Taunton Courier 08 Mar 1911 Taunton County Brewster Sessions White Lion Blagdon Lamb Inn Blagdon Pitlands Inn Otterford Rising Sun Knapp Royal Oak Knapp

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Taunton Courier. Bristol and Exeter Journal, and Western Advertiser. Wednesday 08 Mar 1911

Page 2 Column 3 and 4




SATURDAY. - Before Colonel W. O. MEADE-KING (in the chair), Colonel CHISHOLM-BATTEN, Mr. J. E. W. WAKEFIELD, Mr. A. E. EASTWOOD, Mr. Wyndham SLADE, Mr. V. STENHOUSE, and Mr. E. C. TREPPLIN.


Hy. EMBERSON, of the Harp Inn, Shoreditch, was granted an hour's extension on the 9th inst. for a military smoking concert. - Wm. JENNINGS, of the Hatch Inn, was granted a similar extension on March 10th for a Conservative concert.

The magistrates were occupied for several hours in considering the renewal of five licenses adjourned for consideration from February 4th. These were the White Lion and the Lamb, Blagdon; the Pitlands Inn, Otterford; and the Rising Son and the Royal Oak, North Curry.


The first inn considered was the White Lion, Blagdon, landlord, Hy. JENNINGS; owners, Messrs. Hanbury & Cotching, Taunton, for whom Mr. C. P. CLARKE appeared.

Mr. F. H. PRICE, architect, of Taunton, described the situation and accommodation of the house. He said that the building was a two-storied one, with stabling accommodation. It also possessed a long skittle alley, and a large garden. The house was situated on the main road from Taunton and Honiton. The nearest public-house was the Lamb Inn, 230 yards away, the next being the Crown, at Staplehay, two miles away. The sanitary arrangements were good.

By Mr. CLARKE: The house was conveniently adapted for the business carried on there. There was an open space in front of the inn, which was convenient for people to use who were driving to pull up at.

Superintendent STOKER stated that the White Lion was an ante-'69 beerhouse. The population of Pitminster at the last census was 1,118, being an average of one licensed house to each 186 of the population. There were six licensed houses in the parish. Going from Taunton to Honiton, the first public-house one came to was the Crown, and two miles further on, 230 years from the White Lion, was the Lamb, a fully-licensed house. In his opinion the whole of those three houses, within a distance of about two miles, were not needed, having regard to the number of the people in the locality and the amount of traffic on the highway. As far as he knew the house had always been well conducted, and it was perfectly clean and in good order.

By Mr. CLARKE: He did not enquire of the people in the neighbourhood regarding their needs, but he spoke from police observation only.

Inspector WHITEHEAD corroborated Superintendent STOKER's evidence, and said that in his opinion there were too many public-houses in the hamlet of Bladgon.

By Mr. CLARKE: When did you first make up your mind that this house was unnecessary?

Superintendent STOKER: That is scarcely a fair question. I did not say that the White Lion was unnecessary, but I said that there were too many houses in the locality. I left the Bench to differentiate.

Thomas BRIGHT, assistant-overseer for the parish of Pitminster, said that the rateable value of the house was £15 6s.

Evidence was then called in support of the renewal of the license of the house.

Mr. F. W. ROBERTS, architect, of Taunton, produced plans on behalf of the owners, and, in answer to Mr. CLARKE, said that the house was exceptionally clean, and it was very well situated.

Stanley AUSTIN, a local resident, spoke as to the need of the house, and, in answer to Superintendent STOKER, said that he considered that two well-conducted houses in the neighbourhood were better than one.

Henry JENNINGS, landlord of the White Lion, said he had been tenant for the past three and a half years, while his predecessor held the license for 26 years. All the traffic from Taunton to Honiton was by road. He got several people staying at his house during the summer, there being four bedrooms. His yearly takings were £305.

By Superintendent STOKER: In his opinion it was necessary to have two public-houses in Blagdon. He had never expressed the opinion that one house was sufficient, as far as he knew.

Mr. W. H. CHANNIN put in a statement as to the trade done a the house.

Mr. W. A. PORTER, farmer, of Blagdon, and Mr. Edward CLEGG, retired inspector of the Metropolitan Police Force, both gave their opinion that the White Lion served a useful purpose in the neighbourhood, but the latter, in answer to Mr. WAKEFIELD, said that he thought the needs of the locality could be served by one house. Both, however, gave a living to the licensee.

