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duke of wellington

28 Sherborne Road / 52 Sherborne Road

 

The Duke of Wellington was operating as a beerhouse by 1869 at which time it was adjoining a private house called Medina Cottage which later (after 1881) became part of the public house. Judging by its proximity to the Royal Osborne Brewery, it almost certainly was a tied house of that brewery.

I can remember the Duke of Wellington (marked 'C' on the map below) as a two-storey double fronted pub on the Sherborne Road and I can remember venturing inside on more than one occasion, but that's about it.



 

 

The first recorded licensee, Mary Bell, was born around 1840 at Silton, Dorset. She was married to Daniel Bell, a machine maker, and they had two children. The young family had moved to Ringwood, Dorset, around 1867 but Daniel died in 1869 aged just 31. Mary moved to Yeovil where by 1871 she was licensee of the Duke of Wellington.

Who'd have thought it? - two men called John Norman, both born in Shepton Mallet, both living in Yeovil in 1881 and both publicans; one at the Duke of Wellington and the other at the Railway Inn in Middle Street. Little wonder that, without the benefit of easy internet access to the census returns, eminent Yeovil historians Leslie Brooke and Leonard Hayward confused them. John Henry Norman of the Duke of Wellington was born around 1854 and in the 1881 census was found living with his Yeovil-born wife, Eliza, and their young daughter, Beatrice, at the Duke of Wellington. John was listed as an innkeeper and coal merchant. By the time of the 1891 census John, now apparently known as Joseph, was running the Blue Ball Inn in Middle Street with Eliza and Beatrice plus a new baby son, Daniel. John / Joseph died between 1895 and 1898 by which time his widow, Eliza, was licensee of the Blue Ball. By 1900, however, Eliza had moved to Wellington Street and had taken over the license of the first Royal Standard from Jane Locock, who had assumed the license briefly after the death of her husband, Thomas.

Who'd have thought it? - two men called William Ricketts, both living in Yeovil in 1891 and both publicans; one at the Duke of Wellington and the other at the Anchor Inn in Vicarage Street. Little wonder that, without the benefit of easy internet access to the census returns, eminent Yeovil historians Leslie Brooke and Leonard Hayward confused them. William Ricketts of the Duke of Wellington was born about 1857 in Yeovil (the other William Ricketts was born about 1868 in Mudford) and was married to Lucy Sophia, also of Yeovil. In 1891 they had seven children and were living in the Duke although William's occupation was given as leather dresser. By 1901 there was little change except for two more children and William's occupation now given as glove manufacturer. Lucy died in October 1907 and in the 1911 census William is living at 178 Sherborne Road with many of his children and his new wife, Kate, ten years his junior (the census states they had been married 'under one' year). William was listed as a glove manufacturer. By 1914 one of the William Ricketts was licensee of the Royal Oak in Wine Street but I couldn't tell which one.

William Ricketts was followed by Thomas William Merrick as licensee from at least 1911. He is found variously in the records as Thomas William, Thomas and William. He was born in July 1874 in Yeovil the son of John Merrick, a railway switchman originally from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, and his wife, Eliza, of Yeovil. In 1881 the Merrick family lived in Newtown (the Grass Royal area), Yeovil. The family had moved to Camborne Grove by 1891 at which time 16-year old Thomas was working as a glove cutter. In October 1898 Thomas married Emily and by 1901 they had a baby son, Lionel, and lived at 196 Sherborne Road. Some time after 1907 (when William Ricketts was still listed as licensee in the Yeovil Trade Directory) Thomas Merrick became the licensee of the Duke of Wellington which he ran until at least 1914. The license was taken on by Thomas' younger brother, Rupert, into the 1920's. Amy Slater was licensee from at least 1935 until the late 1940's.

The Duke of Wellington was demolished in November 1992.

 

map

 

 

gallery

 

This interesting aerial photograph, probably taken during the early 1960s, shows the junction of Reckleford and Sherborne Road at lower left, the house at the junction (now a pedestrian / flowerbed area), the Duke of Wellington at lower right and the industrial units between the Sherborne Road houses and Wyndham Hill at top right.

 

This photograph, taken about 1950, looks down Sherborne Road, past Sparrow's garage towards the Elephant and Castle, right of centre, at the junction of Lower Middle Street and Wyndham Street. The Duke of Wellington is at extreme left.

 


Courtesy of the late George Hendry and Audrey Hendry

 


Courtesy of the late George Hendry and Audrey Hendry

 


Courtesy of the late George Hendry and Audrey Hendry

 


Courtesy of the late George Hendry and Audrey Hendry

 


Courtesy of the late George Hendry and Audrey Hendry

 


Courtesy of the late George Hendry and Audrey Hendry

 


Courtesy of the late George Hendry and Audrey Hendry

 


Courtesy of Colin Haine

The western end of the run of buildings on the south side of Townsend, photographed in the early 1980s. To the right of Dave's Plaice fish & chip shop is the Duke of Wellington.

 


Courtesy of Chris Rendell

The Duke of Wellington, closed and boarded up in 1991.

 

The Duke of Wellington still boarded up and awaiting demolition in 1992.

 


Courtesy of Rob Baker

Scanned from a newspaper cutting, this photograph was taken in 1992 as demolition of the Duke of Wellington got under way.

 

 licensees

 

1871 – Mary Bell (widow aged 31) – Inn-Keeper (1871 census)
1881 – John Norman – Innkeeper & Coal Merchant (1881 census) listed as Duke of Wellington
1882 – John Henry Norman (Whitby's 1882 Yeovil Almanack Advertiser)
1890 – Eliza Jane Norman - License transfer (Borough Petty Sessions, September)
1890 – William Ricketts - License transferred (Borough Petty Sessions, September)
1891 – just the family of William Ricketts, a Leather Dresser, in residence (1891 census)
1895 – William Ricketts – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1895 Directory) pub not named.
1898 – W Ricketts (Whitby's 1898 Yeovil Almanack Advertiser)
1901 – the family of William Ricketts, Glove Manufacturer, in residence (1901 census)
1907 – William Ricketts (1907 Yeovil Directory)
1911 – Thomas Merrick (Whitby's 1911 Yeovil Almanack Advertiser)
1911 – Thomas William Merrick - Inn Keeper (1911 census)
1914 – William Merrick – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1914 Directory) pub not named
1919 – RE Merrick – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1919 Directory)
1923 – Rupert Merrick – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1923 Directory) pub not named
1935 – Mrs Amy McCullough-Slater – Beer Retailer (Kelly’s 1935 Directory)
1936 – A Slater (1936 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1938 – A Slater (1938 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1939 – Amy Slater (Kelly’s 1939 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington Inn
1947 – A Slater (1947 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1949 – FJ Bagwell (Kelly’s 1949 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1951 – FJ Bagwell (1951 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1954 – FJ Bagwell (1954 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1957 – FJ Bagwell (1957 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1965 – Licensee not named (1965 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1968 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1968 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1969 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1969 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1970 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1970 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1971 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1971 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1972 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1972 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1973 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1973 Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington
1974 – Licensee not named (1974 Yeovil Directory) listed as Duke of Wellington 
Demolished 1992