William Taylor – in 1747 when property acquired by John Summers, William was shown as being the occupant. The 1755 list of licensees in Gloucester Records Office also shows William Taylor.
John Shill – when William Cowley bought the property in 1773 the documents show that John Shill was the tenant. He was also listed as the tenant in the 1776 the Poll Book and the indentures in 1779 when William Cowley, the owner of The Cock, bought the property next door.
John was baptised on 20th September 1740, the son of Henry Shill (or Shield) of Tytherington and his wife, Ann. On 24th September 1765 John (described as a publican) married Betty Knott. They had eight children, almost all daughters: Hester born on 16th November 1765, Ann born on 9th November 1767, Mary born 27th June 1770, Betty born on 4th June 1772, Sarah born on 28th July 1774, Martha born on 24th September 1776, Anna born on 16th December 1778 and finally, a son, John who died as an infant and was buried on 20th September 1781. The baptism records for the first three children show that John was a publican, the others do not show any occupation. We suspect therefore that John was the publican at the Cock from at least 1772 and it seems likely that he was in some way connected to the Thomas Shill who had been the owner of the Cock in 1768. We know that John had a half brother called Thomas.
John Shill’s daughter Hester Shill married James Hodges who built the new house at the Crispin. Hester was later buried at the Quaker burial ground at the Friends Meeting House in Thornbury. This shows that at least some of the Shill family may have been Quakers. John died at the Tockington Inn and was buried in Olveston on 22nd December 1797.
James Roach – James was the licensee of The Cock from about 1788 when Ralph Grove bought the property. Various indentures mention his occupancy there and he is listed as still being the occupant in the 1800 land tax record.
We think James was baptised on 27th December 1751, the son of Timothy Roach and Mary (nee Wonman) whose address was at Sibland. James and his wife, Betty, had several children: Elizabeth born on 19th November 1776 when the family were living at Morton, Mary born on 6th February 1779, James born on 18th September 1781, Henrietta born on 18th March 1784, Dent born on 25th June 1786, William born on 29th March 1788 and Amelia born on 16th January 1791. We believe that James may have moved to Patchway after 1800. He appears to have died there aged 55 and buried in Thornbury on 31st October 1803.
Matthew Mills – the 1809 land tax record shows Matthew Mills is the occupant of the Cock. We suspect that this Matthew was the one who was born on 5th September 1762, the seventh child of James Mills, a mason, and his wife, Martha. Matthew married Anne Trayherne (or Trayhurn) on 28th June 1788. They had several children: James born on 13th February 1790, Elizabeth born on 16th March 1792, Matthew born on 9th July 1795 and Thomas born on 22nd November 1797. Click here to read more
George Williams – various deeds and other documents show that George was the innkeeper at the New Inn. The land tax records show that George was there from at least 1810 to 1831. Baptism records refer to him as an innkeeper from 1813 onwards.
George and his wife, Elizabeth, had several children: Elizabeth was baptised on 8th August 1813, Mary was baptised on 5th June 1816, Enoch baptised on 8th February 1818, Hester baptised on 5th December 1819, Martha baptised on 2nd September 1821, George baptised on 8th August 1824 and Frederic baptised on 20th August 1826. Frederick died aged only 35. His death caused caused some gossip – click here to read more
The 1832 land tax record shows William Knapp became the new tenant of the New Inn replacing George Williams who had just died.
William Knapp – the 1832 land tax record shows William Knapp as the tenant. We are not sure which William Knapp this was.
Abraham Cole – the 1839 indenture shows that Abraham Cole had been the tenant of the premise at some time after George Williams who died about 1831.
When Abraham’s first child was baptised in Thornbury on 6th August 1834 Abraham was described as a victualler so he may have been publican at the New Inn at that time. When his second child was baptised on 21st October 1835 Abraham was described as an innkeeper. Later baptism and census records show that Abraham became a maltster.
Abraham became owner of several pubs and other properties in Thornbury. Click here to read more
Henry Weeks – the 1840 Tithe Survey shows Henry Weeks was the occupant of the New Inn. Henry was baptised in Thornbury on 2nd February 1806, the son of John and Elizabeth Weeks whose address was in Oldbury.
