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The Coach and Horses Beerhouse Shefford

brass band outside Coach and Horses 1920s
Brass band outside Coach and Horses 1920s - Z1306-101

Coach and Horses Beerhouse: 1 Ampthill Road, Shefford.

Bedfordshire & Luton Archives & Records Service has very few documents for this former beerhouse. Its first known licensee was Samuel Smith, shown in the register if alehouse licences for 1872 [HF143/1]. Directories as far back as 1850 list a Samuel Smith, shopkeeper, as being a beer seller in Shefford and it seems reasonable to suppose they are the same man. When Laurence Read Colbourne Higgins and Cecil Charles Norman Colbourne Higgins conveyed their brewery business to their new limited company, Higgins & Sons Limited in 1902 the Coach and Horses was one of the licensed houses transferred; licensing registers indicate that they owned the house at least as far back as 1872.

In 1927 the town of Shefford was valued under the Rating Valuation Act 1925; every piece of land and building in the country was assessed to determine the rates to be paid on it. The valuer visiting the Coach and Horses [DV1/C/289]: noted that the tenant, Arthur Fossey had "been here 6 years". He commented that the building was a "Poor looking place. Low pitched". It comprised a tap room ["fair"], public bar ["fair"], private parlour, scullery and cellar downstairs. Upstairs were two bedrooms and two attics. Outside was a stable and wash house. Trade was quite good, being 1½ to 2½ barrels and 4 to 5 dozen bottles of beer a week for total takings of around £15.

The Coach and Horses closed in 1957 and is now [2008] a private house.

 former Coach and Horses January 2008
Former Coach and Horses January 2008

Document References:

  • HF143/1: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1872-1873;
  • HF143/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1874-1877;
  • HF143/3: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1878-1881;
  • GK4/6: schedule of deeds to Coach & Horses: 1881;
  • HF143/4: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1882-1890;
  • HF143/5: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1891-1900;
  • HF143/6: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1900-1914;
  • GK4/4: conveyance of the business from Laurence Read Colbourne Higgins and Cecil Charles Norman Colbourne Higgins both of Castle Brewery, Bedford, Common Brewers to Higgins and Sons Limited: 1902;
  • PSBW8/1: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1903-1915;
  • DV1/C/289: valuation: 1927;
  • BTNegOB60/7: Coach & Horses and general view of street up to the railway bridge: c.1931;
  • GK297/1: conveyance of Higgins & Sons Limited to Wells & Winch Limited: 1931
  • PSBW8/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1956-1972

List of Licensees:

note that this is not a complete list; entries in italics refer to licensees where either beginning or end, or both, dates are not known:
1850-1878: Samuel Smith (and shopkeeper);
1878-1909: James Kendall;
1909-1914: Arthur Smith
1920-1931 Arthur Fossey;
1936: Harry J.Chambers;
1940: Timothy Michael Walsh
1957: Frederick George Slater;
1957: Charles Graham Pressland
Beerhouse closed 8 Mar 1957