Greater Manchester - Gorton

A historic pub interior of national importance

Listed Status: II

927 Hyde Road
M18 7FB

Tel: (0161) 223 9671




Real Ale: Yes

Nearby Station: Ryder Brow

Station Distance: 500m

Public Transport: Near Railway Station (Ryder Brow) and Bus Stop

Bus: Yes

View on: Whatpub

A basic. but friendly, drinkers’ pub of red brick with some terracotta details, whose layout is virtually unaltered since the building was constructed in 1893. The main entrance leads to a black and white floored corridor/drinking lobby with lots of lovely green tiling in the dado. To the right is the vault which is a splendid example of a late- Victorian public bar. It has a particularly elaborate bar counter, a fine bar-back in a loosely Jacobean style, and plain, bare bench seating with raked back-rests. The corridor leads on to what is now termed the snug (rear) and lounge (front left) which have historic features such as bell-pushes. The pool room has been stripped of any historic interest. On the side road is a doorway to the former off-sales compartment and upstairs is a meeting room. Owners Robinsons of Stockport undertook an excellent refurbishment in 2013, two of the many merits of which were the removal of the modern pot-shelf on the counter and the clearing of the off-sales area to reveal its original appearance. Listed in 1994 following a pilot study of Greater Manchester pubs by CAMRA for English Heritage.

The Plough is a basic drinkers pub that is intact since remodelled in 1893 and includes a central lobby with a tiled dado and one of the UK's great public bars (called 'Vault' in this part of the country). There is also a bar parlour, smoke room, pool room, all off the central hall, plus a side passage in Wellington St leading to a disused off-sales hatch, and an upstairs meeting room.

In 2013 the pub received a model refurbishment enhancing the original fittings, removing ugly 1960/70s additions, opening up fireplaces once again and adding a patio area to attract new customers – the result has been a noticeable increase in trade turning a pub considered ‘uneconomic’ to one performing very well.

At the front right is the Vault with a very richly-carved bar counter with foliated consoles including grapes motifs. The bar back is in an ornate Jacobean style with mirrors - some are replacements, and there are no changes to incorporate fridges, which are sensibly positioned to the side. In the middle bay of the bar back where the modern till is now situated look for the two coin holders that now store coin bags. In 2013 the ugly canopy / pot shelf added in the 1970s was removed so it is now possible to view the glory of the bar back fitting. The fixed seating all around the room is of the unadulterated bare bench type seen in Victorian times with match-board backs and no cushions or padding added - very rare - and at one end is an ornate lobby screen or draught screen. Note how the bench below the dart board has suffered from damage by stray arrows. The room has a ceiling of two sections with a plaster cornice and frieze with swags, a parquet floor added later. In the 1960/70s the original fireplace was removed and replaced by a radiator; in 2013 the radiator was replaced by a Victorian-style fireplace which houses a log fire in winter.

Interior lobby has a black and white tiled floor and a dado of mainly green tiles. Double swing doors with decorative glazing, one with a figure '2' on it, lead to a hall with black and white mosaic floor of geometric design, and a lovely dado of dark green glazed tiles with decorative panels including floral patterns in pale blue and cream which continue up stairwell. For service to the rooms off the lobby there is a hatch with vertically hung sliding sashes (sealed in an open position many years ago), margin lights with Victorian coloured and textured glass, and a split door to the servery for staff.

To the left is a door (it did have a number '3' on it which is missing following a repainting in 2013) leading into the Bar Parlour (now called the ‘lounge’). It still retains its original fixed upholstered seating (recently re-covered) with bell-pushes above all around the room, one draught screen near the door (another has been removed in recent years), a plaster cornice and frieze with swags. The original fireplace was removed some time ago and replaced by a radiator; in 2013 the radiator was replaced in 2013 by a Victorian-style fireplace which houses a log fire in winter.

At the rear left a door (it did have a number '4' on it which is missing following a repainting in 2013) leads to the snug (originally the Smoke Room) again with original fixed seating, bell pushes all the way around and an ornate carved draught screen by the door. The original fireplace was removed some time ago and in 2013 an inter-war fireplace from another pub was added, but it is not usable.

A doorway to the rear right leads into a room clearly brought into public use in modern times and now the games room. There is a tiny hatch for service to the back of the servery, a draught screen with leaded panel in the top, which has been brought from another pub. At the end of the passage are new toilets brought inside 2004, but not affecting the historic parts.

If you take a look through the door in the corner of the public bar you will see the intact Outdoor Department or Off Sales. It has a locked entrance door on Wellington Street and a figure '8' on the inner door with a still working hatch with gas light fitting above. It has a black and white tiled floor, there is more good green tiled dado with floral panels and a sliding hatch to the side of the servery. This area is now used for storage. Note the figure '5' on the cellar door. Former first floor meeting room has original fireplaces. The side windows retain their original etched panels but the main front windows have been replaced with plain glass.

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