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Old coaching roads

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CovPoliceHistory
Coventry
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16 of 26  Wed 16th May 2018 6:45pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2018  Total posts:29

4th September 1835, Mr Hancock's steam coach arrived in Coventry from Birmingham at around 11am. The return was the following morning, leaving at 7am.
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
SJT
Brisbane, Australia
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17 of 26  Thu 17th May 2018 5:11am  
Member: Joined Apr 2018  Total posts:19

Thanks for all the great suggestions and information - this website and forum contributors is amazing! I've decided The Coach & Horses Inn on Much Park Street (adjoining the London Road) is a fair bet as a staging inn for coaches to/from London in 1832 (taken from Real Ale Rambles - thanks Helen F - I found this site earlier looking for The Butcher's Arms in New Buildings where there was a pub brawl reported at the time after one of the key witnesses in the Beck's Mill trial, a journeyman from Manchester, was found to have used a false name). My character (a poor weaver on a quest to prove his brother's innocence) will be travelling as cheaply as possible so unfortunately won't get to travel on the grandly liveried, super-fast mail coaches of the day, Kaga. But what a wager you describe! And the prize sounds like a small fortune! The change over of horses must have been something of a pre-cursor to modern F1 pit crew tyre changes, vividly described by Judith Flanders "The Victorian City, Everyday Life in Dickens' London" page 92 quoting a traveller of the day: when the guard's bugle sounded, the barmaid would start pouring an ale and as the wheels sounded in the yard, out ran the "inn-keeper, bar-maid, stable-boys, mischievous urchins... The horses were pulled back upon their haunches, and stopped as if shot; the reins were thrown down on either side; the whip given unceremoniously to the envied occupant of the box-seat; and the coachman descended, with a princely air of condescension... A wooden block... was thrust under the hind wheel... the coachman would nobly toss off the foaming tankard presented to him... and ere a minute had flown by, the guard would say "All right:" as he ascended the back of the coach, the block be withdrawn, and the horses... dart away at a gallop." Edited by member, 17th May 2018 6:23 am
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
Dreamtime
Perth Western Australia
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18 of 26  Thu 17th May 2018 6:41am  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:3317

Sounding good so far SJT. No queuing up at the petrol station but do you think the coach companies would have had to pay a road tax as well as a toll payment? Roll eyes
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
Helen F
Warrington
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19 of 26  Sat 11th Aug 2018 10:58am  
Member: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:1522

A resource with zoomable maps of the old coaching routes.
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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20 of 26  Sat 11th Aug 2018 12:56pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:3004

SJT, The info I got was from an old Brighton history book and was a true story, The race was from The White Horse Cellars, Piccadilly, London to The Ship Hotel on Brighton seafront, a round trip of108 miles, in the late 1830's. The driver's name was Selby and for £1000. I have all the stops and times. He did it in 7 hours 50 mins, the police in London held up the traffic for him - the reception was tumultuous for him. The upper decks of the horse buses were crowded with spectators, hats flung in the air, women waving parasols and papers, as the sweating horses came to a standstill. Dreamtime, there were 23 coaches a day from Brighton to London - no mention of tolls in any paper I found. Completely off topic. My cousin from Coventry who fought with the Warwick's in WW2 died in a Brisbane nursing home about six years ago - I was on the Gold Coast at the time and had no idea he was out there, only found out recently.
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
mcsporran
Coventry & Cebu
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21 of 26  Sat 11th Aug 2018 4:06pm  
Member: Joined Oct 2013  Total posts:419

On 11th Aug 2018 10:58am, Helen F said: A resource with zoomable maps of the old coaching routes.
These route maps contain interesting plans of the towns and cities en route, this is Coventrey (sic) in 1675 for example. The main roads are shown, the rivers, the city wall and the suggested route from south (Dunsmore) to north (Bedworth) through the city. Each furlong is indicated by a dot and each mile by a double dot. Note that true north is about 20 degrees clockwise on this part of the map.
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
Helen F
Warrington
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22 of 26  Sat 11th Aug 2018 5:03pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:1522

Thanks mcsporran, I hadn't worked out the dots... or even noticed them if I'm honest. Blush Advert for a coach service from Coventry to London in 1880 reads: Schedule for coach departing Craven Arms at 6 a.m. for London, by way of Dunchurch, Daventry (Breakfast), Weedon (Change Horses), Towcester, Fenny Stratford (Change Horses), Dunstable (Dinner), Redburn, St. Albans, Barnet (Change Horses) and arrive London at 8:45 p.m. at Castle and Falcon in Aldersgate Street. Ninety-six miles. The three main coaching inns were The Castle in Broadgate, The Bull on Smithford Street and The Craven Arms on the High Street.
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
Helen F
Warrington
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23 of 26  Sat 11th Aug 2018 6:17pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:1522

And continuing the coaching references - here's an online book Humorous Reminiscences of Coventry life, Coventry coaching, etc
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
Rob Orland
Historic Coventry
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24 of 26  Sat 11th Aug 2018 10:09pm  
Webmaster: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:1449

Now that is a book well worth reading Helen. I have a rare original and it is both educational and humorous indeed, very well written. It's still in print in paperback on Amazon, too.
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads
Helen F
25 of 26  Sun 12th Aug 2018 9:00am  
Off-topic / chat  

Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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26 of 26  Sun 12th Aug 2018 11:34am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:3004

Helen, Just ordered mine too. Thanks for the info.
Local History and Heritage - Old coaching roads

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