Thomas VERRIER, postman, said that he always stabled at the White Lion, while Frank COLES, a dairyman, of Blagdon, occupying premises adjoining the inn, also spoke to the fact that it was necessary for the needs of the district.


The second house dealt with was the Lamb Inn, Blagdon, generally known as the Lamb and Flag, landlord Robert John MICO; owners, Messrs. Arnold & Sons, Taunton. Mr. W. T. BOOKER represented the tenant and owners.

Mr. F. H. PRICE, in his description of the premises, said that they contained a large public kitchen, a bar, and a large sitting-room, with a separate entrance from the road. There were five bedrooms and a long skittle alley. The house faced the main road, and the nearest licensed house was the White Lion, the next being the Holman Clavel Inn, two miles away.

By Mr. BOOKER: People could use the sitting-room for having tea without coming into contact with the rooms used for serving drink. There was a “pull up” outside the house.

Superintendent STOKER gave similar evidence as in the previous case, stating that The Lamb was a fully-licensed house.

Inspector WHITEHEAD corroborated, and in answer to Mr. WAKEFIELD, said that from his experience in the Division he considered that one house was quite sufficient to meet the needs of the locality.

By Mr. BOOKER: He would not go so far as to say that a fully-licensed house would be better, if one was shut up, than a beer-house.

Mr. T. BRIGHT stated that the rateable value of the inn was £24 gross and £21 net.

Mr. BOOKER submitted that there was no redundancy of license in Pitminster, and if there was the license of the Lamb was not the one that should be extinguished.

Moses FARDOE, a thirty years resident in Pitminster, was of opinion that the extinguishing of the license of the Lamb would cause inconvenience to the public.

By Mr. STOKER: He would not like to say that two houses were necessary in a small place like Blagdon.

John MARKE, whose people had lived at Pitminster ever since 1640, and that he now occupied the premises adjoining the inn, said that a paddock attached tot he house was very useful for dealers to put their stock in.

By Mr. BOOKER: All the rooms in both the Lamb and the White Lion were needed for lodgers in the summer time.

Robert John MICO, the landlord of the Inn, said he had been there over two years, and made a good living. The sitting-room was used considerably for teas, and people often stayed at his house during the summer. The stable and paddock was considerably used.

Mr. A. G. NOCK, representing Messrs. Arnold & Sons, presented figures as to the trade of the house for the past three years, which, he said, showed an increase for each year.

By Mr. BOOKER: The owners were quite willing to carry out any improvements or alterations which the justices thought necessary.

The magistrates retired for some little time, and on returning.

The Chairman said that they had decided to renew both the licenses.


The third license to be considered was that of the Pitlands Inn, Otterford; (landlord, John Henry GOODLAND; owner, Mr. James EDWARDS, Yarcombe; lessees. Messrs. Hanbury & Cotching, Taunton. Mr. C. P. CLARKE appeared for the tenant and lessees.

Mr. F. H. PRICE described the house and its accommodation, and said that it was situated on the road from Honiton to Buckland St. Mary. The nearest inn was the New Inn, Bishopswood, three-quarters of a mile away, while the Holman Clavel Inn was nearly three miles away.

Supt. STOKER stated that the population of Otterford was very sparse, being only 328(?). There were three fully-licensed houses in the parish, viz., the one in question, the New Inn, and the Holman Clavel. That gave 109 persons to each licensed house. He considered the number of licensed houses in the parish unnecessary. Two of the houses were on by-roads where there was very little traffic, and the Pitlands Inn was the smallest and most inconvenient of the three.

P.S. WHITEHEAD corroborated, and in answer to Mr. CLARKE, said during the nine years he was in the division little trade was done at the inn. There was no complaint regarding the conduct of the house. - By Mr. WAKEFIELD: He thought the New Inn could meet all the reasonable requirements of the neighbourhood.

Mr. T. C. COUSINS, assistant overseer for the parish, said that the rateable value of the house was £19 gross and £17 net.

In defence of the license,

John Henry GOODLAND, the licensee, said that he had been there since 1901. He paid £14 a year for the house and £11 a year for the land. He was very happy there, and got a living.

By Superintendent STOKER: He farmed 16 acres of land, and was a small cattle dealer. When he (the superintendent) called, he had in the house two barrels of beer, one only partly full.

Jas. EDWARDS, the owner, gave evidence that he let the house to Messrs. Hanbury & Cotching for £40 a year, together with 15 acres of land, while Mr. W. H. CHANNIN, manager to Messrs. Hanbury & Cotching, stated that the amount of beer supplied to the house during the past three years had been in money £73 6d. The tenant also bought cider.

