Malt Shovel

Derbyshire - Derby

A historic pub interior of national importance

Listed Status: II

Potter Street
Derby, Spondon
DE21 7LH

Tel: (01332) 674203

Real Ale: Yes

Real Cider: Yes

Lunchtime Meals: Yes

Evening Meals: Yes

Nearby Station: Spondon

Station Distance: 900m

Public Transport: Near Railway Station (Spondon) and Bus Stop

Bus: Yes

View on: Whatpub

This largely 18th-century red-brick building houses an impressive, traditional multi-room pub with off-sales, drinking passageway and three other public rooms. The snug is especially interesting, being formed by a full-height, part-glazed curved partition wall with seating attached - one of very few such spaces to survive (the Holly Bush Inn, Makeney, above being another). Like the corridor, it has a red and black quarry-tiled floor. The small room further down the corridor has old movable benches. On the right, the lounge is unusual in being accessed across a corner of the servery but otherwise contains little of heritage interest. The large Tudor or Long Room at the front was in use by 1939, though the Tudorisation was mostly done after 1960. The various rooms are identified by letters on the doors, rather than the customary numbers. The kitchen occupies the former brewhouse which ceased activity in 1918.

A late 18th / early 19th century red brick building. A pub that has resisted changes – indeed previous owners Ken & Barbara Littleproud bought the pub from Bass in 1992 to stop them ruining the unspoilt interior. This late 18th or early 19th century red brick pub retains its original floor plan of off-sales, drinking passageway with bar, rare partitioned snug, a small lounge that you can now only access by walking through part of the servery and a separate snug. Go up a short flight of steps to the front door and beyond it is the (now disused) off sales hatch. The quarry tiled passage that runs to the rear has a bar counter with panelled front that is not easy to date and has a copper top. The existence of old shelves on the walls indicates passageway drinking and the bar back consists of old shelving.

The star here is the snug on the left of the passage created by a floor to ceiling part glazed curved partition wall. There are very few rooms like this left in the whole of the UK. It has a red and black quarry tiled floor with bench seating attached to it and the walls; a tiled and marble effect fireplace from the 1920s and just two tables. Note the letter ‘B’ on the door – in the past licensing magistrates insisted on all rooms for public use be numbered but here, unusually, they use letters. (The cellar has a ‘D’ on it).

There are only a handful of similar rooms or snugs formed of two or more high backed settles left in the whole of the UK. They can be found at the following Heritage Pubs – the Holly Bush, Mackeney, Derbyshire; Green Dragon, Flaunden, Hertfordshire; Red Lion, Kenninghall, Norfolk; North Star, Steventon, Oxfordshire; Kings Head, Laxfield, Suffolk; Bell & Cross, Holy Cross, Worcestershire; Old White Beare, Norwood Green, West Yorkshire; Red Lion, Llansannan, North West Wales;; Crown, Snape, Suffolk;; Wheatsheaf, Raby, Merseyside;; Galway Arms, East Retford, Nottinghamshire;; and Anchor, High Offley, Staffordshire .

Further along on the left beyond a low doorway is the small tap room. It has a tiled and marble effect fireplace from the 1920s and benches which could date from the 1950/1960s. On the right a dog-leg in the passage past the cellar door and through the corner of the servery is the lounge with fixed seating possibly of the 1950s, which is the date of the brick fireplace. There is another door (now disused) which originally enabled customers to access the room from the passage near the front door. To get served you actually stand alongside bar staff in the servery. In 1990’s(?) the former barn was converted into two further rooms with bars and access is via a passage from near the tap room. The first is a small lounge called the ‘Tudor Room’ and beyond it a larger room with a full sized billiard table.

Other Heritage pubs still with full sized billiard tables are the Lamb, Eccles, Greater Manchester; and the Douglas Arms, Bethesda, North Wales.

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