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Carshalton’s Long Forgotten Pub – The Old Swan Ale House

The Old Swan Ale House Carshalton

I’m a bit obsessed with history. In my opinion this is one of the most fascinating historical buildings in the heart of old Carshalton village, because it’s a pub that no-one (well, hardly anyone) seems to know about, and it’s barely mentioned in the history books. It’s often confused with The Swan Inn that stood further along the road, but this 18th century building pre-dates that entirely.

What amazes me most is that the building in West Street still stands, unlike many, many others of the lost and demolished pub buildings in the area. It’s one of only 4 old pub buildings still standing in and around Carshalton village – of the 11 old pub buildings that are known to have existed. It was only rediscovered in 2011 by accident, with the help of local historian John Phillips.

Infact I’m so fascinated by it I’ve imagined what The Old Swan Ale House may have looked like if it was still operating today.

The Old Swan Ale House Carshalton

*Please note these illustrations may not be copied or reproduced without prior permission

Built in 1740, here’s some current pics of the building shown from the front, along with some very evocative and pubby shots from the rear of the property. The property was no longer a pub by 1867. The later 19th century The Swan Inn just along the road, on the corner of The Old Swan Yard ceased trading in 1908 and has since been converted into residential property.

We’ll be updating this blog post with more historical detail later. Please follow us on social media for updates.

With special thanks to Maggie Stubberfield for uncovering the story and for allowing us to share it, and who has the Court Rolls to provide evidence of this find. Also thanks to Colin Castledine for providing the large photograph of the front of the building. We have plans to illustrate some more of Carshalton’s lost pubs in the future. Please leave comments below so I can track your feedback.


5 thoughts on “Carshalton’s Long Forgotten Pub – The Old Swan Ale House

  1. For a while, the part on the left was a ladies hairdressers in the 1950s . And the right-hand side was a builders yard.

  2. The Swan Inn on the corner of old swan yard hasn’t been demolished it is now a private house.

    1. Thanks Terry, I’ve now updated the post to reflect this. The building has been heavily redeveloped, and I’d always assumed it has simply been rebuilt in a similar style.

      1. My Grandfather Tom Preen took it over about 1912 & converted it part house part timber merchant it was taken over by Daniel Thompson on Toms death & became near derelict in the early 1970’s

        1. If you were able to share any photos of The Swan Inn that would be great. We were thinking about illustrating it, but I can’t see any photos of the right of the building. It had a wooden porch at the front once, and it looks like it once had a chimney stack running up the outside of the building.

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