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[6] John (Jack) Wales: Evocative walk; 1930’s Pubs in Earith

A Black Bull pub sign.1930’s Pubs in Earith, there was a lot! Earith was well served with Public Houses.
Beer was brewed on the premises and many people supplied their own tankard, which was kept at their preferred public house.

‘The Anchor’ (situated near the pond) was kept by Walter and Violet Broughton.
Walter was the carrier to St. Ives Market and on his way home one night, fell out of his cart coming out of Needingworth and was killed.

‘The Black Bull’ stood between Enderby’s shop and Micky Day’s, opposite the Hut.
It was pulled down in 1934 and Sid Browne built a house on the site.
A human skull was purported to be found under the footings.

‘The George’ (situated on the corner of the High Street and Colne Road turn) – still called The George corner today.
It used to have a stable door entrance to the Jug and Bottle department and, as a boy on my way to school, I left a can of milk on the counter.
During the war, it was the meeting place for younger members of the Home Guard after Sunday morning parade.
The pub was demolished in the 1960’s so that very long concrete pillars could be taken around the corner.
The pillars were for the track constructed between Earith and Sutton Gault for the hovercraft test-bed.

The Crown Pub Earith.
The Crown Pub Earith.

‘The Crown’ backs onto the river and hires out boats and punts for fishermen.

It was a meeting place for Officers and NCOs of the Home Guard after Sunday parade.
The only pub with a beer garden!

‘The Angel’ was used by stagecoaches and barges for changing horses.

‘The Wheatsheaf’ situated on Back Lane (Chapel Lane), only a beer house but had a public right of way passing right through it!

‘The Boat’ had a thatched roof and backed onto the river.
The beer was kept cool in a cellar and served from a large enamel jug.
The pub burnt down in 1958.

‘The Plough’ situated over at the Hermitage nearly opposite the railway station.
The many fishermen who came at weekends from London and the Midlands used this pub to weigh up their catch to find the winner for the day.
In those days Earith was noted country-wide for its excellent coarse fishing and, of course, eels which were caught commercially by the Killingworth family.

In the 1930’s the ‘Riverview’ was a Guest House with a high-class reputation.

Only two of the above now exist – The ‘Crown’ and the ‘Riverview’.

(Extracts from ‘Keeping Time by the Crows’ University of Cambridge
John Wales retains copyright on original contributions)

John (Jack) Wales

February 2012

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