The Catherine Wheel is situated a quarter of mile west from the centre of the village on the main road to Cirencester. The pub dates from the 16th century and was licensed in 1755. The licence was probably transferred from an earlier beerhouse called the Wheel, which was situated nearer the River Coln. The reason why it is called the Catherine Wheel is not clear. However it is generally accepted that it is not named after the firework of the same name. According to local historian John Holland it might have been named after a queen.
Mr. Holland has memories of pre-war landlord George Adams: “He was as broad as he was tall. He was enormous, the stoutest man I have ever known and a wrestler of some renown in those days.” The Catherine Wheel was purchased by the Cirencester Brewery in 1921.
In 1997 the Catherine Wheel was owned by the Eldridge Pope pub chain, which was based at Dorchester in Dorset. Eldridge Pope has since been taken over by Marstons.
In 2002 the pub became very famous.. in Japan! A Japanese artist visited the pub to enjoy the speciality dish of fresh trout (Bibury Trout farm is just down the road). He was so impressed that he painted a picture of the Catherine Wheel, which became a highly regarded piece of artwork in Japan. As a result of the painting up to 200 Japanese tourists a week came to sample the trout dinners served at the pub. The Catherine Wheel was even featured on TV in Japan.
This page will be updated with additional information.
Map Reference: SP 112067
Owner in 1891: Trustees of John Hathaway (free from brewery tie)
Rateable Value in 1891: £9.12s.0d.
Type of licence in 1891: Beerhouse
Owner in 1903: Nailsworth Brewery
Rateable Value in 1903: £9.12s.0d.
Type of licence in 1903: Beerhouse
Closing time in 1903: 10pm
Owner in 1921: Cirencester Brewery (conveyances drawn up on 23rd May and 11th June 1921)
Landlords at the Catherine Wheel include:
1851 Ann Green (aged 70, widow. Retailer of beer. Name of premises not given)
1871 William Smith (aged 38, name of premises not given)
1881 John Hathaway (aged 52, publican and cooper)
1891 William Hathaway, 38
1901,1939 George Mallard Adams (aged 39 in 1901, beerhouse keeper and haulier)
1939 George Mallard Adams (born 1862, died 1952 – nickname ‘Damper’)
1997 Paul and Katy Wood
2000 ‘Mac’ and Evelyn McComb