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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 Greyhound

There are a number of possible explanations of this name:

a) a famous mail coach which travelled between London and Birmingham;
b) a heraldic reference to the Dukes of Newcastle;
c) the greyhound was formerly used in the chase, but is now mainly associated with greyhound racing.

Though, in this case, it was probably because a greyhound was a fast canal boat.

The greyhound is first mentioned on 11th September 1829 when the Coventry Herald announces it as a new public house, with the owner Thomas Worthy, described as a farmer. Later he is described as a butcher and farmer and a farmer and innkeeper. the local history collection has a photograph of Benjamin Beesley, landlord in the 1890's, with his wife Mary ( ne Davenport ) and children. One child, Clara, later married John Charles Nelson, who took over the pub after Benjamin died.

In 1976 £15,000 was spent in refitting the lounge.

In 1982 it was described as 'a popular pub at the junction of the Coventry and Oxford canals'. It is now part of an industrial archaeology conservation area of special interest to canal enthusiasts. A Grade II listed building.

Research by 'philex31' on the Historic Coventry forum would suggest that the Sephtons and their extended family had connections with many of the pubs in the Longford area: Boat (Blackhorse Road), Boat (Grange Road), Greyhound, Elephant & Castle, Miners Arms, Bird In Hand, Green Man, Old Crown (Windmill Road), New Inn, Saracens Head, Coach & Horses, Engine. Also, away from Longford were the Park Gate Hotel and the New Inn (Stockingford). The majority of the Coventry Sephtons appear to be descended from James Sephton, a canal boatbuilder, who arrived in the Hawkesbury area c1805 from Shardlow in Derbyshire.

Somewhat at odds with this boozy background, other family members operated temperance hotels in the city centre (The Victoria, Warwick Row and The Priory, Bayley Lane).
Known Licensees are;
1845 Thomas Worthy & butcher & farmer
1861 Edward Watton
1863 Mrs. Abigail Worthy
1866 Thomas Barnett
1868 William Barnett
1874 William West
1876 William Lee
1880 William Ratliff
1888 - 1900 Benjamin Beesley ( Beasley )
mary beasley
1904 - 1924 Mrs. Mary Beesley, wife of above. Landlady of the Greyhound Inn for over 20 years. Late 19th Century (died 1928)
1929 Clara Beesley, daughter of Benjamin and Mary
1931 - 1940 John Charles Nelson, husband of Clara
1957 Clara H. Nelson, wife of John Charles, daughter of Benjamin and Mary Beasley
1820's Thomas Worthy

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