The 16th century Black Horse is now the only surviving pub in the village of North Nibley. (The New Inn at Waterley Bottom is still trading but it is located in an isolated position to the east of the village). The three gabled building is on the cross-roads in the centre of the village.

The landlord in 1903, A.A. Newton, was convicted and fined on 23rd January for selling brandy adulterated with 28% of water.

Courtesy Michael Wilkes

Courtesy Michael Wilkes

In 2002 the Black Horse was extensively refurbished and a new roof was added. It was sold by Quality Inns in November 2005.

Image: Nigel Hammond

The Gazette, 27th August 1999 – A lasting influence: Ted and June Hamston have never forgotten their first sight of the Black Horse at North Nibley. It was to influence the rest of their lives. “We came down the hill from Wotton and saw the pub in front of us and we said “That’s it,” Mrs Hamston recalled this week. That was 13 years ago. They bought the pub, now run by Mrs Hamston and their son, Rod.

The former Civil Service engineer and his one-time magistrates clerk secretary wife chose new jobs in the licensed trade with just a bit of persuasion from Rod, who was tired of his old employment. Mr Hamston said: “We didn’t have a clue about pubs. The chap we bought the place from said: “I will do the pipes for you once and then you’re on your own.” Mrs Hamston said: “We managed!”

After falling in love with The Black Horse they say they found little to change after their move from just outside Oxford. Last weekend, the couple celebrated their golden wedding – with a surprise party organised by daughter Jan Baber and sons Rod and John and their families. It was at the Black Horse, of course, and a few regulars found time to join 50 invited guests, some of whom the couple had not seen for 10 years.

Portsmouth-born Mr Hamston (74) and his wife, who is 70 from Gillingham in Kent, moved to Somerset Close, Kingswood, in 1988 leaving Rod and his wife at the pub, where daughter Jan also helps out. The Black Horse is a popular port of call for those fit enough to climb Nibley Knoll to the Tyndale Monument, which they want to know all about it. There are also six letting bedrooms plus a separate restaurant. Mrs Hamston said: “It’s an olde-worlde pub and we didn’t want to change it – and we haven’t.

July 2006

Dursley & District sub-branch of CAMRA, report November 2023: The Black Horse in North Nibley has, once again, closed. We do not know why the tenants decided to leave although there are rumours that cannot be verified. This is a blow for the village as they had settled in well and had built up quite a large following. There is no other pub in the village, the only other pub locally is the New Inn at Waterley Bottoms which only opens on a pop-up basis and occasionally for special events.

Map Reference: ST 741958

Licensing Details:

Owner in 1891: Arnold Perrett & Co. Ltd, Wickwar Brewery

Rateable value in 1891: £12.15s.0d.

Type of licence in 1891: Alehouse

Owner in 1903: Arnold Perrett & Co. Ltd, Wickwar Brewery

Rateable value in 1903: £12.15s.0d.

Type of licence in 1903: Alehouse

Closing time in 1903: 10pm

Landlords at the Black Horse include:

1885,1906  Albert Lewton (listed as Augustus A. Lewton in 1891)

1915  W. Harper

1919, 1927 Mrs Rosamond Harper

1986 Ted and June Hamston

1999 Rod and Jan Hamston

2004 Easton and Alison Hogben (Quality Inns)

2005, 2008 Jason and Candice (nee Hewett) Nabb

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