Updated: Aug 9, 2022
Minus one? MINUS ONE!! This is May, isn't it? Getting up on a Sunday morning after an evening in the Duke of York is never really easy, but at 5.30a.m. it was somewhat harder than usual.
5.30a.m.! As I'm not racing at the moment I had offered my services as a marshal at this morning's time trial. The only plus point was that whilst I was going to pedal to Bakewell, it wasn't going to be painful. Just a little cold.
I was stationed on the roundabout in the centre of town. Perfectly placed to enjoy the aroma of frying bacon as it wafted from the kitchen of the Rutland Arms. Built in 1804, and purportedly used by Jane Austen whilst writing Pride and Prejudice, it sits on the site of a bygone boozer – the White Horse – which was pulled down to allow the construction of this larger hostelry. But I want to focus on a couple of more recent closures that are both within a couple of hundred yards of where I stood. Not that recent, but there are still folks alive who can remember them in operation.
Leave the roundabout and head along the A6 towards Buxton and you'll soon pass the Old Kings on the right. This Grade II listed building dates from the early to mid-19th century and was originally called The Crown but at sometime between 1842 and 1849 it changed its name to The King's Arms, possibly coinciding with a change of innkeeper that occurred at that time or maybe to differentiate it from The Crown & Anchor, which was sited not a million miles away. Quite when it closed I'm not sure, but it was still open during WW2.
Edit August 2022
I recently came across this image of the old King's Arms. I assume that the rider is leaving the stables and not the lounge bar.
The second bygone boozer is the aforementioned Crown & Anchor. Once again I'm not certain when it closed, but it too was operating in the 1940s. By that time it had dropped the crown from the name. In fact this happened around the time that The Crown/King's Arms made its appearance. Unfortunately the building was demolished to allow for changes in road alignment but can be seen in the centre background of this 1894 Francis Frith photo, taken when Elizabeth Briddon was landlady. She ran the place for over forty years and was succeeded by her son Thomas.
The scene hasn't altered that much – except that the Anchor has gone. The building on the left was originally built as a branch of the Sheffield & Rotherham Bank and opened in 1837. Unfortunately a pub had to close and be flattened for its construction – the Three Tuns. The bank flowed through several owners, eventually becoming a part of RBS who closed this Bakewell branch in 2018.
If we take ourselves back in time to August 1902 we'll find The Anchor looking like this, all decked out for Edward VII's coronation.
It's not all bad news, as two days ago The Joiners Arms opened its doors for the first time. Haven't been in yet to sample its wares, but it'd be nice to do so shortly.
As for the purpose of the ride, my duties as a marshal passed without incident. Even managed to get a pic of clubmate Mat with the still open Red Lion in the background.
Well, that's bikes and bygone boozers covered today, but no beer . As Meat Loaf sang, “Two out of three ain't bad.” After all, it's still only half past nine in the morning.
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