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Rushden Coffee Tavern and Public Hall Company Limited

The Coffee Tavern stands between the two rows of window blinds, centre right

The Coffee Tavern & Public Hall was built in 1882, where Peacock's shop stands today (2008), and the little lane next to it bears the name still. It was pulled down about 1959 when 'Fine Fare' came to Rushden.

Poster and Notice for the new Building
This poster is from a bundle of what we think may have been printers' proofs - printed on the backs of old posters.

Tenders are invited for the purchase of the Building materials on the site of the proposed Coffee Tavern, in one or more lots.

Full particulars can be obtained on application to Mr. C. Bayes, Mr. J. Claridge, or Mr. W. Foskett, and to whom the Tenders will have to be sent not later than 4 p.m. on Tuesday, September 14th, 1880

Secretary, pro. tem.

Wellingborough & Kettering News, May 15th, 1880, transcribed by Kay Collins

COFFEE PUBLIC-HOUSE — On Wednesday evening last, a meeting was held in the Vestry-hall, Rushden, to consider the advisability of forming a limited liability company for building a coffee-house, with reading and commercial rooms, and a large hall suitable for public meetings. The Rev. J. T. Barker occupied the chair, and there was a good representative company, among whom we noticed—the Rev. — Hayes (incumbent of Swineshead, Beds.), Rev. E. Templeman (vicar of Higham Ferrers), Messrs. J. and P. Cave, G. Denton, J. Claridge, W. Wilkins, Batt, F. Knight. S. Knight, junr., J. Sargent, junr., and about 50 others.

The first resolution, as follows—"That this meeting, recognising the social and other benefits which have sprung from coffee public-houses, pledges itself to use its best endeavour to establish a coffee public-house in Rushden," was moved in a very able speech by Mr. Hayes, seconded by Mr. J. Cave, and supported by Mr. Ball, and carried unanimously.

The second resolution—"That this meeting, having heard the scheme for building a coffee public-house in Rushden, considers the same satisfactory, and resolves to form a committee, to take steps towards forming a limited Liability Company for carrying this scheme or such portions thereof as the said company, when formed, shall deem advisable," was moved by the Rev. E. Templeman, seconded by Mr. W. Packwood, and carrried unanimously.

The following were appointed a committee to make arrangements for the formation of the Company: Rev. J. T. Barker, G. Denton, J. Claridge, W. Packwood, P. Cave, J. Sargent, and S. Wright, junr. The usual voted of thanks concluded the meeting.

Wellingborough & Kettering News, August 14th, 1880, transcribed by Kay Collins

Rushden Hotel, Coffee Tavern, & Public Hall Company (Limited).

CAPITAL: £2000, IN 2000 SHARES OF £1 EACH.

A Limited Liability Company, with the above name, has been registered, with the following objects:

1. —To provide a Coffee Tavern, where Tea, Cocoa, Coffee, and other Refreshments can be obtained at reasonable prices, and where all classes may meet for relaxation and social enjoyment, without the necessity for using intoxicating liquors.

2.—To combine with the Coffee Tavern suitable hotel accommodation, and to provide now, or at some future time, a larger room for Lectures, Concerts, Public and other Meetings, than Rushden at present possesses.

A suitable site can be obtained in a central position in Rushden, but no contracts of any kind have yet been entered into on behalf of the Company.

Applications for Shares should be addressed to the Rev. J. T. BARKER, Mr. J. CAVE, Mr. J. CLARIDGE, or Mr. G. DENTON. The first call of 5s. per Share is payable on allotment, and the balance, as may be required, in instalments of 2s. 6d. per Share, at intervals of not less than three months.

The First Ordinary General Meeting of the Shareholders will be held in the Infant Schoolroom, near the Rectory, on Tuesday, August 17th at 8 o'clock in the evening, to appoint Directors and other Officers of the Company.

Secretary pro tem.

Wellingborough & Kettering News, August 14th, 1880, transcribed by Kay Collins

COFFEE TAVERN—We draw attention to an announcement in our advertising columns of the first ordinary general meeting of the shareholders of the Rushden Hotel, Coffee Tavern, and Public Hall Company (Limited). The scheme, we are glad to say, is being taken up very heartily. The Rev. J. T. Barker, H. W. Carrie, Esq., and the leading shoe-manufacturers of Rushden have, among them, agreed to take a large proportion of shares, and friends at Wellingborough, and at a distance, have also promised to take shares in encouraging numbers. The Coffee Tavern at Wellingborough has more than exceeded the most sanguine expectations of its promoters, and we hope a like gratifying measure of success will attend the labours of the Company just registered at Rushden.

