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Coventry Arms, 1 Smithford Street

Alternative Addresses:Broadgate
These premises have been known by different names during their history:FROMTONAME
1868?BOARD, Broadgate
18741898SPIRIT VAULTS, 1 Smithford Street
18931903BOARD, 1 Smithford Street
19031929COVENTRY ARMS, Smithford Street / Broadgate
Photo The Coventry Coat of Arms was the Elephant and Castle. This pub was the BOARD before it became the Coventry Arms. Broadgate was widened in 1820 and most of its medieval buildings were demolished. The building that became the Coventry Arms is thought to date from then. However, the Coventry Arms itself was demolished in 1929, when it was found to have a spacious vaulted 14th century cellar, decorated medieval fireplaces and much of the building was thought to date from the 16th or 17th century. Like many Coventry buildings, all this was hidden behind a more recent facade. The National Provincial Bank next door was also demolished and both buildings were replaced by a much larger National Provincial Bank,which still stands on Broadgate. The Coventry Arms was known locally as the 'Swinging Arms', not from any sexual proclivity, as might be expected today, but because it had wild-west style swinging doors! William Harrison, who kept the pub from 1893 to 1903, would not open on a Sunday.


1868 - 1874 John Dell 1886 - 1893 Wine & Spirit Merchant licensee W. Threadwell 1894 Lucas, Blackwell and Arkwright, brewers, manager William Harrison 1898 - 1903 Lucas & Co, brewers, manager William Harrison 1905 - 1909 W. Newman 1910 - 1924 Thomas Strong 1926 - 1929 E. Reynolds
Coventry Arms
Street plan of 1893
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