Pubs of Manchester

All pubs within the city centre and beyond.
A history of Manchester's hundreds of lost pubs.

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Pack Horse, Bolton Road

Pack Horse, Bolton Road, Irlams O'Th'Height. (c) Neil Richardson [1].

The Pack Horse was built in 1934 to replace a pub of the same name which was the oldest pub in Irlams O'Th'Height.  The original Pack Horse can be traced back to at least 1600, but that's another story.

Pack Horse, Bolton Road. (c) Paul Wilsons with posthumous permission.

Joseph Holt's rebuilt the Pack Horse in mock Tudor style, as seen top in 1949 and below in 1971, and it lasted until 14th September 1975.  The pub had to go to make way for the Height roundabout so was demolished later in 1975 [1].

Pack Horse, Bolton Road. (c) Paul Wilson with posthumous permission.

1. Salford Pubs Part Three: Including Cross Lane, Broad Street, Hanky Park, the Height, Brindleheath, Charlestown and Weaste, Neil Richardson (2003).

Church Inn, Hilton Street

Church Inn, Hilton Street, Broughton. (c) Paul Wilson with posthumous permission.

The Church Inn on Hilton Street North in Broughton has recently closed its doors as a pub for the last time.  Opening in the 1860s, the Church Inn became a Boddington's house in the 1890s, and was modernised by the brewery in 1980 [1].

Church Inn, Hilton Street North. (c) Pugh Auctions.

At some stage the address changed to No.146 Hilton Street North, but the Church survived redevelopment of the area.  Sadly it did not survive the modern pressures put upon inner city pubs of mod-cons, high prices, health scares, the smoking ban, etc.

Church Inn, Hilton Street North. (c) Pugh Auctions.

The Church Inn was up for sale recently and appears to have been taken over by some obscure church group (rather apt), called 'His Presence Assembly'. 

Former Church Inn, Hilton Street North. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

Note how its "FREE HOUSE" sign has been cheekily changed to "HIS HOUSE", although they've retained the old Boddingtons bitter sign.

Church Inn, Hilton Street North. (c) Pugh Auctions.

1. Salford Pubs - Part Two: Including Islington, Ordsall Lane and Ordsall, Oldfield Road, Regent Road and Broughton, Neil Richardson (2003).

Grosvenor, Great Clowes Street

Grosvenor, Great Clowes Street, Lower Broughton. (c) Paul Wilson with posthumous permission.

The Grosvenor opened on the corner of Great Clowes Street and Clarence Street in Lower Broughton in 1877 after it had been granted its license in 1875.  The three-storey hotel had a commercial room, smoke room, refreshment room (vault) and billiard room, with a coach house and stables in the yard.  Threlfalls took over the Grosvenor in the late 19th century, with it passing to Whitbread in the 1960s [1].  

In 1982 the Grosvenor was renamed the Hanky Park Hotel as a theme pub, but this didn't last long and Whitbread turned it back into the Grosvenor in 1986.  Their Delamere Inns division turned the concert room into a games room with a full-sized snooker table.  However, the Grosvenor closed in 1994 and was demolished the following year [1].  The Grosvenor stood at No.95 Great Clowes Street [2] so would have been on this corner.

Former location of Grosvenor, Great Clowes Street. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

1. Salford Pubs - Part Two: Including Islington, Ordsall Lane and Ordsall, Oldfield Road, Regent Road and Broughton, Neil Richardson (2003).

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Regent, Regent Road

Regent, Regent Road, Salford. (c) Paul Wilson with posthumous permission [1].

The Regent was an estate-style pub opened by Whitbread after they decided to rebuild their Regent Hotel, which was lost to the Ordsall rebuild of the 1970s.  Part of this scheme was the widening of Regent Road, so the replacement pub was set back a little from the main road.  On the 5th of April 1977 the old Regent Hotel closed and the new Regent opened.  Sadly the new estate boozer only lasted 13 years, closing in 1990 and by 1992 had become a Burger King outlet, which remained for a few years.  The rather disastrous Ordsall rebuild was fixed by wiping pretty much all remaining character from Regent Road, which is one of many depressed and depressing thoroughfares into the city centre that Manchester and Salford boasts.

Former location of Regent, Regent Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

1. Salford Pubs of the 70s -
2. Salford Pubs Part Two: Including Islington, Ordsall Lane and Ordsall, Oldfield Road, Regent Road and Broughton, Neil Richardson (2003).

Brunswick, Ordsall Lane

Brunswick, Ordsall Lane, Ordsall. (c) Paul Wilson with posthumous permission.

