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Beer Houses of Fordham Heath

by a local resident 

An Inn had a full license to sell beer and all other types of liquor and offered accommodation to travelers. Beer Houses were a product of the 19th century, a result of the Beer Act of 1839 which enabled any householder, whose name was on the rate book to sell beer, but no other intoxicating liquor without obtaining a license from the Justices of the Peace, and free from any control by merely paying the sum of two guineas to the Customs and Excise. The legislation aimed to curb the consumption of spirits which was seen as having a detrimental effect on the health of the labouring poor and to restore the ancient popularity of the national beverage - beer!. Beer houses sprung up all over the country, often in the converted front parlours of cottages. As can be seen from the list of beer retailers of Fordham Heath (below), The Half Moon beer house was set up in the 1850's and what was to become The Star, in 1871. These Beer Houses often doubled as small provisions shops as was the case on Fordham Heath where both doubled as such for a number of years. The Star only gained a full license in about 1937. It was relatively easy to set up a beer house, regardless of your age or occupation. John Goody’s occupation was a "jobber", he was aged 69. George Bunting was a labourer aged 42. Walter Bunting, who was the last beer retailer of The Half Moon, was born circa 1862.

Beer Retailers of Fordham Heath
The Half Moon Beer House Heath Beer House (The Star)
John Goody 1855 ------------------
Maria Goody (widow) 1862 ------------------
John Goody (son) 1870 ------------------
John Goody 1871 George Bunting + shopkeeper
John Goody 1882 George Bunting + shopkeeper
Walter Bunting + shopkeeper 1886 John Gasson + shopkeeper
Walter Bunting + shopkeeper 1894 John North + shopkeeper
Walter Bunting 1899 William Rand
Walter Bunting + farmer 1908 John Thomas Firmin
Walter Bunting 1917 John Wingfield
Walter Bunting 1922 John Wingfield
----------------- 1926 John Wingfield
----------------- 1937 Alfred Geo. Bugg - The Star P. H.

The Beer House that was to become The Star by 1897, ceased to operate as a shop when it was bought by Greene King Breweries in 1894.

1(2)light.gif (1653 bytes) the_star.jpg (239152 bytes)The Star 1949 1(2)light.gif (1653 bytes) star.jpg (169262 bytes) The Star 1938
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1(2)light.gif (1653 bytes) the_star_1950.jpg (235433 bytes)TheStar1950

1(2)light.gif (1653 bytes) half_moon_coits.jpg (229294 bytes)The Half Moon Coits Team 1921
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 1(2)light.gif (1653 bytes)star1998.jpg (41455 bytes)The Cricketers (formally The Star) 1998 1(2)light.gif (1653 bytes) half_moon1998.jpg (36011 bytes)Half Moon 1998
half_moon.jpg (55985 bytes)
The Half Moon Beer House circa 1912......

.....was on the corner of Spring Lane, and Huxtables Lane, Fordham Heath.

Pictured left to right, Walter Bunting, ? Ashton, Jack Perry, George Perry, Arthur Bunting, Jack Firmin.

The Half Moon is now a private house, and has retained the name Half Moon as the house name. 

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Last updated:  29 October 2001 20:21:33