Montague Arms – Uncertain Future
12th Feb 2012
The Montague Arms was bought by Peter Hoyle in 1967, and over years became the perfect alternative and eccentric venue. Its interior an Aladdin’s cave with hundreds of unusual and genuine items including a penny farthing, a blunderbuss, deep sea divers helmet, pre-first world war vacuum cleaner, telegraphy equipment, numerous stuffed animal heads which according to their plaques were shot by African big game hunters between the wars, controls off old steam ships, an incredible full sized stage coach. An absolute I-spy of ridiculous and fascinating items.
Nationally recognised as a treasure of a pub, its stage has seen every type of performer, poets, avantgarde experimentalists, story tellers, musicians and rock bands galore. Its many events, including the unwrong quiz, has for some time now have been hosted and organised by the dapper and be-suited Frog Morris.
It has served real ale from hand-pump and its featured breweries last year were Timothy Taylor, St Austell and Black Sheep, plus Sam Smith bottled beers.
Its licencees were Stan and Bet who ran the pub from day to day and lived above it. Sadly they have recently passed away, both being of impressive age. They owned almost all of the paraphernalia, which has real financial value and is in safe keeping at the moment. That paraphernalia’s future is now dependent on how their estate and wills are resolved.
Peter Hoyle the building’s owner has more or less passed matters to his son Martin to consider how to take things forward from their family’s perspective. One of the options must be the dreaded selling for conversion to flats or worse. In short the situation is in turmoil and uncertain.
Written by Julian Stone