Tipton is still known as a town with a significant industrial past, a place that was once filled with a wide variety of industries. At that time, the town also had a large number of public houses that catered for the many people who lived and worked here. Many of the pubs have been forgotten, particularly as a result of the large scale post industrial development that has changed the local landscape. In Tipton’s industrial heyday, the principal source of leisure in the town was, and still is, the public house, although most of them are now restaurants, catering for people’s enjoyment in eating out, as well as having a drink or two.

I have attempted to produce a complete list of pubs that have existed in the town over the last 200 years or so. For such a small town, Tipton had a vast number of pubs, most of which are long gone. Over the last few years it has become increasingly difficult to keep up with pub closures, and demolitions, as pubs disappear at an alarming rate. They are an ideal target for property developers, because most pubs have a reasonably sized car park, which occupies a sizeable piece of land. The ones marked below in yellow are still open, where as the ones marked in blue no longer survive, although the building may still exist. If anyone can add to the list or make any corrections please send me an email.

Acorn Great Bridge   Manchester Stores Great Bridge Street
Albion 243 Horseley Heath   Masons Arms Ocker Hill
Albion 1 Owen Street   Melting Pot 79 Dudley Port
Anchor 223 Dudley Port   Miners Arms Dudley Port
Anchor 1 Lower Green   Miners Arms 56 Owen Street
Aqueduct Inn 12 Dudley Port   Mitre Wednesbury Oak
Barge and Barrel Bloomfield Road   Moon and Stars Park Lane
Barley Mow 70 Dudley Port   Moulders Arms, 113 Bridge Road, Toll End
Barrel 10 Canal Street   Moulders Arms 135 Horseley Heath
Barrel 93 Dudley Port   Nags Head 1 Groveland Road
Barrel 13 Sedgley Road West   Nags Head 34 Market Place
Barrel off Union Street   Navigation 1 Park Lane West
Beehive 4 Elliotts Road   Navigation 32 Toll End Road
Bell 56 Bell Street   Nelson Gospel Oak
Bell 115 Dudley Port   New Furnaces Copy Street
Bird in Hand 182 Dudley Port   New Inn Coneygre Road
Bird in Hand 1 Tibbington Road   New Inn Owen Street
Black Cock 17 Owen Street   New Inn 117 Sedgley Road East
Blackcountryman 29 Lower Church Lane   New Stork Great Bridge Street
Black Horse 37 Bloomfield Road   Noahs Ark 12 Wood Street
Black Horse 87 Park Lane West   Old Bush 22 New Road, Great Bridge
Blacksmiths Arms Queen Street   Old Church Tavern Upper Church Lane
Bloomfield 54 Bloomfield Road   Old Court House 57 Lower Church Lane
Blue Ball Dudley Port   Old Crown 9 Sheepwash Lane
Blue Pig 22 Horseley Heath   Old Crown 206 Toll End Road
Boat 15 Boat Row   Old George Summerhill
Boat 38 Lower Dudley Street   Old House At Home 193 Bloomfield Road
Boat Lower Green   Old House At Home 85 Lower Church Lane
Boscobel 28 Boscobel Street   Old House At Home 73 High Street, Princes End
Boscobel Park Lane West   Old House At Home Ocker Hill
Brewer and Baker 21 Queen Street   Old House At Home 11 Waterloo Street East
Brewer and Baker 35 Upper Church Lane   Old Kings Head 50 Dudley Road
Bricklayers Arms 28 Ocker Hill Road   Old Port 117b Dudley Port
Bricklayers Arms Wednesbury Oak   Park Park Lane West
Bridge New Road, Great Bridge   Park Lane Tavern 36 Park Lane East
Bridge 74 Park Lane West   Patternmakers Arms 64 Bridge Road
Bridge Wednesbury Oak   Peacock 9 Cleton Street, Dudley Port
Britannia 90 Leabrook Road   Pear Tree 40 Waterloo Street
Britannia 11 Owen Street   Pie Factory 42 Hurst Lane
Britannia New Town, Great Bridge   Plough 30 Aston Street, Toll End
British Oak 16 Chapel Street   Plough 120 Dudley Port
Brown Lion 32 Brown Lion Street   Prince of Wales 1 Bloomfield Road
Brown Lion 55 Lower Church Lane   Prince of Wales 33 Owen Street
Brown Lion 23 Coneygre Road   Prince Regent 190 Horseley Heath
Brown Lion Upper Church Lane   Puddlers Arms 61 Bloomfield Road
Builders Arms 87 Park Lane West   Queens Arms 12 Toll End Road
Bulls Head 2 High Street   Queens Head 40 Bell Street
Bulls Head New Road, Great Bridge   Queens Head Cophall Street, Great Bridge
Burton Inn 42 Hall Street   Queens Head Horseley Heath
Bush 91 Leabrook Road   Queens Head 63 Horton Street
Bush 127 Park Lane West   Railway 8 Eagle Lane
Cape Sedgley Road West   Railway 92 New Road, Great Bridge
Castle 1 High Street   Railway 49 Railway Street
Castle Castle Street, Great Bridge   Railway Dudley Port
Castle Mill 39 Bell Street   Railway Tavern 20 Leabrook Road
Coach and Horses 194 High Street   Railway Tavern 93 Owen Street
Cock and Wheatsheaf 166 Bloomfield Road   Red Cow Great Bridge
Cop Hall Inn 3 Sheepwash Lane   Red Lion Cleton Street, Dudley Port
Cottage Spring 97 Alexandra Road   Red Lion 1 Fisher Street, Dudley Port
Cottage Spring 186 Dudley Port   Red Lion 33 Great Bridge
Cottage Spring 23 High Street   Red Lion 71 High Street
Cottage Spring 5 Horseley Road   Red Lion Horseley Heath
Cottage Spring Tividale Street   Red Lion Parkes Lane
Cottage Spring 109 Toll End Road   Red Lion 172 Park Lane West
Cottage Spring Union Street   Red Lion Dudley Port
Cottage Spring Horseley Heath   Red Man Princes End
Country Girl 168 Toll End Road   Rising Sun 11 High Street, Princes End
Cow and Calf 43 Owen Street   Rising Sun 116 Horseley Road
Cross Cross Street   Roebuck Cottage Ocker Hill
Cross 6 Park Lane West   Rollers Arms Owen Street
Cross Keys 228 Dudley Port   Rose and Crown 108, Brickhouse Lane
Crown 102 Lower Church Lane   Rose and Crown Queens Road
Crown and Anchor Lower Green   Round Oak Dudley Port
Crown and Cushion 1 Leabrook Road   Royal Hotel 81 Bloomfield Road
Dartmouth Arms Sheepwash Lane   Royal Exchange 129 Bridge Road, Toll End
Dewdrop Inn 33 Toll End Road  

