the history of yeovil's pubs
54 Huish / 112 Huish
Although the records of licensees go back to the 1841 census, I'm not convinced that it was in this building, which I think looks much later in style.
There were very few buildings in Huish at the time and even a map of 1901 shows Huish ending just past Grove Avenue with nothing but a footpath continuing on across the fields to Larkhill Lane, as it was then.
published in the
24 October 1863
edition of the
"We hear that the sides of a well at the Beehive Inn have partially given way, and that the recent earthquake is supposed to have been the cause of the displacement."
I am tempted to think that the original premises was probably a cottage turned into a beerhouse following the Beerhouse Act 1830 and that the present building dates from around the 1870's, when there appears to be a slight hiatus in its continued use as a pub.
Certainly behind the pub premises was a short row of four cottages called Beehive Gardens, shown on the 1886 Ordnance Survey map (see above left) running at right angles to Huish. They are referred to in Whitby's Yeovil Almanack Advertiser of 1882 and Collins' directory of 1907 noted that there were four residents. The cottages still appear on the 1958 Ordnance Survey map.
The Beehive Inn was sold by auction in June 1878 and in 1881, I believe, is when the old building was replaced by the current one and a new public house license obtained.
An amusing snippet that caught my eye was reported in the 22 April 1881 edition of the Western Gazette "A Hawk broke a bedroom window at the Beehive inn, Huish, on Thursday morning. It flew into the room, where it stayed for a short time and then made its exit through the hole in the broken pane."
In its edition of 8 September 1882, the Western Gazette reported " Alfred Beare, landlord of the Beehive Inn, Huish, was charged with allowing his house to be open during prohibited hours. PC Dixon said that on Sunday morning, 20 August, he went into the inn by the back way and saw Mrs Beare there, and a man drinking. When spoken to about it, the defendant's wife said they would not do it again. The defendant said that he was in bed at the time or it would not have happened. He hoped the Bench would deal leniently with him. Fined 10s and 6s costs. Charles Peaty, carpenter, Market Street, was summoned for being in the Beehive Inn during prohibited hours, and was fined 10s and costs."
In 1883 the Beehive Inn was to be let by Earle Vincent of the Royal Osborne Brewery in London Road (today's Sherborne Road) but ownership clearly changed in the next few years since an advertisement for the Beehive Inn "to be let" was placed by Brutton's Brewery in the Western Gazette in May 1885.
In its edition of 24 February 1938, the Western Gazette reported "Yeovil's oldest licensee, Mrs R Lucas of the Beehive Inn, Huish, has died at the age of 78."
The Beehive must have something of a record for long-lasting landlords - having been in the occupation of the Beare family for some forty years, by 1891 the licensee was Rebecca Lucas, who was to run the Beehive for the next 47 years, until her death in 1938 at the age of about 90. Rebecca was joined and subsequently followed by her sister, Rosa Bartlett, who was licensee in her own right for the next nineteen years, until the mid-1950's - a family total of a staggering 60+ years.
Nevertheless, it appears that James Beare was the first licensee by 1841 and his widow, Joanna, is seen to have taken over the license by 1851. Joanna was born about 1791 in South Cadbury and in the 1851 census was listed as a widowed inn keeper living in Huish with two daughters, Emma and Amelia (both glove sewers), son Hubert (a carpenter) and grandson Sidney. By 1861 Joanna was living on her own and listed in the census as a beer house keeper. Joanna died in 1862.
In 1863 the Western Gazette, in its edition of Saturday 24 October, reported the following "We hear that the sides of a well at the Bee-Hive Inn have partially given way, and that the recent earthquake is supposed to have been the cause of the displacement." Thanks to Margaret Wilkinson for passing on the following information "In 1863 on October 6 a loud report was first heard, which could easily have been imagined to be a terrific explosion at a distance, and many people believed that Taunton Prison had been blown up by Fenians until their own eyes convinced them otherwise, This was followed by a shaking of houses, bedroom furniture, windows etc. and many people, imagining that their houses were being ransacked by burglars, hastily slipped on garments and searched for the intruders. The shocks were also felt at Curry Rivel and in the Parrett Valley between Stoke-sub-Hamdon and Langport. In Bridgwater the ships lying in the river fairly rocked to and fro, and some portion of a large body of ice in the river near the bridge was broken up. This was a large earthquake with an epicentre in Herefordshire, felt over most of England and Wales."
