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The Red Lion Public House Eversholt

The Red Lion about 1925 [WL800/4]
The Red Lion about 1925 [WL800/4]

The Red Lion was in Witts End. It was a beerhouse by 1853 when it was conveyed by Eversholt carpenter John Lawrence to Woburn brewer James Fowler along with two nearby cottages for £420 [WL1000/1/EV/1/1]. The countywide licensing register of 1876 gives the owner as Henry Fowler of Woburn. James Fowler’s Woburn brewery and its tied houses were put up for sale by auction in 1881 and the Red Lion was one of the houses purchased by Bedford brewer Charles Wells [WL1000/10/1/1].

The sale particulars have the Red Lion as Lot 19. They describe it as comprising: a bar and parlour; a shop and pantry; a cellar; a tap room and washhouse with a club room and four bedrooms. Outside was a walled-in yard with wood and coal houses. There was also a detached two-stall stable with a loft and tiled skittle shed. Rent to its licensee was £16 per annum.

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. The valuer visiting the Red Lion found that it had now become a public house but was still owned by Charles Wells of Bedford and the tenant, George Mason, paid rent of £10 per annum.

The brick and slate “fairly modern” premises comprised a tap room, a bar parlour, a bar, a living room and a scullery downstairs with four bedrooms upstairs. There was also a club room and a cellar. Outside was a slaughter house, used as a store, a coal shed and an earth closet as well as a brick and tiled stable with a loft over, a wood and tiled shed and a well.

The valuer commented: “Few cottages etc around”. Trade was three-quarters of a 36-gallon barrel of beer per week and a gallon of spirits per month. In the summer months two dozen bottles of minerals were sold.

The last licensing register for the district held by Bedfordshire Archive and Record Service ends in 1995 with the Red Lion still a public house [PSA5/5]. Today [2016] the public house has become a private house.

The former Red Lion February 2016
The former Red Lion February 2016

Red Lion: Witts End

  • WL1000/1/EV/1/1: conveyance: 1853
  • PSW3/1: Register of Alehouse Licences - Woburn Petty Sessional Division: 1868-1949;
  • BML10/25/2: auction sale held at: 1879
  • WL1000/10/1/1: auction sale particulars of brewery in Woburn and 26 public houses formerly of James Fowler of Woburn, brewer: 1881;
  • SF18/42: valuation book from William Beasley to Alfred Garrett: 1882;
  • WL800/4 page 17: photograph: c.1925
  • PSA5/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Ampthill Petty Sessional Division: 1934-1959;
  • PSW3/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Woburn Petty Sessional Division: 1949-1953
  • Z1105/1: Liquor Licence Traders Survey Form: 1958;
  • PSA5/5: Register of Alehouse Licences - Ampthill Petty Sessional Division: 1968-1995.

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

1876: John Chance;
1877-1878: GeorgeInns;
1878-1879: William Pulham;
1879-1882: William Beasley;
1882-1887: Alfred Garrett;
1887-1893: Fanny Garrett;
1893-1909: Henry John Reddall;
1909-1910: Herbert John Cook;
1910: Oscar Green;
1910-1911: Josias Stemp;
1911-1913: Frank Simkins;
1913: Frank Wiggins;
1913-1918: Lewis Cooke;
1918-1921: Frank Ernest Theobald;
1921-1926: Oscar Frank Vincent;
1926-1927: George Mason;
1927-1929: Richard James Sharp;
1929-1937: James Bond;
1937-1941: Frederick Charles England;
1941-1949: Lilian Alice England;
1954-1958: Edward Stephen Harmer;
1958-1959: Arthur James Marshall;
1964-1968: Jeffrey Lewis Cooper;
1968-1970: John Gilbert Hooper;
1970-1971: Derrick Louis Pettengell;
1971-1980: Noel William Fitzsimons;
1980-1986: Robert Morgan Paul;
1986-1989: Brian James Bland;
1989-1990: Ronald Malcolm Warner;
1990-1992: D.P.Webb;
1992: Paul Elystan White Archer;
1992-1995: Anthony William Thornton