Genealogy Forum for Pubs, Inns, Taverns and Breweries of Derbyshire - Help and Information for Local Historians and Genealogists with photographs, details of licensees, census data, newspaper articles for those studying their family history.


Genealogy Forum - Derbyshire

Cock Inn


Cock Inn - Derby

Q: Do you have any information about the Cock Inn, a pub that used used to be located on Cockpit Hill in Derby please?
Kenny  Derby  5th February 2006

A: The name of this pub is thought to derive from the arms of Alderman Francis Cokayne [1652-1739] Located on the corner of Eagle Street, the Cock Inn was certainly in existence in 1842. The name, if suggestive of Cock Fighting would mean that it was pre-1835 as this was the year that the sport was banned under the Cruelty to Animals Act 1835. The address of the Cock in 1852 was No.18 Cockpit Hill when William Bagshaw was the licensee. The 51 year-old was also a maltster which suggests that the Cock Inn was selling homebrewed ales. He was born in Risley but his wife hailed a little further south in Shardlow. A century later the pub formed part of the Nottingham Brewery tied estate. The pub was demolished in the 1960's, though it had been closed for many years prior to this. Kieron

Cross Keys Inn


Cross Keys Inn - Ashbourne

Q: My great-grandfather, Thomas Spencer, ran the Cross Keys Inn at Ashbourne in the 1860's. This I have found out from my cousin, now in her late 80's. I visited Ashbourne a couple of weeks ago, late one Friday and went round a few pubs, but no one had heard of it. Someone did tell me there is a Cross Keys on the road to Leek from Ashbourne, but I know there used to be a pub the Cross Keys in Ashbourne, as a local vicar, of all people, had it in a list of old Ashbourne pubs. I have been in touch with the vicar, who has lived in Ashbourne for donkey's years and tells me he has a photo of the Cross Keys and some information - the Cross Keys Inn was in fact knocked down some five years ago as part of the Sainsbury's development. The photograph dates from 1897. It was just before the Durham Ox, with The Wheel just past the Ox. It is on the left of the photo, you will see the cross keys sign hanging outside.
Graham Kelsey  Poole, Dorset  2nd May 2005

A: Thanks for the image and information Graham. I had heard that the vicar had compiled some information on the pubs. I knocked on his door when I made the trip to Ashbourne but he was out. Just my luck. Kieron

Navigation Inn


Navigation Inn - Overseal
This interior photograph was taken in 2001 when the Navigation was run by Wayne and Stephanie Granger.

Q: Abraham Shaw, my great-grandfather, once owned the Navigation Inn in Overseal, Derbyshire, sometime in the 1940's. Could you please find out the exact year/s that he owned the pub? I would be grateful for any relevant information.
Lee Shaw  Derbyshire  15th December 2003

A: This interior photograph of the Navigation Inn was taken around Spring 2001 when Wayne and Stephanie Granger had taken over the freehold. Located in Cherry Orchard, the Navigation Inn s a bit of a 'grey area' pub because, although it is currently listed in Overseal, Derbyshire, historically it belongs to the Ashby Woulds of Leicestershire. Hopefully, the future of the pub will be secure as it can cash in on its close proximity to the tourist attractions of the Heart of the National Forest Centre, Moira Furnace and the Ashby Canal, the latter being the subject of a major restoration project. The Ashby Canal has long been out of use but in the near future will once again flow past the pub which was named because of its location next to the waterway. The current building is a Victorian construction but it could have replaced an earlier pub on this site. This is because the canal which passed close by was opened in 1804, running from the coalfields in the area around Spring Cottage to Marston on the Coventry Canal. Originally 30 miles long, the principal cargo carried was coal form local pits to Coventry, Oxford and London. Mining subsidence had caused closure of the top eight miles by 1966. It was in 1781 that the engineer, Robert Whitworth surveyed the proposed canal route from Griff to Ashby Wolds with branches at Ticknall and Cloud Hill. An Act of Parliament was passed in 1794 so that construction could go ahead with tramways substituting the canal beyond Ashby Wolds. However, a year later Whitworth's contract was terminated and Thomas Newbold appointed before being replaced by John Crossley. In 1798 Benjamin Outram was appointed to construct the tramways and the canal opened from Ashby Wolds to Market Bosworth. In 1802 the tramways had been completed and two years later the canal opened throughout as a wide [14ft] waterway and Moira Furnace was built. The canal and tramways was acquired by Midland Railway in 1846 but the involvement of the rail companies, who had built a line from the Moira Furnace to Nuneaton, signalled the end for the canal and eventually the waterway north of Donisthorpe closed in 1944. Inevitably the canal's length was shortened when in 1957 it closed north of Bott Wharf and by 1966 the route north of Snarestone had also become disused. As for licensees of the Navigation Inn - I do know that the pub was run by Herbert Weaver between 1932 and 1941 and maybe for longer. Kieron

Victoria Inn


The Victoria Inn's entry in an 1895 Trade Directory

Q: I believe my great-uncle John Fining was one of the early landlords of the Victoria Inn, Brampton and would love to know if anyone has any more information on or pictures of this pub, particularly during his time there [1890 - 1900]. It would be great to gather all such information here on this excellent growing database - let's put Chesterfield on the map!
S. R. Stamford  Derby  1st September 2009

A: You're right - Chesterfield needs to be on the website. With diverse manufacturing industries, there were plenty of pubs in Brampton in the late Victorian period. Located in Victoria Street, the Victoria Inn started as a beer house. The pub was very late in receiving a full licence as it was in 1959 that this was finally granted. John Fining kept the boozer with his wife Jane who hailed from Burton-on-Trent. Following his death in 1900, she went to work as a nurse in the District County Asylum at Nottingham. The enumerator that called on the house in 1891 recorded John Fining's birthplace as Willinall which I presume is Willenhall in the Black Country. I did find another John Fining born in Willenhall who was stationed as a soldier in Aldershot at the time of the 1901 census. Could this be a relative? As for the Victoria Inn - it went on to be part of the Ind Coope tied estate of public houses. Vernon Greaves kept the pub for around fifteen years from 1957 onwards. The pub was later sold to Ward's before being operated by Pubmaster. Kieron

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