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The Waggoners at Ayot Green

A popular place for diners who appreciate good food with the ambience and charm of a very old building. _ To view Gallery Click Here

The ‘Waggoners’ at Ayot Green was smaller than the ‘Angel’. The first licensee is believed to have been Joseph Howard. In 1851 the licensee was James Aldridge. In 1881 it was owned by J.W. Kent, brewers in St Albans. It was held on a lease from a Mrs Batchelor of Croxley Green in 1904. It later became a Whitbread house. It is now a listed building; it is thought that parts date back to the 16th century.

Truly the nineteenth hole

Mrs Eleanor Cliffe was licensee in 1937. By the 1950s the volume and speed of the traffic using the Great North Road made it to dangerous to use the front door of the pub. Entry was therefore by a rear door, which also provided easy access for those customers coming straight off the golf course. (Truly the nineteenth hole) At this time there was no bar as such within the pub . Drinks were purchased at a hatchway in a corridor just inside the rear entry door. Drinks would be taken into a small ‘snug’ to the left of the now sealed off front door or into a larger room on the right. Dominoes and cribbage were popular pastimes for the regulars. There was a large open fireplace there. The licensee was Jack Cliffe and later the licence passed to his daughter Clara Cliffe. When Clara had to go to hospital in the late 1960s the pub was run on a rota basis by the customers, including Ferd and Ann Fitt, Clara still being the licensee

The motorway opens in 1973

With the opening to the motorway in 1973 ‘ The Waggoner’s’ was by – passed and isolated on a short length of the great North Road which now became a cul-de-sac and was renamed Brickwall close. In the old days when a pub was by passed by the re-routing of a main road this would have meant loss of trade and possible closure but here the pub was rejuvenated, a proper bar was built, the front door at the road was re-opened and the road itself effectively became a car park. Kathy Blacker was the publican at this time( circa 1986 – 1998) and managed the house with her family. Also at about this time the drink/drive laws were coming into force and more and more pubs were increasingly offering food as a means of continuing trade. This was so at ‘The Waggoners’ where in addition to offering food at the bar, a restaurant was added. After briefly being in the hands of the Red Rooster organisation it again became a family managed pub in 1999 with a Joe and Dawn McCulloch in charge. The licensees then passed to Roberto Agesta and Virginie Fauque and it became a popular place for diners who appreciate good food with the ambience and charm of a very old building. In November 2003 the new licensees Aude and Laurent Brydniak took over and continued to add to the reputation for fine wines, real ale and French fusion food with influences from all over the world

Infamous brothers, the Fox twins would drink in The Waggoners, well remembered as poachers, they looked so alike their best friends could not tell them apart. The story told about the two characters ....Read more

The Waggoners, along with The Shoulder of Mutton (The Red Lion) was the last pub at the top of the Mountain Slow. During its oldest period The Waggoners would have been the more dominant of pubs catering for commercial transport of the times. The Waggoners was built on level ground enabling waggon drivers not to labour their horses immediately after their rest by pulling loads up-hill from a standing start especially after still being worn out from the long drag up Mountain Slow.Read More about the Golden Age Of Lemsford - Click Here