We haven’t traced Henry’s marriage, but we believe that he married Emma Neale Cornock. They had two children: Charles Henry Cornock and Ellen Catherine Maria Cornock, both baptised on 22nd January 1834 when Henry was a farmer living at Milbury Heath. Ellen died aged 3 years and 7 months and was buried on 8th March 1834 and Charles died aged 2 and was buried on 13th March 1834.
Further children followed. Fanny Ellen was baptised on 18th May 1836 when Henry was described as a yeoman living at Kington. By 15th May 1838 when his son, Charles, was baptised, Henry was described as an innkeeper in Thornbury. However he doesn’t seem to have stuck it out for very long. When another son, Augustus Morris, was baptised on 13th November 1839 Henry was again described as a farmer in Thornbury. We must assume that the Tithe Survey information was based on information collected before November 1839 and was therefore out of date.
The 1841 census shows that Henry was then a grocer aged 35 living on the west side of the High Street. He was living there with Emma aged 35 and Charles aged 3, Ellen aged 5 and Augustus aged 1. We are not sure what happened to Henry. The 1851 census shows Emma as a married lady aged 42 and describes her as ‘supported by her father.’ She is living in 32 Castle Street with Morris aged 12 who is working as an errand boy and daughters, Mary aged 9, Pamela aged 5 and Fanny aged 4. The ages of the youngest children vary from the information shown on the FreeBMD website – Pamela was born in December quarter 1847 and Fanny in September quarter 1850.
The 1861 census shows Emma now living in Easton Hill. She is still being shown as married, now aged 48 and working as a semptress. She is living with her daughter, Betsy, aged 12. Pamela died aged 30 and was buried on 8th January 1881. Her address was shown as Easton Hill. The 1881 census shows Emma living alone in Easton Hill. She was now shown described as a widow, a retired dressmaker aged 76 born in Oldbury. Emma died aged 80 and was buried on 23rd February 1885.
Jeremiah Clowes – Jeremiah was licensee of the New Inn for a short time before he bought it from Edward Doward in 1839. Click here to read more about Jeremiah
Charles Barber – in the 1841 census Charles Barber was the innkeeper – he was aged 36 living with his wife, Mary aged 32 and their children: Charles aged 7, Frank aged 4, Walter aged 3 Frances aged 1 and Ellen ??? aged 14. Only Walter and Ellen were born in Gloucestershire.
The baptism records of two more children show Charles continued to be an innkeeper until at least September 1844. Robert John Barber was baptised on 29th March 1843 but he died aged only 6 months and was buried on 15th September 1843 and Emily Julia was baptised on 4th September 1844.
We don’t know what happened to Charles. In the 1851 census some of the children were listed as visitors to Martha Spill in 4 Pipe Lane, Bristol. This record shows that their mother, now called Jane Barber, was described as a publican’s wife aged 40 born in Westbury in Wiltshire.
Oliver George Mowatt – Oliver appears to have been a tenant of Jeremiah Clew’s running the New Inn before Oliver purchased it on 20th December 1845. Click here to read about Oliver
The Gunters – various documents show that members of the Gunter family were connected with Beaufort Arms, but we are confused by the differences in what they are saying. The notice of sale of the Beaufort Arms dated 16th August 1847 mentions that ‘Mr Gunter’ was occupying the property as tenant. The Abstract of Title shows that it was ‘William Gunter‘ who had been a tenant of the property in 1847 when it was sold by Oliver Mowatt to James Screen. However, two trade directories list ‘George and Mary Ann Gunter‘ as publicans of the Beaufort Arms in 1849 and 1852. In March 1850 a notice appeared in the Bristol Mercury advertising the Beaufort Arms to let and telling people to apply to Mr Geo. Gunter on the premises. In the 1851 census Mary Ann Gunter and her brother, George Gunter, were both shown as being innkeepers at the White Hart on The Plain. A newspaper article dated November 1850 also shows them to be at the White Hart. Their father was William Gunter, a farmer from Alveston. Click here to read about the Gunters