Royal Exchange

15 Fisher Street
Doe Bank Cottage Ocker Hill   Royal Exchange 56 Gospel Oak Road
Dog and Gun 10 Bilston Street   Royal Exchange Sedgley Road
Drayton 45 Hall Lane   Royal George Great Bridge
Dudley Port 243 Dudley Port Road   Royal Oak 23 Aston Street, Toll End
Dudley Port New Inn 203 Dudley Port   Royal Oak 7 Dudley Port
Dukes Head Owen Street   Royal Oak 1 Gate Street, Burnt Tree
Dun Cow 69 Horseley Heath   Royal Oak 88 High Street, Princes End
Durham Ox 31 Railway Street   Royal Oak Water Lane
Eagle 7 Park Lane   Royal Oak Gospel Oak
Eagle New Road, Great Bridge   Sampson and Lion 46 Gospel Oak Road
English Oak 77 Upper Church Lane   Sawyers Toby Carvery, Burnt Tree
Factory 13 Hurst Lane   Saxhorn 36 Coppice Street
Fiddlers Arms 62 Park Lane West   Seven Stars 49 High Street, Princes End
Fitters Arms 21 Horseley Heath   Seven Stars 3 Park Lane East
Flag and Staff Union Street   Shakespeare 25 Bridge Road, Toll End
Fountain 202 Dudley Port   Shepherd’s Cottage 229 High Street, Princes End
Fountain 51 Owen Street   Shoulder of Mutton Great Bridge
Fountain Princes End   Shrubbery 60 Horseley Road
Four Ways 137 Aston Street   Sportsman St. Marks Road
Fox 4 Wednesbury Oak Road   Star 185 Bloomfield Road
Fox and Hounds Owen Street   Star Broad Street
Gate Princes End   Station Dudley Port
Gate Hangs Well Alexandra Road   Stork 72 Great Bridge Street
George and Crown 51 Queen Street   Swan Dudley Road
George and Dragon 111 Bridge Road, Toll End   Swan 1 Eagle Road, Great Bridge
George and Dragon 138 High Street   Swan 82 Lower Church Lane
George and Dragon 123, Horseley Heath   Swan New Sedgley Road
George and Dragon Lower Church Lane   Swan 18 Upper Church Lane
Gladstone Aston Street   Swan Toll End
Globe 34 Union Street   Talbot 13 Bradleys Lane
Golden Ball Dixons Green   Talbot Bridge Street
Golden Ball 149 Horseley Heath   Tame Bridge 45 Tame Road (Seven Stars)
Golden Crown Park Lane West   The Great Bear 49 High Street, Princes End
Golden Cup 76 Leabrook Road   The Lounge Bar 4 Market Place
Goldmine Bar and Diner 97 Ocker Hill Road  

