Pub Architecture # 1

Whether it’s the impressive tiled interior of the Victorian ‘Barton Arms’ or the grade II listed glazed frontage of the ‘Trocadero’ there are plenty of interesting examples of pub architecture to be seen in the West Midlands.

Birmingham and the Black Country have a wealth of interesting public houses dotted throughout the streets and suburbs…from grand Victorian public houses to Tudor half-timber Inns. This blog series will highlight some of my favourite examples of pub architecture in the region. Whether you stop off for a nice pint of real ale (or fruit beer in my case!) or to admire the architecture a pub crawl around the West Midlands is a must!

Pub Architecture #1- The Queens Arms

The Queens Arms, Newhall Street

The Queens Arms, Newhall Street

The Queens Arms Public House is a rather bold looking Victorian building located on the corner of Newhall Street/ Charlotte Street. Built in the 1870’s it has quite a striking frontage with first storey projecting bay windows with steep gable roofs and large chimney stacks marking the corner.

I walk past this pub on a regular basis and always admire what in my opinion is the most striking feature which is the decorative glazed tiling in a curved panel across the corner. The section which projects above the eaves line has decorative lettering spelling the name ‘The Queens Arms’ and the lower section on the first storey says ‘Mitchell and Butlers, Gold Medal Ales.’ I assume this tiling was a later addition after the pub was taken over and refurbed by M&B in the 1900’s.

Decorative glazed faïence panel and signage on the corner.

Decorative glazed faïence panel and signage on the corner.

It has all the external hallmarks of a typical Victorian pub with decorative timber barge-boards, projecting brick banding and stone dressings which are all well-preserved and in good condition. The timber display frontage is painted in a racing green colour with pilaster surrounds with scroll pediments and a carved cornice above.

Internally the pub has a L-shaped plan, open plan on the ground floor with communal bar area which may have been split into several rooms originally. I am not sure if any of the interior is original but it has a wooden bar, surround and flooring which are of a traditional style. It’s a nice little pub and worth a visit if you are heading towards the Jewellery Quarter. Allegedly it also has a ghost, which was reported in several newspapers a couple of years ago…make of that what you will!

queens arms 22

  • Location: The Queens Arms 150 Newhall Street, The Jewellery Quarter, Birmingham.
  • Year: C1870 (remodelled 1901 by Joseph. D. Ward, architect, for Mitchell and Butlers )
  • Architect:  Joseph. D. Ward- 1901
  • Builder: Mitchell and Butlers – 1901
  • Use: Public House
  • Style: Victorian
  • Material: Red Brick , painted stone and tile decoration, slate roof.
  • Status: Grade II Listed

More details at:

Queens Arms Bar Website

British Listed Buildings- The Queens Arms


2 replies »

  1. Nice post! That looks like a good pub to wander into if you were passing by One of my future mini-projects this year is to visit and blog on some of the CAMRA Heritage Pubs near me.

  2. Thanks for your comment Pete. Yes you should definitely blog about the CAMRA pubs, that would be really interesting to read. I don’t know if you are familiar with the region but there are loads of interesting pubs in the West Mids, especially in the Black Country. I would like to visit as many as I can and one of my personal faves is the Beacon Hotel in Dudley- a real gem! Such a shame so many pubs are closing every week though!

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