Read the fascinating history of The Old Bridge Hotel

This old postcode shows the back of The Old Bridge Hotel.

This old postcode shows the back of The Old Bridge Hotel. - Credit: THE OLD BRIDGE HOTEL

The Old Bridge Hotel, in Huntingdon, sits on the banks of the Great River Ouse and the edge of the town centre.

The hotel has local links to the Veasey family and was formerly called Bridge House. The Veasey (or Vesey) family of Huntingdon and Godmanchester are well known to local historians, says Karl Brockett, chairman of the Huntingdonshire Nostalgia Group.

Karl Brockett, chairman of the Huntingdonshire Community Nostalgia Group. 

Karl Brockett, chairman of the Huntingdonshire Community Nostalgia Group. - Credit: KARL BROCKETT

Many served as mayors and bailiffs in both towns. Their family fortune was built on corn and milling and by expanding into general building supplies it soon became one the wealthiest families in the district. 

Some time between 1826 and 1835 they bought the Town Wharfs and set up their building supplies and coal merchant business. This must have been profitable as tolls were charged on all non-residents:

The hotel itself stands on the site of Coxlands, a building mentioned in the 1572 survey of Huntingdon. This was later pulled down and a fine mansion was built in its place in the 17th Century.

By 1912, the Fountain Hotel in Huntingdon was closed and that left the town with only The George.  It was fortuitous that the Bridge House came up for sale following the death of Mrs Bateman Brown in 1913 and it was converted into a hotel.

However, war intervened and it was not until December 1919, that it was fully opened as a commercial venture by a decorated and well known former infantry officer Capt H C Roberts.

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Francis Day Veasey who had taken over his father’s business continued to live in Riverview House until about 1911 when he opted for the more comfortable and, probably less damp, Park Villas on the Brampton Road.

By the time he died in 1923 Captain Roberts and his partners had begun to incorporate the warehouses and Riverview into the hotel.

In the mid 1930’s the hotel was bought by the Price Brothers who owned the New Victoria Hotel in Birmingham. Archibald Frederick Price was resident here for much of the war. And it was here that Robert John Lindsell JP, Brewer of St Ives came to live in 1928. He died in his suite in 1939.

No-one is sure when the name of Bridge House was changed to The Old Bridge.

The Old Bridge Hotel sits on Huntingdon ring-road.

The Old Bridge Hotel sits on Huntingdon ring-road. - Credit: HUNTS POST

Some of the car park and gardens were lost to the ring-road in the 1960’s. In the mid sixties, the hotel was owned by Bass, Mitchell and Butler who sold it to Poste Hotels in 1969, for £40,000. John and Julia Hoskins’s company Huntsbridge then bought it in 1994.

John's family ran Poste Hotels in the area for many years. John became a Master of Wine in 1994 – the same year he set up his own company Huntsbridge and bought the hotel.