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The premises that was the King's Arms
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A copy of the advertisement of the Auction from the Reading Mercury newspaper, courtesy of the British Newspaper Archive
The premises location mentioned in the sale of June 1849
The premises very likely to have been the King's Arms is the central building

The King's Arms public house Shrivenham

This Indenture document shown here is a modern, typescript copy of the original. It lists in detail the ownership of the property and the people involved in it's sale. However, as is the usual case, it makes no reference to the location of the property. It is generally accepted that the building that was originally the King's Arms Public House, was in the vicinity of what   became Pound's Stores, Benfords and up to 2019, an Indian Restaurant, located directly opposite Elm Tree Surgery on the corner of High Street and Church Walk. By studying the information from various sources we can now confirm this location and pinpoint it more precisely.

The Indenture refers to an Auction that took place at the Barrington Arms (directly on the opposite side of the High Street) on the 1st June 1849. Below is a copy of the advertisement of that Auction that appeared in the Reading Mercury newspaper on Saturday 26th May, 1849. There were two Lots being sold. Lot 1 refers to this property

Lot 1. A Substantial Freehold Messuage, or Tenement and Premises situate in the pleasant village of Shrivenham, now in the occupation of Mr Charles Flanagan, consisting of a long established Bake-house with a twelve-bushel oven, parlour, sitting room, three bedrooms, two attics, kitchen, pantry and cellar, a spacious yard with back entrance, and convenient stable, cart shed, hog sty, coal and fuel house with loft over, a pump of excellent water, etc. Also a productive garden walled-in and planted with choice fresh trees. Rent 32 shillings per annum; parochial rates moderate. Immediate possession may be had of this lot.

The Indenture referred to above, states that the agreement is between John Badcock and Daniel Day (a local Shrivenham Grocer). The above Lot 1 was purchased by Daniel Day for £500.2s 6p at the auction in June 1849. Further details from the Indenture describe that, 'All that Messuage and Tenement or Dwellinghouse situate and being in Shrivenham, formerly used as an Alehouse and called or known by the name or sign of the Crown and afterwards called or known by the name or sign of the King's Arms ... in the successive occupations of John Gearing, Charles Lucas, William Lucas the Elder, ... Carter, Widow, Jospeh Badcock and John Wrighton, late of Charlotte Wrighton and her undertenants since Robert Dandridge and now or late in the tenure or occupation of Charles Flanagan.'


Location Provenance

From the Tithe Map of 1844. The premises is numbered 141 and the owner is listed as John Badcock. Please see N239 in this Catalogue.

From the Barrington Estate Map of 1866. The premises is numbered 43 and the owner is listed as Daniel Day. Please see N215 in this Catalogue.


Further historical information

The financial accounts of the Chapel Wardens and Overseers of the Poor for Shrivenham, give us the information that the name, 'King's Arms' seems to have come in to existence in 1739. However, the Indenture referred to above informs that it was previously known as the 'Crown'. At a tax collection that was approved at a Vestry Meeting held on 5th August of 1739, sixpence was collected from John Gerring for the King's Arms. John Gerring or the King's Arms does not appear in the earlier collections of 1738. So it seems to have first come into existence in 1739. The Salisbury & Winchester Journal of Sat 11th March 1843, reported the case of Reed v. Street. It describes that Henry Street sold the fixtures and fittings of the King's Arms in Shrivenham, that would suggest the end of the premises as a public house after just over a century. 

The photos of the buildings included in this listing, show the location of the property mentioned in the auction of June 1849. From a study of the buildings, it seems very likely that the central property dates from the 18th century. Although, we cannot be certain yet, it seems highly likely that this is the original King's Arms public house. 


Kings Arms

Info collated & photos by Neil B. Maw


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