Gloucester Journal: October 25th 1884. On Saturday the members of the King’s Stanley branch of the Stroud Benefit Conservative Benefit Society dined together at the club room adjoining the Red Lion Inn. Colone Collier presided, and the candidates Messrs Holloway and Whitmore were present.

The Red Lion, c1908. Image courtesy Paul Best (Facebook)

The last pints were pulled in the Red Lion in 1971, probably on the retirement of long serving licensee Frederick Spiers. In July 1970 the British Legion honoured Mr Spiers (aged 77) who helped form the local British Legion branch twenty five years previously.

Image courtesy Peckhams of Stroud archives.

The Citizen – 23rd April 1971 ‘Stroud RDC is to acquire the site of the recently closed Red Lion Inn at Kings Stanley for housing and a car park. The Council’s Housing Committee yesterday authorised the borrowing of £5,450, over a 60 year period, to pay for the site.’

John Rogers emailed me in January 2008 and told me that the Red Lion Inn was “arguably the best pub in Gloucestershire. The beer and cider were served direct from barrels in the kitchen and, when busy, the family front parlour was opened up. It was famously hospitable.”  After closure the Red Lion was left derelict for a couple of years, but then converted a house and three flats. The property faces onto the village green only a few yards from the Kings Head.


Who doesn’t love a village pub, in fact this strange village down the hill had 4 or 5 many years ago, but now has just the one. This building on the left used to be The Red Lion on the village green, which closed in 1972.

But lets go back to 1800 and a sad moment in it’s history that links this pub to the local churchyard. There is a gravestone for the young daughter of publican John Collins, her name was Martha Collins.

The headstone reads:

“Twas as she tript from cask to cask,

In at a bung-hole quickly fell;

Suffocation was her task;

She had not time to say farewell.”

What happened was she was in the cellar playing on top of the barrels. As she skipped from barrel to barrel she tripped and went head first in a full barrel of beer and drowned.

Such a sad story and there may have been more outside on the green where the village stocks were situated. You could sit outside with a pint and watch any naughty villagers locked in the stocks, while others throw rotten fruit and vegetables at them.

See I said this was a strange village.

Map Reference: SO 812034

Licensing Details:

Rateable Value in 1891: £15.10s.0d.

Owner in 1891: George Hague (free from brewery tie)

Type of licence in 1891: Alehouse

Rateable Value in 1903: £25.0s.0d.

Owner in 1903: Thomas Elvy, Dursley Steam Brewery

Type of licence in 1903: Alehouse

Closing time in 1903: 10pm

Landlords at the Red Lion include:

1830 Robert Gardner

1856 G. Alexander

1881,1891George M. Hague

1902 Arthur Cox

1903,1906  John W. Steele

1919 Alfred Walter Knight

1927 William E. Baker

1939,1970 Frederick Spiers

Share this Page: