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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 Queens Hotel

photo

Hertford Street c1910 (Photo Harvey Barton) Shown with the Coventry Savings Bank and the post office to the left, in that order, the ‘Queens Hotel’ was one of the major hotels in Coventry at this period. The entrance to the stable yard at the rear, can be seen to the right of the main entrance. Although the front was badly bombed in the Second World War it remained open, until Hertford Street was redeveloped in 1967.

NAME QUEENS HOTEL
ALTERNATIVE NAMES QUEENS HEAD HOTEL
ADDRESS 66 HERTFORD STREET

This could refer to a number of queens, Elizabeth I, Victoria or Anne being the usual candidates.

It is said that the Queens Hotel was built in 1879 and that it was small and select.

In 1896 Harry Lawson, Chairman of the British motor Syndicate, brought Leon Bollee over from Paris with one of his his motor tricycles and lodged him at the Queen's Hotel. This was at a time when the Red Flag Act was still in power. The Red Flag Act forbade any vehicle on the open road from travelling at more than 4 m.p.h., that is unless it was preceded by a man carrying a red flag. This was fine when the only motorised transport on the roads was traction engines but by now it was holding back the British from establishing a motor industry. In what appears to be a deliberate act of defiance the Lord Mayor, Alderman London, with the assistance of six policemen, drove the motorised tricycle from the Queens Hotel through the streets without a red flag. It was definitely capable of much more than 4 m.p.h.

Unfortunately, the Queens was hit by an incendiary bomb during the blitz of November 15th 1940. Although firemen tackled the blaze on the top floor, it was decided to blow the building up to create a fire-break to prevent the fire reaching the next door Central Post Office. So in effect the Queens Head was bombed by its own side! All that remained were the dining room and kitchens which continued as the Queens Hotel, being improved and modernised in 1954. I can well remember the pub in Hertford Street in the 1950's although I did wonder why it didn't have a frontage like the rest of the street! It closed c.1966 and was demolished in January 1967.

Licensees
1886 E. Brenmehl
1890 - 1891 J. Thompson
1893 - 1896 A. Liddiard
1903 - 1905 Thomas Henry Cooper
1909 William Cooper proprietor
1919 - 1922 C. L. Tyack & A. H. Tyack directors
1924 - 1940 R. J. (Bob) Oxley

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Dict PN This could refer toanumber of Queens.Elizabeth I, Victoria or Anne being the usual candidates.

2.10.1878 LJ Vol 1 P12 QUEENS HOTEL, Hertford Street Alehouse
Owner : Coventry Hotel Company limited
Licensee : James Thomson
6.11.1879 TOL to Emma Yeats
1.11.1883 TOL to Jane Etheridge
5.11.1883 TOL to John Banhards Brenmote ?
4.8.1887 TOL to James Thomson
22.5.1890 TOL to Laura Thomson
8.1.1891 TOL to Albert Liddiard
9.5.1885 fined 20/- & costs for harbouring prostitutes
11.12.1879 The provisional license declared final this day ( Emma Yeats & Alfred Liddiard occupier ) The executors of James Thomson deceased.

1879 News 2-9 Built

1896 CovHG P92 Meanwhile Lawson brought Bollee over from Paris with his motor tandem and lodged him at the Queen's Hotel in Hertford Street. It was noted in The Autocar of 9th May 1896 that ' The venerable Mayor of Coventry ( Alderman London ) himself became publicly engaged with the assistance of six policemen in breaking the law - in other wards in riding through the streets in Mr Bollee's petroleum tricycle '. The law was being broken because the Red Flag Act was in force; this forbade any vehicle on the open road from travelling at over 4 m.p,h,, unless preceeded by a man carrying a red flag.

c1900 COCIP P58 Photo

Looking up Hertford Street around 1900. The lady with the pram is just approaching the entrance to the Queens Hotel.

1906 OS Map

c1915 ACov P104B ......Queens Head Hotel, both of which were destroyed in the Second World War.

1930 ACov P47A Photo

1936 COCIP P113 Photo

An unusual view of Hertford Street from the roof of the National Provincial Bank in 1936.

Next.....is the small and select Queens Hotel. It is from here in 1896 that the mayor with six policemen deliberately broke the law by riding with Leon Bollee on his petroleum tandem. The vehicle was illegal because it moved at over four miles per hour and this was against the Red Flag Act which stated that any vehicle capable of over four miles per hour should be preceeded by a man carrying a red flag. The Queens was blown up in an attempt to stop fire spreading to the Post Office during the Novenber 14th blitz.

1939 COCIP P128&129 Photo

A fine view looking up Hertford Street in 1939.....and the Queens Hotel. All awaiting destruction in the next fateful year.

1940 COCIP P136 Photo

Firemen tackling the blazing top floor of the Quenns Hotel in Hertford Street November 15th.

15.11.1940 ACov P110 Destruction

15.11.1940 Cov at War Queens Head damaged by bombing

1940's ACov P47B Bombed out site

5.1.1967 News 2-9 Demolition

Originally much larger but heavily damaged in wartime raids, losing most of its frontage. The dining room and kitchens were all that remained. The building was improved and modernised in 1954.

? COOPP Photo 17

The rear of the Queens Hotel in Gretfriars Lane

LICENSEES

1878 LJ Vol 1 P12 James Thomson
1879 LJ Vol 1 P12 James Thomson
1879 LJ Vol 1 P12 Emma Yeats
1883 LJ Vol 1 P12 Emma Yeats
1883 LJ Vol 1 P12 Jane Etheridge
1883 LJ Vol 1 P12 John Banhards Brenmote ?
1886 C&B E. Bremehl
1887 LJ Vol 1 P12 John Banhards Brenmote ?
1887 LJ Vol 1 P12 James Thomson
1890/91 R&G J. Thompson
1890 LJ Vol 1 P12 James Thomson
1890 LJ Vol 1 P12 Laura Thomson
1891 LJ Vol 1 P12 Laura Thomson
1891 LJ Vol 1 P12 Albert Liddiard
1893 Reporter A. Liddiard

1894 R&G A. Liddiard

1896 R&G A. Liddiard
1898 LJ Vol 1 P12 Albert Liddiard
1891 LJ Vol 1 P12 Albert Liddiard
1903 R&G Thomas Henry Cooper

1905 R&G Thomas Henry Cooper

1909 R&G William Cooper proprietor

1911/12 Spennell Licensee not named

1912/13 Spennell Licensee not named

1919 Spennell C. L. Tyack & A. H. Tyack directors

1921/22 Spennell C. L. Tyack & A. H. Tyack directors

1924 P. James R. J. Oxley

1926/27 P. James R. J. Oxley

1929 P. James R. J. Oxley

1931/32 P. James R. J. Oxley

1933/34 P. James R. J. Oxley

1935/36 P. James R. J. Oxley

1937/38 P. James R. J. Oxley

1939/40 P. James R. J. Oxley

? News 2-9 Bob Oxley

1953 LTSD
1955/56 Barrett Licensee not named

1957 Barrett Licensee not named

1960 Barrett Licensee not named

1961 Barrett Licensee not named

1962 Barrett Licensee not named

1966 Barrett Licensee not named

OWNERS

1878 LJ Vol 1 P12 Coventry Hotel Company limited

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