Lost Pubs Of Plymouth
What is a pub, or more correctly, what is a public house ? It is a “house” that members of the public can go into without invitation. They have been a British institution for hundreds of years, going back to Roman times. They have traditionally provided sustenance and a bed for the night for weary travellers.
In the Middle Ages, ale and cider was safer to drink than water, and many households and farms used to brew their own. Today, there are about 60 000 pubs up and down the land, but they are closing at an alarming rate of about 20 per week, nationally. When we say “lost”, we mean that they are not “just closed today”, but will be converted to “other uses”, such as housing, other retail use, or even demolished because the current owners say they are unviable.
The following are a number of pubs in the Plymouth area which have been lost forever – that is, closed and then converted to “other uses”. What does this mean? In a nutshell, it means that it will be highly unlikely that that particular pub will ever open as a pub again, due to being converted to housing, shop/other retail use or something other than a pub.
Why should we be worried about pubs closing? Because the pub is the best place to drink real ale; one of the best places to meet people; because it is where we find out about life in our community and enjoy camaraderie when joining in pub games, such as darts, pool or euchre, for instance! It is often regarded as being the “hub of the Community”, irrespective of where the pub is actually located, be it city, town or village.
Evolution, though, will always happen, and, as we know only too well from City redevelopments, there will be unavoidable pub closures. What we must try and do is support the pubs that we still currently have. They are a very diverse part of our lives, with pubs supporting young people, pubs supporting all customers, pubs showing sporting events on TV, pubs showing live entertainment, pubs with traditional pub games like pool and darts – where will the next Michael Van Gerwin or Phil “The Power” Taylor (dart player’s) come from, or Joey and the Lips (musical artistes) if there are no venues?
Selected List of Permenantly Closed Pubs
This list is NOT definitive, but is an indication of just some of the pubs that have been lost for good since about 1994 (compiled in December 2017).
Adelaide Inn, Stonehouse. Closed in 2009 and converted to housing.
Albert Gate, Morice Town. Closed in 2010 and demolished in 2012.
Britannia Inn, Octagon. The pub closed in 2009 and appears to have been converted in to a community centre.
Hutong Cafe, Stonehouse. Formally the Butcher's Arms, it closed in 2011, with planning permission later sought to change of use to domestic dwelling, which was rejected. However, it is currently trading as a bespoke café.
Commercial Inn, Barbican. A traditional one-roomed locals pub serving excellent quality real ale. The pub was on the market for several years, as the owners wished to retire after many years in the Trade. However, with no suitable bids forthcoming, they reluctantly decided to close and convert it into their retirement home in January 2014. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Commercial Inn
Aglio Olio Restaurant & Pizzeria, City Centre. Formally the Corner House, amongst other names over the years, it closed in 2010 as a pub, and was then converted to a restaurant. Due to the West End redevelopment, it was demolished in 2017.
Cornwall's Gate, St. Budeaux. Closed in 2010 and then demolished in 2013 to make way for housing.
Crown Hotel, Devonport. Originally built in the late 18th century, it was re-built for unknown reasons in the 1880's. It is believed to have closed in the early 2000s. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Crown Hotel, Devonport
Crown Inn/General Moore, Stonehouse. Trading as the Crown Inn until 1983, the name was changed in honour of the Commander British Land Forces after the Falklands Conflict of 1982. Few details are held, however please see Where Are They Now - Crown Inn, Stonehouse for those details we do know.
Crown & Column, Devonport. Closed in 2011 and we currently have no known other details.
Falcon, Ford. Closed in 2011 and converted into housing in early 2014.
Fellowship Inn, Kings Tamerton. The pub was closed and demolished in 2011 to make way for new housing.
Heaven Restaurant, City Centre. Formally known as the First and Last pub, it was sold as a public house in 2011, with a covenant preventing it from re-opening as a pub. However, it is currently trading as a restaurant.
Flames Restaurant & Cocktail Bar, Stoke. Formally the Steambridge Inn, this closed in 2010 and has remained so ever since. No further information is known about this pub.
