Tuesday, 6 January 2015

A Family Pub Crawl

One of the things I was quite shocked to find when tracing my ancestors, was the sheer amount of them who ran and managed public houses or inns. Never would I have expected my family to have been on the other side of the bar.

The closest publicans in relation to me would be Edward and Margery Barrass, who ran the Hartley Arms in New Hartley, on the estate of Lord Hastings. I believe they inherited the pub from Edward's father, Robert, when he died in 1876. Edward died soon after in 1884, but Margery kept on the pub and was helped out by her children and grandchildren.

When Margery died in 1897, the Hartley Arms was inherited by her son, Matthew who continued the tenancy. Sometime before Matthew died in 1916, the pub was renamed to the Hastings Hartley Arms for unknown reasons. After his death, Matthew's wife Annie carried on the running of the Hartley Arms as instructed in her late husband's will.

Edward and Margery's son, Robert also became a publican. He ran the Duke of Wellington pub, East Howdon for some years, but sadly died in his mid-fourties, closely followed by his wife, Emma. His three eldest children went and lived with their Uncle Matthew at New Hartley. 

Margery's brother, James Turnbull ran the Jenny Lind Inn, East Howdon (A short distance down the road from the Duke of Wellington) with his wife Mary Thompson for a number of years. Like MargeryJames raised his family in the pub and was helped out by his children. When both James and Mary died, their daughter Isabella Sparks managed the Jenny Lind. When Isabella's cousin, Robert Barrass died, she took in his youngest daughter, Nellie.

Sadly in 1910, Isabella was forced to leave the family pub of over 40 years when it was taken over by the the Northumberland Shipbuilding Company who were planning on business extensions. From the Jenny Lind, Isabella became the tenant of the Queen's Head on Brunton Street in Willington Quay. After Isabella took over, the takings were increasing every week. Only a few months into the tenancy, the license was refused a renewal and the Queen's Head was forced to close. From there Isabella went on to run the Quarry Inn, located in Marden, Whitley Bay.  

Margery and James' niece, Isabella Robson, daughter of their elder sister, Elizabeth was also in the same business. She married Bartholomew Logan and together they ran the Black Bull Inn, Seaton Burn and also the Bee Hive Inn, Seghill. In later years they also went on to manage Morpeth Conservative Club as Steward and Stewardess, when it was situated at Collingwood House. Isabella died in her mid-nineties and was remembered for her graciousness and regard to every member of the club. 


The extended Turnbull family of publicans.