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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 Varsity

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NAME VARSITY
ALTERNATIVE NAMES Later CASTLE
ADDRESS 7 LITTLE PARK STREET

This pub got its name from its proximity to Coventry University.

This building was erected in the 1720s or 1730s for a silk merchant. It has six giant Corinthian pilasters rising from a deep plinth. The narrow central doorway and the window above with its decorative surround are similar to those at Stoneleigh Abbey, designed by William and Francis Smith 1720 - 26. There is a tradition that the Smith brothers also designed this house and two others in Coventry. Behind the building is a much less elaborate extension that was used as a silk warehouse.

Pevsner describes the building as one of the most splendid in Coventry and similar to one in Priory Row. He says that the narrow doorway with pilasters and triglyph-like fluted capitals are similar to Stoneleigh Abbey.

In 1939 this building was occupied by the Miners Union Club. In the late 1990s this building was converted into a pub, the VARSITY, but there was substantial demolition to open the rooms up into a public space. There is one panelled room surviving but unfortunately the owners did not use a silk theme for the pub.

In c2009 this became the CASTLE

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