The Albion was acquired by St Austell Brewery in 2014 and remains one of Clifton’s most popular dining and drinking establishments over 250 years since its opening in the 1760s.
An extensive renovation took place in 1956 which forced a closure of five months. The licence however was held in abeyance, the first time that this had been allowed by Bristol Licensing justices.
The Cordeux family sold the Albion to Bristol United Breweries in 1901 when the deeds revealed that the inn had been built in contravention of local planning laws as the stables were above 12 foot in height. The inn was allowed to remain unaltered.
The arch to the left of the pub leading to Victoria Square was built in 1837 and was the scene of a legal action in 1861 known as the Battle of Boyce’s Buildings when the owner William Mathias refused to allow carriages through despite it being a right of way. A mother taking her baby in a pram through the arch was attacked by Mathias who claimed it was a carriage. He was eventually sent to prison for 6 months as a result of his actions.
Boyce’s investments proved too much for his means and he ended up bankrupt, selling his assets in Boyce’s Avenue to the Cordeux family in 1773.
Boyce inserts a notice into Felix Farley’s Journal announcing the fitting up of ‘three large and elegant lodging houses on Clifton Hill, which became known as ‘Boyce’s Buildings’ in Boyce’s Avenue.
Built in the late 1760s for stabling of coach and horses for the visitors using his three lodges. The pub is most likely named after a 200 ton ship built at that time in the Bristol shipyards, owned by Davis and Protheroe and launched in 1778 under the name of The Albion.
Thomas Boyce acquired land on Clifton Hill from Isaac Elton of Clifton and spent £8000 building accommodation for the wealthy visitors who flocked to the spa for the season.
Thomas Boyce was a well-to-do peruke (wig) maker in King Street Bristol who went into property speculation during the heyday of the Bristol Hotwell Spa.
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