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Tumble Down Dick Hotel

227 Farnborough Road
GU14 7JT

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Premises Status

This pub is permanently closed. Closed February 2008 following a failed Environmental Health Inspection.

About the Pub

The Tumbledown closed in February 2008 when Spirit Group voluntarily shut the pub after a failed health inspection. Despite, promising a refurbishment within 6-9 months, the pub never reopened. It stood empty for six years. and was seriously overlooked, whether through deliberate and wilful neglect or pure “professional” incompetence. With holes in its slate roof it was wondered how much longer the inn could weather the storm. In October 2012 a campaign was started to generate a positive and practical course for the pub, by a Group known as the Friends of the Tumbledown Dick. The Group organised several rallies and fund raising events and in April 2013 secured the pub as the first ever building in Rushmoor to be accepted as an Asset of Community Value (ACV). In July 2013 a planning application was submitted by McDonald’s to turn the Tumbledown Dick pub into a fast food outlet. On Wednesday 9th October 2013, this was formally considered by Rushmoor Borough Council’s Development Control Committee. and planning permission granted by 7 votes to 3. Some of the valid material planning objections were seemingly swept aside as being almost irrelevant. Demolition of the pub commenced in April 2014 with only the façade remaining and McDonalds opened in October. Never been to McDonalds since!

Historic Interest

As far as we know there has been an inn on the site of what is now the Tumble Down Dick, 227 Farnborough Road, since around Tudor times. The first licence to serve alcohol or as a hotel was issued in around 1661. The first sign of a public house on any map dates back to 1772 when only St Peter’s Church, dating back to Norman times, and the coaching inn were visible on what was once open heathland. Farnborough was a good stopping point as it was half way between London and the south coast. There is even a milestone across the road from the pub, just outside the Milestone Surgery. Initially the pub was thought to have been called the Prince of Orange but later had its name changed to The Duke of Cumberland. The name The Tumble Down Dick has a number of potential origins: One rumour is that it is named after Dick Turpin. Another possible name is from the highwayman Richard “Galloping Dick” Ferguson (17??-1800) who met his eventual accomplice Jerry Avershaw at the Tumbledown. Local man Dick Thrupples apparently fell off a stool at the inn. Oliver Cromwell’s third and youngest son, Richard (4 October 1626 – 12 July 1712), became Lord Protector of England on the 3rd September 1658 but lasted only a few months until April or May of 1659 when parliament was dissolved and Cromwell was allowed to “fade away” from his position as the country’s premiere. Ever since known as “Tumbledown Dick” this is the man after whom the pub is most likely named. The current red brick Tumble Down Dick building mainly dates back to 1812 and there have been numerous modifications and additions to the pub over the years including an interior toilet (oh, the luxury) commissioned by the then owners Simonds Brewery (Reading) in 1915 for war-wounded local servicemen who were “inconvenienced” by the old outdoor facilities. (source Friends of the Tumbledown Dick Website)

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Tumble Down Dick Hotel

227 Farnborough Road
GU14 7JT

Sat Nav Reference

51.293267, -0.753443

OS Reference


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Tumble Down Dick Hotel - Farnborough

Permanently Closed

Tumble Down Dick Hotel

227 Farnborough Road
GU14 7JT

Pub Features

  • No Real Ale
  • Close to Railway Station

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