History in Structure

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Red Lion, Erdington

A Grade II Listed Building in Erdington, Birmingham

We don't have any photos of this building yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »


Latitude: 52.5284 / 52°31'42"N

Longitude: -1.8433 / 1°50'35"W

OS Eastings: 410729

OS Northings: 292294

OS Grid: SP107922

Mapcode National: GBR 3DQ.LJ

Mapcode Global: VH9YR.0QD2

Entry Name: Red Lion, Erdington

Listing Date: 10 November 2017

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1450468

Location: Birmingham, B23

County: Birmingham

Electoral Ward/Division: Erdington

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Birmingham

Traditional County: Warwickshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): West Midlands


A public house of 1899, designed by Wood and Kendrick for Mitchells and Butlers in a loosely Jacobean style and including a lavishly-decorated, ceramic bar front made by Craven Dunnill of Jackfield Shropshire.


A public house of 1899, designed by Wood and Kendrick for Mitchells and Butlers in a loosely Jacobean style and including a lavishly-decorated, ceramic bar front made by Craven Dunnill of Jackfield Shropshire.

MATERIALS: red English bond brick with stone and terracotta dressings and a slate roof with a timber and lead clock turret.

PLAN: the building has two and three storeys and occupies a corner site. The road front turns the corner by three angled portions of the façade, with a yard to the rear. Internally, the building retains its large, L-shaped public bar, which was formerly divided by a screen at the angle to form two bars. To the rear is a further large bar room. This has been extended to include the area formerly occupied by a smoking room and the off-sales department. At first floor level is a function room.

EXTERIOR: the road frontage has an angled corner bay, at either side of which are ranges of two and three storeys. Windows across the front are sashes, with plate glass below and multi-pane lights above. Continuous string courses extend across the front at the level of the window sills and window heads of both ground and first floor windows. The ground floor has a series of recessed, angled bow windows, with etched lateral panes, several of which show rampant lions. At first floor level the walling has alternating flush bands of brick and stone and the first floor bays are divided by shallow pilasters. Between the floors there is a deep stone band extending from the tops of the ground floor windows and the sills of the first floor windows.

The angled corner bay has a doorway at centre with an elaborate ashlar surround, including pilasters and deep brackets which support a scrolled pediment with a lion on a shield in shallow relief at the centre. Above this is a single sash window. The angled bay then rises above the parapet line to form a square clock tower with cartouches to three sides at second floor level and clock faces above this, flanked by pilasters and with a pulvinated frieze below an ogee lead roof.

At either side of this bay are single, recessed bows to the ground floor corresponding with paired sashes at first floor level. Beyond this the roofline rises with an attic storey under hipped roofs at both sides. The southern angle, facing Station Road, has a central bowed oriel window at first floor level with stone mullions and transoms and a shaped parapet, at either side of which are tall first floor windows with basket-arched heads with alternating stone and brick voussoirs and shaped gables with ball finials. The lower plate glass window panes have etched designs. The plainer ground floor has a door at far right, which formerly led to the off-sales department, and a window to its left which appears to have been inserted in place of another, wider doorway. The south-west facing angle, facing Short Heath Road, is plainer with paired sashes to the first floor and triple-light windows to the attic with shaped gable heads. Ridge stacks also have flush bands of alternating stone and brick.

The yard front has two angled bay windows to the ground floor above which are three large windows lighting the function room at first floor level. Otherwise the angled front has random fenestration and fire escape doors. A wall connects to the single-storey lavatory block and the two storey stable block and wagon store.

INTERIOR: the front bar is entered at the angle. The doorway leads to a square lobby with timber sides and a stained glass domed roof. Doors to either side formerly led to the two bar rooms, but after they were joined to form one space by the removal of the screen attached to the lobby, a single central door now leads ahead into the bar and the lateral doors have been closed up. The public bar room has a long bar with a rounded corner. This has a ceramic front whose upper body bows out. It is divided into panels by pilaster strips and there is a fluted frieze to the top with paterae. The front is richly decorated with polychromatic, stylized foliage and flowers. The bar top is mahogany. The bar back is also mahogany, with inset etched mirrors and shelves with turned supports. The cornice above this is of carved mahogany and repeats the motif of a frieze with paterae and flutes. There is a clock inset to the curved corner. An encased column rises from the bar top to the ceiling and has panels of etched mirror glass. Fitted benches line the walls with central heating pipes below. A sash service hatch connects the back of the public bar to the corridor leading to the stairs up to the first floor.

The rear bar has been extended to include part of the off-sales area and the former smoking room and now connects to the staircase hall. It retains the fixed benches of the smoke room, which have moulded ends with central heating pipes below, and these extend into two angled bays which overlook the rear yard. The bar back is original, but was apparently moved here from another bar in the building. The bar front is of C20 date. There is a large mural along the eastern wall showing the exterior of the pub at night with an Edwardian street scene.

The first floor function room has panelled walls and a panelled ceiling. Fixed benches run along the walls and have bell pushes set into their back rails. Some of the benches appear to have been moved and adapted to fit. A mid or late-C20 bar is set in the south-west corner.

Persuant to s1 (5A) of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 (‘the Act’) it is declared that the external lavatory block and the stable and wagon store in the rear yard to the north east of the public house are not of special architectural or historic interest.


The Red Lion was built in 1899 to the designs of Wood and Kendrick for the brewers Mitchells and Butlers. The lavish decoration of the bar interiors includes a ceramic bar front with polychromatic decoration made by Craven Dunnill of Jackfield, Shropshire, which is similar to that in the Crown Hotel, Victoria Street, Belfast.

Some alteration to the original plan form has included the loss of the off sales department and the removal of a decorated wooden screen which divided the public bar from the smoking room, which has now been made into the Lounge.

Reasons for Listing

The Red Lion Public House, Erdington, Birmingham B23 is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:
* The bar areas, particularly the public bar, have fittings of high quality and the ceramic bar front and entrance lobby are rare survivals;
* The street frontages are well designed by the noted Birmingham architects Wood and Kendrick for the brewers Mitchells and Butlers.
Historic interest:
* The building is a good and well-preserved example of a highly decorated pub of the ‘gin palace’ type, dating from 1899.

Selected Sources

Book cover links are generated automatically from the sources. They are not necessarily always correct, as book names at Amazon may not be quite the same as those used referenced in the text.

Source title links go to a search for the specified title at Amazon. Availability of the title is dependent on current publication status. You may also want to check AbeBooks, particularly for older titles.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

BritishListedBuildings.co.uk is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact BritishListedBuildings.co.uk for any queries related to any individual listed building, planning permission related to listed buildings or the listing process itself.

British Listed Buildings is a Good Stuff website.