British Oak

West Midlands - Birmingham

A historic pub interior of national importance

Listed Status: II

1364 Pershore Road
Birmingham, Stirchley
B30 2XS

Tel: (0121) 458 1758

Email: bookingsbritishoak@gmail.com

Website http://www.britishoakstirchley.co.uk/

Real Ale: Yes

Real Cider: Yes

Lunchtime Meals: Yes

Evening Meals: Yes

Nearby Station: Bournville

Station Distance: 300m

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

Bus: Yes

View on: Whatpub

Designed for Mitchells & Butlers by prolific pub architects James & Lister Lea and built in 1923-4, this large brick pub has an asymmetrical frontage in a 17th-century domestic style, behind which are no less than five substantially intact public rooms. Double doors in the centre lead into a lobby with tiled dado, behind which is the large public bar with a terrazzo floor, original fixed seating and oak bar counter. Sadly the bar-back now suffers from yellowish paint. Front left, the narrow lounge (formerly ‘gents only’) has its original fireplace and panelling, fixed seating with bell-pushes and a couple of baffles. The assembly room at the rear has a parquet floor, marble fireplace and small hatch to the servery. Also at the back is the smoke room with an alcove, wall-panelling to two-thirds height, and a three-sided servery (but is the latter original?). Finally, back to the front of the pub, where the right-hand room again has its original fireplace and seating. Both gents’ toilets have their original tiling, as has the ladies’ on the right. The attached bowling green is still in regular use. Listed in 1998 following a pilot study of Birmingham pubs by CAMRA for English Heritage.

An excellent, largely intact example of Birmingham's large inter-war pubs, in this case built in 1923-4 to designs by James & Lister Lea (probably Mr Brassington) for Mitchells & Butlers. Behind the slightly asymmetrical frontage are no less than five rooms and a very much used bowling green. New management in 2004 has led to the uncovering of the public bar and assembly room floors, restoration of the original fireplaces, and the opening of a link on the left of the public bar to the 'Gents' Only' lounge to bring the room into greater use - it was disused for many years. Unfortunately the wide openings cut in the dividing walls either side of the former off sales have been implemented rather crudely, and spoils that end of the bar.

The front main double doors lead into a lobby with an inter war tiled dado. In the centre is a large public bar with a terrazzo floor and an original light oak high bar counter. The relatively plain original light oak bar back fitting remains but it was painted yellow in 2004 to follow the current trend for modern bright colours rather than dull dark 'old' colours. The original fixed seating remains but painted white and there are baffles as you enter. There was an off sales where the present ladies toilet is on the left.

At the front on the left side is the former Gents' Only lounge with panelling, original fixed seating newly re-upholstered and two good baffles. This narrow room has a 1920s brick and good wood surround fireplace with arch shaped decoration above and a strip of panelling above the fixed seating which includes bell pushes from the days of table service. The gents here are intact with terrazzo floor, 1920s tiled wall, two urinals and sink.

Double doors at the rear lead to the Assembly Room on the left now used for dining and overlooking the rear garden. This large room has a parquet floor, fine nine sectioned ceiling, original wood surround fireplace with a modern interior, and a small hatch to the back of the servery with an old dumb waiter alongside. Note the bell pushes unusually placed in the dado panelling. At the rear there is a patio which has been covered over in recent years - on the left hand side of the garden is a six-bay curved loggia with seating, and beyond the garden is the bowling green.

Double doors lead to the rear Smoke Room with an attractive small screened three-sided servery, which has lost its lower rising panels. It retains an original counter, original fixed seating with modest baffles, wood panelling to two-thirds height with good plaster decoration above the panelling and on the ceiling, and a 1920s brick and wood surround fireplace. The gents off the rear smoke room is intact. The ladies has a carpet over the terrazzo floor and original wall tiles.

The front smoke room (now the 'Penn Lounge') on the right has a door with the figure '8' on it and original fixed seating re-upholstered with a strip of panelling above having bell pushes. This narrow room has an original brick and wood surround fireplace with a mirror in the mantelpiece above and a small counter to the side of the servery.

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