By the 1870's their son Hubert, a coal merchant, his wife, Elizabeth, née Chaffey, and their family were in residence. It appears that from this point on Hubert's main occupation was as a coal merchant with running pubs as a sideline. Elizabeth died in 1874 and in the spring of 1875 Hubert was married to Ann. By 1881 Hubert, Ann and their family were living in Kingston where Hubert's coal merchant business was carried out but, as evidenced by various trade directories, he remained licensee of the Beehive. Hubert's brother Alfred and his family were in residence at the Beehive and it is at this time. The Beehive Inn was sold by auction in June 1878 and in 1881, I believe, is when the old building was replaced by the current one and a new public house license obtained. Albert was the Band Master of the 16th Yeovil Rifle Volunteers who were based at the Armoury in The Park. By 1895 Hubert is listed in Kelly's trade directory as running the Anchor Inn in Vicarage Street. Three years later he was licensee of the Albion Inn in Vicarage Street. Hubert's son, James, was licensee of the Quicksilver Mail in the 1910's.
Of the next licensee in 1882, Charles Poole, nothing is known as there were three Charles Pooles living in Yeovil at the time and it is not possible to differentiate between them as to which was landlord of the Beehive. What is known is that the house was owned by Brutton's Brewery as an advertisement for the Beehive Inn "to be let" was placed by the brewery in the Western Gazette in May 1885.
A bit more is known about the next licensee, Rebecca Grace Lucas. She was born around 1848 in Peckham Rye, London, the daughter of a carpenter and painter, James Lucas and his wife, Louisa, who had at least seven children. Both James and Louisa were originally from Yeovil but during the late 1840's lived in Peckham and in the early 1860's lived in Clapham, London. By the time of the 1871 census the family were living in Battersea, London and Rebecca, aged 23 and single, was described as a general domestic servant. By 1881 the family had returned to Yeovil and were living in the Swan Inn in Park Street. In 1884 the Western Gazette reported that James Lucas "landlord of the Beehive Inn" was summoned by the Overseers for non-payment of rates, the amount due being £1 1s 3d - he was given 14 days to pay. Rebecca is first recorded as the licensee of the Beehive in Kelly's 1889 Directory and Louisa, noted as the widow of James Lucas, died in the Beehive on 2 January 1889. In the 1891 census both Rebecca and her much younger sister, Minnie, were listed as publicans. By 1901 Minnie had married Charles Dodge who was now employed as Rebecca's assistant. By 1911 Minnie and Charles had departed but Rebecca was joined by another of her sisters, Rosa Bartlett, and her two children, Rose and Ernest. Rebecca was described as a beer house keeper and Rosa as assisting in the business. Rebecca died in 1938 and although she was listed several times as Mrs Lucas in various trade directories, she never married. Rosa carried on a licensee of the Beehive until 1954.
The notice of Rebecca's death in the Western Daily Press edition of 24 February 1938, citing her as Yeovil's oldest licensee.
Sketch Plan of the Beehive Inn
This is a sketch based on plans held at the Heritage Centre, Taunton. The original plans are undated but most likely date to the 1930s. The coals / WC / scullery and the ladies' and gents' toilets were both single-storey lean-to buildings. On the first floor were five bedrooms, a box-room and a bathroom.
Photographed in 1960 by Charrington & Co Ltd's surveyors as part of a 'stocktaking' exercise of photographing Brutton's pubs prior to the brewery takeover.
Regulars and their families prepare for a day out - I'm guessing late 1950s or early 1960s.
The Beehive, photographed in the 1970s.
Courtesy of Chris Rendell
The Beehive photographed in 1989.
The Beehive photographed in 2009.
1841 – James
Beare – Beer
census) pub not
1851 – Johanna Beare (widow of James – Inn Keeper (1851 census)
1852 – Johanna Beare – Retailer of Beer (Slater's 1852-3 Directory)
1852 – Johanna Beare – Beer Retailer (Denton's 1852 Directory)
1859 – Johanna Beare (Harrison, Hodder & Co's 1859 Directory)
1860 – Joanna Beare "keeper of a beer-house in Huish called the Beehive Inn"
(spirits licence refused at Petty Sessions)
1861 – Joanna Beare (Widow aged 71) – Beer House Keeper (1861 census) pub not named
1861 – Joanna Beare – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1861 Directory)
1865 – Licensee not named, application for spirit license - refused (Borough Petty Sessions)
1866 – Hubert Beare – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1866 Directory)
1871 – Only the family of Hubert Beare, Coal Merchant, were in residence (1871 census).
