The Fox and Hounds Public House Riseley
The Fox and Hounds April 2015
The Fox and Hounds Public House: 36 High Street, Riseley
The countywide licensing register of 1876 tells us that the Fox and Hounds was first licensed in 1869, at that time it was a beerhouse. In 1876 the owner was George Claridge of Harrold. By 1891 the owner was Bedford brewer Thomas Jarvis. Jarvis & Company was taken over by rival Bedford brewer Charles Wells in 1917.
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 Fox and Hounds [Dv1/C222/11-13] found that the tenant, Harry Porter, paid £8 per annum rent to Charles Wells Limited. At that date the beerhouse only occupied the south-western half of the building. It comprised a tap room, a cellar, a living room, a kitchen and three bedrooms. Average trade was fifteen gallon of beer per week, bottled trade being "negligible". The valuer noted: "Far too many pubs here". He also commented: "Poor looking place. Bad inside". Outside stood a brick and tiled stable, open bay, washhouse and three bay shelter. Included in the rent was a half-acre grass field.
The north-east portion of the building was let to E Stanton ("not at home") for £9/2/- per annum. Accommodation comprised a living room, kitchen and bedroom ("very large rooms"). A barn stood outside. The valuer considered the rent to be high.
After the war the Fox and Hounds became a fully-licensed public house. At the time of writing  the Fox and Hounds is the last pub left in Riseley.
The Fox and Hounds was listed by the former Department of Environment in June 1974 as Grade II, of special interest. It dates from the early 17th century and is built of colour-washed roughcast over a timber frame, with an old clay tiled roof. It comprises two storeys and is built in an H-shape. There are lean-to additions to both cross-wings and a ons storey addition at the south-west.
- PSS3/1: Register of Alehouse Licences - Sharnbrook Petty Sessional Division: c.1901;
- PSS3/2: Register of Alehouse Licences - Sharnbrook Petty Sessional Division: c.1903;
- PSS3/3: Register of Alehouse Licences - Sharnbrook Petty Sessional Division: 1904-1930;
- WL800/2 page 32: photograph: c. 1925;
- PSBW8/4: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade and North Bedfordshire Petty Sessional Divisions: c.1957-1995;
- Z53/96/29: photograph: 1962;
- PSBW8/3: Register of Alehouse Licences - Biggleswade and North Bedfordshire Petty Sessional Divisions: 1976-1980;
- WL722/69: reopening of the pub in Charles Wells in-house magazine Pint Pot: 1992;
- WL722/78: visit of Morris men to the pub in Charles Wells in-house magazine Pint Pot: 1994;
- WL722/97: feature on food at the pub in Charles Wells in-house magazine Pint Pot: 1999
Licencees: note that this is not a complete list and that dates in italics are not necessarily beginning or end dates, merely the first/last date which can be confirmed from sources such as directories and deeds:
1876-1877: Joseph Valentine;
1890-1903: Eli Litchfield;
1906: William Wadsworth Litchfield;
1914-1930: Harry Porter;
1930-1934: Sidney Sharman;
1934-1935: Talbot Jarvis;
1935-1938: Ernest Joseph Stanton;
1938-1940: Mrs Mabel Stanton
1966: Percy William Harris;
1966-1975: Glyn Davies;
1975-1976: Patricia Davies;
1976-1984: John Anthony Harris;
1984-1989: Edwin Arthur Cheeseman;
1989-1990: Jan Waldemar Zielinski, Susan Lesley Keen and Michael Frank Wright;
1990-1993: Jan Waldemar Zielinski, Malcolm Doig Starling and Michael Frank Wright;
1993: Jan Waldemar Zielinski, Michael Frank Wright and Susan Keen;
1993: Jan Waldemar Zielinski and Susan Keen;
1993-1995: Jan Waldemar Zielinski and Michael Alfred Porter