The present day Tipputs Inn is on the top of the hill to the south of Nailsworth on the Bath Road. The inn is in an isolated position in the hamlet of Tiltups End. Horsley is about three quarters of a mile to the north-west.

Courtesy Nailsworth Town Archives
Courtesy Nailsworth Town Archives
Image: Nigel Hammond

In the 1891 and 1903 Gloucestershire licensing books the pub is referred to as the Black Horse Inn. The Inns of the Cotswolds Map published by Bartholomew and drawn and compiled by K.C. Jordan in the 1970’s also lists the Black Horse at Horsley. In March 2004 Mike Beacham emailed me and gave the information that, according the Victoria County History, in 1826 there was a Black Horse Mill which has long since vanished. 

The old inn sign used to depict six pairs of hands, with just one larger than life hand held palm upwards. In the palm is a coin – the old table game of ‘tipputs’ is being played. This is a game based on bluff where participants guess whether the coin is concealed in the right or left hand.  A pub called the Tiltups Inn is known to have been serving travellers as long ago as 1769. It is likely that ‘tipputs’ is a simple, and probably deliberate, corruption of ‘Tiltups’.

The replacement pub sign is rather disappointing, even though it is housed in the original iron framework of the time when the pub was owned by West Country Breweries

In 2002 Nick Beardsley and Christophe Colquin bought the Tipputs and it opened for business on 14th September. The official opening ceremony was conducted by Stroud’s MP David Drew. During the renovation the interior of the 17th century coaching inn was ‘stripped back to expose the beauty of the original structure’ and modern lighting and furnishings were added.  In 2003 the Tipputs Inn won the Greene King National Marketing Business of the Year. The press release said: “Until last year the Tipputs was a run down, run-of-the-mill pub, with a sparse wet trade based on locals alone and an extremely basic food offering.”

It was feared that the Tipputs would close when it was purchased unexpectedly by a school, but it has survived. This story will be examined in detail when this page is updated.

Map Reference: ST 844972

Licensing details:

Owner in 1891: Stroud Brewery

Rateable value in 1891: £12.5s.0d.

Type of licence in 1891: Alehouse

Owner in 1903: Stroud Brewery

Rateable value in 1903: £12.5s.0d.

Type of licence in 1903: Alehouse

Closing time in 1903: 10pm

Owners in 2008: Pheasant Pluckers

Landlords include:

1856 T. Palmer (Black Horse Inn)

1885,1891 John Maller (Black Horse Inn)

1902 Walter Stacey (Black Horse Inn)

1903,1906 William Neville (Black Horse Inn)

1919,1927 Alfred Dee (Black Horse Inn)

? Beverley Whitebread (Tipputs Inn)

1999 Kevin and Pat Bratchell (from Royal Oak, Leighterton)

2002,2004 Manager Chris Wright (owners Nick Beardsley and Christophe)

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