I have access to some amazing secondary local sources. And access to people who have access to many primary sources concerning the history of this area in the 17th and 18th centuries.
We were infamous! Even Scotland Yard despaired!
The image above is a drawing of how the town was in the 17/1800’s, at the height of the World Famous Horse Fair in town.
Austrian and Prussian Cavalry used to come here to buy their horses, many of which had been brought over from Ireland.
Of all the pubs and taverns and beer houses on the map above – several still remain.
Starting top left :
The Reindeer is now a private home. The Crown is a pub and so is the Fighting Cocks (We used to live one door away. On the corner and behind the Cock’s was the local blacksmith’s forge where the horses were shoed for show.)
The Black Swan, King’s Head (known locally as The Thatch because it’s…still thatched)The Ship, The Bull, The Red Lion, The Punch House,The New Inn (now called Old Nick’s and owned by mates) The Rodney and the Angel are all still hostelries/pubs/taverns.
Amazing. And a total contradiction to many ongoing theories about historical buildings, methinks :o)