A bit of history...
Originally called the White Hart, the Lock Keeper began its life as a private house whose occupier started brewing using water from the river and nearby well. Then it opened up its kitchen & fireside to drinkers and became an alehouse. By 1719 The White Hart was a licensed public house.
On a warm summer evening a great stir and commotion filled the usually quiet and sleepy little town of Keynsham. The news had spread that, in an attempt to win the crown from his Uncle King James II, Monmouth was marching, with his army, up from Glastonbury, Wells and Shepton Mallet, into the parish of Keynsham. This display of force, now some 9000 strong, was cut short by heavy rain and the men retired to Keynsham to find shelter. Monmouth’s rebels slept in the fields beside the River Avon, utilising the White Hart Inn, now known as the Lock Keeper as the guard post which it had been during the English Civil War.
Flooding has always been an issue in our area, and up until the great flood of 1968, the main road to Keynsham high street actually passed directly in front of the main entrance to our pub, and through what is now our car park. It’s probably a good job that the new road was built the other side of the building, as leaving a pub after a few beers and stepping straight onto a busy road certainly isn’t ideal!
In more recent history (the 1970’s), did you know that what is now our downstairs cellar used to be a rather popular nightclubbing establishment? It’s hard to imagine everyone dancing about down there now, but quite a lot of our regulars certainly have fond memories of partying at Barges Cellar Club! We love to hear their stories of what they used to get up to back in the day.