Some history of the Hope and Anchor Inn on King William Street at Amblecote in the County of Staffordshire


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Amblecote : The Hope and Anchor Inn on King William Street [c.1940]

This photograph was taken in around 1940 during Ada Nightingale's long era at the pub. She had been licensee since the First World War. It looks as though there was once another door to the left of the building but this had been bricked up and the window enlarged - notice the headstones of the original door and right-hand window.

Dating from around 1846, this beer house, originally called the Stocking Inn, was located at No.40, and later No.44 King William Street. The Hope and Anchor Inn was approximately halfway along the thoroughfare almost opposite Dennis Street.

Amblecote : Map extract showing the location of the Hope and Anchor Inn on King William Street [1947]

Thomas Weaver was both owner and licensee of the Stocking Inn during 1868. He later moved to Bristol. Succeeding Hannah Cole, Samuel Duggan took over the licence of the house in October 1870. He had grown up in nearby Collis Street where his mother Mary ran a greengrocer's shop. Thomas Weaver sold the beer house to Samuel Duggan in 1875. He almost immediately attempted, but failed, to secure a full licence for the premises.

Amblecote : Notice of an application for a full licence by Samuel Duggan of the Hope and Anchor Inn on King William Street [1876]

Not only was Samuel Duggan unsuccessful in this application to retail wines and spirits, it would be over 70 years before the house was granted a full licence. Until then the premises was only licensed to sell beer and cider. As owner-publican, Samuel Duggan obtained a billiards licence for the house in 1880. I believe he and his family emigrated to the United States.

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Thomas Hand succeeded Samuel Duggan in 1880. The engineer and his wife Maria moved to King William Street from Wordsley. The couple later moved back to Wordsley where they kept the Harmonic Tavern.

Amblecote : Disposal of a Bagatelle Board by John Richards at the Hope and Anchor Inn on King William Street [1883]

Moving from their home in Brettell Lane, William and Mary Brooks moved into the Stocking Inn during 1884. The couple had started married life together at Aston's Fold between Amblecote and Stambermill. William, a Lye-born former clay miner, died whilst at the Stocking Inn. Widow, Mary Ann Brooks, re-married to James Hand in April 1889. The ink colour used by the clerk filling in the licence register suggests that it was Mary Ann who changed the name of the tavern to the Hope and Anchor in 1888. Perhaps she felt the need to draw a line under her previous life and start afresh.

It was during Mary Ann's period as licensee that the pub was acquired by George Thompson and Sons of the Dudley and Victoria Breweries in Hall Street at Dudley. By the late 1890s however, the Hope and Anchor formed part of the tied estate of Bucknall's Brewery of Kidderminster. They were acquired by Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries Ltd. in 1914 which explains how this house came to be an outlet for Banks's beers.

Moving to Brettell Lane to work as a glass-cutter, James Hand was succeeded by 69 year-old Birmingham-born William Adey. Also a glass-cutter, he had moved to the Dennis Park area with his family in the 1860s. He shared the living accommodation with his daughter and her husband Samuel, a 28 year-old loco engine driver.

Widow Helen Flint was the beer house keeper at the time of the 1901 census. She was born in Campbeltown, Argyllshire in 1865. Her five children help to trace her movements; they were born in Devonport, Lichfield and Tamworth. She married Ernest Bridgens at Dudley in October 1904. Retaining the licence, she and her husband remained at the Hope and Anchor until 1913.

The Hope and Anchor was granted a full licence in 1949, the year in which George Corfield moved into the premises. He remained until 1952 when he was succeeded by James Jeavons, better known as Kenneth. He disappeared in strange circumstances in 1955. He had married Marion Bloomer at Rowley Regis in October 1941. She took over the licence following the vanishing of her husband.

The licensee in the early-mid 1960s was Ethel Annie Jordan. She would later run the British Arms on Furlong Lane at Cradley.

The last licensee of the Hope and Anchor was Violet Bradley who bolted the door for the final time on February 28th, 1971.

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Licensees of the Stocking Inn
1868 - Thomas Weaver
1870 - Hannah Cole
1870 - 1880 Samuel Duggan
1880 - 1883 Thomas Hand
1883 - 1884 John Richards
1884 - 1888 William Brooks

Licensees of the Hope & Anchor Inn
1888 - 1889 Mary Ann Brooks
1889 - 1889 Mary Ann Hand
1889 - 1890 James Hand
1890 - 1891 William Adey
1891 - 1898 Joseph Pearson
1898 - 1899 Thomas Higgs
1899 - 1900 Harry Bullas
1900 - 1906 Helen Jane Flint
1906 - 1913 Helen Bridgens
1913 - 1917 Thomas Henry Dulson
1917 - 1917 Minnie Hayes
1917 - 1949 Ada Nightingale
1949 - 1952 George Arnold Corfield
1952 - 1955 James Kenneth Jeavons
1955 - 1955 Marion Jeavons
1955 - 1958 Maggie Roome
1958 - 1960 Margaret Alice Worton
1960 - 1966 Ethel Annie Jordan
1966 - 1971 Violet Mary Bradley
Note : this is almost a complete list of licensees for this pub. The only grey area being the actual date of opening and if anybody kept the house prior to Thomas Weaver. The listing for 1870 to 1971 is complete and accurate as these names are sourced from licensing records and brewery property books. These records are hand-written and I have done my best to transcribe them accurately, though some scribbles of the clerks can be hard to determine.

Banks's Brewery Poster Advertisement

Banks's Bitter Beer Label

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Related Newspaper Articles

"Brierley Hill licensing justices heard today that a local licensee had been missing for six days "Quite a mystery," commented Mr. A. L. S. Todd. A representative of Banks's Brewery was asking for the licence of Hope and Anchor, Amblecote to be transferred to a new licensee. The magistrates' clerk Mr. G. M. King interrupted to say: "I believe there are some unusual circumstances." The Brewery representative replied: "Yes sir, the licensee left the house on Tuesday morning and hasn't been seen since." Mrs. Jeavons, wife of the missing licensee 35-year-old James Kenneth Jeavons, father of two children, said later: "My husband left the house at 10.30 Tuesday morning while I was in bed ill. I haven't seen him since. He gave me no indication that he was leaving. He didn't take a suitcase or luggage. I have been to the police. It's a complete mystery." Brierley Hill police said that Mr. Jeavons had been officially reported missing but they had no cause to suspect foul play."
"Vanished Licensee Mystery"
Evening Despatch : March 7th 1955 Page 1

Banks's Brown Ale Beer Label

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