The magistrates referred the license to the County Compensation Authority, granting a provisional authority.


was the next house considered, it being the third time the license had been objected to. The landlord and owner of the inn is John WOODMAN, for whom Mr. C. P. CLARKE appeared.

Mr. PRICE, in his description of the premises, said that the inn had a flight of stone steps leading to the main entrance, but the house generally had been improved since last year. The nearest licensed house was the Royal Oak, 370 yards away, and then there was the White Hart, a mile away.

Superintendent STOKER said that the inn was situated in the parish of North Curry and had been greatly improved since last year, especially the fl ght <sic> of steps, which now had a handrail. Before they were positively dangerous. The population of North Curry was 1,525, and there were three fully licensed houses, six beerhouses, including the Rising Sun, and one grocer's license, giving one license to every 152 persons, far too many for the parish. The inn was in Haymoor's End-lane, and considering there was another a few yards off, he thought one of the houses quite unnecessary. - By Mr. CLARKE: That was the third time the landlord had had to come there to defend his license.

P.S. READ corroborated, and Mr. F. I. COOMBES, assistant overseer, gave the rateable value of the house as £10 1s gross and £9 net.

John WOODMAN, the landlord, gave evidence that he had kept the inn for 37 years, and got a living out of it with other things combined. Road contractors stopped at his house for meals. It was a free house. His sale averaged about three barrels of beer and one of cider a week. His trade had increased since last year.

Before deciding about this license, the Bench went on to consider


The landlord and tenant of the inn is Thos. DERHAM. - Mr. E. B. KITE represented Mr. DERHAM.

Mr. PRICE stated that the inn had a thatched roof, and was situated at the end of Haymoors-lane, the only(?) other way of approach was by way of Haymoor Drove. There was only one public room, a bar parlour.

Superintendent STOKER stated that the house was an ante 1869 beer-house. He visited it on February 27th, and at the time Haymoor's Drove was impassable. The landlord told him that in December last, the house had been flooded. He further stated that during the time he and his wife slept there, but had to go backwards and forwards from the house in a boat. He (the superintendent) thought that the house was situated in an unhealthy and insanitary position.

P.S. READ corroborated, and, in reply to Mr. KITE, agreed that there had never been such a large amount of water on the moors as during the past winter. He knew one other inn in the district which had been flooded. - Mr. COOMBES said that the rateable value of the house was £7 gross(?) and £6 net.

Mr. KITE submitted that the magistrates could not refer the house again on the ground of redundancy, because they had done so last year, and it had been renewed. It had indeed been before the Compensation Authority twice before in 1907 when it was renewed on account of the lack of money to pay compensation, and last year when it was renewed on its merits. It was just the same as trying a criminal again on a charge for which he had been dismissed(?).

The Bench decided to renew the license of the Rising Sun, and refer that of the Royal Oak, granting a provisional authority.


A dispute between next door neighbours had its sequel in the case in which Hy. WARE, gardener, of Rumwell, was summoned by Lena CORNISH, married woman, also of Rumwell, for using bad language, and for threatening to kill her on February 18th.

The prosecutrix stated that on the date in question she was filling a tub with rain water from a shute, and was going to put a second bucket under it as well, when WARE came along, used bad language towards her, and threatened to kill her. - In answer to the defendant she denied putting a card with some words he objected to written on under his door. - Ed. John CORNISH, husband of the prosecutrix, and Harry CORNISH, a son, also gave evidence, and the latter admitted that he wrote what was on the card, but denied putting it under the defendant's door.

The defendant gave evidence on oath denying the bad language or the threats. The son Harry was impertinent towards him, and he told him to keep quiet or he would put his head in the bucket. He alleged that the CORNISH family bore him ill-feeling. - Wm. EVANS, of Rumwell, said that he had always known WARE as a good neighbour and a quiet man.

The Bench dismissed the case for threats, and in regard to the bad language bound both parties over to keep the peace, and ordered them to pay their own costs.


I've got enough to do to keep children, let alone a dog,” was the exclamation made by Thomas WARRY, a labourer of Creech St. Michael, who was summoned for keeping a dog without a license on February 13th. - P.C. BLACKMORE stated the facts(?), while the defendant contended that the animal belonged not to him but to his son. - Inspector WHITEHEAD pointed out that the person on whose premises the dog was found was liable to pay the license(?). - The defendant was fined 15s including costs.

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