132 High Street, Wheatsheaf Inn

by Wendy Snarey

No. 132 High St. (formerly the Wheatsheaf Inn) was built c. 1500 with a three-storied jettied front. In the mid-17th century it was given a new framed elevation towards the street set several feet forward of the original line. The initials J.V. in a decorative panel above the door lintel may be for John Underhill (d. 1719). [Cal. Glouc. Wills, 1660–1800, 144]. The almost vertical façade is surmounted by a fourth story with an ogee shaped gable; there are long ranges of mullioned and transomed windows with a shallow bay at the centre, and the timber studs have ovolo-moulded edges and are set forward to achieve a panelled effect.

PLAN: A 4-storey narrow frontage property with decorative central gable, on 3 jettied stages, with side-entry to throughway and long 2-storey back wing, including a later extension or separate property. Frontage block of double-depth, single-room width plan with central stack towards right-hand party wall.

Grade II*

Wheatsheaf Inn (Tewkesbury), published in Our Own Country, about 1865. Wood engraved print with recent hand colour

The Wheatsheaf Archive begins with an Indenture of 1806 when William Merry sells the Wheatsheaf to William Moore for £520. There is a reference to William Merry having purchased the premises in 1791 from Samuel Mew and Elizabeth his wife. The Premises then are described as:-

ALL THAT MESSUAGE or Tenement situate and being in a certain street called the High Street otherwise the Oldbury Street in Tewkesbury aforesaid sometime used as an Inn and called the Wheatsheaf then in the occupation of John Clifton afterwards called or known by the name of the Yellow Lion and occupied by John Baylis and William Pye but now again called or known by the name of the Wheatsheaf heretofore in the occupation of the said William Merry late of Mary Bonnewell but now of William Finch as tenant thereof–

Having a Messuage or Tenement heretofore in the occupation of Andrew Lawrence butcher but now of John Dick linen draper on one side and a Messuage or Tenement formerly in the occupation of Sarah Face afterwards of John Turner and Samuel Turner butchers late of Richard Heath but now of William Weare carpenter on the other side thereof.

And Also all that Malthouse Barn Stable and Garden adjoining to the first mentioned Messuage or Tenement and occupied therewith – All which said Messuage or Tenement Malthouse Barn Stable and Garden hereditaments and premises intended to be hereby granted and enfeoffed were lately bought and purchased by the said William Merry of and from the said Samuel Mew and Elizabeth his wife and are the same premises comprised in the Indenture of Release hereinbefore mentioned.

By George Rowe, 1830s
By George Rowe, 1830s

It is unclear from the description above whether the property goes fully back to the Oldbury in 1806 however from other research on the houses next door [nos 133 and 134] there was a building at the rear of the Wheatsheaf was a theatre in 1824:-

ALL THOSE TWO MESSUAGES of him the said Samuel Estop Turner in the tenure of Richard Turner and John Face since of John Turner and Sarah Face the said the said Samuel Estop Turner and Lewis Hopkins successively but now of George Bishop Thomas Prew and Joseph Smith as tenants thereof having a messuage or tenement and premises called the Wheat Sheaf late in occupation of William Causon innholder and a tenement or building at the back thereof occupied as a theatre on the one side and a messuage and premises in the occupation of Charles Banaster saddler on the other side thereof and extending from the High Street on the forepart to the Oldbury field on the hinder part 

John Moore is also recorded as being the owner of both the Wheatsheaf and The Theatre in 1836

William Moore died 9th August 1819 and his Will was proved 27th September by his son John Moore. William left legacies to his wife and 2 daughters, and to his 3 sisters and also 2 sums of £1500 to Trustees Henry Fowke and Edmund Warden Jones to be invested for the benefit of his two daughters. He also devised to his wife Mary, Messuages called The Hop Pole Inn and the Hop Pole Tap for her life and afterwards to son John Moore.
Today as Cornell Books
Today as Cornell BooksClick Image
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Again from the research of nos 133 & 134

In 1844

TWO MESSUAGES with courtyard and TWO TENEMENTS and gardens and offices and carpenter's shop and other outbuildings lying behind and adjoining same. - Formerly in tenure of Richard Turner and John Face then of John Turner and Sarah Face Samuel Estop Turner and Lewis Hopkins successively then of George Bishop, Thomas Prew, and John Smith since of Charles Archer and his undertenant Thomas Timbrell and Jeremiah Heath and Now of Henry Spurrier having:- 
A Messuage called Wheatsheaf and a tenement or building at back formerly occupied as a theatre now as a Lace factory on one side and a Messuage formerly in occupation of Charles Banaster saddler after of Frederick Lane and now of W.C.Fowler grocer on the other side extending from High Street on forepart to the Oldbury field on the hinder part

