We are attempting trying to trace the history of the Swan from opening to the present day.
We would appreciate any more details or corrections - please email
We understand The Swan was formerly a farm and was converted into a pub by Simonds Brewery of Shepton Mallet. Simonds Brewery was based in Reading but purchased the Charlton Brewery in Shepton Mallet. This is the only connection we can trace.
Please see note further below re Anglo Bavarian Brewery.

The Hanham Local History Society can be found using the following link:


Thomas Bailey may have been the first Landlord of the Swan.
When his daughter Agnes Elizabeth was born on 23rd April 1857 at Two Mile Hill, St George, Bristol, Thomas's occupation was recorded as Farmer and Beer Shop Keeper.  Thomas was also living at Two Mile Hill, St George at the time.
It is not clear whether the "Beer Shop" he was keeping was actually The Swan.


Thomas Bailey is mentioned in the census of 1871 as Innkeeper at The Swan, Conham Hill, many thanks to Michael Cordy for updating these early history sections and correcting some inaccuracies.

1883 Many thanks to Roy Crew, Secretary, Hanham History Society for the newspaper cuttings around the turn of the 19th  century
Swine fever outbreak at the Swan

circa 1890

map showing area around the Swan
Land Registry map showing area around the Swan (thanks to Tony Watts).

1891 Census

The 1891 Census data lists 3 people living at the Swan - it reads:
Thomas Bailey - Head - Married aged 62 - Farmer/Publican - neither employer or employed
Fred Bailey - Son - Single - 24 - help to Father Inn - employed
William Hodge - Lodger - ? - 40 - Quarryman Stone - employed
Extracts from Gloucestershire Pubs Database

Owner in 1891: Thomas Bailey (free from brewery tie)

Rateable value in 1891: £14.10s.0d.

Type of licence in 1891: Beerhouse

Owner in 1903: Anglo-Bavarian Brewery, Shepton Mallet, Somerset

Rateable value in 1903: £25.10s.0d.

Type of licence in 1903: Beerhouse

Closing time in 1903: 11pm


Thomas Bailey, Father-in-law of Fanny Bailey,  died on 13th January 1892 at Jefferies Hill, Hanham (presumably The Swan) cause of death  - bronchitis.  The informant on the certificate was his son Walter Henry Bailey, who was in attendance at the death.  His occupation is stated as Beer House Keeper.

1896 Walter Henry Bailey passed away June 4th 1896 aged 40 - husband of Fanny Bailey who passed away March 29th 1944 aged 86, the cause of his death was pneumonia, gravestone in Hanham Parish Church


maps showing area around the Swan


1901 – 1939
Fanny Bailey

Report of drunkenness 06 June 1902


The Swan Conham - This was once a delightfully unspoilt old fashioned three-bar spit and saw dust pub - An ex-miners pub for Hanham Colliery still known as 'Fanny Bailey's' by Local's after a former landlady. To the left of the Swan there is a white building. This was used during the mining era (1906 - 1926) as a temporary Mortuary when disaster struck, and traces of the white painted interior walls can still be seen on the older walls of the Swan car park. According to Tony Watts, The Swan was also known as The Slab for obvious reasons.

thanks to Nick Plenty for the 1911 Census copy


Fanny Bailey Head 54 Widow Inn keeper
Florence Lear Daughter 25 Married  
Earnest Lear Son in law 25 Married Stone cutter in quarry
Grantley Bailey Son 22 Single Gardener
Ronald Lear Grandson 5    

Anglo-Bavarian Brewery
The white sign writing on the window reads "Anglo ales" (from Anglo Bavarian Brewery, Shepton Mallet). The Anglo-Bavarian Brewery was established in Shepton Mallet in Somerset, England in 1864 as the first lager brewery in the United Kingdom. It closed in 1920. The brewery was built for Morrice, Cox and Clarke of London, and was initially called the Shepton Mallet Pale Ale Brewery. In 1871, the business was sold by auction to Hill, Garton and Company of Southampton, who subsequently expanded and modernised it.
In 1872 the Pale Ale Brewery was renamed the Anglo-Bavarian Brewery in reference to the employment, by the new owners, of some brewers from Bavaria in order to produce a German-style beer, and it appears that what is now called lager was brewed from that year.

"Sorry to say, the Anglo-Bavarian did not brew lager. What the Garton brothers did was to invent a method of inverting sugar to add to the brew. They then used this to produce light, sparkling ales. However when asked point blank if they produced lager they denied it. When Alfred Barnard wrote his tome “The Noted Breweries of Great Britain....” in 1890 he described the process at the AB, and it did not include the lagering process, but was very much brewing in the traditional British manner . Look at Martyn Cornell’s Zythophile on wordpress on the internet for a long article on lager, including the AB. The 1897 Jubilee booklet had photos showing all standard British equipment, with no mention of lager or the lagering process. With the First World War, the connection to Germany became a problem and the name was rapidly changed to “Anglo”. I wonder if this is when your etched glass window dates from? Perhaps just after the 1st WW?"

update from Mary Miles
Miners pose for the camera at Hanham Pit in the 1920s

1939 – 1946?
Ronald (Lear?)
grandson of Fanny Bailey

lived in house on corner opposite The Swan with his (uncle?) Grantley - now being sold off as flats (2010)

VE Day
8 May 1945

Many thanks to local resident Jean Bateman for giving us permission to use this photograph.
Relatives of Jean pictured are: sister on the right with an American flag who also served in the Swan, sister - third from left in front row, mother -  just to the left behind the banjo player, father - second from left at the back with the hat
On the left of the photo is the former (temporary) mortuary - note the white flecks of paint on the wall which can be still seen in the pub car park
The depth of the front indicates the wall would be closer to where the road is today

1940? - 1954
Dick Rowlands

Left the Swan to run the Wheatsheaf at Winterbourne


map showing area around the Swan
The farm at the rear of the Swan belonged to Grantley Bailey. Cyril used to farm it with his father. Grantley, the other son was a bit more studious The house on the corner opposite the Swan was called "Rock House" where Mr & Mrs Bailey lived. It was a farm shop for milk etc.

