Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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The Original Inn

The Original Inn, Pier Street

The Old House
In 1894, what was without doubt, deemed as the oldest house in Ryde, that was occupied for so many years by the late Mrs Parsons, in Pier Street, was shortly to be pulled down to give place to more pretentious modern premises.  The house was said, by those best competent to give an opinion, to be at least two hundred years old.

The Cluitt and Parsons family had lived there the better part of the century, and it was very old when they went into it.  Many persons expressed the opinion that it would have been better if the brewers who had purchased the old place had left its exterior as it was, and only improved its internal accommodation.  They believed that such a venerable looking place, with its moss-grown roof, its little windows, and its shop entered by going down several steps, was far more likely to attract curiosity and attention of the visitor, standing as it did surrounded by modern buildings, than a new structure would be likely to do.

Mr F. Parsons left the building in 1894 and said that it had been inhabited quite long enough, and that it was in such a dilapidated condition that it would have been a difficult task to patch it up, for when this was once attempted it would be difficult to know when to stop.  He doubted whether it could have been originally built for a living house, since all the interior was simply wood, only the outer walls being substantial.

At all events, the house, being almost the last relic of old Lower Ryde, its demolition was a matter which could not fail to interest old inhabitants, who had perhaps spent pleasant hours there, or remember the genial people who used to keep it.

This building opened as a pub around 1845 and was called the Original Inn, but by 1866 it became Cluitt’s Refreshment Rooms (with license).  In February 1894, the license of the Original Inn, Pier Street, lately held by Dorothy Ann Parson, deceased, was transferred to her son, Mr. F. Parsons.

By 30 June 1894 the building had been demolished, and the local press related that the Ryde beach was once where Pier Street now runs, is evident from the subsoil which is being dug out in making the foundation for the new house, which is now being erected where the Original Inn once stood.  It is all sand and shingle of recent formation.

The King Lud, Pier Street, Ryde

On 29 Sept 1894 the press again stated, that the house which replaces the old “Original Inn,” Pier Street, is rapidly approaching completion, and is generally regarded as a very handsome addition to the street.  The only objection we have heard is that the appearance of the premises would have been greatly improved had the rooms in the first storey been higher.  The builders have had to struggle against damp in the basement, the cellars being below high water and the subsoil gravel.  They have, however, successfully overcome this difficulty by a liberal use of concrete.

On 13 April 1895 The license of The Original Inn, Pier Street, was transferred from John Brickwood (Brewer) to Francis H. Daltrey and then in July 1895 to Lydia Bennett.  Before the end of the 19th century the name of the new building had been changed to the King Lud.

Sources: IW Observer, IW County Press, RSHG Archive
Images: RSHG Archive Roy Brinton Collection
Article: Ann Barrett