History of the White Swan pub

The White Swan, Worksop
The White Swan, Worksop

THIS week’s Archive Corner picture was sent in by Guardian reader David Gower, of Monmouth Road, Worksop.

It shows the White Swan Inn, on Cheapside, Worksop, in 1987.

The pub’s history goes much further back than that though.

This building was completed by James Hole, of Newark, in 1925 at a cost of £2,200 on the site of the old early 19th century inn, which was a historic part of Worksop’s industrial and prosperous commercial past.

In 1835 it adjoined the chair-making factory of Isaac Allsop and Son, who made hand-turned Windsor chairs and stools, for which Worksop was famous.

Mr Allsop had his factory when he was just 30 and was also the owner of the White Swan and inn keeper as well in 1844, combining the two jobs and offering sustenance to his 13-strong workforce.

He continued to prosper with his younger brother William until 1871 when poor health caused the business to be transferred to his son Alex.

The running of the beer house was entrusted to tenants.

In 1885 Mr Hole had just founded his Castle Brewery and news of the vacant Worksop property reached him through the trade. He bought it in 1887.

One of the White Swan’s many interesting customers was a circus bear from the Bracebridge Circus in 1984 out for a walk with its trainer who both drank some John Smith beer.