Northampton Mercury, August 21, 1880, transcribed by Greville Watson


On Tuesday evening the first ordinary meeting of the Rushden Coffee Tavern and Public Hall Company was held in the Infant School.  The Rev. J. T. Barker presided, and there were also present the Rev. Mr. Bromage, Messrs. G. Denton, J. Cave, P. Cave, F. Cave, A. Cave, W. Claridge, senr., W. Claridge, junr., J. Claridge, E. Claridge, E. Cunnington, W. Foskett, C. Bayes, J. Bayes, J. Sargent, Ruddle, W. Packwood.  The following were appointed directors:- Rev. J. T. Barker, Messrs. J. Claridge, W. Foskett, J. Cave, P. Cave, W. Packwood, H. Skinner, J. Sargent, jun., C. Bayes, W. Wilkins, W. Claridge, Ruddle, C. Cunnington, and T. Willmott; Mr. G. Denton was appointed as secretary, and Messrs. Warton and Wood were chosen as auditors.  It was decided to provide such sleeping accommodation in the building as the directors might deem fit, and the matter of building a hall for the holding of public meetings was left over for further consideration.  On the motion of Mr. Denton, it was decided that before the directors accept any building tenders or enter into any contracts, the plans and specifications should be submitted to a general meeting of the shareholders of the company.

Wellingborough & Kettering News, May 14th, 1881, transcribed by Kay Collins

New Coffee Tavern at Rushden
The financial and social success which has attended the establishment of Public Coffee Taverns in several towns in this county and in other parts the country induced some of the principal inhabitants of the thriving village of Rushden to take up the idea with a view of building such an institution in that place. It was, we believe, in August last that the movement was first mooted, and after holding meetings, it was decided to endeavour to form a Coffee Tavern and Hotel Company. This matter was heartily taken up by a large number of the inhabitants, and in November a limited liability company was duly formed, with a capital of £2,000 in 2,000 shares of £1 each. It was only intended at first to erect a Temperance Hotel and Coffee Tavern, but it was subsequently resolved to also build a public hall adjoining the hotel. By November 1,187 shares had been allotted, and the first call of 5s. per share paid thereon, while 250 additional shares had been applied for, and have since been taken up. A very eligible site in the High-street adjoining London House, was purchased for £385, and the old buildings which stood thereon were sold for £27 10s. and pulled down. Plans for the proposed building were invited by the Directors, and those Mr. Abraham Hart, architect, Wakefield, were selected. The building, we may here state, is to be in the old English style, and when finished, to judge by the plans, will present a handsome appearance and will be a great ornament to the village. The front is to be built of pressed bricks, with Bath stone dressings, and silver-grey slated roof. It is to be a three-storey building, and on the ground floor there is to be a coffee-room 28ft. by 20ft., a reading-room 21ft. by 20ft., a caretaker's room 15ft. by 11ft., a kitchen and scullery, 20ft. square, a steam room 11ft. square, and other conveniences. On the first floor is to be placed a billiard-room, 25ft. by 20ft., a recreation room, 25ft. by 20ft., a ladies' room, 11ft, by 15ft. On the top floor there are to be six commodious bedrooms for commercial travellers, and others. On the ground floor will also be erected the public hall which is to adjoin the hotel, but will have a separate entrance. The dimensions of this hall will be 76ft. by 30ft., and a portion of it will be partitioned off and used as committee room. In the hall over the carriage entrance there is to be a gallery which will be used as an orchestra and as a band room. A four-stall stable is also to be provided. The building will warmed with hot water. The tenders were sent in in February last, and those of Mr. Daniel Ireson, of Northampton, for the building, Mr. W. Moore, Rushden, for the carpentering, and Mr. W. Spencer for the plumbing, were accepted. The total amount of the contracts was £1,700. The work was commenced on March 25th, and it is expected that the buildings will be completed by September next. Thursday the 5th inst. was the day fixed for the performance of the pleasing ceremony of laying the foundation stone, which was done in a public manner by Mrs. Currie, wife of W. H. Currie, Esq., J.P., of Rushden. At three o'clock in the afternoon the directors and shareholders of the Company, and others interested in the movement, met at the Temperance Hall, and marched in procession, headed by the National School and Temperance Bands, to the site of the Tavern. There was a large assemblage of persons to witness the ceremony, and amongst those present we noticed the Rector of Rushden (Rev. Canon Barker), Mrs. Barker and Mrs. Hall, Mrs. Currie, Mrs. Sanders, the Rev. E. and Mrs. Templeman, Higham Ferrers; Rev. J. T. Hayes, Swineshead; Rev. J. Jordan; Rev. Mr. Davis, Rushden; Rev. Mr. Pung, Rushden; Rev. Mr. Ball, Finedon; Messrs. W. Jackson, Wellingborough; W. H. Simpson and C. Simpson, Higham Ferrers; O. Robinson, C. Pollard, Hutchins and Stanley, Kettering; P. Cave, C. Bayes, J. Cave, J. Claridge, W. Claridge, C. J. Cunnington, W. Foskett, W. Packwood, J. H. Ruddle, J. Sargeant, jun., G. H. Skinner, W. Wilkins, T. Willmot (Directors of the Company), W. Clarke, J. Sargeant, sen., G. Denton (secretary), &c.