The Tavern

Golden Cup 53 Toll End Road   Thatched Tavern 14 Eagle Street
Golden Lion 29 Albert Street   Three Furnaces 8 Furnace Parade
Golden Lion 63 Great Bridge   Three Horse Shoes Lock Street, Lower Green
Golden Pheasant High Street   Three Horse Shoes 97 Ocker Hill Road
Gospel Oak 1 Bilston Road   Three Horse Shoes Princes End
Grapes 38 Owen Street   Three Tuns 28 Hurst Lane, Princes End
Great Western Hotel 15 Bradley’s Lane   Tibbington Central Avenue
Great Western Stores 113 New Road   Tilted Barrel 33 High Street
Green Dragon Park Lane   Tipton Arms Birmingham New Road
Green Dragon Princes End   Tipton Tavern 37 New Road, Great Bridge
Griffin 90 New Road   Top Star 178 Horseley Heath
Grinders Arms 134 Horseley Heath   Triples Bar 13 Bradleys Lane
Grinders Arms Toll End   True Briton 2 Lower Green
Groveland Brook Inn 22 Sedgley Road East   Turf Tavern 13 Aston Street
Gypsy’s Tent The Coppice, Ocker Hill   Turks Head Howard Street, Dudley Port
Hare and Hounds 76 Owen Street   Two Furnaces Furnace Parade
Harrier, now the Tiger Tavern Powis Avenue   Two Furnaces 40 High Street
Hen and Chickens Canal Side, Owen Street   Two Furnaces 1 Howard Street
Hollybush Deepfields   Unicorn 2 Tibbington Terrace
Hoo Arms 29 Bilston Road   Union 46 High Street, Princes End
Hop and Barleycorn 57 Dudley Port   Union 76 Union Street
Hop and Barleycorn 26 Hurst Lane   Union 1 Wednesfield Road
Hop and Barleycorn 38 Toll End Road   Veal Inn Bloomfield Road
Hop and Barleycorn 38 Union Street   Victoria 40 Dudley Road
Hope 76 Lower Church Lane   Vine 119 Dudley Port
Hope and Anchor 3 Sedgley Road East   Vine 177 Horseley Heath
Horse and Jockey 40 Moat Road   Vine Park Lane
Horse and Jockey Princes End   Violin 195 Bloomfield Road
Horseley Tavern 238 Horseley Heath   Waggon and Horses 57 Dudley Road
Jacobs Well Hall Street   Waggon and Horses 47 Great Bridge Street
Jolly Brewer 46 Burnt Tree   Waggon and Horses 131 Toll End Road
Jolly Collier 51 High Street   Waterloo 18 Waterloo Street
Jolly Collier Horseley Road   Weary Traveller Owen Street
Jolly Collier 29 Leabrook Road   Wellington 99 Park Lane East
Jolly Collier Newhall Street   White Hart 49 Owen Street
Jolly Collier Union Street   White Horse 29 Bridge Road, Toll End
Jolly Collier Dudley Port   White Horse 79 Dudley Port
Jovial Farmer 59 Union Street   White Horse Horseley Heath
Junction High Street   White Horse Lower Church Lane
Junction 2 Sedgley Road West   White Horse 148 Park Lane West
Kings Arms 36 Bloomfield Road   White Lion 17 Boat Row
Kings Arms 12 Toll End Road   White Lion 273 Dudley Port
Kings Head Union Street   White Lion 24 Upper Church Lane
King William 29 Factory Road   White Rose 154 Horseley Heath
Lagoon 151 High Street   White Rose Whitehall Road
Lame Dog 262 Dudley Port   White Swan Bradleys Lane
Legends Owen Street   White Swan 5 Burnt Tree, Dudley Port
Leopard 118 Horseley Heath   White Swan 7 High Street
Leviathan 60 Upper Church Lane   White Swan Sheepwash Lane
Limerick 4 Market Place   Woodman Albert Street, Princes End
Lion 66 Great Bridge   Woodman Lockside, New Cross Street
Little Burton 18 Alexandra Road   Wrens Nest 140 Dudley Port
Magpie Owen Street   Zions Bar 9 Sheepwash Lane
Pub Open     Pub Closed  
The Three Horse Shoes at 97 Ocker Hill Road is now The Goldmine Bar and Diner.
The Seven Stars at 49 High Street, Princes End became The Great Bear in 1969.
The Limerick at 4 Market Place, Great Bridge is now The Lounge Bar.
The Old Crown at 9 Sheepwash Lane, Great Bridge is now Zions Bar.
The Talbot at 13 Bradleys Lane is now Triples Bar.