Francis Arms, Stonehouse. This pub closed in 2013 and was converted to housing.
Friendship Inn, Greenbank. Listed as an Asset of Community Value, this pub was sold in 2013 and eventually converted into housing in 2015. ACV-Listing now has legal standing, meaning that pubs with this status can not now be converted to other uses without first being offered for sale to the local community for purchasing.
Friendship Inn, Stoke. Very little information is held about this pub, but it has been closed for a number of years (since 2010?).
Good Companions, city centre. This pub closed its’ doors in 2010 and was earmarked for demolition in 2012. As part of the city centre regeneration project, the pub was finally demolished in 2017.
Haddington. Stoke. The pub closed around 2010 and has been boarded up for the majority of that time. It was converted into residential use in late 2016/early 2017.
Dinky Diner Dartsworld Cafe, Devonport. The former Half Moon Inn was a very popular locals pub in its' day, serving one cask ale. However, it is believed to have closed and was then converted into cafe use in 1997. It is now trading as the Dinky Diner Dartsworld Cafe, opening during 2017. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Half Moon Inn
Inn On The Green, Ham Green. Sadly, this pub closed and was demolished for housing at some time during the 2000s.
King’s Arms, Devonport. Sadly, this pub closed in 2004, but, fortunately, was made a Garde-II listed building by English Heritage (now Historic England) in 1998. The building is still in other business use. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - King's Arms, Devonport
Mountain Inn, Lutton. This regularly-listed GBG pub was sold in August 2014, but remains closed, despite being the only pub in the village and an Asset of Community Value.
Rock Salt Cafe & Brasserie, Stonehouse. Unlike most other pubs listed here, the former Mechanic’s Arms was closed and converted into a restaurant which is still trading today.
Mutley Tavern, Mutley. Yet another pub which closed in the Mutley area and was converted into housing in 2011. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Mutley Tavern
Nectar, city centre. This large open-plan city centre bar, formally called George's, closed in 2010 and is still on the market for sale/lease.
No Place Inn, Stonehouse. Another fairly recent closure and conversion into housing. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - No Place Inn
Patna, North Road West. This once-popular pub closed in 2011 and was converted into housing in 2013.
Pear Tree Inn, Stoke. This is another pub which closed its’ doors for the final time in 2011. It is now in other business use, which opened in 2015. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Pear Tree Inn
Pennycomequick, city centre. This once-popular hostelry closed its’ doors for the final time in 2011 and was quickly converted into housing in 2012.
Prince Alfred, Stonehouse. Sadly, this Stonehouse pub closed its'doors for the final time in 2010 before being converted into housing in 2012. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Prince Alfred
Pym Arms, Devonport. A haven for real ale drinkers in the 1980's and 1990's, the pub fell on hard times and sadly closed around 2005. It was eventually converted into housing. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Pym Arms, Devonport
Stoke Vaults, Stoke. This unpretentious locals pub closed at some time during the late 2000s. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Stoke Vaults
Swan Inn, Devonport. A Mecca for real ale drinkers during the 70's, 80's and early 90's until it sadly closed in 1997. Shortly afterwards, it was converted into housing. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Swan Inn, Devonport
Tiger, Whitleigh. This former estate pub was closed in 2010 and demolished to make way for housing.
Town House, city centre. This is another pub which closed in 2013 and was quickly converted into housing.
Wellington Hotel, Greenbank. This locals pub, situated in a largely residential area, sufferred from the demographic changes of the area, and closed in 2010. It has now been converted into housing. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Wellington Hotel
White Lion, Stonehouse. Having survived the blitz of 1941, when others close by didn't, the White Lion found the trading situation of the 1990s very difficult, and closed as a pub in 1995. However, it reopened as the White Lion Cafe (confusingly!) before finally being converted into residential use in 2010/2011. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - White Lion, Stonehouse
Wyndham Arms, Stonehouse. Another pub within walking distance of the city centre and converted into housing. For further details, please see Where Are They Now - Wyndham Inn