The valuer visiting the falcon found the public house duly owned by J W Green, the tenant being Arthur J Hitchens, who paid rent of £25 per annum “fixed by Ampthill Brewery 18 years ago”.

The “painted” property comprised a bar (“fair three pulls not used”), a tap room (“good”), a bar parlour, a living room, a reception room, a kitchen and a scullery downstairs with four bedrooms and a boxroom above. A barn and an earth closet stood outside along with a coachhouse and stable and there was a barn in the orchard.

Trade was eighteen gallons of beer and half a gallon of spirits per week as well as six dozen bottles of beer per month. The valuer commented: “Was a charabanc place, never come now” meaning organised trips into the country from nearby towns used to stop at the place.

In 1954 J W Green merged with Midlands brewery Flowers and it was the Flowers name which survived. This firm was taken over by Whitbread in 1962. The last recorded licensee was 1959 [PSA5/2]. By the time of the next licensing register, 1968 [PSA5/5], the pub must have closed as it is not listed.

Sources:

  • CLP13: Register of alehouse licences: 1822 – 1828
  • Z1043/1: listed in inventory of John and Joseph Morris: 1827;
  • X21/629: conveyance of properties from Joseph Morris to devisees under the will of John Morris, deceased: 1828;
  • WB/M/4/1/VP1: Mortgage for £30,000 from John Morris to Mary and Catherine Morris of various properties: 1831;
  • QSR1851/1/5/35: arrest at the Falcon: 1851;
  • PSW3/1: Register of Alehouse Licences - Woburn Petty Sessional Division: 1868-1949;
  • WB/M/4/1/VP2: Mortgage from John Thomas Green to Susanna, Mary Jane and Sophia Morris of a number of properties: 16 Jun 1882;
  • WB/M/4/1/VP8: Abstract of Title of Morris & Company (Ampthill) Limited to various properties: 1900-1926;
  • CCE 5304/1: conveyed by Morris family to Morris & Company (Ampthill) Limited: 1907
  • WB/M/4/2/1: mentioned on list of properties of Morris & Company (Ampthill) Limited: c.1926
  • WB/M/4/2/2: mentioned on list of properties of Morris & Company (Ampthill) Limited: 1926;
  • WB/Green4/2/2: payments by J.W.Green Limited to landlord - Duke of Bedford.: 1927-1953
  • PSA5/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Ampthill Petty Sessional Division: 1934-1959;
  • WB/Green4/2/5: list of properties of J.W.Green Limited: c.1936;
  • WB/Green4/2/4: Certificate of title of J.W.Green Limited to various properties: 1936-1952;
  • WB/Green4/2/9: Schedule of deeds of properties owned by J.W.Green Limited: 1949;
  • PSW3/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Woburn Petty Sessional Division: 1949-1953
  • WB/Green4/2/12: schedule of deeds of various J.W.Green Limited properties: 1952
  • WB/Green4/2/16: list pf properties owned by J.W.Green Limited: 1952;
  • WB/Green4/2/17: Second schedule of trust deed showing properties owned by J.W.Green Limited: 1952;
  • WB/Green4/2/19: lists of properties owned by J.W.Green Limited: 1954
  • WB/Flow4/5/Ev/F1-2: photographs: 1960s

List of Licensees: note that this is not a complete list. Italics indicate licensees whose beginning and/or end dates are not known:

1822-1827: John Staniford;
1828-1831: Susanna Whinnett;
1847-1854: Joseph Smith;
1869-1885: Thomas Millard;
1885-1886: James Makeham;
1886-1894: Ann Makeham;
1894-1902: Joseph Brinklow;
1902-1907: Richard Crisp;
1907-1908: William Harry Ward;
1908-1911: Alfred Patten;
1911-1928: Arthur John Hitchins;
1928-1933: Ernest Barton;
1933-1938: Roland William Knowles;
1938-1959: Benjamin Gibson Reid.

Falcon House February 2016
Falcon House February 2016