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Here is what we think is the only comprehensive record of pubs and beerhouses within the Coventry city boundaries going back as far as available records allow. This is an ongoing project so contributions, corrections or additions to this archive, especially anecdotes, photos and media are most welcome. Feel free to contact us for a pint and a chat anytime.



The first houses erected in Hillfields were in King William Street in 1828, so the Ivy Cottage probably dated from the very origins of Hillfields. Prior to this date Primrose Hill House is described as being about half a mile from Coventry and the Hillfields area could only be reached by two roads - Swan Lane and Harnall Lane. The direct approach was by footpath from New Buildings under the arch ot the old city gates In Hales Street and past Swanswell Pool.

The pub first appears in directories in 1841 as the beerhouse, King William Street, with Thomas Gill as licensee. The Gills retained the license for the next forty years.

In the 1841 census Thomas Gill, 45, is a retail brewer on the north side of King William Street. In 1851 he is 56 and a licensed victualler in King William Street. By 1861 there is no matching record. The Ivy Cottage had a full public house license from 1850

Known Licensees are;
1841 Thomas Gill
1861 Sarah Gill
1868 - 1881 William Gill butcher & licensed victualler

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