The Grosvenor Hotel

41 The High Street

High Street Research Team

The Grosvenor Hotel built shortly after the railway came to Wivenhoe
John Stewart - Wivenhoe Memories Collection
Coronation Parade going past the Grosvenor Hotel in 1911
Nottage Maritime Institute 04329.23a
The Grosvenor Hotel celebrating the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953
Photo: Helen Douzier

High Street Trail index – click here

The Grosvenor was built in 1865 by John Eade soon after the railway arrived here.  It was an obvious place for commercial travellers from London to stay.  It is thought that the name Grosvenor was chosen because it is the family name of the Dukes of Westminster and so sounds superior.

In 1900 it had a flagpole like many pubs in the heyday of the Empire. We know that Henry Bow was the landlord about this time and had his name written in large letters on the front of the building.

There are many rumours about the pub including that the cellar was haunted and that upstairs there was a brothel, which isn’t surprising as Wivenhoe was a busy port with lots of sailors. (See the two girls looking from an upstairs window).

It was often referred to in later years as the Shipwright’s pub – not to be confused with the Shipwright’s Arms which was a pub in West Street which was on corner of the road which is now called Shipwrights, taking its name after the pub.

In May 1937, it was decorated with flags to celebrate the Coronation of George VI.

In its later years, one of the doorways was changed to a window and, as it was in a good position, the men would sit on the diagonal window sill which looks up & down the High Street and down Station Road so they could see all that was happening.  It is said spikes were put on the sill but that did not deter men from congregating on that corner.

Read more about The Grosvenor in its later years – click here

High Street Trail index – click here

Sources:

  • “Wivenhoe Pubs” by Peter Kay
  • “Sea Change, Wivenhoe Remembered”, Paul Thompson
  • “Wivenhoe, Its Attractions, Pleasures and Eccentrics”, Dick Barton

 

This page was added on 01/08/2018.

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