Winteringham Inns & Pubs

Winteringham Local History and Genealogy

Winteringham’s Inns and Pubs

Bay Horse Inn Winteringham 2005

Did Dick Turpin stay at the Bay Horse?

Bay Horse Inn sign, WinteringhamVillage legend has it that Dick Turpin stayed at the Bay Horse ... could this possibly be true, or is it a village legend with no foundation?  Certainly it wasn’t on his legendary 15-hour ride from London to York as there is no evidence that he ever did this feat (though another highwayman apparently did!).

Turpin had turned to crime after being trained as a butcher, and his criminal career began close to London, and especially in Epping Forest.  He had numerous associates in his criminal activities, but after shooting one, he decided that things were too ‘hot’ in Epping Forest, and lived for a while at Long Sutton, in the south of Lincolnshire.  Suspicions of him being a horse thief, and rustler of other farm stock (at that time a crime punishable by hanging), he moved on again to Brough, and continued as a, seemingly respectable, horse dealer.  Many if not most of the horses he dealt in (he was actually stealing them and selling them ... sometimes even holding them for several months before selling them back to their original owners!) were in Lincolnshire.  So although it cannot be proved 100%, it is almost certain that Dick Turpin, now calling himself John Palmer, crossed from Brough to Winteringham very many times on the ferry.  It is equally as likely that he would sometimes have to wait at one of Winteringham’s village inns for the tides and weather to be right for crossing back to Brough.  And it was in Brough that he sealed his fate in October 1738 when he shot his landlord’s cockerel, being reported to the magistrate, who with some diligent detective work discovered his horse stealing.  The magistrate saw to it that he was taken to York as a prisoner and eventually hanged, not for murder, nor for being a highwayman ... but for stealing horses!

You can read more of Dick Turpin’s life at these websites ... York Castle Museum, Complete Newgate Calendar (University of Texas)Wikipedia

Ferry Boat Inn High Burgage Winteringham 1966Bay Horse Inn Gate End Winteringham 1966








Three Village Inns

Above, the Ferry Boat and the Bay Horse in the mid-sixties, below, the Waterside Inn (or Beer House) was a pub in the 19th century.

Waterside House (formerly Beerhouse) 1990


Ferry Boat Inn sign, WinteringhamSix Village Alehouses!

Almost 400 years ago there were no fewer than six pubs, inns and alehouses in the village!  These were probably called the Ferry Boat (or Ferry House), The Bay Horse, Waterside Inn, the Ship Inn, the Three Horse Shoes and the New Mown Hay.

By 1792 three alehouse licences to unnamed establishments were issued, and by 1823 there are records for the Ferry Boat (Ann James), the Bay Horse (William Bell) and the Three Horse Shoes (John Holmes).  By the time of White’s 1842 Directory the names of the Inns were the Bay Horse, The Ferry House, and the Ship!  If that were not confusing enough, it appears that the Bay Horse as we know it, was the original site of the Ferry Boat Inn - being purchased in 1818 by John Burkill and apparently renamed the Bay Horse ... hence if, as is likely, Dick Turpin stayed at the inn at Gate End, it would be known as the Ferry Boat at that time!

Another famous person to have stayed at one of the village Inns was Dr William Stukely in 1724.

The Ferry Boat and the Bay Horse were frequently the scenes of major village events and celebrations, and it was ironically the building of the Temperance Hall, in 1882, which saw many of these functions taken to that building in West End.  The Court Leet was often held at the Ferry Boat, including one occasion in October 1827, as were many of the meetings concerning the enclosure of Winteringham and the buildings of the Haven drain, the banks, the clough, and the roads in the 1790s.

Guests who have stayed at the Bay Horse

(in date order)
Dr Stukely, Historian

Dick Turpin, Highwayman, and Horse Thief (see article, left)

James McMahon, Ordnance Survey, 1851 ( see here)

Lord Noel Buxton
(After walking across the Humber for a “wash and brush up.” 1953

Bay Horse
1842 William Bell
1851 William Bell
1856 William Bell
1861 William Bell
1861 William Bell
1868 William Bell
1885 Robert Bell
1889 Elizabeth Hatter
1901 Goodman John E
1905 Goodman John E
1909 Goodman John E
1919 John W Birkinshaw

Ferry Boat Inn
1842 Ann  James (“Ferry House”)
1851 William Kendall
1856 William Kendall (“Ferry House”)
1861 William Parker (“Ferry House”)
1861 census - see “Ship Inn”
1868 John Slater (“Ferry House”)
1885 Robert Cook Thornton (“Ferry Boat Inn”)
1889 Robert Cook Thornton (“Ferry Boat Inn”)
1901 Walter T Thornton
1905 Walt. Thos. Thornton (“Ferry Boat Inn”)
1909 James Sharpe (“Ferry Boat Inn”)
1919 Mary E Field (“Ferry Boat Inn”)


1842 Thomas Ogg

1861 William Parker


Waterside Beerhouse
1842 John Waddingham
1851 John Waddingham
1856 John Waddingham
1861 John Waddingham
1861 John Waddingham
1868 John Waddingham









The above lists are from Directories and Censuses of Winteringham.  Intriguingly, the 1861 census lists William Parker as Innkeeper at the Ship (in the area where the Ferry Boat Inn is), whilst the 1861 Post Office Directory of the same year states that he is at the “Ferry House”.

Mary Field’s husband was killed in the Great War, and is remembered on the village War Memorial.  See the Remembrance page.