Phil Clayton came across an item in the BCN Engineer’s Reports to Committee, 30th May, 1902 that relates to the Fox Inn, 4 Wednesbury Oak Road:

In consequence of the Mining operations of Messrs P. Williams and Sons, at Wednesbury Oak, it has become necessary to widen and strengthen the Canal embankment…… it has been necessary to take down the “Fox Inn” and Cottages adjoining and I have agreed to pay for the materials in these buildings the sum of £150.’

G. R. Jebb, Engineer.

The Albion Inn in Owen Street. From an old postcard.

The Evolution of the Traditional English Pub

The traditional English pub evolved into several separate rooms, each with its own purpose. The bar, with a counter, was copied from gin houses, where the idea was to serve customers quickly, and keep an eye on them.

The saloon bar, or lounge, appeared in the latter part of the 18th century, as a comfortable, carpeted, and well furnished room with an admission fee, or higher priced drinks. It catered for more affluent people. Often entertainment would be provided, and drinks were served at the table.

The tap room, or public bar, was developed for the working classes. It had simple wooden bench seats, cheap drink, and bare floorboards, or tiles, that were often covered in sawdust to absorb spillages, and spit.

Another room, the snug, sometimes called the smoke room, was a small, private room where people could drink without being observed. The windows were made of frosted glass, and the room had a separate entrance to the bar, so that people could enter and leave without being seen. There was usually access to a separate section of the bar, where a higher price would be paid for drinks. The snug was often used by ladies, at a time when the pub was perceived to be for men only, and also by courting couples, who liked their privacy.

An advert from 1966.

An advert from the 1997 Tipton Carnival Programme.

There was often an off licence, where beer, wine, or spirits could be purchased for home consumption. It was a small room with a counter, or often just an open window facing the back of the bar, through which people were served.

Customers, including children, sent on an errand by their parents, could take bottles to be filled with beer. A paper seal would often be stuck over the stopper to ensure that the children didn't sample the contents.

An advert from the 1994 Tipton Carnival Programme.

The well known Fountain Inn in Owen Street.

The Fountain Inn at night.

Beer Houses

Many of the bubs began as beer houses with a beer house license. Beer was considered to be a harmless, nutritious alternative to gin, the consumption of which should be actively encouraged. This idea led to the Passing of the 1830 Beer House Act that introduced new and radical changes in the law. It allowed any householder and tax payer to obtain a license to sell beer on their premises, in exchange for a 2 guinea licence fee. Licensees were not allowed to sell spirits or fortified wines. Anyone doing so would be closed down, and heavily fined.

The legislation led to a rapid rise in the number of public houses, and the introduction of a new class of licensed premises, the beer house. Beer houses were family homes, in which beer was usually sold in the front room, and dispensed from a jug, or directly from the barrel. Often the room was simply furnished with bare floorboards, wooden benches, and trestle tables. By the 1850s beer houses greatly outnumbered pubs. Some of the early beer houses carried names, just like pubs. Many of the more successful beer houses eventually became pubs.