The Indenture of 1847 – John Moore sells the premises to James Walker who borrowed £400 from William Hawkley. James Walker is noted as "Innkeeper" in the censuses of 1851, 1861 and 1871. William Hawkley died in August 1849 leaving Thomas Vernon, Henry Insall and William Lloyd Chandler his executors. Henry Insall died 1852 So in 1853 the mortgage debt was transferred to Charles Edward White on security of the premises described as follows

All that Messuage Tenement or Dwelling House situate and being in a certain street called the High Street otherwise the Oldbury Street in Tewkesbury aforesaid used as an Inn and called or known by the name or sign of the “WHEATSHEAF” and the yard lying behind the same formerly in the occupation of William Hatch but now of the said James Walker together with all and every the Rights Easements Advantages, Members and Appurtenances whatsoever to the said Messuage Tenement or Dwelling House Hereditaments and Premises or any part thereof belonging or  appertaining or therewith used or enjoyed. 

It would seem the premises just had a yard then and the “Theatre” or “Silk Mill” was separate.

In 1855 the mortgage debt was again transferred from Charles Edward White to William Brydges.
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An 1877 Conveyance sees the premises being sold by James Walker to William Westfield for £650 - £550 of this being borrowed from James Walker himself – it is now described as

All That Messuage Tenement or Dwellinghouse with the Cellars and Outbuildings belonging thereto or occupied therewith situate in the High Street in the Borough of Tewkesbury in the County of Gloucester used as an Inn and called or known by the name or sign of The “Wheatsheaf” and the yard lying behind the same formerly in the occupation of William Hatch but now of the said James Walker which said Messuage Inn and Premises are bounded

  • On the North by premises belonging to Mr Thomas Chandler and the Old Silk Mill
  • On the South by premises occupied by Mr Lemuel Jones
  • On the East by the said Old Silk Mill
  • On the West by the said High Street
In 1881 William Westfield sells the property to Joseph Edge of Ironbridge Shropshire for £800 - £550 of which is paid to James Walker to pay off mortgage and £250 to William Westfield By 1885 the property seems to be in the hands of the Tewkesbury Brewery Company as there is a Fire Policy for the premises in their name. It now lists A Timber and Slated Skittle Alley In 1912 Thomas Walker engineer sold land and buildings in the Oldbury to his wife, Mary Hannah Collins Walker for £900 -This was described as

All that piece or parcel of land with the house and warehouse then situated in the Oldbury Tewkesbury aforesaid together with the buildings then recently erected thereon and known as The Picture Palace and then in the occupation of Shakspeare Shenton as tenant thereof - bounded

  • On the North by the passage leading to the Wheatsheaf Inn
  • On the South by property of the Misses Fowler
  • On the East by the Oldbury Road
  • On the West by property of Arnold Perrett & Co or property of the said Mary Hannah Collins Walker
In 1923 Mary Hannah Collins Walker sold this to brothers Shakespeare Theaker Shenton and Noel Belmore Shenton cinema proprietors for £1250 with them taking on a mortgage with her for £1000 at 5% interest using the premises as security This became the Picture Palace and by 1925 the mortgage had been paid and the premises re-conveyed to the Shenton brothers.

By 1933 the Picture Palace had been demolished and Shakespeare Shenton conveyed his interest in the premises to brother Noel for £250 – this was:

All that piece or parcel of land with the house thereon situated in the Oldbury Tewkesbury aforesaid bounded

  • On the North by a passage leading to The Wheatsheaf Inn
  • On the South by property then of the Misses Fowler
  • On the East by the Oldbury Road
  • On the West by property then of Arnold Perrett and Co

Noel Shenton settled this land in a Trust for his children with Shakespeare a Trustee together with Brian Gurney a solicitor from Cheltenham

In 1945 the property was sold to Sidney Charles Hopton of Tewkesbury coal merchant for £800 – this then described as:

All that piece or parcel of Land with the house then standing thereon known as “Palace House” and the Land adjoining thereto being the site of the Picture Palace (then derelict) and which said premises are bounded

  • On the North by a passage leading to the Wheatsheaf Inn
  • On the South by property of the Misses Fowler
  • On the East by Oldbury Road
  • On the West by property of Arnold Perrett & Co Ltd
And all which said premises are situate in the Borough of Tewkesbury and are for the purpose of identification shown on plan thereto annexed and then coloured pink 
In 1949 - Sidney Hopton agreed to sell to the Cheltenham & Hereford Breweries – formerly Cheltenham Original Brewery Company Ltd for £50
ALL THAT piece or parcel of land (formerly the site of a Warehouse) situate in the Borough of Tewkesbury in the County of Gloucester which said piece of land is bounded
  • On the North and West sides by a passage leading to the Wheatsheaf Inn
  • On the South by property belonging to the Purchasers
  • On the East by other property known as Palace House belonging to the Vendor
The Wheatsheaf closed as a pub in 1957.

