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The Swan, the Swallow, the Reindeer and the Sheep.

It seems a while since I posted the last piece of this drivel, but much of my time of late has been concentrated elsewhere. If I haven't been performing scapula protractions in the press up position or eccentric anterior deltoid short levers in an attempt to sort the shoulder situation I've been trying to deal with the massive increase in demand for membership of the site from folks with email addresses like and or women' and Up to ten requests a day over the last month. All gmail addresses and all attempts by this IT-illiterate to insert robot-filtering devices into the application process have so far failed. Still, it doesn't take too long to simply manually block them until I manage to stumble upon a solution. Hopefully their number won't grow too much and if you're in need of a contact for an online casino, a supplier of steroids or a source of weight-reducing amphetamines you know where to come.

With the subluxating shoulder limiting any serious training, although in all honesty I'd find it hard so say that I've really been indulging in any serious training of late, it was nice to receive an invitation to spend a couple of nights with our friends in Old Bolingbroke, Lincolnshire. It would've been nicer to have been able to take the bikes and have a pedal through some different countryside but that will have to wait until next time.

As is often the case before I go to stay somewhere, I have a scan of the old maps of the area to see if there are any potential subjects. Sad, aren't I? This old 25-inch Ordnance Survey map came up trumps in the village of Tumby.

What used to be the Swan Inn in Tumby can be found in close proximity to the mini roundabout where the A155 meets the A513. With scores of sunseekers speeding towards Skegness I didn't fancy risking standing in the middle of the latter to get a shot so I've fallen back on the old standby of Mr. Google.

The former Swan Inn, Tumby. © Google 2022

In existence from at least 1829 when Pigot's directory gives Fred. Norton in residence...

Extract from Pigot's 1828/9 directory. 1871 the Swan's in the possession of Joseph Naylor who'd been there at the time of the previous census too, but by the following year...

Extract from the 1871 census.

...a Swallow is in residence – Jackson Swallow. His brother, Robinson, is farming at the nearby Toft Grange.

Extract from White's 1872 directory.

In 1881 Jackson Swallow is still there...

Extract from the 1881 census.

...and, by the following year, is also keeping the Rein Deer in nearby Horncastle.

Extract from White's 1882 directory.

A quick check of Mr. Swallow's newly acquired interest shows that it too is now no longer serving. A bonus bygone boozer – I'll return to it in due course – but for the moment it's briefly back to the Swan.

The Swan, sometimes black, sometime uncoloured, continued to be occupied by a succession of farmer-cum-publicans until the early 1900s. The final reference to it as an inn that I've found is in Kelly's directory of 1913. There is no mention of it in any later ones that I have had the opportunity to peruse.

Was Aner Scargall the Black Swan's final landlord?

Moving on to the bonus bygone boozer. In the same 1829 directory in which Pigot recorded Fred. Norton in the Swan, John Walter is in residence at the Rein Deer in Horncastle's Far Street.

He's still there thirty-two years later...

Extract from the 1861 census.

...but dies in 1862 and it's then that Mr. Swallow's link with the Rein Deer probably starts. He's certainly there by the time that Morris's directory is published the following year, the Rein Deer has become a single word and Far Street has been renamed as Westgate. It will be renamed again later.

Extract from Morris's 1862 directory.

He's still there in 1871 with housekeeper Betsy Simpson along with another general servant and an ostler...

Extract from the 1871 census.

...but we've already seen above that our Mr. Swallow is at the Tumby Swan in 1881, so who's looking after the Reindeer? Well...

Extract from the 1881 census.'s in the charge of a Betsy Swallow. Hmmm? Wasn't Jackson's housekeeper a decade earlier called Betsy? That's right. Jackson had married his housekeeper two years earlier and between them they were running a pair of pubs.

The Reindeer was still one word and still in the Swallow's control in 1892...

Extract from Kelly's 1892 directory.

...even though the street name had changed once more. Jackson died 1897 and the pub changed hands, which it did several more times until its closure.

The picture below shows the Reindeer and was probably taken when the Swallows had it. It's seen wearing Soulby's colours and this Alford brewery merged with Winch, from Louth, in 1896 to form Soulby's, Sons and Winch Limited. With no reference to any winding gear the photo is likely to have been taken before that date.

I can't be sure when the Reindeer finally closed. It was still in operation in 1958 when it appeared in the phone directory – Horncastle 3264 – being run by W.R. Beeson but the entry has disappeared by the time that the 1960 edition was published, which possibly provides a big hint. Today this Grade II listed building is in residential use.

The former Reindeer. © Google 2022

So that's the Swan, Swallow and Reindeer from the post's title dealt with, but what about the sheep?

Regular readers of this drivel, and I mean both of you, may well remember in, the post about the former Rising Sun in Darlton, that you were introduced to twins Josh and Jess, the Lleyn/Suffolk crosses along with Woody, the Boreray wether. Well, we were going to stay with them.

The twins are fine and have grown a bit...

...whilst Woody is just Woody and enjoys nothing more than helping move any wheeled object around. Note the upturned wheelbarrow from a previous attempt at assistance.

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

If you've read this far, then thank you. Possibly, like me, you may have some sort of interest in bygone boozers. Clicking here will take you to a searchable/sortable index which you can use to see if I've already featured any lost locals from your locality. You can also 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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