The Old Strap and Block

A term redolent of the golden age of sailing ships a strap-block is a wooden block with a strap around it “and an eye worked at the lower end with an attatchment to a hook on deck for a purchase”.

The Old Strap and Block was one of a comparatively large number of pubs that gave Castle Street a notoriety in the middle of the nineteenth century that was second to none in the Plymouth area. Known locally as Damnation Alley there was even a brief attempt to “disguise its tattered morality” by renaming the thoroughfare Silver Street, but it didn’t last. Today none of those old ale-houses survive and Castle Street is a quite backwater of the Barbican, however locals don’t have to travel too far to find a wide selection of pubs today.


1804 - John Sims
1823 - Peter Anderson
1830 - Ann Rambridge
1844 - Francis Shepherd
1847 - Ann Shepherd