Census Data 1841-1891

1851
132 High Street
1851-b51209a
James Walker; Head; Married; Male; 39; Innkeeper; Bromyard; Hereford
Emma Walker; Wife; Married; Female; 36; ; Westmancote;worcs
James Walker; Son; ; Male; 13; Scholar; Tewkesbury;glos
Mary Ann Walker; Daughter; ; Female; 11; Scholar; Tewkesbury;glos
Thomas Walker; Son; ; Male; 4; Scholar; Tewkesbury;glos
George Bearcroft; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 24; Serv; Tewkesbury;glos
John Moore; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 42; Farrier; Tewkesbury;glos
Charles Townly; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 36; Serv; Tewkesbury;glos
William Warland; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 26; Millwright; Islip;oxon
Thomas Williams; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 34; Ag Lab; Tewkesbury;glos
1861
132 High Street
1861-b61255
James Walker; Head; Married; Male; 50; Innkeeper; Bromyard; Herefords
Emma Walker; Wife; Married; Female; 47; ; Bredon;worcs
Emma Walker; Daughter; ; Female; 10; Scholar; Tewkesbury;glos
Rose Walker; Daughter; ; Female; 10; Scholar; Tewkesbury;glos
S A Walker; Daughter; ; Female; 12; ; Tewkesbury;glos
Thomas Walker; Son; ; Male; 14; ; Tewkesbury;glos
Louisa Guest; Serv; Unmarried; Female; 19; House Serv; Tirley;glos
Thomas Pitt; Serv; Unmarried; Male; 20; House Serv; Reading;berks
J W Teague; Boarder; Married; Male; 26; Traveller Boot Seller; Birmingham;warks
George Throughton; Boarder; Unmarried; Male; 27; Ag Lab; Stoke Orchard;
Charles Vend; Boarder; Unmarried; Male; 22; Shoemaker; Northampton;
1871
Wheatsheaf Inn, 132 High Street
1871-b71234
James Walker; Head; Married; Male; 60; Innkeeper; Worcester;
Amy Walker; Wife; Married; Female; 57; ; Bredon;worcs
Rose Walker; Daughter; Unmarried; Female; 20; ; Tewkesbury;glos
Unice Evans; Serv; Unmarried; Female; 14; Dom Serv; Stow On Wold;glos
William Penrose; Serv; Unmarried; Male; 29; Lab; Tewkesbury;glos
1871
Wheatsheaf Inn, 132 High Street
1871-b71235
Edwin Thompson; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 33; Tin Plate Worker; Worcester;
1871
Wheatsheaf Inn, 132 High Street
1871-b71236
Timothy Webb; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 51; Tailor; Hetter Dale;staffs
1881
132 High Street
1881-b81166
William Westfield; Head; Married; Male; 50; Innkeeper; Kingstanley;glos
Elizabeth Westfield; Wife; Married; Female; 46; ; Tewkesbury;glos
Henry J Westfield; Son; Unmarried; Male; 19; Carpenter; Tewkesbury;glos
Edith Bryan; Serv; Unmarried; Female; 19; Serv Dom; Hereford;herefords
William Hemming; Serv; Unmarried; Male; 45; Carter Pensioner; Bredon;worcs
William Hughes; Serv; Unmarried; Male; 56; Ostler; Tewkesbury;glos
Henry Webb; Serv; Unmarried; Male; 25; Carter; Ashchurch;glos
Elias Cotton; Lodger; Unmarried; Male; 22; Pedlar; Russia;
1891
132 High Street ( Wheatsheaf Inn )
1891 Ref-RG12/2049 336-1A
habitation count: 5+
Frederick L. Key; Head; Married; Male; 46; Pork Butcher & Publican;b. Tewkesbury Glos; Employer.
Sarah A. Key; Wife; Married; Female; 42; Beer Retailer;b. Tewkesbury Glos; Working On Own Account.
Blanche Key; Daughter; Female; 14; Beer Retailer;b. Tewkesbury Glos; Employed.
Mabel E. Key; Daughter; Female; 8; Scholar;b. Tewkesbury Glos.
William Key; Son; Male; 12;b. Tewkesbury Glos.
Hugh Key; Son; Male; 10; Scholar;b. Tewkesbury Glos.
Joe Bullock; Servant; Single; Male; 19; General Labourer;b. Ashchurch Glos; Employed.
Alick Hewitt; Lodger; Single; Male; 34; General Labourer;b. Tewkesbury Glos; Employed.
Philip Perkins; Lodger; Married; Male; N. K.; General Labourer;b. Oxford; Employed.
Number of records found: 7


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