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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 Cross Keys

NAME CROSS KEYS
ADDRESS 16 EARL STREET
This is a common sign in Christian heraldry, referring to St Peter, to whom Jesus said, 'I will give unto thee the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven'. The papal arms show crossed keys and they occur again in the arms of various bishops such as those of Exeter, Gloucester, Peterborough, Ripon and St Asaph where the cathedral in each case is dedicated to St Peter.

It is claimed that this pub is referred to as 'Le Cross Keys' in a fourteenth century manuscript, but unfortunately we have been unable to confirm this. The earliest reference we have been able to find is in a will of 1720

In 1870 this was the meeting place of a group of high spirited young wags called 'the Lumber Troop'. in 1908 it was demolished to make way for the Council House.
Known Licensees are;
1835 - 1841 William Gray
1850 - 1868 Mrs. Elizabeth Gray, victualler and maltster
1869 John Lowe
1869 - 1874 John Kelly
1879 Mrs. Mary Anne Kelly
1881 - 1886 William Eccles
1890 - 1896 Mrs M. A. Eccles
Brewers;
1850 Elizabeth Gray

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Dict PN A common sign in Christian heraldry referring to St. Peter to whom Jesus said ' I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven '. The Papal arms show crossed keys and they occur again in the arms of various bishops such as those of Exeter, Gloucester, Peterborough, Ripon and St Asaph, where the cathedral is dedicated to St Peter.

1300 JA34 Gregory Hood 52 & 21, Wilson 1691/22 LE CROSS KEYS

JA23 According to Wilson this pub is mentioned in a 14th century deed referred to in Gregory Hood / 66. JA can't find this.

1850 WB P17 Brewer Elizabeth Gray

1851 Source 49 Boeard of Health Map

5.11.1869 JA63 CH&O Transfer of license from John Lowe to John Kelly

c1870 COC P14 Mention of the ' Lumber Troop '

28.8.1878 LJ Vol 1 P27 CROSS KEYS, Earl Street Alehouse
Owner : Mary Ann Kelly
later William Eccles
later Corporation of Coventry
Licensee : Mary Ann Kelly
11.12.1879 TOL to William Eccles
4.8.1887 TOL to Mary Ann Eccles
--------------------Not renewed 1896

1908 JA Demolished to make way for the Council House

LICENSEES

1835 Pigot William Gray

1841 Pigot William Gray

1841 Census William Gody 50 yo Not b Wks m Elizabeth, 50

1845 Kelly William Gray

1850 CS Elizabeth Gray ( also brewer in 1850 directory )

1851 Census Elizabeth Gray 63 yo victualler & maltster b Coventry & 1 neice
1864 JA77 Elizabeth Gray ( & maltster )

1868 Buchanan Mrs E. Gray

23.11.1868 Lantern Elizabeth Gray

1869 JA63 John Lowe
1869 JA63 John Kelly

1871 Census John Kelly 40 yo b Coventry m Mary A., 32 & 3s, 2d, 1 mother
1874 C&B J. Kelly [ 16 Earl Street
1878 LJ Vol 1 P27 Mary Ann Kelly
1879 Stevens Mrs Mary Anne Kelly
1879 LJ Vol 1 P27 Mary Ann Kelly
1879 LJ Vol 1 P27 William Eccles
1881 C&B William Eccles

1886 C&B W. Eccles

1887 LJ Vol 1 P27 William Eccles
1887 LJ Vol 1 P27 Mary Ann Eccles ( Are Mary Ann Eccles and Mary Ann Kelly the
1890/91 R&G M. Eccles [ same person ? )
1893 Reporter Mrs M. Eccles

1894 R&G Mrs M. A. Eccles

1896 R&G Mrs M. A. Eccles

OWNERS

1878 LJ Vol 1 P27 Mary Ann Kelly
later LJ Vol 1 P27 William Eccles
later LJ Vol 1 P27 Corporation of Coventry
1898 LJ Vol 1 P27 Corporation of Coventry

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