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5th June 2017

Salisbury Heritage Open Days 7 – 10 September

Salisbury Civic Society and the Salisbury and South Wilts branch of CAMRA will be collaborating on a “Salisbury’s Historic Pubs and Inns” themed programme for the Heritage Open Days in September 2017.

Heritage Open Days is England’s largest festival of history and culture. It’s a chance for the public to see hidden places and try out new experiences.

The Salisbury’s Historic Pubs and Inns events will be a great opportunity to learn more about Salisbury’s fascinating pubs, history and architecture. All events are free although you must pre-book the tours as numbers are limited.

The events programme is as follows:

The Wyndham Arms: first home of Salisbury’s Historic Hop Back Brewery

The Hop Back brewery, whose beers include Summer Lightning one of the UK’s most awarded beers, started life 30 years ago at the Wyndham Arms in Salisbury. As part of a series of events to mark the 30th anniversary of the brewery, the Wyndham Arms and the Hop Back Brewery will have an exhibition to mark the occasion in the upstairs function room of the pub. There is also more to see on the history of the pub and the brewery throughout the downstairs area, plus the full range of Hop Back beers (including Summer Lightning) for you to taste. The Wyndham Arms is the local CAMRA branch pub of the year 2017.

Exhibition dates: Thursday 7th – Sunday 10th September upstairs function room Wyndham Arms

Salisbury Pub Heritage Walks

The Heritage Open Days in September will include short walking tours of Salisbury’s pub heritage. The centre of Salisbury once had over 70 pubs and there are more than 300 pub names associated with its historic buildings. Come hear the fascinating history of Salisbury’s existing pubs and its many lost pubs and inns from Ed Garman of CAMRA. The walks will include a refreshment stop on route.

Tours: Friday 8th Sept 5.30pm-7pm and Saturday 9th Sept 5.30pm-7pm. Places are limited to 14 per tour and must be pre-booked via Eventbrite at

Lost and Found: An Exhibition of Salisbury’s Historic Pubs and Inns

With the startling demise of many pubs local Salisbury artist Fred Fieber decided after years of aimless specialist research in darkened bars to capture Salisbury’s pubs in his drawings. Fred has now completed over 80 drawings of Salisbury’s lost and existing pubs. The Public Library, our venue for the exhibition, is on the site of one of Salisbury’s lost Inns – the Maidenhead Inn–but parts of its C15th roof and its C15th fireplace can still be found in Salisbury.

Copies of Fred’s drawings will be available for sale from the Library along with details of all the other events celebrating Salisbury’s historic pubs and Inns during the Heritage Open Days.

Exhibition dates: Saturday 2nd– Saturday 9th September ground floor Salisbury Public Library.

The Rai d’Or: unveiling by Phil Harding of a Blue Plaque commemorating Agnes Bottenham

At 12.15 on Thursday 7th September local archaeologist Phil Harding will be unveiling a Salisbury Civic Society Blue Plaque outside the Rai D’Or pub and restaurant dedicated to Agnes Bottenham, C14th publican and founder of nearby Trinity Hospital. Phil is well known for his appearances in Time Team and his support for the heritage and beer. The Rai D’Or is a listed C16th building in Salisbury (on the site of an earlier pub owned by Agnes Bottenham). In the Medieval period the area was the red-light district with Love Lane around the corner as the centre of the trade. The name ‘Rai d’Or ‘ meaning ‘ray of golden light’ was anglicised to ‘Rydedorre ‘ which was its name in the time of Agnes. Its current name is a reversion to the most original form of the pub name.

In search of Romano-British beer: a Heritage Open Day’s lecture at Salisbury Rugby Club

Come along and hear about the origins of our national drink on Thursday 7th September 7pm for a 7.30pm start at Salisbury Rugby Club. The bar will be open for refreshments. Alison Freezer will be talking about the evidence we have for beer in the Romano-British period.

In looking through modern secondary sources on beer in Britain during the Roman Empire a sort of consensus seems to arise: it was weak, did not keep long, and was made from barley.  But what if this is fake history and contradicted by contemporary sources such as the Vindolanda tablets and a miscellany of fragments preserved by a Greek speaking Roman from Egypt, as well as the archaeological record?  Can these sources serve as a basis for an attempt to be made to create a beer which might conceivably have been brewed on the edge of the Roman Empire in the early part of the first millennium? Alison will also review the latest evidence for a civilian beer culture in Roman London shortly after the Boudiccan revolt. There will also be time for a question and answer session.

Salisbury Rugby Club is the local CAMRA branch Club of the Year for 2017. Organised Club Rugby has been played in Salisbury since 1878, initially under the auspices of a Salisbury Football Club. A collection of signed rugby shirts exhibited in the Club shows the historic contribution of Salisbury club members to the professional and international teams.

The Haunch of Venison Pub Salisbury

This mid-C15th building is one of Salisbury’s most historic and atmospheric pubs and is listed in CAMRA’s National Inventory of Historic Pub Interiors.  Hidden away behind the upstairs restaurant and not normally accessible to the public, is the “Churchill bar” or Cloisters Bar and Grill where it is said that Winston Churchill and Ike Eisenhower took refreshment when staying at Wilton House and planning the invasion of Europe during WW II.  You will be able to visit this bar only during the Heritage Open Day tours.

Tours: dates and times Thursday 7th September 4.30pm-5pm, Friday 8th September4.30pm -5 pm. Places are limited to 12 per tour and must be pre-booked via Eventbrite at

The Former Three Crowns Inn Harnham

The former Three Crowns Inn now a family-run guesthouse, was a winner of a 2016 Conservation Award from the Salisbury Civic Society.  This partly C18th listed grade II building had been derelict for some years before its restoration. What made the conservation work standout was the rescue of some remarkable and elaborate C18th plasterwork within the buildings main room, now the guest house dining room. This plasterwork will be viewed during the tours.

Tours: Thursday 7th Sept 13.00 & 14.00; Friday 8th Sept 12.00, 13.00 & 14.00. Places are limited to 12 per tour and must be pre-booked via Eventbrite at


Further information

Neil Beagrie

Salisbury Civic Society/ Salisbury and South Wilts CAMRA


Tel: 01722 324925