Trowse Pubs – From 1656 to 2012


For such a small village, Trowse has a delightful history of pubs. Although only having two today, there has been many more over the years. So we’ll go on a little tour of Trowse to discover the pubs over the years.

In 1656, as you would enter Trowse from the city end, you’ll see one of the first pubs on the left where the current fire station is. Originally it was called The Swanne, but soon after it changed its name to The Pineapple, The Drovers (no doubt aiming to encourage the cattle drovers to pop in for a pint), back to The Pineapple, then to Drovers, then back to the Pineapple again for which it is most commonly known. The pub finally closed in 1985 and the stained glass windows (featuring pineapples) were purchased by Colin Keatley and presently runs the Fat Cat in Norwich.

Trowse Pineapple (formerly The Swanne, The Drovers)

Trowse Pineapple (formerly The Swanne, The Drovers)

Also in Trowse Millgate around 1656 were the following pubs:

  • The Angel (later called the Chequers)
  • The Rose and Crown (later called the Jolly Millers)
  • The Railway Tavern (later called the Railway Inn)
  • The Britannia

Coming over the bridge into Trowse Newton you see the May Gurney Offices on the left. On the left hand side of the building was a pub which was initially called The Carpenters Arms then the Harvey Arms, then the Oak, finally becoming the Royal Oak before it closed in 1967.

May Gurney Offices (previously home to Carpenters/Harvey Arms,Royal Oak)

May Gurney Offices (previously home to Carpenters/Harvey Arms,Royal Oak)

As you come into Trowse and turn left down Whittlingham Lane, just after the ski club you come across what used to be known as The Trowse Eye (now called Hythe Cottage, between Yare and Easter cottages). This had a dubious reputation for its ‘lockins’ and was closed down in 1870.

The Trowse Eye (now Hythe Cottage)

The Trowse Eye (now Hythe Cottage)

Further down Whittlingham Lane, close to the car park on the right, is the White House. Now a private house, the original proprietor operated a ferry across the river to Thorpe and used to be a stopping off point for visitors to see the Whittlingham Caves, experience the remarkable echo in the valley and the pleasure gardens. In Kelly’s directory, the White House was reported as having been destroyed by fire, but it was only the thatched roof that was lost.

Trowse White House (old and new)

Trowse White House, in the 1700s and in 2012

Coming back into Trowse, opposite the common is the White Horse. The original White Horse (also called the White Hart) was actually on the corner of the common, but this was demolished around between 1887 and 1914. There was another pub opposite the current White Horse called the Lime Kiln. In later years, there was another Lime Kiln pub standing where the private Crown House on Kirby Rd is currently.

In the 1760s there are also references to other pubs:

  • The Crown (no connection with the current Crown Point) which changes its name to The Rose and Crown, then back to The Crown
  • The French Horn
  • The Prince of Wales
  • The White Swan

The whereabouts of these are unknown (at the moment!).

In 1872 the new owner of Trowse, Jeremiah Colman closed several of the pubs and replaced them with things considered ‘more wholesome’, which included the bowling green at the rear of the Manor Rooms.

Current Pubs & Eateries in Trowse, Crown Point, White Horse, River Green

Current Pubs & Eateries in Trowse, Crown Point, White Horse & River Green Cafe

So currently in 2012, there are two pubs serving great beer and food, the White Horse by the common and the Crown Point Tavern. You can also get a food and drink at The River Green Café, previous site of other coffee houses and a bakers.


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