A Virtual Stroll Around the Walls of Chester

The Vanished Pubs of Chester Gallery

hop pole hotel
The Hop Pole Hotel, Foregate Street 1920

hop pole advertThe Hop Pole Hotel was at 13 Foregate Street, on the north side close to the junction of Frodsham Street. It may be seen in the background of the photograph above, depicting a pretty girl and a pony collecting funds for injured WW1 servicemen in 1920.

On the far right may be glimpsed another of Chester's vanished ancient inns, the Bear's Paw.

The Hop Pole was first mentioned in 1642 when it was built by Alderman Edwards. It was also called The Globe Tavern. This inn, however was soon afterwards destroyed during the Civil War seige and rebuilt a decade or so later bearing the same name (it was recorded as such 1n 1725), which it would retain until 1782 when its name was changed to The Hop Pole Inn, the licencees at the time being John Axon and William Hassall. The inn was recorded as such in Cowdroy's Directory in 1789 when the licencee was still John Axon, apparently now alone.

Curiously, a second entry for the inn appears in this directory, giving the licencee as John George. The licencee in 1822-3 was Daniel Williams, in 1828 David Williams, between 1850 and 1860 (when it was called The Hop Pole Commercial Inn) Mrs Elizabeth Bell, in 1873 A. C. Lockwood, in 1898, Thomas Wooliscroft and in 1902 Jas. E Riley. By the time of our photograph, the place had reverted to the name of The Hop Pole Hotel, a "first class commercial and family hotel".

The first edition of Thomas Hughes' Stranger's Handbook to Chester (1870) refers to the Hop Pole as "a superior traveller's inn". In 1921, shares were offered for a proposed Scala cinema on the site of the inn- which was never built. The licence was withdrawn nontheless and the building became part of the premises of Stead & Simpson.

eastgate street view
A fine Edwardian postcard view of the Eastgate. The Hop Pole Hotel can be seen on the right

tobacconist advert next to hop pole hotel
Advertisment for a tobacconist's premises "adjoining the Hop Pole Inn"

Do you have any more information about this old pub?

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