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Luftwaffe Losses.

Firstly an apology to those of you who are subscribers for the alert you recently received about a phantom post. Fat Finger Syndrome again I'm afraid. It's in production but you'll just have to curb your enthusiasm for a while longer. In the meantime here's another little post to keep you going.

In the recent offering on Gorleston's Lifeboat Tavern we got an idea of the effects of the Luftwaffe's visits in 1940 and 1941 on Great Yarmouth's pubs. The Lifeboat narrowly escaped being hit whilst the Waterside Tavern around the corner didn't. I thought that I might produce a series of posts cataloguing some of these losses. This first of these posts deals with the Upper Ferry Inn which used to be found at 50 South Quay

Before we come on to the Upper Ferry, let's first consider the Three Herrings, for that was what the pub was known as in the nineteenth century. The inn was housed in a seventeenth century building which sat on South Quay at the south-west corner of Row 136. (If you're unfamiliar with Yarmouth's Rows there is a nice account of them to be found if you click here.) Presumably the pub was named after Yarmouth's original coat of arms which depicted three of said clupeids as charges on an azure escutcheon. It gained the lion bits courtesy of a grateful Edward III after the Battle of Sluys in 1340.

Almost half a millennium after that defeat of the French and Genoese we find that Robert Wilkinson was running the Three Herrings but in all likelihood it was in operation before then...

Extract from Pigot's 1830 directory

...and it continued to be known as the Three Herrings until at least 1896 when William Clarke was in residence.

Entry in Kelly's 1896 directory.

The change of name possibly coincided with a change of landlord which occurred around the turn of the century. The 1901 census shows that William Goate and the Upper Ferry Inn are to be found at 50 South Quay.

1901 census entry.

William's father-in-law, William Gedge, had been the landlord at the Britannia Tavern and a little later, for a brief period, took over the licence before his son – also William – took over from him. The picture below shows William junior's mother and wife and possibly his son, yet another William.

The Upper Ferry Inn c1903.

Its new name was quite appropriate for the pub was situated close to the eastern landing of the River Yare's upper ferry. The pub marked at the bottom centre of the map extract was the original Anson Arms which we've previously met here.

The Upper Ferry Inn was situated near the eastern landing point of the upper ferry which crossed the River Yare.

An early twentieth century shot of the upper ferry crossing the River Yare with the Upper Ferry Inn right of centre.

William and wife Annie remained in the pub until well into the 1930s but had retired by the time that war broke out. In 1942 the pub was requisitioned by the War Department. It's unlikely that this made it any more of a target but it didn't offer any protection from the Luftwaffe's attention either with the building failing to escape damage when the Wehrmacht's winged warriors visited the town.

The Upper Ferry Inn looking rather sad.

The same view in October 2018 © Google 2021

The war-damaged Upper Ferry, along with its neighbours, came down as part of the town's post-war regeneration and the site is now occupied by blocks of flats and maisonettes.

The Ordnance Survey extract is reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland under this licence.

If you've read this far, then thank you. Like me, you must have some sort of interest in bygone boozers. If you haven't done so already you can subscribe to ensure that you don't miss any future posts. Simply click here to return to the home page (opens in a new tab), follow the 'Subscribe' link and complete the form to receive an email notification of any future post. Or you could simply follow the link at the top of this page.

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