Rifleman’s Arms

(by the 1960s the name had been shortened to ‘The Rifleman’)

The building was on the very end of Chapel Street, on land that is now the roundabout. It closed in 1973 and was demolished in the late 1980s along with a series of buildings along Tape Street.

By 1907 the pub was owned by the Burton Brewery Company. The rent paid by James Plant at that time was £14 per year.

On December 31st 1966 the Oddfellow Society held their annual general meeting here, the society had previously met in the Unicorn Hotel.

The Rifleman’s closed in 1973 following the death of the licensee, the pubs location in the town was by now considered to quite dangerous as road traffic had increased; throughout 1974 it was described as “the most dangerous place in Cheadle” by local press. The owners of the building Ansells Ltd. lodged a number of proposals with the Staffordshire Moorlands District Council throughout that year but they were refused.

By 1978 the building was still vacant and the area was still part of a plan to improve the road system; new plans to re-open the building as a pub were blocked at various time at the start of the year, against all the odds though the pub was granted a license in late 1978 although it failed to re-open.

In March 1981 the council managed to declare the pub permanently closed on the grounds of redundancy. The following month an application was submitted to turn the building into a series of flats, the road would remain the same for a little longer!

Past Proprietors:

William Thomas Elkin (Kelly’s Post Office Directory of Staffordshire 1872 and Kelly’s Directory of Staffordshire 1880 and 1884)
James Plant [from around 1895](Kelly’s Directory of Staffordshire 1900, c.1910 Information, Kelly’s Dir 1921 and 1924)
Frank Albert Plant (Kelly’s Directory of Staffordshire 1932 and 1940)
George Brassington [last licensee in 1973] (Cheadle Public Houses of Yesteryear)

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6 Responses to Rifleman’s Arms

  1. Belinda Knobbs says:

    My Father had many a trip with the Henpecked Husbands trips, sadly he his no longer with us, his name was Derek Knobbs.

  2. Dave Alcock says:

    This was one of the first places I had a beer in 68ish-69 and remember George. The front door led straight into the bar and it was very small, more than 6 people and you couldn’t move.

  3. Susan Corbett says:

    I remember the pub when I was growing up in the 50’s, and it was considered dangerous then really where it was situated, at least one window hung right over onto Tape Street and there was no footpath on that side of the road because of this.

    In 1917 a G Uncle of mine named Charles Arthur Rushton of 6 Sun Street, was killed outside the ‘Rifleman’s Arms’ corner of New Street, he was age 9/10 years old.
    An inquest was held by T.R.Cull, had reveiled Charles had been crossing the road between a farmer’s float and an on-coming motor-car, he was knocked down by the car been driven by A.T.Radcliffe J.P. ‘The Broadmore ?’ near Chartley.

    (A different version by family said Charles had been playing on the back off a brewery lorry whilst the draymen were delivering beer barrels to the pub, he had jumped down accidently into the path of the oncoming car.)

    Charles was taken off the road and into number 5 New Street, where he died a few minutes later, his father (my G grandfather) had been sent for, and Dr Ernest Mackenzie had given his verdict of 5 broken ribs and bleeding to the lungs, Charles’s father George carried him home.

    Mr. A.T.Radcliffe J.P. had expressed great regret and sympathy and had offered to pay for the full expenses of the funeral if the family would allow him to do so.
    The jury gave an accidental verdict and cleared Mr. Radcliffe of any blame.
    The Plants that lived there at the time were also related to our family.

  4. Susan Corbett says:

    Thank you for posting my story

  5. Carole Loakman says:

    Hi Susan,
    Having just read your posting about the Riflemans Arms I couldn’t resist commenting as the pub used to be run bt my grandfather ((Frank)Albert Plant) & grandmother (Maggie Plant). This was in the forties & fifties. Maybe we are related?

    • susan corbett says:

      Hi Carole,
      Just seen your posting, I am so pleased to hear from you, my family are the Allens/Rushtons, my GG grandfather owned the ‘Travellers Rest and Rope Walk’ daughter Clara Allen my gg aunt, married Thomas Plant,brother to your G grandfather James W.Plant (father to Frank Albert).
      My mum’s best friend was Eileen Plant daughter to Frank Albert and Margaret (Collins), I have a lovely photo of Eileen and another one of her with my mum and uncle, taken at 5 Sun Street (Tan Yard).
      I do the family history on Ancestry and have all your Plants, did you know that every seventh son was named Septimus.

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