History of the Queen's Head at Old Hill, Rowley Regis in the county of Staffordshire. Research is augmented with photographs, details of licensees, stories of local folklore, census data, newspaper articles and a genealogy connections section for those studying their family history.


Queen's Head
Queen's Head

Some History of this Pub
The Queen's Head was located at No.76 High Street, next door to the Fox Hunt Inn. The latter managed to outlive its neighbour but the Queen's Head was arguably the more important of the two, particularly as it was the tap house of the Old Hill Brewery. In fact, during the Victorian era the pub was more generally known as the Old Hill Brewery not the Queen's Head.

Old Hill - Queen's Head [c.1947]

Here you can see the Queen's Head in a photograph dating from just after the Second World War. The building on the right is the Fox Hunt Inn. On the other side of the Queen's Head you can just make out a small general shop.

Former coal miner Joseph Griffiths was running the beer house in the early 1870's. He kept the pub with his wife Isabella. The couple had five children living on the premises but still had room to take in boarders. The family later moved to Wrights Lane from where Joseph Griffiths worked as a labourer in an iron works. Seemingly, he didn't make his fortune running the brewery tap.

A number of licensees came and went in the 1870's suggesting an unsettled house. In April 1877 the licence passed to Eliza Tinkham. The wife of a railway contractor, she and her husband had previously lived at Sandfield Cottage in Harborne. In September 1877 she applied for a seven day licence for the beer house but was refused.

Silas Chambers was one of the pub's more colourful characters. A newspaper article [see below] reveals that the beer house was still selling homebrew ales for he was reported as having got up early to start brewing. In later years the Queen's Head formed part of the tied estate of Wolverhampton and Dudley Breweries Ltd.

The column to the right features a biography of Silas Chambers, a man who had a varied career, the running of pubs being just a part of his extensive curriculum vitae. He had previously kept the Prince of Wales in Wright's Lane.

The Queen's Head survived a scare in 1913 when the pub was referred by the Rowley Regis licensing justices. However, after consideration, the Staffordshire Licensing Committee decided to renew the licence of the Queen's Head. This was during the same session in which pubs like the True Briton Inn at Quarry Bank and the Pheasant Inn at Brockmoor lost their licences and were forced to close.

Abel Siviter, licensee of the Queen's Head throughout the 1920's, had moved up the road from The Beehive.

Richard Edge held the licence of the Queen's Head for over twenty years. He was hauled before the magistrates in April 1941, charged with "aiding and abetting Victor Edmonds in the consumption of beer after permitted hours." The publican was fined £2 with £5.5s.0d. costs.

Old Hill - Queen's Head Beer House Licence [c.1947]

The Queen's Head was granted a full licence on February 1st 1950. I am not sure of the exact date of its closure and when the building was demolished. However, I think the pub was wound up in the mid-late 1960's and the building pulled down in the early 1970's.
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Related Newspaper Articles
"A serious fire at the Queen's Head inn, High Street, Old Hill, was prevented by the timely discovery of the licensee, Mr. Silas Chambers, on Wednesday morning. At 3.30am the landlord arose for the purpose of commencing his brewing operations, when he was surprised to find the sitting room full of smoke and the furniture in flames. Mr. Chambers at once roused his wife and family, and summoned the local fire brigade, which quickly turned out. The furniture was then well alight, but after working for some time, the firemen succeeded in extinguishing the flames. Damage to extent of about £100 was caused, the floor of the sitting room having been burnt through and a quantity of the furniture precipitated into the cellar. The damage is covered by insurance. It is supposed that the outbreak was due to a gas jet, which had been left alight in the cellar, setting fire to the sitting room floor. When the brigade attempted to open the doors of the engine-house it was found that there was some obstruction behind them, and on going outside Engineer Cook discovered Mr. Chambers lying in an unconscious condition, having been overcome by the fumes and his exciting rush to the station, He was attended to, and quickly recovered.”
"Rescued Just in Time"
in Birmingham Daily Post
: August 22nd 1913.
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Licensees of this Pub
1871 - Joseph Griffiths
1876 - John Blaydon
1877 - Eliza Tinkham
1880 - Eliza Tinkham
1887 - Joseph Harding
1903 - Edward Stevens
1912 - Silas Henry Tilley Chambers
1919 - Edward Chambers
1919 - 1932 Abel Siviter
1932 - 1955 Richard Edge
1955 - 1956 Phoebe Blanche Edge
1956 - Lawrence Bernard Hanes