The Brunswick stood on the corner of Ordsall Lane and South Hall Street in Ordsall, and was first recorded in 1869.  Groves & Whitnall took the Brunswick in the early 1900s and they expanded the beerhouse into the newsagent's next door whilst giving it the company green tiled facade. 

Former Brunswick, Ordsall Lane. (c) Paul Wilson with posthumous permission.

The Brunswick became a Greenall Whitley house in the 1960s, but it closed for good in 1982 [1].  The building at No.147 Ordsall Lane was used by the 'Lime Bank' hospital equipment business (the windows were strangely made smaller) until it was demolished to make way for a substantial block of flats.

Former location of Brunswick, Ordsall Lane. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

1. Salford Pubs Part Two: Including Islington, Ordsall Lane and Ordall, Oldfield Road, Regent Road and Broughton, Neil Richardson (2003).

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Knox's Cottage, Greengate Brewery

Greengate Brewery, Middleton Junction, Middleton. (c) JW Lees [1].

Knox's Cottage is the brewery tap and visitor's centre at JW Lees' Greengate Brewery, Middleton Junction.  It's named after Bobby Knox, the old caretaker who used to live in the cottage, and was turned into the on-site pub after he died in 1992.  His granddaughter, Coronation Street's Suranne Jones, opened the refurbished pub in 1998.  Whilst it's not open to the public most of the time, you can enjoy a few pints in Knox's Cottage as part of the brewery tour, on open days, or at private functions.  We popped in for pre-Christmas pint and a look around this famous old brewery.

Knox's Cottage (left), Grimshaw Lane. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

Kicking off with a Brewers Dark, a low strength but tasty dark mild, Manchester Pale Ale (MPA) was next up.  This ale has been well-promoted and equally well-received as a pale and hoppy beer to placate those of us who miss Boddington's cask bitter.  Personally, I reckon Lees could do with adding at least as many hops again to give it the bitterness and aroma of old Boddies, and make MPA stand out from Robinson's Dizzy Blonde, Holt's IPA, and so on.  The evening's barman, and JW Lees' head brewer, Paul Wood, then suggested we take a look around the brewery itself to work up a thirst.

The brewery is pleasingly old-fashioned with something historical around every corner and up every set of steep wooden stairs.  The control panel is right out of the 1970s and the malted barley milling machine is almost a century old but in perfect working order.  Speaking of the '70s, JW Lees beers had a reputation for inconsistency for many years, and I recall being served pints of dodgy Lees in the Sportsmans and the John Willie Lees in town in the early 1990s.  Thankfully investment from the '90s onwards has seen the brewery expand and the beer range and quality improve hugely.

Once the barley has been mashed to release the sugars, the liquor is ran off to the copper for hop addition and boiling, but the spent grain is sent out to local farms as cattle feed.  Apparently, once a batch of spent grain underwent an early fermentation, resulting in a field full of drunken cows!  Up more wooden steps - so old that footstep-grooves are worn into the steps - to the modern (stainless steel) coppers where hops are added to the wort.  Hop pellets are used these days, but the room is adorned with old hops sacks stamped with familiar English hop varieties like Goldings and Challenger.

As the brewing process continues to the fermentation vessels, we pass the laboratories where the Lees house yeast strain is tended to.  These modern microbiology and QC labs have been squeezed into an old part of the building where the brewery ghost is said to roam the corridor.  This end of the brewery also houses the Carlsberg fermentation vessels - I wasn't aware that JW Lees brewed Carlsberg lager under contract.  This is a significant part of the company's income and allows the brewers to experiment making smaller volumes of new and seasonal beers.

This is FV9 (fermentation vessell # 9) and is where the yeast get to work converting the sugars from the malted barley into alcohol and carbon dioxide over a period of several days.  We opened the doors to the fermentation vessels containing Lees Bitter (the only beer Paul, the head brewer, drinks) and Christmas Plum Pudding, a rich, fruity seasonal (a current favourite and what I spent Christmas day supping) for a gawp inside. 

The aroma escaping was lovely but of course I had to stick my head for a proper sniff.  The hit of CO2 nearly knocked me out, but once composure was regained, it was fascinating to see the brew bubbling away, the yeast hard at work.  These microbes are more important to beer than many appreciate.  The characteristic flavour of some brewery's ale - Robinson's, Holt's, Lees themselves - comes largely from the yeast used, as raw ingredients are essentially the same.  Lees' yeast is many generations old, and small amounts of yeast from a spent brew are pitched into the next.  A bacterial infection nearly wiped out the yeast once, but a small number of cells were rescued from the labs.

As we neared the end of the tour we were allowed into the cellar where the ales are casked and the smooth-flow and lagers are kegged.  Lees don't bottle their own beers, using Robinson's or Thwaites facilities for this, but the lines where beers are pumped into their containers and then trundle off to distribution (or the on-site pub) reminded us of the pints that waited us back in the warmth.