Beer houses flourished until the introduction of the Wine and Beer House Act of 1869, which prevented the opening of new beer houses, and tightened local magistrates' control of the industry. By the early years of the 20th century they had all gone.

Long Surviving and Well-Known Pubs

Tipton’s oldest surviving pub is the Red Lion in Park Lane West, which dates from around 1818. It was Grade II listed on 29th September, 1987. The first landlord, William Nicklin, was also a maltster. Another old pub is the Noah’s Ark in Wood Street, which dates from around 1840. Other old pubs include The Limerick in Market Place, Great Bridge, which dates from around 1830. In 2007 it became The Lounge Bar. The red Lion in Dudley Port opened in about 1830 and The Star in Horseley Heath opened around 1840. It has had two other names. In July 1991 it became Port ‘N’ Ale, then in 2013 it became Top Star.

Mad O'Rourke's Pie Factory in Hurst Lane is well known throughout the West Midlands. It was built in 1923 as the Doughty Arms, on the site of a previous pub called the Plough Inn. It was named after a prominent local figure, William Wooley Doughty, JP., a local councillor who owned the Horseley Heath Hinge Works. It became the Pie Factory in 1987 and was refurbished in 2011.

The Tilted Barrrel in High Street is well known because of the effects of mining subsidence which have distorted the building. The left-hand end appears to have sunk a little, so that the building tilts to one side. It opened in the 1860s as a beer house called The Barrel Inn and had a third story until the 1940s which was removed after being struck by lightning.

The Fountain in Owen Street is well known as the headquarters of William Perry, Tipton’s well known prize fighter, the ‘Tipton Slasher’. It opened in the 1820s and was Grade II listed on 10th February, 1982.

The Tipton Conservative & Unionist Club in Union Street closed in 2016 and was due to be converted into apartments. It was originally a flour mill, which became the Conservative Club in 1909. It had several bars, games rooms, a function room and around 3,000 members in its heyday.

The Crown and Cushion, Leabrook Road. From an old postcard.

Tipton Conservative & Unionist Club in Union Street.

The plaque on the front wall.

The future of the building is now uncertain. In June 2020, police were called to Union Street after reports of a disorder and men brandishing weapons outside the club building.

Arrests were made and inside the police discovered a huge cannabis farm with over 1,000 plants growing there.

The building was made secure, but in November 2020 an arson attack took place, which caused some damage. As a result the doors and the windows on the ground floor have been boarded-up.

The former Conservative Club in April 2022.

Bomb damage at The Star pub in 1940.

The Bush in Park Lane was badly damaged during a Zeppelin raid, just after midnight on 1st February, 1916 when a bomb, dropped from L19 exploded in the road in front of the building. The licensee, Thomas Taylor and his family were cut by flying debris, but had a lucky escape. The pub was rebuilt after the war and remained in business until 1995. In 2008 it was converted into a shop.

The Public House Today

Sadly many pubs have disappeared within the last few years, and still continue to do so at an alarming rate. The pub was used mainly by working class communities, and factory workers. Most of the factories are now gone and working class communities have largely disappeared. Many people now drink at home, taking advantage of the cheap beer, wines and spirits that can be found in the local supermarket. The smoking ban and tougher drink-drive regulations have also had an impact, as has the downturn in the economy.

John Seedhouse & Sons Limited were based at Seven Stars Brewery, High Street, Princes End.

The business was founded by John Seedhouse in 1858 at the Seven Stars Hotel. A large brewery was later built and a chain of tied houses was acquired. The company also supplied beer to many of the working men's clubs in the area.

The firm became a private limited  company in 1912 and was reconstituted in 1932.

Brewing ended in 1955 and the 15 tied houses were sold to Wolverhampton and Dudley Breweries. The firm continued to operate for some years as wine and spirit merchants.

The Waggon and Horses, Dudley Road.

The Waggon and Horses, Toll End Road.

The Harrier, Powis Avenue.

Hitchmough's Black Country Pubs: http://longpull.co.uk/downloads.html has been a great help in preparing this section.

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