The licence of the Bird in Hand was originally a house near to the Swan on the northern side of Church Square. The 18th century building also served as the church house where vestry meetings were held. The original Bird in Hand was demolished in 1819 when the chapel was extended and the license had been transferred by 1829.

The license was transferred to a property opposite facing the church on the sharp bend on the A48 coming down the hill from Newnham.

The old Bird in Hand. Note the recess on the side elevation for safe pedestrian access on the pavement.


In 1891 and 1903 the Bird in Hand was designated an alehouse and had an annual rateable value of £18.0s.0d. It closed at 11 pm. The Bird in Hand was owned by Samuel P. Evans & Co in 1891, who was the owner of the nearby Blakeney Brewery.  Drinkers at the pub only had another six years to enjoy the taste of their local beer as the Blakeney Brewery closed on 30th March 1897 following the acquisition of the Wickwar Brewery (Arnold Perrett & Co., Ltd.) who were rapidly expanding their estate at the time. The Bird in Hand was a Wickwar Brewery pub in 1903.

Gloucester Journal, November 1885: Littledean Court. George Whiting was summoned for obstructing the highway at Blakeney. PC Newport saw a cart belonging to the defendant standing outside the Bird in Hand at Blakeney for an hour, unattended. Fined 2s.6d. and costs.

The Bird in Hand closed in the mid 20th century. For almost one hundred years the Ancient Order of the Foresters in Blakeney met at the Bird in Hand.

The building is now residential but until 2013 the ground floor was occupied by Second Image Ladies Hairdressers. The property has a bay window fronting the main road which was presumably, in times gone by, a distinctive feature of the Bird and Hand. Also of note is that the corner of the building is recessed enabling pedestrians better access on the tight corner.

Landlords at the Bird and Hand include

1856 J. White

1876 Mrs Mary Parsons

1885 Samuel Ford

1888 John Enoch (GJ May 1888 – John Enoch, landlord of the Bird in Hand, Blakeney, was found dead in bed on Monday morning by his wife.)

1891 George L. Hatton

1902, 1906 John Merlin

1919 Oliver Grindle

1927 George Read

1937 Harry Yarnton

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