the history of yeovil's pubs





Fleur-de-lys (2)

Mudford Road / St Michaels Avenue


The Fleur de Lys was built in 1936 to serve the Mudford Road / St Michaels Avenue area where much inter- and post-war housing was being developed. In that sense it is a typical 'estate' pub of the period, red brick under a tiled roof in much the same vein as the Green Dragon, Milford Inn, Royal Standard and the Sun.

During the Second World War, the Fleur-de-Lys was earmarked as a Civil Defence Reinforcements Rendezvous Centre.

In recent years the Fleur de Lys has had several changes of licensee and has spent a fair period of time closed, but is now open as a Co-op convenience store.

The following is part of an article from the Western Gazette of 4 January 1993 (and it could have been published last week!) -


Landlords cry in beer as regulars stay home

Last orders are being called at pubs across the country as landlords bow to the pressure of recession. The cheer has gone out of the trade as drinkers find little to celebrate and tighten their belts. Last year the Licencsed Victuallers Association - the landlord's national representative body - collapsed, leaving landlords with even less back-up. In Somerset , sales have plunged by around 15 per cent over the past five years as daily drinkers cut back to one or two evenings a week and more people lose their jobs. And despite brewery promotions, tied pubs are feeling more exposed than ever. Last year three per cent  less beer was brewed as producers react to falling sales. Landlords believe that more people are drinking at home because of the rising cost of visiting the local. Home brewing also has an effect. And the number of licensed premises on the market continues to grow by the day as weary landlords call time.

Glum licensee Richard Stallard was chairman of LVA's Yeovil branch when it went under. And as his staff at the Fleur de Lys prepare to open the doors again, he reflects on the pressures which are driving more and more publicans to the wall. "This is the first time we have actually experienced a recession in this trade," he says. "Like anyone else in the leisure industry we rely on spare cash. I have always said that this was the last trade to suffer and the first to recover but the number of pubs that operate on a food basis has changed that. People say there is money in food but after all the legislation there is not. I have been a landlord for 30 years and now the EC tells me that I am not qualified to make a sandwich. It is absurd." The new food and hygiene regulations have hit hard, especially with the public's changing perception of pubs. More people than ever expect to be able to walk into a pub at any time and order food.

And, with the price of licensed premises falling along with the housing market, more and more couples are falling into the trap of buying one to fulfill their dream of owning a cosy pub. "New landlords seem to be coming and going more than ever," says Mr Stallard. "Most people sell their house to buy a pub. It is the biggest mistake they can make. Publicans are born not taught and no matter how good you are things can still fall apart. If you do not make it you can find yourself without a roof."

Richard Stallard is one of the old guard of publicans - he has been at the Fleur de Lys on Mudford Road for 25 years and is one of a dying breed.


The Fleur de Lys closed during the summer of 2014 and is now a Co-op convenience store.




From my collection

This photograph, by H Harvey of Yeovil, probably dates to between the mid-1940s and the mid-1950s, but may date to 1936 when the Fleur de Lys first opened.


Courtesy of Chris Rendell

The Fleur de Lys photographed in 1989.


From my collection

Advertisement for the Fleur de Lys from the Visitor, June 1993.



The Fleur-de-Lys photographed in 2009....


Courtesy of Vivien and John Cornelius

.... and again in 2009. 


... and once more, in 2013.


.... and in February 2015 - being converted to another convenience store.


.... and in its guise as a Co-op convenience store. Photographed in 2017.




1957 – RC Brown (1957 Yeovil Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys. In the late 1940's and early
            1950's Mr Brown had been licensee of the Red Lion in Kingston.
1960 – RC Brown (1960 Yeovil Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys
1965 – Licensee not named (1965 Yeovil Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys
1968 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1968 Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys Hotel
1969 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1969 Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys Hotel
1970 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1970 Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys Hotel
1971 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1971 Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys Hotel
1972 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1972 Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys Hotel
1973 – Licensee not named (Kelly’s 1973 Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys Hotel
1974 – Licensee not named (1974 Yeovil Directory) listed as Fleur De Lys
1986 – Richard Stallard (Advertisement)
1993 – Richard & Janet Stallard (Advertisement)