The present 'New Inn' stands on the site of a previous hostelry also called 'The New Inn' which was probably built in the first quarter of the 19th.century. In the mid-1880's a fire destroyed the old building in 'suspicious circumstances'. It was started just as the bailiffs were in taking away anything saleable. The rebuilding design was undertaken in 1885 by Denman of Brighton. Throughout the latter half of the 20th. century the pub earned itself a reputation which could be described either as 'enviable' or 'non-enviable' depending on what the customer's idea of a village pub should be!
A public house and former hotel it was built for the South Down & East Grinstead Brewery Co.
It is of red brick with limestone dressings and red clay-tiled roofs, ridge and eaves stacks.
The interior has a long public bar on at the front and a small public room behind. The central entrance to hotel leads to a large function room or former restaurant on left.
TLooking from the Main Road there is a single storey room on the left and two storeys to the right. The 'Function Room' has a 3-light mullioned window, the lower lights with segmental heads, the tracery lights being divided by mullions bearing baluster-like decoration. There is half timbering in the gable over the frontage. The central entrance has etched glass in the door windows stating 'Hotel Entrance' with a fanlight over with central mullion also with baluster-like detail. Above a single-light window with details similar to the function room window. Public bar with two 2-light windows similar to others. The entrance is under a projecting brick canopy with round-arched head, this rises to a crow-stepped gable with central pinnacle. Above the parapet embattled features breaking through the gambrel roof. On the right-hand return there are two half-timbered gables.
Features of the interior of the Public Bar include an elliptical arch resting on fluted console brackets halfway down the length of the room. There is a simple panelled counter front and timber counter top. The shelving in the bar-back including a cash drawer is original. There is a sash-windowed hatch from servery to corridor, two simple fixed benches, a wood-block floor and matchboard dado panelling. There is further matchboard panelling round the rear public room, function room and the corridor and an ornate cast-iron fireplace in the corridor.
'This is a rare example of a rural public house and hotel which retains its planform and fittings virtually intact'.
The New Inn is not the only 'watering hole' the village has known, the oldest one probably existed for around 300 years before it served its last pint in 1900. It was known as 'The Spotted Cow' and was situated in the lane that still bears its name. 'Loudwell', in Tinker's Lane was once an ale house famed for its home brewed beer, its old sign post was dug up in 1969. The 'Stonemason's Arms' was once what is now 'The Haven', it lost its license when the new 'New Inn' opened.
Information from English Heritage
'Photos courtesy of Michael Slaughter LRPS
Go to the New Inn's page on the CAMRA Historic Interiors web site.