Red Lion

West Midlands - Birmingham

A historic pub interior of national importance

This pub is currently closed (since 01/01/2007)

UPDATE April 2017: Despite being Grade II-star listed, the pub has suffered from a lack of maintenance and care for many years; it closed in 2008 and is considered 'at risk'. Latest information is that it is likely to reopen as a restaurant, not a pub. It failed to sell at auction in October 2014 but the owner claimed that people were still viewing the pub and talks were taking place. The Council had inspected the interior and found no unauthorised works.

Reported sold October 2016. Despite being Grade II-star listed, the pub has suffered from a lack of maintenance and care for many years; it closed in 2008 and is considered 'at risk'. Latest information is that it is likely to reopen as a restaurant, not a pub. It failed to sell at auction in October 2014 but the owner claimed that people were still viewing the pub and talks were taking place. The Council had inspected the interior and found no unauthorised works. Historic England At Risk register for 2015 SITE NAME: The Red Lion Public House, Soho Road, Birmingham DESIGNATION: Listed Building grade II* CONDITION: Fair OCCUPANCY: Vacant/not in use PRIORITY CATEGORY: C (C) OWNER TYPE: Commercial company LIST ENTRY NUMBER: 1276278 Public house, 1901-2 by James & Lister Lea for the Holt Brewery Company. Built of red brick with terracotta facade, the building is of unusual richness and completeness with interior detailing comparable with best surviving examples nationally. Leaking roofs have caused significant problems; pigeons occupy upper floors. A new owner undertook urgent works, including repairs to roof, and gained Listed Building Consent for re-use as a public house restaurant. However works have not been carried out and building is for sale/lease again since 2014. Condition is deteriorating. Contact: Katriona Byrne 0121 625 6858.

Listed Status: II*

270 Soho Road
Birmingham, Handsworth
B21 9LX

Tel: (0121) 554 5159

Nearby Station: The Hawthorns

Station Distance: 1850m

Public Transport: Near Railway Station (The Hawthorns) and Bus Stop

Bus: Yes

View on: Whatpub

Built in 1901, it retains a spectacular interior including floor–to-ceiling tiles in passages, ornate bar fittings, four tiled paintings, and panelled ‘coffee room’. There was a pub on this site in 1829. It was bought up by Holt's Brewery in 1893 and rebuilt eight years later to the designs of James & Lister Lea. This magnificent pub was threatened with demolition in the 1980s to make way for road improvements, but fortunately survived and is still with us. The extravagant exterior is in two shades of terracotta. The interior consists of a superb tiled hall and staircase on the right; a fabulous public bar stretches across the full width of the frontage; a tiled passage on the left leading to the Smoke Room; and a little used Coffee Room.

The narrow public bar retains its original bar counter and a magnificent bar back of mahogany and gilded, painted and etched mirrors featuring Holt Brewery lettering and squirrel motifs, which was incorporated into Ansells symbol when they took over Holt Brewery in 1934. The original bench seating along the window side remains and above timbered dados are superb cream, green, blue and gold wall tiles by Minton. On the left side of the pub the passage to the smoke room is particularly fine and has a colourful quarry tiled floor with a disused off sales hatch to the bar.

The door to the Smoke Room has a good panel of etched and gilded glass and inside are large framed lithographs - 3 on the left hand side wall, one either side of the fire and another near the hatch to back of the servery. This little used room retains its original fixed bench seating (in need of repair), with service bells, stained and leaded windows and old gas lamp fitting but it has lost its fireplace. On the right is a superb staircase hall, beautifully tiled throughout mainly in cream and turquoise and is lit by stained glass windows. Upstairs function room with etched windows?

On the rear right hand side the Coffee Room (again little used) has dark wood panelling all around the walls and framed engravings of paintings 'The Village Wedding', 'Shamrock' (dogs), 'Rannoch Moor', 'Thistle' (more dogs), 'The Mountain Pool' (Bison) - 9 in total, and service bells. There is a tiled and wood surround fireplace with bevelled mirror in the wood surround, original fixed bench seating, 'Coffee Room' in frosted and etched window in the door and a hatch to back of the servery.

Despite being Grade II-star listed, the pub has suffered from a lack of maintenance and care for many years; it closed in 2008 and is considered 'at risk'. Latest information is that it is likely to reopen as a restaurant, not a pub.

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