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The New Inn Northbridge Street Shefford

The New Inn and Northbridge Street about 1910 - picture courtesy of Howard Webb
The New Inn and Northbridge Street about 1910 - picture courtesy of Howard Webb

New Inn Beerhouse: Northbridge Street, Shefford

Shefford has had two licensed premises called The New Inn. This one was in Northbridge Street and the only record held for it by Bedfordshire & Luton Archives & Records Service is an abstract of title which Bedford brewer Joseph Allen Piggot had to it. The abstract reveals that the site had been sold mortgaged by George Kempson to William Eve in 1835. The following year he pulled down a cottage which stood on the land and built another in its place. In 1835 he agreed that the cottage and land might be conveyed to William White Coleman as he was unable to repay the mortgage.

Coleman devised the property in his will to trustees for sale; he died in 1863 but it was not until 1871 that the trustees sold the premises to Piggot. In the conveyance the premises was described as a: "messuage with the yard and outbuildings thereunto belonging in the Town of Shefford in the County of Bedford on the west side of a Street then called North Bridge Street and formerly Bedford Street then in the occupation of Thomas Barcock and known as The New Inn".

On 8th November 1871 there was a disturbance at the inn as the following makes clear: [HF147/11/14]: "Report of Sergeant George Daniels stationed at Shefford.  He saw Thomas Price hawking from door to door into High Street Shefford some printed papers and woollen caps.  Sergeant Daniels asked to see his license.  He showed him one dated 5th October 1871. Sergeant Daniels called his attention to this and told him to get it altered.  Price went away.  2 to 3 hours later Sergeant Daniels was sent for to the New Inn Beerhouse.  He found Thomas Price in the kitchen making a great deal of noise.  5 panes of glass were broken, some platters and teapots.  Price was behaving like a madman." 

"Report of Mary Barcock who lived at the New Inn Beerhouse.  Price had lodged at her house the previous night and had come back this night.  He had started up the stairs to bed and half way up he threw himself backwards.  Another lodger coming up behind him caught him and took him to the kitchen.  Price laid down for a while then got up and started to break everything.  He was behaving like a madman.  She sent for Sergeant Vincent."

"Report of George Brewer also lodging at the New Inn.  He saw Price start up the stairs, when half way up he fell backwards.  Brewer caught him and took him to the kitchen.  Price laid down but shortly afterwards he got up and started breaking everything.  He behaved like a madman."

Joseph Allen Piggot's business was bought by Charles Wells in 1875. The New Inn seems to have closed after the death of long time landlord Samuel Cutler in 1914. His wife took over the licence immediately after his death but by 1927 it was a private house. In that year the town of Shefford was valued under the terms of the Rating Valuation Act 1925; every piece of land and building in the county was assessed to determine the rates to be paid on it. The valuer noted that the building (which has since been demolished but stood near 35 Northbridge Street) was owned and occupied by an E.Cutler. It was built of brick and slate and comprised a living room, kitchen, scullery, four bedrooms and a barn. The valuer noted: "was a shop". This premises was shown in the 1910 "Domesday" valuation as Samuel Cutler's beerhouse.

plan of the New Inn 1871 - WL93
plan of the New Inn 1871 [WL93]

The site of the former beerhouse is buried under new housing somewhere in the area of 35 Northbridge Street.

The New Inn about 1910 - picture courtesy of Howard Webb
The New Inn about 1910 - picture courtesy of Howard Webb 

Sources:

  • WL93: abstracted mortgage of site by George Kempson to William Eve: 1833;
  • WL93: abstracted further advance from William Eve to George Kempson who had pulled down a cottage and built a new one on the site: 1834;
  • WL93: newly built cottage and other property conveyed by William Eve to William White Coleman, with agreement of George Kempson: 1835;
  • WL93: abstracted will of William White Coleman devising all his real estate in trust for sale: 1858, proved 1863;
  • WL93: New Inn conveyed by trustees to Joseph Allen Piggot: 1871;
  • HF147/11/14: disturbance at the New Inn: 1871;
  • 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;
  • HF143/4: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1882-1890;
  • Bedfordshire Mercury: accident to Thomas Barcock: 1883;
  • HF143/5: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1891-1900;
  • HF143/6: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1900-1914;
  • PSBW8/1: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade Petty Sessional Division: 1903-1915;
  • DV1/C290/129: valuation: 1927.

site of the New Inn Northbridge Street February 2008
site of the New Inn Northbridge Street February 2008

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:
1839: James Bunyan;
1861-1878: Thomas Barcock;
1878-1885: Mary Barcock;
1885-1889: Charles Bushby;
1889-1897: Samuel Mattins;
1897-1914: Samuel Cutler;
1914: Ellen Cutler