A lesson in persistence

The Poyntz Arms was very almost thwarted in its attempts to open. Here’s the story of how the pub got its licence - and its name… 

In 1866, Francis Bowry, a cab proprietor living in Pemberton Road, opened a new public house which had been erected on the corner of Manor and Walton Roads. 

The village of East Molesey was then expanding  And every year more and more houses were going up, and Mr Bowry had good reason, therefore, to believe that the licensing authorities would allow him to open it as an inn. 

However, in spite of a petition signed by numerous residents, including the vicar of St. Paul's Church, and a letter from the dowager Lady Clinton of Molesey Park, the bench refused to grant his application. 

In the following year, he again applied, the petition in his favour now being supported by three clergymen, two churchwardens, and one hundred and seventeen other people. But still it was turned down, the magistrates deeming "that the requirements of the neighbourhood did not yet demand another licensed house". 

Nevertheless, he persisted, and in 1868, when most of the landlords of surrounding inns had dropped their opposition, his request was allowed, and he received his license. 

Mr Bowry was so grateful for the assistance he had received from Lady Clinton in his attempts to open the inn that he wanted to name the house after her and call it the ‘Clinton Arms’. The Clinton family, it was said, was horrified at the thought of their name being associated with anything as low as a public house and objected. Whereupon the good lady replied: "Never mind. If you still want to call it after me, you can use my maiden name. They cannot demur at that”.

And, as she had been a Miss Poyntz, ‘The Poyntz Arms’ it became.