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15 High Street Toddington

15 High Street March 2016
15 High Street March 2016

The New Inn stood on the corner of the High Street and Luton Road, opposite the Angel Inn. In its early years it appears to have been associated with a neighbouring brewery. In 1899 a dwelling house, brewery, malting, stabling, garden and premises known as "The Toddington Brewery" together with the public house known as the New Inn and adjoining cottages, was leased by Henry Whitbread of the Old George Inn, Bedford, licensed victualler, to the occupier, Thomas George Green of Toddington, brewer, for 21 years at £100 per annum [BS2235]. The lease also gave Green the option to purchase the property from Whitbread for £2,000 at any time during the 21 year term. The fixtures and fittings included with the New Inn consisted of a beer engine, a bar counter, shelves etc., as fitted in the Bar, all the window rollers, blinds and fittings, and gas fittings.

Under the terms of the Rating and Valuation Act 1925 every piece of land and building in the country was assessed to determine the rates to be paid on them. When Toddington was assessed in 1927 the New Inn was clearly in decline. It was a free house owned and occupied by Miss Marler who had been there for six months. The inn consisted of a bar parlour, a tap room, a bar, a dining room, a kitchen and an office, with three bedrooms upstairs. Outside were two stables, a garage, cart hovels and a derelict brewery. The valuer's comments were damning. He called it a "miserable looking place" with "very poor bars". The manager "sells his beer at 3d a pint" and the valuer thought the "trade given me overestimated in view of closing order. Only one customer in bar at 10.35 am … Local gossip – gives away beer to attract custom." The manager stated weekly trade to be four barrels of beer, 20 to 30 dozen bottles of beer, and 3½ to 4 gallons of spirits, which the valuer assumed to be "a lie". A more realistic list of one 36 gallon barrel of beer and one 18 gallon barrel of bitter a week, and ½ gallon of spirits a month was added [DV1/C84/27].

The New Inn closed on 29 December 1928. In 1980 the former inn premises at 15 High Street were listed by the former Department of the Environment as Grade II, of special interest. The listing describes the property as dating from the early 19th century, possibly with an earlier core, and being of whitewashed brick with a slate roof. In 2015 the property was in use as the Toddington Social and Services Club.