History in Structure

The Fleece Inn

A Grade II Listed Building in Bretforton, Worcestershire

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Latitude: 52.092 / 52°5'31"N

Longitude: -1.8653 / 1°51'55"W

OS Eastings: 409324

OS Northings: 243747

OS Grid: SP093437

Mapcode National: GBR 3LF.WRF

Mapcode Global: VHB0V.MP74

Plus Code: 9C4W34RM+QV

Entry Name: The Fleece Inn

Listing Date: 30 July 1959

Last Amended: 9 September 2022

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1081605

English Heritage Legacy ID: 148630

ID on this website: 101081605

Location: Bretforton, Wychavon, Worcestershire, WR11

County: Worcestershire

District: Wychavon

Civil Parish: Bretforton

Built-Up Area: Bretforton

Traditional County: Worcestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Worcestershire

Church of England Parish: Bretforton

Church of England Diocese: Worcester

Tagged with: Pub

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Farmhouse of probable mid-C15 origins, extended and remodelled in the C17 and licensed as a public house from 1848.


Farmhouse of probable mid-C15 origins, extended and remodelled in the C17 and licensed as a public house from 1848. Restored following a fire in 2004.

MATERIALS: timber-frame with rendered infill on stone plinth, tiled roof throughout.

PLAN: there are three public rooms to the ground floor, known as the 'Pewter Room', the ‘Dug Out’, and the 'Brewhouse'.

EXTERIOR: five bays aligned north-east/south-west, with a main stack to north of narrow central bay, probably forming a cross-passage, with a hall to the north. To the north-western front there is one storey with an attic lit by two framed dormers and five assorted casement windows. To the left of centre on this front there is a four-light C17 stone mullioned window (with a later casement inserted). The earliest section of the timber framing is the two bays to north end, with two rectangular panels with curved tension braces.

INTERIOR: the layout of three rooms, the Pewter Room, Brewhouse and Dug Out, remain, there is flagstone flooring throughout. There is a small service area in front of the bar counter which leads to the original front entrance. This has matchboard dado panelling to the wall and three openings to the servery - the door and first hatch being historic, with a later hatch added by the National Trust, cut through the wall. The bar back shelving in the servery area is all modern.

The Pewter Room is named after the impressive pewter collection that is noted to have been on display for over 300 years at The Fleece Inn. There are circular apotropaic markings in front of the original inglenook fireplace which have been restored by the National Trust, and a fixed settle around the fireplace (with two low-set doors at the back for storage) which creates a passage into the room.

The Brewhouse is accessed via the main bar and has a large chamfered beam with runout stops to support the ceiling joists above. There is a brick inglenook fireplace with oak beam on stone piers at the south end of the room. To either side of the fireplace are single-light windows with leaded glazing. A further leaded window with three leaded lights is situated at the west end of the room.

The Dug Out is accessed via a timber plank door and is down two stone steps at a lower level than the Brewhouse and contains a C20 stone fireplace. The ceiling joists are later and are pegged into older framing within the west and east walls. The west partition wall contains a hatch.

The original toilets are now storerooms and new gents' and disabled toilets have been positioned where the domestic kitchen was formerly situated. The pub kitchen and ladies' toilet were formerly where the original ground-floor ‘cellar’ was, replaced by a new cellar in a building adjoining the barn.


The Fleece Inn is likely to have originated as a farmhouse in the mid-C15, probably with a cross-passage plan and a hall set to the north. The earliest part of the existing timber-framing is the two bays to the north end, which consists of two rectangular panels with curved tension braces. The house was substantially remodelled and enlarged in the C17. It is first recorded to have been granted a licence as a public house in 1848 and has been in the ownership of the same family throughout this period, of whom the last owner, Miss Lola Taplin, ran the pub until 1977. Following the death of Taplin, the pub was bequeathed to the National Trust, who continue its operation. The inn sign features the coat of arms of the Ashwin Family, of the Manor House in Bretforton.

In February 2004, the Fleece Inn was damaged by a fire. Restoration work was subsequently undertaken by the National Trust. The adjacent C16 thatched barn (Grade II, UID: 1157689) was also integrated into the pub during this period for use as a function room.

Reasons for Listing

The Fleece Inn, a farmhouse of probable mid-C15 origins, converted into a public house in the mid-C19, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:

* the building retains a significant proportion of its historic fabric, and its likely origin as a timber-framed farmhouse remain legible, with a cross passage and hall to the north;

* the inn retains many historic fittings including inglenook fireplaces, stone floors and chamfered ceiling beams.

Historic interest:

* the inn is of probable C15 origins with a substantial survival of the building’s timber frame, providing evidence of construction methods and techniques used during the post-medieval period;

* later alteration and additions to the building have added to its interest and help to demonstrate the development and use of the building over the centuries.

External Links

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