1954 – 1955
Len & Bett Short

Dunkerton, Peasedown, Cross Ways Bath (not sure of the connection)

1955 - 1971
Ken & Doris Richards
Flying Officer Kit

Many thanks to Elaine Dudley who emailed the Swan with the following updates and pictures:

"I spent many an hour at the Swan in the years that Doris and Ken owned it.  I was married to Nick in 1968 and we emigrated to South Africa in 1970.  Unfortunately after 10 years the marriage fell apart.  I have since re-married.  Nick died 6 years ago this month having suffered from cancer.  He was a remarkable person and could do more than most people who have all their limbs.  His business in printing chemicals did very well and he made quite a name for himself. 

I still keep in touch with Ken Elliott from Kingswood who was one of Nick's best  friends.  ..... I can still remember Ken saying "All ashore that's going ashore" when it was last orders.......

......On the first photo you will see Nick Richards and if you look at the wedding photo you will see a tall lady to Nick's right, that is Doris and the short man with the handlebar moustache is Ken.  This was taken in 1968. 

You might be interested to hear that Ken spent a lot of time with Lawrence of Arabia and they rode motor bikes together in the war.  Ken was in the R.A.F.  I remember taking him to see the film Lawrence of Arabia just before he died.   After his death Doris married Dennis Coombs who had lived down the road from the Swan for many years.  He also helped behind the bar.  Another barman was Ted but I can't remember his surname.  Dennis died some years later and Doris then moved to be close to Nick in South Africa.  I am from Filton originally but have now lived in South Africa for 42 years.  I stay in a place called Sedgefield surrounded by the sea, lakes, forests and mountains.  It is called the Garden Route for good reason.  I have been in the wine business for 20 years along with my husband Bob"

Ken & Doris's son Nick, despite having only one arm served behind the bar and was a keen photographer. At that time there used to be a piano in the old bar, the pianist was Arthur Morgan who used to play "by ear". The pub was very popular particularly 10.30 - 11.00 being just outside the city boundary where closing time was 10.30!!
Apparently, during the time Doris and Ken had the pub there was a very smartly dressed local who frequented the lounge bar who was known as "The Mayor of Hanham" 
Kit is Ken's nickname - Left RAF after the war - gentleman with a large handlebar moustache
As you go down Vicarage Road from Church Street, where the new houses are built used to be a market garden  owned by Reg Brain.

1971 - 1982
Ron (Father) & May Irwin

The fancy dress party photo was taken during this period and May Irwin is in the middle of the picture next to Rose Joy. Pete Joy is Batman - Trevor Hudson is on duty!

The same fancy dress party - is that Father Ron Irwin in the centre of the pic? - he looks a lot like Ron the son!
Detectives will note the Cockney Pearly King & Queen connection with the other pic!!

1977 The Swan Ladies Jubilee football team
Played the Elm Tree Ladies on Hanham Common the match being refereed by Trevor Hudson. No details of the final score are to hand but apparently it was quite a bruising encounter with the Swan team winning the match.
L-R TOP ROW: Karen Wiltshire (nee Sharp), Jean Sharp, Jean Peat, ME, Rosemary Joy, Don't know the name of this girl but she lived down in the valley so Judy Beckett may be able to tell you), Maureen.....(don't know her last name but she is Diane Hutton's sister). L-R BOTTOM ROW: Diane Hutton, Marilyn Hutton, Jenny Bawden, Judy Beckett, Jill Stokes.

Thanks for Pic and info. -  Jean Guest
Subject: Vice Squad at the Swan 1979
Date: 2018-06-25 14:52
From: Shane Baldwin
Hi Gerry,
This is the guy in the leather jacket that called in the pub Saturday afternoon and told you about how we used to go in the Swan when we were 15. I also told you that our band Vice Squad played in the skittle alley. We actually played twice and here are two photos from the second time we played on 2 May 1981.
I've written a book about the band and I'm sending the page that tells about the first time we played in 1979. The exact date is unknown, as you can see from the attached list, but it was probably May 1979. As you can see Trevor is also mentioned!
Anyway, I hope this is of some interested, we certainly never forgot it.

It was good to meet you,


1982 - 1995
Ron Irwin – son

Ron Irwin was landlord, Eileen his live-in manager/partner also worked at the Swan. Eileen had two dogs, who were easily bribed to keep quiet by bars of chocolate during a break-in one night.
Ron came on a couple of the Hanham Sunday FC Football tours.

1995 - 2000
Tony Watts

Before the Mogg Dynasty alterations - Well known local footballer and character heavily involved with Hanham Sunday FC as a player and on the committee - his father Reg was often seen around in the Jolly Sailor and other local Hanham pubs - Tony on left, Al Mizen on right

Gerry Mogg

Another well known local footballer. Gerry runs the pub as a family concern with the help of Joe, Abbie and Dan


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