Walking back through the brewery yard, we passed the shiny new boiler system and the crooked old chimney, and it was back into the pub, where were informed we could pull our own pints.  Like in the old Hydes Brewery Tap, this is a treat for ale and pub fans who are usually on the other side of the bar.  The Bitter, John Willie Lees strong ale, and several Plum Porters were sampled.  The latter two were especially good, and the Plum Pudding was thankfully on offer during our Christmas Day meal the other day!  It was great to talk beer and pubs with Paul, who was a great host, both on the tour and in the pub (and good to finally meet the equally knowledgable Tandleman).

Greengate Brewery. (c) David Dixon at geograph under Creative Commons.

Liner Bar / Dockers Club, Trafford Road

Liner Bar, Trafford Road, Ordsall. (c) Paul Wilson with posthumous permission.

The Liner Bar or Liner Restaurant was opened by Greenalls Brewery on Trafford Road in the mid-1980s.  This low-rise building, pictured above about 1991 by the late Paul Wilson, had previously been the Dockers Club, opposite Manchester Docks.  The Liner Bar closed in 1993 and demolished for road widening in July 1995 [1].  This office block now stands on the site of the Liner Club, opposite the entrances to Salford Quays and Media City.

Former location of Liner Bar / Dockers Club, Trafford Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

1. Salford Pubs Part Two: Including Islington, Ordsall Lane and Ordsall, Oldfield Road, Regent Road and Broughton, Neil Richardson (2003).

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Goldfinder, Oldham Road

Former Goldfinder, Oldham Road, Failsworth. (c) Rob Magee [1].

This brilliantly-named boozer stood on the corner of Croft Street and Oldham Road in Failsworth.  It can be traced back to 1853-4 when a Thomas Burgess opened the beerhouse, naming it after the Chester Gold Cup Winner which he'd just won big on at 50-1.  The Goldfinder was next to the huge Swedenborgia Chapel and over the road from the first Failsworth Co-Op.  Unfortunately, Burgess was a not a good beerhousekeeper, and many of his customers never paid for the beer, instead chalking up pints on the wall.  The Goldfinder is named in the 1860 census but then disappears from the records, so may be Failsworth's shortest-lived beerhouse, eventually becoming two houses [1].

Former location of Goldfinder, Oldham Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

1. Failsworth Pubs 1731-1995 and their licensees, Rob Magee (1995).

Woodman, Manchester Road

Woodman, Manchester Road, Hollinwood. (c) Dr Neil Clifton at geograph under Creative Commons.

The Woodman stood at No.684 Manchester Road in Hollinwood, just inside the M60 ring road.  Although the aerial shot on Google Maps shows the pub still standing, it closed a few years ago and has been demolished recently.

Woodman, Manchester Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

The Indian restaurant next door stands alone on this stretch of the A62, with JE Lees' Woodman Inn already a memory.  

 Former location of Woodman, Manchester Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

It was at the Woodman that the Failsworth Blues MCFC supporters club started up in 1978, the landlord and lady, Pat and Win Power, being the father of City's Paul Power [1].

Woodman Inn, Manchester Road. (c) Failsworth Blues [1].

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Bridgewater Hotel, Manchester Road

Bridgewater Hotel, Manchester Road, Hollinwood. (c) Alan Winfield with kind permission.

The Bridgewater stands today at the junction of Manchester Road and Chapel Road in Hollinwood, but this is the modern Joseph Holt's new-build, estate-style carvery pub.  The original Bridgewater Hotel was an old Holt's house on this same site at No.197 Manchester Road, as pictured above in the 1980s, with Chapel Road to the left.  It opened in 1854 and unfortunately, in the October of that year, a Horatio Mills died when he fell down the stairs of the newly opened pub [1].

Former location of Bridgewater Hotel, Manchester Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.


Kings Arms, Manchester Road

Kings Arms, Manchester Road, Hollinwood. (c) Alan Winfield with permission.

The Kings Arms stood on the A62 Manchester Road in Hollinwood, just north of the M60.  It was a Holt's house and is pictured above in December 1988.  The pub used to sell dregs for half price, a practice I can recall rumours of myself, but never had the pleasure of sampling.

The spot where the Kings Arms used to stand was on the east side of Manchester Road, just south of  Irving Street, with Cardigan Road to the rear.  Suspect it was the building of the M60 junction here that saw off the Kings Arms.

Former location of Kings Arms, Manchester Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Streetbridge Inn, Roman Road

Streetbridge Inn, Roman Road, Failsworth. (c) Rob Magee [1].

