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The Prince of Wales Public House Upper Dean

The Prince of Wales about 1925 [WL800/4]
The Prince of Wales about 1925 [WL800/4]

The Prince of Wales Public House: High Street, Upper Dean.

The Prince of Wales was never owned by a brewery but always by individuals, often the licensees, hence was a free house. Sadly, it means that Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service has little information on the property. The countywide licensing register of 1876 shows that the licensee Robert Baxter was owner at that date. He was also a tailor. The register also states that the public house was first licensed in 1866.

The countywide register for 1891 states that the property was owned by J. D. Ackroyd of Dean. He was still the owner in 1903, when the countywide register states that the premises was in a good state of repair and had one front and one back door

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. It is likely that Upper Dean, like most of the county was assessed in 1927. The valuer visiting the Prince of Wales [DV1/C150/37] noted that it was owned by Mrs. J. Wade and that the tenant, William Hart, paid rent of £18 per annum for the free house, which had been fixed eight or nine years previously.

The “modern looking house” (“main building good, outbuildings poor”) comprised a tap room, a club room, two living rooms and three bedrooms. Outside lay the cellar, two barns, a hovel, a washhouse and two piggeries. Trade comprised of eighteen gallons and two dozen bottles of beer and three pints of spirits per week. Takings were £8-£10 per week “a good lot of this tobacco”.

The Prince of Wales is last mentioned in a licensing register held by Bedfordshire and Luton Archives and Records Service in 1995. At the time of writing [2011] it is a private house

The former Prince of Wales Public House May 2011
The former Prince of Wales Public House May 2011

Sources:

  • WL801/123: negative image, damaged: c. 1925;
  • WL800/4: photograph: c. 1925;
  • RDBP3/505: plans for alterations: 1945;
  • RDBP3/940: plans for additions: 1947  

Licensees: Note that this is not a complete list; italics indicate licensees whose beginning and/or end dates are not known

1869-1877: Robert Baxter, tailor;
1885-1894: Joseph Allen;
1898-1906: Walter Lilley;
1910: William Parker Darlow;
1914-1918: Frank Herbert Hilson;
1918-1934: William Hart;
1934-1948: Sidney Walter Hart;
1965-1968: Thomas Tabor Wilkinson;
1968-1972: Frederick Kenneth Capon;
1972-1977: Leonard Charles Silvester Batchelor;
1977-1979: John Humphrey Winterbourne;
1979-1980: Frederick Alfred Mervyn Pollard;
1980-1983: John William Tester;
1983-1984: Sidney Johnson;
1984-1987: Derek Randolph Dexter and Anne Marie Dexter;
1987-1988: Michael John Power and Julie Power;
1988-1995: John Anthony Tomassi and Elizabeth Ann Tomassi