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Days Gone By - Raising a glass to Ipswich’s Feathers Hotel and Sorrel Horse

PUBLISHED: 19:00 14 March 2017

The Feathers Hotel at the corner of Westgate Street, Ipswich, with Kershaws the tobacconists next door. This photograph was taken in 1949 when William Beckerleg was the landlord.

The Feathers Hotel at the corner of Westgate Street, Ipswich, with Kershaws the tobacconists next door. This photograph was taken in 1949 when William Beckerleg was the landlord.

Dave Kindred

Recalling lost public houses, inns and taverns often sparks memories and debates and this week readers have been remembering two of Ipswich’s Watering holes.

The landlord and landlady of the Sorrel Horse, Ipswich, Eric Jim and Pam Sharman and their full-time assistant, Irene Marjoram The landlord and landlady of the Sorrel Horse, Ipswich, Eric Jim and Pam Sharman and their full-time assistant, Irene Marjoram

The Feathers Hotel stood at the junction of Westgate Street and Lady Lane. It was the site of the Three Feathers dating back to 1528, which stood just outside the town’s West Gate. The gate was demolished in the 1780s. Reader Dave Ashford has recalled the tobacconists shop that stood next door until the 1960s.

Another reader sent a 1974 cutting from the Evening Star featuring the Sorrel Horse in Fore Street, Ipswich, which intriguingly had a “Tunnel of Love”.

The Sorrel Horse stood at the junction of Grimwade Street and Fore Street, and closed in 1975.

Bill Peck and John Sharman enjoying a pint at the Sorrel Horse, Ipswich, in December 1974. Bill Peck and John Sharman enjoying a pint at the Sorrel Horse, Ipswich, in December 1974.

The building was thought to have been a private, possibly farmhouse, that became an inn during the 17th Century.

During coaching days it had stable accommodation.

This 1974 photograph was taken from Grimwade Street. The area was developed and is know called Sorrel Horse Mews.

The Sorrel Horse  stood at the junction of Grimwade Street and Fore Street. The building was thought to have been a private, possibly farmhouse, that became an inn during the 17th Century. This 1974 photograph was taken from Grimwade Street. The Sorrel Horse stood at the junction of Grimwade Street and Fore Street. The building was thought to have been a private, possibly farmhouse, that became an inn during the 17th Century. This 1974 photograph was taken from Grimwade Street.

Eric ‘Jim’ and Pam Sharman took over as landlord and landlady of the Sorrel Horse from Eric’s grandfather who had been licensee since 1922.

Eric was born and spent his childhood there.

In 1974 he said: “This is a family house.”

Ladies enjoying an evening out at the Sorrel Horse, Ipswich, in December 1974. Ladies enjoying an evening out at the Sorrel Horse, Ipswich, in December 1974.

His father John ‘Jack’ visited the pub every lunch hour and Eric’s sister “Rene” had helped behind the bar for 18 years.

Do you have memories of the Feathers or the Sorrel Horse? Email David Kindred with your memories.

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