1872 – Hubert Beare – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1872 Directory)
1875 – Hubert Beare – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1875 Directory)
1875 – Hubert Beare – Beer Retailer (1875 Post Office Directory) By 1895 Hubert is listed in
Kelly's trade directory as running the Anchor Inn in Vicarage Street. Three years later
he was licensee of the Albion Inn in Vicarage Street.
1878 – Hubert Beare – Beehive Inn sold by auction (Western Gazette, 28 June 1878)
1881 – Only the family of Alfred Beare, Band Master, were in residence (1881 census) Albert
was the Band Master of the 16th Yeovil Rifle Volunteers who were based at the Armoury.
1882 – Alfred Beare - fined for serving beer on a Sunday Morning (see text above)
1882 – Charles Poole (Whitby's 1882 Yeovil Almanack Advertiser) listed as Beehive Inn
1883 – Beehive Inn "to be let" by Earle Vincent, Brewer (Western Gazette, 9 March)
1884 – John Jeans - transfer of license (Borough Petty Sessions, January)
1884 – James Lucas- license transferred (Borough Petty Sessions, January)
1884 – James Lucas "landlord of the Beehive Inn" (Western Gazette, March)
1885 – Beehive Inn "to be let" by Joseph Brutton (Western Gazette, 15 May)
1888 – Henry George Giles - transfer of license (Petty Sessions, May)
1888 – Elizabeth Stagg - license transferred (Petty Sessions, May)
1889 – Rebecca Lucas – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1889 Directory) listed as 54 Huish
1891 – Rebecca Lucas – Publican (1891 census)
1895 – Rebecca Lucas – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1895 Directory) pub not named
1897 – Rebecca Lucas – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1897 Directory) pub not named
1898 – Rebecca Grace Lucas (Whitby's 1898 Yeovil Almanack Advertiser) listed as Beehive Inn
1901 – Rebecca Lucas – Inn Keeper (1901 census) pub not named.
1902 – Rebecca Lucas – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1902 Directory) listed as 54 Huish
1906 – Rebecca Lucas – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1906 Directory) listed as 112 Huish
1907 – Mrs RG Lewis (Yeovil Directory 1907) listed as Beehive, 112 Huish
1911 – Mrs Lucas (1911 census Summary) listed as Beehive Inn.
1914 – Miss Rebecca Lewis (sic) – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1914 Directory) pub not named
1919 – Rebecca Lewis – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1919 Directory) listed as Beehive Inn
1923 – Miss Rebecca Lucas – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1923 Directory) pub not named
1935 – Miss R Lucas – Beer Retailer (Kelly's 1935 Directory) listed as 112 Huish
1936 – Rebecca G Lucas (1936 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive
1938 – Rebecca Lucas (1938 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive - Rebecca died in 1938
1938 – Ernest Gilbert Bartlett "of the Beehive Inn" (Western Gazette, June)
1939 – Rosa Ada Bartlett (Kelly’s 1939 Directory) listed as Beehive Inn at 112 Huish
1947 – RA Bartlett (1947 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive
1949 – RA Bartlett (Kelly’s 1949 Directory) listed as Beehive
1951 – RA Bartlett (1951 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive
1954 – RA Bartlett (1954 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive
1957 – CD Prout (1957 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive
1960 – Percival Spencer Jacobs (Beehive Information Sheet)
1960 – Charles Francis Hardisty (Beehive Information Sheet)
1964 – Charles Francis Hardisty (Foord's 1964 Directory)
1964 – Joseph Davis (Beehive Information Sheet)
1965 – Licensee not named (1965 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive
1968 – Daniel Henderson (Kelly’s 1968 Directory) listed as Beehive Inn
1969 – Allen Kennedy (Beehive Information Sheet)
1969 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1969 Directory) listed as Beehive
1970 – Allan Kennedy (Kelly’s 1970 Directory) listed as Beehive
1971 – Leonard McKee (Beehive Information Sheet)
1971 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1971 Directory) listed as Beehive Inn
1972 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1972 Directory) listed as Beehive Inn
1973 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1973 Directory) listed as Beehive Inn
1974 – Licensee not named (1974 Yeovil Directory) listed as Beehive Inn
1987 – D Parfitt (Denton’s 1987 Directory) listed as Beehive Inn
1987 – JM Humphries (Beehive Information Sheet)
1995 – Mike Shearing (Beehive Information Sheet)
1997 – Mark & Ally Groves (Beehive Information Sheet)
1999 – Mark Deacon (Beehive Information Sheet)