The Streetbridge Inn today is a 1980s estate-style pub on the Failsworth-Hollinwood border, but the original beerhouse dates a lot further back, to at least 1861, when it had been farmhouses.  The Streetbridge Inn was named after the Roman Road ("the street") and the bridge over the nearby canal.  The beerhouse was bought by Oldham Brewery in 1901, and by 1925 was hosting Manchester & District Whippet Club dog races out the back.  The Streetbridge got its full license in 1960 and so it remained until 1983 when Boddington's took over Oldham Brewery and decided to rebuilt the pub close by.  The original pub was demolished and became the car park for the new boozer [1].  Meanwhile, the Roman Road was tarmaced, the bridge was removed and the canal was filled in [2].

Streetbridge Inn, Roman Road. (c) Rob Magee [1].

1. Failsworth Pubs 1731-1995 and their licensee, Rob Magee (1985).

Barton Inn, Cawdor Street

Barton Inn, Cawdor Street, Eccles, 1995. (c) Alan Winfield with kind permission.

The Barton Inn stands on the corner of Adelaide Street at No.11 Cawdor Street in Eccles.  It can be traced back to 1887 when the license of the Southgate Inn in Pendlebury was transferred to two houses in Cawdor Street, which was converted into the Barton Inn [1].

Barton Inn, Cawdor Street. (c) rightmove.

By 1905 the Barton Inn was headquarters of the Springfield Football Club, which later became Eccles Borough A.F.C. [1].

Barton Inn, Cawdor Street, 1959. (c) Tony Flynn [1].

A full license was only granted to the Barton Inn in 1949 as a Threlfalls house, an in 1967 it passed to Whitbread as they took over Salford's Threlfalls Brewey.  It remained a Whitbread's Chester's house, offering Chesters and Boddies bitter in the mid-90s [2].

Barton Inn, Cawdor Street. (c) Eccles Express at geodruid.

The Barton Inn shut in the 2000s and remains closed despite being surrounded by flats and potential customers.

Barton Inn, Cawdor Street. (c) Kev Dol at panoramio under Creative Commons.

1. A History of the Pubs of Eccles, Tony Flynn (1980).

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Paul Pry, West Street

Paul Pry, West Street, Blackley. (c) Manchester Local Image Collection. Click here to view full image [1].

The Paul Pry beerhouse was tucked away on West Street off Crab Lane in Blackley, opening in 1830 after the Beer Act was passed.  Although beer was brewed on the premises, there were no beer pumps, so beer was brought in jugs from the cellar.  Walker & Homfrays took the Paul Pry in 1888, as seen in 1905, and just before the First World War, the licensee of the Old House at Home was also in charge at here.  The Paul Pry closed in 1923 and these days Blackley Cemetery covers the site [2].  

The name 'Paul Pry', of which there were several in the area including the one in Salford, comes from an 1825 play of the same name, and Mr Liston (of Liston's Bar and music hall fame), was depicted on several pub signs as Paul Pry - in this case, on a swinging sign in the pub's front garden.  This fact, and many many more, are from Roger Hall's excellent and readily available book, The Pubs of Blackley, published by the late Neil Richardson [2].

2. The Pubs of Blackley, Roger Hall (1980).

Queens Arms, Rochdale Road

Former location of Queens Arms, Rochdale Road, Collyhurst. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

Not to be confused with the Queens Arms (aka Gas Works Tavern), this Queens Arms stood at No. 213 Rochdale Road on the corner of Barlow Street (later Aston Street).  It was licensed after the Beer Act of 1830 and the beerhouse was lost when it was combined with the Kings Arms next door in the late nineteenth century [1].  This once bustling stretch of Rochdale Road has been stripped of most buildings and is an embarrassment to Manchester, like so many of the main roads leading into the city centre.

1. The Old Pubs of Rochdale Road and neighbourhood Manchester, Bob Potts (1985).

Waggon & Horses, Liverpool Road

Waggon & Horses, Liverpool Road, Patricroft, Eccles. (c) deltrems at flickr [1].

The original Waggon & Horses was first known as the Dog & Partridge and dates back to 1773.  After it was rebuilt in about 1856, as the building pictured above in 1991, it became a HQ for many local societies including the Patricroft Lancers FC, Barton Wheelers, the Peel Green Dahlia Society and the Peel Green Homing Society.  The new Waggon & Horses was a Hardy's Crown Brewery house until 1962, passing to Walkers of Warrington in 1961, and was a Tetley's pub [2] until it closed and was demolished in the early 2000s.  Since then a Netto supermarket has been built on the site of the old pub.

Former location of Waggon & Horses, Liverpool Road. (c) Google 2014. View Larger Map.

2. A History of the Pubs of Eccles, Tony Flynn (1980).