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The Rising Sun Public House Clophill

The former Rising Sun July 2010
The former Rising Sun July 2010

The Rising Sun Public House: Shefford Road, Clophill

Bedfordshire & Luton Archives & Records Service has comparatively few archives relating to the Rising Sun, principally because it was owned by Baldock brewers Simpson & Company and their archive is at Hertfordshire Record Office. All Bedfordshire & Luton Archives & Records Service material are directories or licensing records.

Interestingly the licensee of the beerhouse from 1903 to 1936 (with a brief gap) was Charles Durston. His son Jack (1893-1965) was a fine cricketer 6 feet 6 inches tall and powerfully built, he bowled fast medium right hand for Middlesex from 1919 to 1933 and in one test match for England, against Australia at Lord's in 1921 when he took 4/102 and 1/34 but despite this promising start was never again selected. Jack was born in Clophill, but not at the Rising Sun.

In 1927, whilst Frank Durston's father was still licensee, the premises were valued under the 1925 Rating Valuation Act; the valuer found a brick and slate detached beerhouse (i.e. only allowed to sell beer and cider, not wines or spirits) with a taproom ("good"), private bar ("small"), kitchen and living room ("let to visitors") downstairs along with a "good" cellar and with six bedrooms above. Outside were a washhouse, urinal, earth closet, shed, coal and wood barn and separate coal barn. The licensee also occupied a barn, henhouse and three pigsties on adjoining land and 2.286 acres in two fields. Trade was local and consisted of a 36 gallon barrel and eight dozen bottles of beer per week - the brewer called every ten days. Interestingly the valuer noted that Charles Durston had been there for forty years but as be is recorded as taking over the licence in 1903 from Ann Garner that does not seem likely, unless he had acted as her manager or assistant before taking over. Charles Durston was obviously comfortably off as he is also recorded as leasing a small brick and tile house in Jacques Lane from Simpson & Company, sub-let to an S.Roberts in 1927

The Rising Sun became a public house, on being granted a full licence, on 11 March 1954 but is now [Mar 2007] a private house.

Mosaic on Rising Sun Inn
Mosaic on former Rising Sun Inn, Clophill - March 2007

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

1851-1881: George Garner;
1881-1903: Ann Garner;
1903-1909: Charles Durston;
1909-1910: Robert Hinton;
1910-1936: Charles Durston;
1936-1939: Alfred John Daniel;
1939-1954: Nellie Dorothy Daniels;
1954-1959: Robert Charles Kingsley;
1970: Peter John Jest;
1970: Ronald Frank Neale;
1975: Terrence John Butler;
1975-1977: Richard Nigel Coward;
1977-1983: Peter Alfred George Rockall;
1983-1985: Rodney Kevin Newman;
1985-1989: Roger William Owen;
1989: Terence Joseph Scott;
1989-1994: Alistair Charles Lawrence;
1994-1996: Barry Alan Moorhouse;
1996: Clive Peter Harris


  • CRT110/102: deeds at Hertfordshire Archives Service as part of Simpson & Company archive: 1730-1896;
  • PSA5/1: Register of Alehouse Licences - Ampthill Petty Sessional Division: 1872-1927;
  • PSA5/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Ampthill Petty Sessional Division: 1934-1959;
  • PSA5/4: list of licensed premises in Ampthill Petty Sessional Division: c.1950s;
  • PCClophill9/4: transfer of licence: 1954;
  • PCClophill9/11: transfers of licence: 1970-1975.