The Queens Head was located in Central Lydbrook and was just up the road from the Jovial Colliers. The adjacent building was Phelps Grocery shop. Mike Stephens contacted me and said that his grandparent’s house in Central Lydbrook was possibly the Queens Head. Now named Glenbrook, Mike, who was born in the house in 1948, had been told that the property once was a pub. This was confirmed by Michael Gibb who told me that in the 1901 census the Phelps family, including Michael’s Grandmother, were living adjacent to the Queens Head which was occupied by Thomas Cooper with the ‘Grocery Stores’, (presumably the Phelps shop) in between.
In 1873 James Phelps purchased the Queens Head with a mortgage supplied by Alfred Wintle, Brewer of Bill Mills at Weston under Penyard near Ross on wye. In 1889 the Queens Head consisted of ‘three bedrooms, three rooms on first floor, cellar, wood house (with passage through for use at any time), bakehouse or back kitchen (with use at any time for baking purposes), pigscot and garden.’
In 1891 Alfred James Phelps owned the Queens Head. Perhaps Alfred was the son of James. Despite the mortgage supplied by Alfred Wintle, the Queens Head was still owned by the Phelps family and was trading free from brewery tie. With the Wintle family connection it is surprising that the pub was not tied to the Forest Brewery. The annual rateable value of the Queens Head was £13.0s.0d. in 1891 and 1903 and was licensed as a beer house. Closing time was 10 pm.
Anglo-Bavarian Brewery of Shepton Mallet, Somerset had purchased the Queens Head by 1903, and the landlord resident was Thomas Cooper. There appears to be no further records after 1903, possibly indicating that the licence of the Queens Head had been voluntarily relinquished.
Apparently, the Queens Head was known as the ‘Parrot’ by locals. The reason for this is unclear, but a landlord of the pub may have once kept a parrot as a pet. Maybe the locals taught the bird some objectionable words, which were recited at inopportune times! With Tommy Cooper as landlord the parrot might have indeed learnt a few tricks!
Landlords at the Queens Head include:
1856 Thomas Watkins
1873 James Phelps
1876 John Bennett (junior)
1885 James Bailey
1891 Alfred James Phelps
1901, 1903 Thomas Cooper