UK in progress - Northern areas of the UK

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UK Pub History in progress

I have been researching pub history for 15 years, and the Pub history UK site is an extension of these efforts. It brings together many peoples research of the historical public house. This site splits some of the slightly more northerly and Midlands pubs from London and the southern counties.


The pub history sites are regularly updated on a daily basis; and everyone is welcome to contribute. If you visit the site, you will quickly understand that this is more than just a pub history site. It is also a useful guide to researching any building, and particularly a traders address. The site uses trade directories, census detail and much more to list many snapshots of a building, its address, those living or owning the property, plus many images.

Do you have a victualler, publican or beer retailer in your family history? This site will, hopefully, answer your questions as to where their pub was.

Pubs, like churches move slowly over a period of time, I use this to my advantage; as I do other buildings like hospitals. A good example of this is in tracking address changes through time.

See the pub history menu for all of the other areas which are covered, some are strong, others are awaiting more input. Please feel free to send me modern and historical images and detail.

Here are my research suggestions to get you started:

The pub / public house / boozer is where most of us spent our youth, and more. They are now expensive places to drink, and the local supermarket has replaced many (if not all) of the Off Licences. There is also a new breed of pubs, with a range of nice ales at affordable prices (I am quoting the likes of Wetherspoons); and this new brand replaces the old established and often run-down pubs of the past. I am not selling either as a preference, this is a pure article on pub history as I see it from the years of research into the matter.

Let us start in 2018 and a round up of the current pub trade. Many pubs are closing, and being replaced by restaurants and pizza houses.  Other pubs are closing and being converted back into housing, generally flats. The current economic climate is forcing many of the tied public houses to close, whilst newer pubs are continuing to open ( at a lesser rate). The reference 'tied houses' refers to the fact that a pub has to purchase its beer and spirits from the chain which runs the establishment. This is a more expensive option than being able to purchase from the market place, and has forced many pubs to be uneconomical, thus closure. I am not clear as to how Wetherspoons pubs operate, but their prices tend to undercut many of the established lager pubs, and is generally a better experience.

A major trend over the last twenty years or so, has been the renaming of pubs from a centuries old name, to a modern trendy name. The pub history site tends to reflect on the original names. Another trend appears to be the purchase by a brewery of an 'old' building, with little pub interest; and then transforming the same building into a historical pub. I am never clear about the economics of such a transformation, but the costs of this can run into a million pounds for just one pub, and therefore it must make economical sense.

You can research a Pub, or any home, by researching using a surname in the BT telephone directories. These are available as part of the Ancestry basic search. If you need more detail, their other packages offer additional searches, e.g. the electoral rolls. I am not selling their services, but these are available, at a cost.

There are also a number of free sites which are incredibly useful, e.g. the directories listed at Leicester University special collections, there are many older books out of copyright which can be searched via google books, and also there is the Access to Archives site.

 Last updated on: Saturday, 26-Jan-2019 09:52:38 GMT

And Last updated on: Saturday, 26-Jan-2019 09:52:38 GMT