Douglas Inns


For details of references cited and historical background see Introduction. {NM] refers to Neil Mathieson's papers which form the basis of much of this list.Since Mathieson's time another source of information has emerged - the Castle Rushen papers in Manx Museum have been sorted and amongst them are the annual list of applications (and approvals) for Public House licences (though not all years appear to have survived). The 1789 list is available

According to Train (suspect quoting Jefferrys of 1808), Douglas streets were not even named until 1809, certainly they were not numbered until late1843 when the Post Office started to deliver mail instead of requiring people to collect it.

Most of the Inns are on North Quay or in a street very close to it. The figure is a rather simplistic representation of the North Quay area - West to the top, the house numbers increase as you move down from the Castletown Road and bridge to the Parade (the red rectangle is the Old British Hotel) - (for those with the CD-ROM version the index page gives access to a 25" plan of the area). The Market place was between Old St Matthews and the Quay

stylised plan of North Quay

Several major slum clearances have totally demolished old Douglas - the first was in 1875 when Victoria Street was cut through from Prospect Hill to the new Victoria Landing Pier, the next was 1895/6 when much of the area around Old St Mathews (Market Place, Chapel Row etc) was demolished, including Old St Mathews itself. A new town hall and street (Ridgeway St) was also created. In the 1930's came the wholesale slum clearance of the area to the east of the Market Place. Likewise with the building of the King Edward VIII Pier (on the foundations of the 1796 Red Pier) and the subsequent filling in of part of the harbour much of the rest of North Quay has been altered.

Hannah Bullock writing in 1816 says;

The lodging-houses are very numerous in this town, but there are few inns, and only two of any pretensions; in these the accommodations are good, and the difference between their charges and those made at English hotels is so great, that it induces many persons to give a preference to Douglas, for a temporary visit during the summer,...

The tourist trade started to grow from the mid 1820's, encouraged by the IoMSteam Packet Co. from the 1830's.

The various pages give the various Hotels, Inns and Taverns arranged by name - many changed names with changes of Landlord - the major source of information has been the various trade directories - an 1856 Act established licensing courts and reports of proceeding in this court were carried by the press, subsequent acts extended the powers of these courts.


 Pubs Index


Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
HTML Transcription © F.Coakley , 1999