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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 Royal Court Hotel

Coundon Hall (Old Hall Inn)

From the mid 19th century some wealthy people moved to Keresley away from the noise and dirt of Coventry. The manor house, was built in 1894 as a private residence set in 11 acres of landscaped gardens and parkland for William Hillman of Hillman & Herbert, a bicycle manufacturer. In 1892, the company changed its name to the Premier Cycle Company – claiming to be the largest cycle manufacturers in the world by 1896.

At this time, the motor industry was in its infancy in Great Britain, and at the forefront of this development was Coventry. In 1907 he teamed up with the Frenchman Louis Coatalen for a brief period making large motorcars, the largest being a six-cylinder 9654cc model. After Coatalen’s departure to the Wolseley Company, Hillman cars were of more conventional and economic proportions of 9 to 12hp through to WWI.

Hillman himself died in 1921, and by 1928 the company was absorbed into that of the Rootes Brothers Empire, seeing the introduction of the ‘Wizard’ and ‘Minx’ models in the 1930s.

In 1929 Keresley Hall was converted into a convalescent hospital. It was named after John Alcock who left a large sum of money in his will. In 1942 it was made part of the Coventry and Warwickshire Hospital. Keresley hospital finally closed in 1968. It is now the Royal Court Hotel.

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