The proceedings, the pleasure of which was somewhat marred by a slight downfall of rain, commenced by the company singing the Old Hundredth Psalm, "All people that on earth do dwell."

The Rector, who, we may mention, has taken a great interest in this movement, and is Chairman of the Company, then offered up a moat appropriate prayer. In the course of the prayer he asked that "this building may be blessed to Thy service by being a bond of unity and brotherly love to all the inhabitants of this parish, a powerful witness against the sin of drunkenness, and a centre for Christian effort in the furtherance of the cause of temperance in our Neighbourhood. We pray Thee that the opportunities given by this building for social intercourse may make us feel for one another, and seek help one another in whatever different works may be engaged. We pray Thee that the opportunities here afforded for education and self-improvement may be diligently used by the inhabitants of this parish, and that through this building we may all gain a further and deeper knowledge of the course of human history and the lives of good men, and the laws of nature and art, and the meaning and beauty of this world in which Thou has placed us, so that we may indeed have eyes to see, and ears to hear, and hearts able to understand and advise."—The Rector then called upon the Rev. E. Termpleman, vicar of Higham Ferrers, who, he stated, was a staunch supporter of the temperance cause, to address those present.

The rev. gentleman said that when they met together some years ago on a similar occasion to this to lay the foundation stone of the Temperance Hall, he thought, and justly so, that that was a good day for Rushden. A great many present, no doubt remembered that event, and if they thought that was a good day for Rushden, what did they think now when there was a large number present to assist in the good work they had just commenced? The growth of what might be called temperance principles had done a great amount of good, and whatever some people might think and say about it, there was only one opinion about the matter, and that was that the temperance work which had been done had been productive of great good to many they saw before them. A great many, no doubt, were witnesses to this truth, and had derived great good from the work that had been carried out; and he hoped and trusted that this coffee tavern would be a success, as he had no doubt it would be. After speaking of the great advantages which were enjoyed by the present generation compared with those of their forefathers, Mr. Templeman reminded his hearers that this building was not to be erected simply to promote temperance, but also to bring about a true religious spirit and love for our Lord and Saviour. The rev. gentleman then called upon Mrs Currie whom he said they all respected, honoured and esteemed, to lay the foundation stone.

Mrs. Currie was presented with a mallet and silver trowel with which to adjust the stone. The mallet was made out of a piece of old oak taken from the Parish Church, and was nicely polished. This was the gift of the Directors; while the trowel was presented by the Architect, and it bore the following inscription: "Presented to Mrs. Currie on laying the foundation of Rushden Coffee Tavern, May 5th, 1881, by Abraham Hart, architect, Wakefield".

The stone was then lowered, and placed in its proper position by Mrs. Currie, after Miss Madeline Barker had placed inside it a bottle containing documents connected with the Company, and the usual assortment of newspapers, coins, &c.

At the conclusion of this ceremony, Mr. W. Jackson called for three cheers for Mrs. Currie, which were heartily given.

Mr. Jackson then delivered a short and able address on the value of institution of this kind, and was followed by Mr. Pollard, of Kettering, who advocated the cause of temperance in his usual well-known manner, and also congratulated the inhabitants of Rushden on the commencement of the noble building which they were about to erect.