Ferry Boat Inn, High Burgage, Winteringham

A 19th Century Poem about the Ferry Boat, supplied by Geoff Greaves

Ferry Boat Inn
Travellers called here long ago,
To dine and rest, then tell the tale,
Until the tinkle of a bell,
That let them know the time to sail

Then on they went down Ferry Lane,
To try another Ferry boat,
And cross the Humber once again
By oar and sail that made her float.


James McMahon - Guest at the Bay Horse in 1851

James McMahon was responsible for much of the Ordnance Survey work that underpins the maps produced of the village for 150 years after his visit!  So, when we look at maps of the village, think of the man who put in much of the leg-work!  Here, Linda Griffiths tells us about the man who was a guest at the Bay Horse when the Census of 1851 was taken ....

James McMahon
by Linda Griffiths

James McMahon was born in Killeevan, County Monaghan, Ireland in 1827. He was the son of John McMahon, a carpenter. In 1847 on 25 January, aged 19 and 6 months, he joined the Royal Corps of the Sappers and Miners. James spent his time with the Sappers and Miners working on the Ordnance Survey, which, during this period, was engaged in completing the first edition "Old Series" maps of Britain, and as such he travelled around the country.

James was listed as a soldier in both the 13th and 16th Companies. He was listed as a Private serving with a detachment under Captain John Bailey, Royal Engineers based in York. This was a mixed detachment made up of soldiers from three separate companies and James was listed as being a soldier with the 16th Company which were based in Southampton.

In April, 1851 he was at Winteringham, where he stayed at the Inn on Lower Burgage moving on to Barton in May, the town where his future wife lived. From Barton he moved to York.

In January 1852 he received an increment in his pay for Good Conduct for having completed 5 years and 5 days service after the age of 18. January and February he was on duty in Huddersfield and back in York in March.

His marriage certificate, 13 May 1852 tells us he was now a Corporal attached to the Hull Corps of Sappers and Miners. The marriage was solemnized in Hull, Holy Trinity. Not surprisingly, as he was never resident in one place for any length of time, he was married by licence. His bride was Hannah Morris, a schoolteacher and daughter of Ann and John Morris of Barton.

In April 1857 is again listed as a Corporal and his trade given a carpenter and was stationed in Downpatrick, Co Down, Ireland and apart from a brief period in Belfast in September he remained in Downpatrick for some time remaining there when the rest of the company depot had moved to Perth. It was while he was in Downpatrick that his son, Frederick John McMahon, was born on 12 December 1858.

By December 1866 James was back with the 13th Company Royal Engineers in Dublin as a Sergeant. Sadly, in the "Return of the Non-Commissioned Officers and Men of the 13th Company" we learn that Sergeant James McMahon died 16 December 1866. His next of kin is given as his wife Hannah McMahon then living at Chapelizod, on the outskirts of Dublin, County Dublin. A note tells us he left 62 8s 11d (approximately 62. 45) in the Savings Bank. Though the sum appears modest by modern standards it should be remembered that a corporals daily pay as in the 1861 muster was just 2s 2 1/2d (11p) per diem and that of a sergeant 2s 10 1/2 d (14p) per diem. As James had both wife and possibly more than one child to support the sum represents considerable savings.

Hannah returned to England and on the 1871 census is living with Frederick in Barton. Sadly she died in May 1871 at Bellview Terrace, Barton. Her grave can be found in Barton Cemetery.

The photograph shows James in the uniform, not Dress uniform, of a Colour Sergeant. It would be strange to have had a photograph taken as such as the Dress uniform would be more intricate. The answer lies in the "Reasons for absence at the respective musters". It can be seen that the company's Colour Sergeant was in Southampton and of the 9 sergeants James McMahon was the only one present at the company headquarters and as such he would have been "Acting Colour Sergeant". The photograph was probably taken in Dublin just prior to his death.


To the Editor of the (Stamford) Mercury
from Val Peill

To the EDITOR of the MERCURY
Sir,_In last week's Mercury, there appears in the Brigg news a paragraph unduly reflecting upon the management of my house, the Bay Horse Inn.  I trust to your sense of fairness to allow me by this letter to give the statement there made my unqualified denial.  This house has been in the possession of my family upwards of 100 years, and has always borne a good name amongst commercial and other travellers.  Allow me further to say, if the two gentlemen (?) who complain of gruff treatment at my house are the two who some two months ago drove into my yard, brought their own horse feed with them, joined in the house at one small glass of brandy, and then, after some hours, drove away conveniently forgetting to pay the ostler, that for the future I hope they will take their valuable custom elsewhere.

Yours truly, Wm. Bell
Bay Horse Inn,
Nov. 2, 1874

Moor and Robsons Brewery (which also owned the two maltkilns in the village at one time) sent the bill below to Mr E W Field at the Ferry Boat in, in October 1915.  The next month, Elias was mortally wounded when the Lincolnshire Regiment, aboard the Mercian, was shelled by a German submarine in the Mediterranean.  For more accounts, click here.

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Have you tried the other Winteringham Websites?
Winteringham, Parish Council (includes current news items, photographs, weather forecasts, calendar of events, etc etc) Don Burton World of Nature Photo Archive (modern photographs of the village), What the Papers have said about Winteringham (since July 2004), High Resolution Historical Photographs, Winteringham Film Archive, Winteringham Football Club, Winteringham Nature Site, Winteringham Recipes, Winteringham Sales, Winteringham Camera Club, Winteringham Village Hall, Winteringham Chapel

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