The New Victory Inn was affectionately known as the ‘Little Vic’.
The Townsend family had a long association with the New Victory stretching from 1912, when Thomas Townsend took it over, until 1983 when Jim, who succeeded brother Tommy, finally called it a day. Violet Townsend, better known as ‘Cissy’, who was a popular landlady in the 1950’s was ignominiously removed from the Magdalen House Nursing Home in Gloucester just five days before she died in February2003, aged 88.
In the 1950’s and 1960’s the New Victory Inn was the Head Quarters of the Tredworth Rugby Football Club and had successful darts, shove ha’penny, crib and even angling teams. The Tredworth Road Walk was established at the ‘Little Vic’ in the 1950’s. This was initially a fun race where customers of the pub downed a couple of pints, stripped down to their vests and ran in their working boots. As the years passed it developed into a competitive running race and was a great day out, during its heyday attracting thousands of spectators. By 1970 interest had waned and the race was abandoned. In 1974 the event was revived and the ‘Little Vic’ was the starting point.
Darrel Kirby in his book ‘The Story of Gloucester Pubs’ (The History Press, 2010) visited the New Victory Inn and described it as a ‘delightful old-fashioned, unspoilt pub, the Little Vic is entered via a small covered passageway from the High Street. The passage goes through to the pub garden at the back and two doors lead off it. The first has a sign saying ‘Saloon & Off-Sales’, although this is the pool room. Just inside the door is an old hatch for off-sales, which I haven’t seen in any other pubs in the city. The sign over the second door says ‘Games Room’ This is a small room with a bar running along the length of the right-hand wall and a dartboard on the back wall. The Little Vic doesn’t sell real ale, but it does sell cider, referred to by the regulars as ‘rough’, but we weren’t adventurous enough to try that.’
The New Victory Inn has now closed.
Landlords at the New Victory Inn include:
1879 Robert Price
1893, 1906 R. Price (junior) (reference in 1873 is to the New Victoria)
1912 Thomas Townsend
1936 T.B. Townsend
1939 Mrs Louisa Townsend
1950’s Tommy and Violet ‘Cissy’ Townsend (‘Old Vic’)
1954-1983 James S. Townsend (Jim was Tommy’s brother)
1997,1999 Steve Birch and Cassie Overthrow