MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Old, disused, forgotten and converted pubs
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Altp500
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Joined: Mon 03 Jan, 2022 1:36 pm

MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by Altp500 »

Hello all,

I’m studying conservation of historic buildings at University of York, and my dissertation topic is on the importance of late Victorian / Edwardian pub interiors in Leeds. My three case studies are Whitelocks (renovated 1895), the Adelphi (built 1900-1901) and the Cardigan Arms ( built 1894-1895). I’ve found lots of old plans, some newspaper clippings, some slightly older descriptions, but no first hand accounts of what the pubs were like at the time they first opened/were renovated (between 1890-1914, just before WWI). I’m particularly interested in the role of women & others in pubs - I’ve found a decent amount of information on men but not much about anyone else!

I’d love to hear from anyone who has something to say, a story to tell, even if it’s gossip or ghost stories! It doesn’t have to be one of my three case studies, but if it is, then that would be excellent.

Please reply to this thread, or email me if you’d prefer: [email protected]

Thank you so much for taking time to read my post, and cheers!
Ashley

jma
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Joined: Fri 05 Aug, 2016 3:38 pm

Re: MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by jma »

Welcome to Secret Leeds. I don't like to see something going unanswered but I can't help with anecdotes. I'm by no means the oldest contributor here but I'm 77. I reached the age to drink in a pub in 1962 so my reminiscences don't cover the period after WWII, never mind before WWI. My first visit to Whitelock's would have been in 1965. Apart from newspaper archives and the like, I don't know where to suggest a start. As a long shot, how about census records to get the family details of licensees and then trying to trace descendants.

Altp500
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Joined: Mon 03 Jan, 2022 1:36 pm

Re: MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by Altp500 »

Thanks jma!

And thank you for the suggestions, some good ideas.

It’s definitely a long shot, as most of the stories I’m looking for are from people who are long gone. I’m hoping someone might have a story passed down about a grandma or great aunt etc.

Out of curiosity though, when you first started going to Whitelocks did it still have the dining room on the first floor? I’ve seen the old photos with the exposed roof trusses, but cannot find evidence through past planning applications when it was converted to storage/staff space. Is Whitelocks the same now as it was when you remember first going?

Thanks!

jma
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Re: MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by jma »

I only ever remember a ground floor at Whitelocks but that's not definitive. In the 1960s the clientele was totally different at lunchtime from the evening.

In those days a financial centre like Leeds had lots of branch managers - building societies, banks, insurance companies etc., - who had real authority over things like granting loans and mortgages and Whitelock's was the sort of place they got together for business lunch. In the evening, Whitelock's was packed out with students including the yard outside.

Change doesn't happen overnight but I'd say Whitelock's had a double whammy. The lunchtime trade was affected by the trend to get rid of executive branch managers. The so-called Yorkshire Ripper murders really reduced city centre drinking in the evenings in Leeds.

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tilly
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Re: MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by tilly »

Hi ALt500 Sorry i cant help you have you looked on Leodis photographic archives i am sure there will be photographs of the pubs you are interested in.A lot on people post remarks about the photograph so could be of interest to you good luck with your search .
No matter were i end my days im an Hunslet lad with Hunslet ways.

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blackprince
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Re: MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by blackprince »

I am sure Alt500 will have seen this already but some other SL members might be interested
https://whitelocksleeds.com/history/.

As to the lack of information on Women in pubs this is relevant
"Whitelock’s was a favourite rendezvous with stage stars and it received royal approval when Prince George, later Duke of Kent, entertained a party in a curtained-off section of the restaurant. At one time a doorman made sure that men wore dinner jackets and, as women were not allowed at the bar, waiters served drinks where female customers sat."

Amazing though it seems now It was legal to refuse to serve a woman at a bar as recently as 1982
It used to be said that the statue of the Black Prince had been placed in City Square , near the station, pointing South to tell all the southerners who've just got off the train to b****r off back down south!

Altp500
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Joined: Mon 03 Jan, 2022 1:36 pm

Re: MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by Altp500 »

Thank you all!

Leodis.net has been very helpful, actually there was a story someone posted on this image that made me think to ask if anyone else had one:
https://www.leodis.net/viewimage/113538

Yes, Whitelocks has an interesting history, and it seems its’ feeling of exclusiveness continued for quite some time. The licensing registers in the archives list quite a few women as owners or licence holders, including Clara Whitelock for Whitelocks.

Thank you all for your suggestions! And hopefully someone out there has some cool stories about women or others in pubs during the 1890s-1910s :)

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chemimike
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Location: Reading

Re: MA Dissertation on Late Victorian pubs - stories please!

Post by chemimike »

Not Leeds, but with regard to Black Prince's comment about women being served in bars. I can remember visiting the pub fronting a small brewery in the late 1970s in the Black country after a brewery visit organised by some friends in ICI and the pub refused to serve a female in the party a pint of beer , though they reluctantly allowed her two half pints in separate glasses.
Also of interest, though it probably would not apply to the particular pubs in this study, if you investigate the census records of pubs you will often be a bit puzzeled by the pub not appearing to be listed as such in the occupation of the main occupier. In smaller alehouses the official landlord was a man, but he often had another trade which he entered on the census, while virtually all the actual work was done by his wife who might be entered as having some occupation related to the pub but sometimes is just listed as his wife.

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