The Royal Oak was once a tied house of George Stibbs’ Cheltenham Steam Brewery of Albion Street, Cheltenham. Stibbs’ beers were only supplied to a handful of pubs in Cheltenham, with the Royal Oak and Cross Hands (Kilkenny Inn) being the furthest from the brewery. The Stibbs’ Cheltenham Brewery was acquired by Cheltenham Original Brewery in 1897.

Courtesy Michael Wilkes.

A surprise visitor to the Royal Oak in April 1985 was Crown Prince Aya, then next in line to the Japanese throne. The Prince and his entourage chose the Royal Oak in Andoversford as he wanted to sample the experience of having a meal and a drink in a traditional English pub. They were at the Royal Oak for two hours following a visit to the Wetlands and Wildlife Trust at Slimbridge. Landlord Mike Farley told the ‘Citizen’: “The officers checked out the pub in advance and sat at another table from the five strong Japanese party. Two of the Japanese asked for a local beer”, adding “I hadn’t realised our fame had spread so wide.”

Mike Farley. Image: Gloucestershire Echo.

In the early 2000’s the Royal Oak was part of Johnny Johnston’s small Blenheim Inns pub chain which also included the Butchers Arms in Sheepscombe and the Falcon Hotel and Royal Oak in Painswick.

In the ‘Great Gloucestershire Flood’ of 20th July 2007 the nearby River Coln burst its banks and floodwater caused damage to properties in Gloucester Road including the Royal Oak. Carpets were ruined as two feet of water deluged the pub. Kathie Broadhurst and Simon Green had only been at the pub for six weeks when disaster struck. The Royal Oak finally reopened in November 2007.

Licensing Details:

Owner in 1891: George Stibbs & Co., Cheltenham Steam Brewery, Albion Street

Rateable value in 1891: £16.5s.0d.

Type of licence in 1891: Alehouse

Owner in 1903: George Stibbs & Co., Cheltenham Steam Brewery, Albion Street

Rateable value in 1903: £22.0s.0d.

Type of licence in 1903: Alehouse

Closing time in 1903: 10pm

Landlords at the Royal Oak include:

1856 J. Denley

1885 Howard Chester

1891,1903 William Holloway

1906 W. Holloway

1919,1927 Edwin Ernest Stroud

1939 Rt. Murray Grand

c1975-c1887 Michael Farley

1997 (November) – 1999 (12th Jan) Geoff and Janet Page

1999 Johnny and Hillary Johnston (owners) David Edward Hall (landlord)

2006 Kevin Robinson

2007 Ian Baker and David Flemming

2007,2010 Simon Green and Kathie Broadhurst

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