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Banks's Imperial Mild Ale [1960's]

Genealogy Connections
If you have a genealogy story or query regarding the Queen's Head you can contact me and I will post it here in addition to including your message within the website pages for Staffordshire Genealogy.

Map Showing Locaton of the Fox Hunt Inn and Queen's Head [1939]
On this map extract from 1939, I have marked the locations of the Queen's Head, along with the Fox Hunt Inn. The thoroughfare at the bottom of this map extract is Waggon Street.

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Queen Elizabeth I
"I do not want a husband who honours me as a queen, if he does not love me as a woman.”
Elizabeth I

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Newspaper Articles
“The death occurred, in tragic circumstances, on Saturday, of Mr. Silas H. Chambers, of 116, Powke Lane, Old Hill, at the age of 56 years. He collapsed and died whilst watching Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal at Molineux Grounds. This occurred soon after the Wanderers had scored their first goal in the first half. A doctor was summoned immediately, but on examination Mr. Chambers was found to be dead. He had recently been attended by a doctor for heart trouble, but had carried on his business, and his condition had so much improved that his health gave no cause for anxiety.
Old Hill - Queen's Head licensee Silas Chambers
Mr. Chambers was a well-known figure in the Old Hill district, and his straightforwardness and generosity earned for him high esteem. He was born at Dudhill Farm, Old Hill, which has been in the family for a very long period. At an early age he assisted his father with horse-drawn traffic on a local canal, and later he acquired a horse of his own and engaged in navigation on the canal. His activities covered local districts as far as Birmingham. He made great progress and became a road haulier in addition to his canal work. At one time he owned the Prince of Wales Inn, Wright's Lane, Old Hill, and subsequently he went to the Queen's Head Inn, High Street, Old Hill. Eleven years ago he bought the Summerhill Farm, Kingswinford, and made a successful farmer. As a haulage contractor, Mr. Chambers was well-known in the Midlands. He conveyed goods both by road and water, and was so keenly interested in water transport that rather less than two years ago he had a motor-boat built to his own design. He supervised its construction on his premises, and its subsequent launching on the canal. Two new motorboats were also launched by him recently. A close follower of local administrative affairs, he made two unsuccessful attempts to secure a seat on the Rowley Regis Council, contesting Rowley Ward on one occasion and Old Hill on the other. He was a great sportsman, and while at the Queen's Head he engaged in whippet racing, a Black Country sport in which he was keenly interested. He was also a pigeon fancier. At one time he was an ardent Villa fan but, of late years, he had taken a Wolves season ticket. His wife died four or five years ago, and he leaves one son and two daughters. At his funeral the vicar, Rev. H. Card, said : "he did not know a man more straightforward. To him his word was his bond, and he did not know a heart more golden. Many could testify, if they were allowed, as to the generous nature of their brother, and he would never have his many acts of kindness, typical of him, made public in any shape or form. He did not let one hand know what the other gave. Rowley Regis would suffer a loss by his passing. He was a good father, and a worker in the best sense of the word."
"Old Hill Man's Tragic Death"
Brierley Hill Advertiser : March 1938

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Banks's Imperial Mild Ale [c.1948]

Banks's Mild Ale [1959]

Banks's Imperial Mild Ale [1960's]

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Beer and Pipe Smoker

Bar Parlour Stained Glass

Tap Room Etched Glass

Pub Drinkers between the Wars


Bar Etched Glass

Rural Drinkers outside the Pub

Beer is Best

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Public Bar Stained Glass

Woman Serving Beer

Brewery Buildings