Inns, Pubs and Lodging Houses

Jon Malings

This article is drawn from existing material on DOL including Mary Vane Turner's 1933 book The  Story Of Deddington, a list of old pubs Where are they now, Deddington News, and, for photographs, The Gallery. In addition, Jackson's Oxford Journal (1800-1900), available online through most County Libraries, and the UK Census 1841 - 1911 have also been fruitful sources.

Comments or additions are very welcome.  Please contact us.    


The Public House has always been a quintessential part of English village life and "dirty, drunken Deddington" is no exception.  Given it's location, on the main road between Banbury and Oxford, the simple beer-house alone was not adequate, travellers needed overnight accomodation as well as food and drink; coaching inns and lodging houses became even more necessary as transport links expanded in the 18th century.

In 1623 the Bill of the inhabitants of the Mannor of dadington identifies one innkeeper, nine victuallers, one wyiner and (only) one drunkard. There was no mention of brewers so it would be reasonable to assume that some, if not all, of the victuallers were making their own beer.

Later censuses did not count the number of drunkards but the number of Deddington watering holes seems to have been fairly constant at around ten. Some were just "beer houses, the more salubrious had names, some of which (Unicorn, Crown and Tuns) are still with us, others are present with a name change, as in the Queens Arms/Kings Arms/Deddington Arms.

A detailed map of Deddington parish was drawn up in 1808 as part of the enclosure award. At that time only three inns were specifically identified: The Kings Arms and The Horseshoes (or Three Horseshoes) in the Horse Fair and The Crown and Tuns in New Street.  The Horseshoes, on the point of falling down, was demolished in the 1940's and replaced by a private dwelling. The Kings Arms (now The Deddington Arms) and The Crown and Tuns are still open for business.  

One feature in the nineteenth century is that innkeeping seems to have been a vocation. Several landlords move from pub to pub, like James Lewis of the Crown and Tuns and then the Flying Horse, or William G Grace of the Exhibition and then, also, the Flying Horse.

Many Innkeepers also had other employment, like John Bennett of the Butchers Arms - Builder and Innkeeper - or Edward Heathen of the Kings Arms - Innkeeper and Farmer of 30 acres.

The Establishments

By no means a complete list.  

  • Black Boy: from the Parish Burials Register, March 12th 1657, "Francis Busby of the Black Boy" 
  • Butchers Arms, Public house, Church Lane
  • Castle End, Lodging house
  • Crown (possibly the Crown and Tuns?) 
    • From the Parish Burials register, November 10th 1643 "Frances __ a servant who lived at the Crown"
    • National Archives ref C 5/94/106.  Court of Chancery, 1689.  A dispute between Richard Tustian and John Comner relating to the Crown Inn.
  • Crown and Tuns, Public House, New Street
  • Duke of Cumberland's Head Public House, Clifton
  • Flying Horse/Volunteer/Russell, Public House/Hotel, New Street
  • Holcombe, Guesthouse/Hotel,High Street
  • Lyon: from the Parish Burials Register, March 9th 1670 "George Nurse which was the Lyon Ostler"
  • Philcote Street, Lodging house
  • Plough Inn, New Street
  • Plough, Public House, Hempton
  • Queens Arms/Kings Arms/Deddington Arms, Inn/Hotel, Bull Ring
  • Red Lion, Public House, Market Place
  • Three Horseshoes (1808-51)Bull Ring. Renamed the Exhibition 1851, Unlicensed from 1917 as a private house. Reverted to name Three Horseshoes 1961. Now Rothbury House
  • Three Horseshoes,  Public House, New Street
  • Unicorn Inn, Market Place 
  • Windmill, Public House, Hempton Road

Deddington Map Group - Where are they now?

 Aynho on the hill
Clifton in the clay
Dirty, drunken Deddington
And Hempton high way

Is there any truth in this old rhyme? Here are just some of the drinking and eating places that have come and gone.

Where an actual or probable location is known, we have marked this map (PDF), the pubs being numbered 1 to 30.

  1. 1 BEAR
  2. 2 BELL
  3. 3 BISHOP'S INN (now the Mount)
  6. 6 CROWN, CLIFTON (now Sedgehill)
  7. 7 CROWN, DEDDINGTON (now Geggs Hook)
  8. 8 EL MEXICANA (now May Fu Two)
  9. 9 EXHIBITION INN (now Three Horseshoes, private house)
  10. 10 FLYING HORSE (became the Volunteer)
  11. 11 GORSE GREEN BEER HOUSES (possibly the Mount)
  12. 12 HOLE IN THE WALL (now the Mount)
  13. 13 HOTEL RUSSELL (now Russell House)
  14. 14 KEMPSTER'S ALE HOUSE (became Tucker's, then Country Store, now Dexter's)
  15. 15 KING'S ARMS (now Deddington Arms)
  16. 16 LEADENPORCH BEER HOUSE (now Leadenporch House)
  17. 17 MARKET HOUSE TEA ROOMS (became Tiffany's)
  18. 18 NEW INN (possibly on SW corner of High Street)
  20. 20 PLOUGH INN, DEDDINGTON (now Plough House)
  21. 21 PLOUGH INN, HEMPTON (was at the crossroads)
  22. 22 PRIORY ICE CREAM PARLOUR (became El Mexicana)
  23. 23 QUEEN'S ARMS (became King's Arms)
  24. 24 RED LION - 17th century (possibly on North side of Horsefair)
  25. 25 RED LION - 19th century
  26. 26 SHIP (was in Horsefair)
  27. 27 SWAN, CLIFTON (now St James' Farm)
  28. 28 THREE HORSESHOES (became Exhibition Inn)
  29. 29 TIFFANY'S (became Dexter's, now Police Office)
  30. 30 VOLUNTEER (became Hotel Russell)

© 1998 Deddington Map Group