West Hoe Inn

A modest building with limited life-span, or at least so it would appear. The 1852 street directory entry read ‘Pillar William, beer retailer’: a few years later it had become ‘Pillar William, West Hoe inn, Millbay Pier’. The following year Pillar was listed as a victualler, suggesting that this was now more than a beerhouse. Nevertheless the property did not appear to run beyond the tenure of the man himself.

Opened, in all likelihood, to cater for the men working on the West Hoe and then subsequent development of Millbay Docks, we see its northern elevation here, as we look south towards the Sound, the recently built terrace at Rusty Anchor, with the familiar, octagonal Custom House building just above the word ‘Inn’. The draw bridge to the right of the pub – there was another on the other side – was to admit boats into the long-since infilled West Hoe Dock to collect the broken limestone. Note also the little round building to the left – an outside urinal.


1852-1862 - William Pillar