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Pub History Research - where to start.

I would welcome additional articles if you fancy writing a page. Any area can be covered, although most of my research is in London and the South East.

Research into Pub history is  interesting. Where to start is always the first question  :

I have begun a series of useful articles on pub history research, particularly in London  - see

A bit of knowledge of early Pub legislation is always useful - see the LMA guide ; this basically states that you need to search the Petty Sessions Victuallers records if you can get to the relevant record office.

Trade Directories are invaluable, although often slightly out of date. Census are a fantastic tool, and often list the sign name outside a beer retailer. Other times they do not list a Licensed Victuallers premises by name. I list a whole host of other resources on this page; and do not forget to look at maps to spot the road name changes. The BT Telephone directories are rather useful too (see Ancestry link at top).

Lastly, this site covers most of the South of England. Try the search engine (at the top of every page) and search either by surname, Pub name or street address. The engine also searches various other sites that I run, e.g.,,  etc. The sites only improve by you feeding back with useful information and pictures for the sites. This is not just a historical Pub site, but also a historical street directory. Enjoy.

1 I have begun a series of useful articles on pub history research, particularly in London  - see

1a Essex Record Office SEAX database, which is an amazing search engine. And do follow the links in the navigation to all Pub History on this site, including London, Essex, Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Middlesex, Oxfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Berkshire, Suffolk etc.

2a. The London Gazette Online has an archive, which is absolutely amazing; I just do not have the time to peruse all of the great information - please let me know if you find something useful for the site, please.

2b. I get email from all sorts of old pub sites, this is one of the better ones, the Dead Pubs Society - I enjoyed visiting it.

2c. The Pub History Society was set up to bring together anyone interested in the British pub and its history. Visit out site to find out more.

2e The Old Bailey online - excellent resource, with lots of Pubs included in the cases.

4. A brilliant site for viewing the early Trade Directories of much of England is at the University of Leicester digital library. The project has completed, but the array of information available to search and download is very impressive. The site can not always be guaranteed to respond, so be patient, it is a very busy site. The site covers the whole of England, and is amazing.

4a. Never ignore the Genuki site listings, they are sometimes hard to find your way about - but not the London Listing @ - a brilliant & updated page. there are lots of similar links to here, and much other useful info too.

What I am now attempting to achieve is the coverage of an earlier London street directory in 1832. This is unique, plus images of the 1842 Robsons directory which confirm earlier entries and also carry much more trade detail about a premises or person. Here is the index of streets in 1832, many with 1842 imagery added.
And next is the complete 1940 London street directory - this will take some months to complete, so bear with me!

London pub history directory.

LONDON Pub History

London Street Listings in 1832.

1832 Index

London street listings in 1842

1842 Index

London Street Listings in 1818 - mainly A and B.

London public houses in 1833 Pigots.

Entire London Street Listing in 1843 - by surname.

London public houses in 1856.

London public houses in 1869.

London public houses in 1899

London 1921 Street directory in 1921

London 1940 Street directory 1940

London Pubs in 2018