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The Old Crown Inn Snarestone

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The Old Crown InnThe Old Crown Inn Snarestone - Traditional Village Pub

In 1766 there were four alehouses in Snarestone and local records from 1772 reveal that George Gadsby was the landlord of a Crown Inn but the names of the other alehouses are not known. By 1785 the village had two pubs and by 1795 it appears that the Crown Inn was the only survivor of these early establishments. The Gadsby family had a long association with the Crown Inn that lasted until 1820. Official records (1) of the landlord and pub name commenced in 1825  and the following is a list of some of the licensees for the Crown Inn over the last 200 years:
1826  James Mead
1827  James Mending
1842 George Denton Lees
1872 Mrs.Caubett
1873 – 1874 John Ball
1875 – 1881 John Taylor
1882  James Smith, during this year transferred to Robert Christian and later to William Clamp.
1883 – 1884 John Taylor

In 1885 the property was purchased by the Burton Brewing Company which where one of the largest Burton breweries who by this time were expanding, purchasing inns around the region and becoming major owner brewers. 
1885 - 1890 William Clamp 
1890 – 1892 Robert Squire
1893 – 1912 Samuel Sentence
1912 – 1919 Emma Caunt 
1920 – 1929 Harry Smith
In 1925  the pub was acquired by Ind Coope & Co Ltd another Burton based brewery company.

1929 – 1949 Ronald Atkinson
1949 – 1960 Marie Atkinson 
1960 - Clifford John Smith whose family remained landlords until the 1980’s. 

In those days it was a real time capsule and customers remembered it as having changed very little since the Burton Brewing Company bought it in 1885. Indeed local historian Mick Stretton who remembers drinking at the Crown when he first moved to Snarestone, discovered that the ‘Snarestone Friendly Society’ which was a form of savings bank common across the country where working men paid into in order to provide an income should they fall on hard times, was based at the pub.  These societies gradually became redundant when social security was introduced after the second world. The Snarestone Friendly Society was based in a side room at The Crown known as the ‘Crown Lodge’. Mick remembers being allowed into the Lodge room and it was as if the door had been shut and the room and contents had been abandoned many years ago. 

Since then the pub has changed hands several times, being modernised and enlarged with the addition of a restaurant and guest rooms in the early 1990’s. It has also had some name changes along the way to the Odd House and then the Lonely Lion and back again to the Oddhouse and now finally back to its original name of Old Crown Inn to acknowledge and reflect the long history of the establishment and celebrate its status as the oldest pub in the village. 

With grateful thanks to Mick Stretton for his help in compiling this short history 

 (1) Ref: Alehouse Recognizance Register 1753 – 1977

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