A hymn was then sung, and the Benediction pronounced by the Rector, after which a large number sat down to tea in the National Infant Schoolroom and the Temperance Hall.

In the evening a public meeting was held, the Rev. Canon Barker presiding. There was a crowded attendance, amongst those on the platform being the Rev, E. Templeman, Rev. J. T. Hayes, Rev. J. Jordan, Rev. Mr. Davis, Mr. O. Robinson, &c. Suitable addresses were given by several of the gentlemen present.

Wellingborough News, 16th September 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

To the Overseers of the Poor of the Parish of Rushden, in the County of Northampton, and the Superintendent of Police for the Division of Wellingborough, in the said County of Northampton, and to all whom it may concern.

I GEORGE EDWARD MARTIN, now residing at Rushden, in the County of Northampton, Manager of the Rushden Coffee Tavern, do hereby give Notice that it is my intention to apply at the Adjourned General Annual Licensing Meeting, to be holden at the Police Station in Wellingborough, in the Division of Wellingborough, in the said County, on the 29th day of September next ensuing, for a license to keep a House, called the Rushden Coffee Tavern, for Public Billiard Playing, situate at Rushden aforesaid, in the Parish of Rushden, in the County of Northampton, and being within the said Division.

Given under my hand this 31st day of August, One Thousand Eight Hundred and Eighty-two.


Wellingborough News, 30th September 1882, transcribed by Kay Collins

Friday, Sept, 29th.—Before Mr. Spencer Pratt (in the chair), Mr. R. Arkwright, and Mr. N. P. Sharman.

APPLICATION—The manager of the Rushden Coffee and Hotel Company applied for a billiard licence for that place. The various notices were proved, and the Bench granted the application.

Wellingborough News, 29th March 1884, transcribed by Kay Collins

NEW HALL —An application has been made by the Liberal Association to the Directors for the use of the Hall for their lectures, and the following resolution was adopted by the Directors:— "The Directors being anxious to make the Coffee Tavern and Hall as useful as possible to all shareholders residing in Rushden, resolved that any political organisations connected with Rushden, and having responsible officers shall be admitted to use the hall for all purposes of a directly political character."

The Argus, 10th March 1893

Rushden Hotel and Coffee Tavern Company
The Directors of the above Company are prepared to receive applications for the post of SECRETARY. Information as to duties and remuneration can be obtained of the hon. sec.,


The Argus, 4th March 1898

Local Notes
The Rushden Coffee Tavern and Public Hall Company, Limited, at their annual meeting on Tuesday evening, had a very encouraging report placed before them, showing that the tavern and reading room still meats a public want. It was not with the object of effecting financial gain that the company was formed; the promoters were prompted by more benevolent intentions than profit making, and while, of course, entertaining the hope that the concern would be self-supporting, the primary desire was to cater for the comforts of a large class of the inhabitants, in providing attractions of a temperate and wholesome character. As the efforts of the company have been so much appreciated, it has been thought, seeing the manner in which Rushden is growing, that branch taverns should be established, and Wellingborough-road and the Rock Estate were suggested as likely situations. The matter is now under the consideration of the directors, who will report to the shareholders at a future meeting.

Rushden Echo, 22nd December 1899, transcribed by Kay Collins

As Manager and Manageress of the Coffee Tavern, Mr and Mrs Hughes, of Dudley, have been appointed.

The Rushden Echo and Argus, 17th April 1959, transcribed by Jim Hollis

Waverley Hotel to Close
The Waverley Hotel, Rushden, which opened in 1882, is to close down. This was decided by Waverley Hotel Ltd., shareholders at an extraordinary general meeting called to consider a take-over offered by a property company.

After the meeting, Mr. J. Blunt, chairman of the directors, said he could give no details of the meeting – attended by about forty people – but confirmed that the hotel and the Waverly Hall would close down.

It is generally expected that the close-down will not be delayed, but on Wednesday, Mr. Blunt repeated earlier statements that the future was undecided. A meeting of directors is still to be called to discuss this matter.

Rumours about the hotel have been going about Rushden since last year and it is believed that the business may be succeeded by that of a supermarket.

The hotel was originally owned by the Coffee Tavern and Public Hall Company.
Note: in 1960 on this site the first non-Co-op supermarket in Rushden was built - Fine Fare

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