'As smooth as oil, sweet as milk, clear as amber and strong as brandy.'
Boniface, in George Farquhar's play The Beaux Stratagem, describing Lichfield ale.
Farquhar was one of the visitors to Lichfield in the eighteenth century when the city was notorious for its many pubs and brothels. Today, thankfully, only its pubs are famous and continue to add colour to this fine Georgian city. The great medieval cathedral forms a magnificent backdrop to the many pubs of the city, some of which were visited by Lichfield's most famous son, Samuel Johnson, whose brooding statue can be found in the city's market square. Many of Lichfield's ancient pubs, some of them old coaching inns from the days of stagecoaches and highwaymen, are still in existence; others, sadly, have gone. This book tells the story of those lost pubs - where they were and why they disappeared - as well as examining those that still grace the city, tracking their history through the centuries and telling their many uplifting, sad, and sometimes strange stories. Find out about haunted pubs, the pub where an army regiment was founded and the two rival inns where political parties encouraged mob violence in the street that separated them. Lichfield Pubs is a book that residents and visitors alike will not want to miss.
Neil Coley is the author of a number of local history books and newspaper articles. He has a B.A. degree in History and Politics from Lancaster University and an M.A. in Media from De Montford University. His favourite things include pubs (of course) cricket, walking, birdwatching, cinema, theatre and reading. He lives in Lichfield with his wife and a large number of dependant birds, which are frequent visitors to their garden bird feeders.