The Flying Horse
It is first recorded in 1731 when the will of its owner, Joseph Hill, was proved; ten years later Hill's trustees sold it to Abraham Perrin. Perrin's daughter was Elizabeth Stapleton and her son, James sold the inn to the Ampthill brewer John Morris in 1797.
This evidence supports the Department of Environment's estimated date for the property, when it was Grade II Listed, as being 18th century at the rear, with a 19th century front. It suggests that the property may have been built as an inn. Interestingly the first act to regulate the road "from Luton to Westwood Gate", the modern A6 and to ensure it was kept in good repair was passed in 1726 and it is possible that the inn was built about this time and reflected the increased use of the road. Clearly the inn was enlarged in the 19th century, presumably due to increased demand and the enlargement possibly came quite early in the century as evidence shows that auction sales were being held there as early as 1809.
The inn remained in Morris ownership until the company (then Morris & Company (Ampthill) Limited) was sold to Luton brewers J.W.Green Limited in 1927. In the same year the public house was valued under the 1925 Rating Valuation and the valuer found a brick, timbered and slated detached premises and noted "long frontage, good bldg"; it comprised a taproom ("good"), bar and store, hall, club room ("large"), smokeroom ("small"), kitchen and scullery downstairs and six bedrooms and a bathroom with wc above. Outside were stables used for bicycles etc., one of five stalls, one of seven and a six horse stable used for two cars; there were also an earth closet and urinal, two loose boxes used as stores, two disused pigsties and another urinal. The business "gets main road traffic, has good yard, gets charabanc parties, mainly a weekend trade" it was "best pub in village". Trade consisted of forty eight 36 gallon barrels of beer per annum as well as 180 dozen bottles of beer and 47 gallons of spirits and 199 dozen bottles of mineral water.
J.W.Green merged with Flowers Breweries in 1954 and thereafter took the Flowers name until the company was purchased by Whitbread in 1962. Whitbread ceased to brew and to keep public houses in 2001 but the Flying Horse remains open at the time of writing [Jan 2007] as part of the company's subsidiary Beefeater.
List of Licensees: note that this is not a complete list. Italics indicate licensees whose beginning and/or end dates are not known:
1731: Joseph Hill;1741: Abraham Perrin;1797 - 1828: James Maddams;1831: Welch;1839: James Maddams;1851: Mary Maddams;1854: Robert Young;1861: Daniel Brightman;1864 -1880: Thomas Worsley;1880-1888: Arthur Wilsher Mallows;1888: Charles Mallows;1888-1907: James Shotbolt;1907-1909: Thomas Copperwheat;1909-1911: Charles Henry Robinson;1911-1913: Frederick Rogers;1913-1936: Sidney Chase;1936-1954: Charles William Cross;1954-1973: Edwin Alfred Lloyd;1973-1975: Colin Campbell Joiner and Brian Joseph Minnighan;1975: John Eric Parker, Colin Campbell Joiner and Brian Joseph Minnighan;1975-1978: Colin Campbell Joiner and John Eric Parker;1978-1979: Colin Campbell Joiner;1979-1980: Norman Arthur Hards;1980-1984: Robert Lewis Ivell and Thomas Aitken;1984-1985: John Tomlinson Holmes and David Anthony Ratcliffe;1985-1986: Colin James Trignell;1986-1987: Malcolm Doig Starling and Graham Pollard;1987-1988: Malcolm Doig Starling and John Crawford;1988-1989: John Phillip Jackson and John Crawford;1989: John Phillip Jackson and Keith Moreton;1989-1991: Ian Cross and Keith Moreton;1991-1992: John Philip Jackson and Keith Moreton;1992-1994: Roger Clive Pritchard and John Philip Jackson;1994: Deborah Younger;1994-1995: Deborah Younger and Anthony David Hudson
(Information taken directly from the Bedfordshire Community Archives)