The Flying Horse Hotel
THE Flying Horse Hotel, Nottingham, situated upon The Poultry, is an exceedingly picturesque building, and bears on its signboard the date 1483, the year in which the Princes were murdered in the Tower.
In spite of its picturesque and antique appearance there is curiously little history attached to the building, which stands upon the site of the house which the Plumptre family erected for themselves when they first came to Nottingham in the 13th century.
What their house was like we do not know, but their gardens extended to St. Peter’s-gate and probably Peck-lane was a side way into their premises.
In 1799 the inn was known as " The Traveller’s Inn," and in 1813, a great dinner was held within its walls to celebrate the victories over Napoleon. To make merry, a figure of Napoleon had been brought down from London on the top of a coach, which figure was duly burnt in the Market Place amidst scenes of great excitement and rejoicing, oxen and sheep being roasted whole to mark the occasion.
It is very difficult to account for the name of the Flying Horse being attached to this inn, for Pegasus, the mount of the muses, seems to have little connection with so prosaic a place as the "Traveller’s Inn" upon The Poultry.
Possibly the name may have been chosen to tempt would-he travellers in days when horse-drawn vehicles were the only means of communication, and may have some reference to the superior stamina and speed of the animals supplied by this inn.
At any rate, just in front of it stood one of the saw-pits of Nottingham, and as this saw-pit appears to have been left continually open, and as no provision was made for public lighting, it must have been a pretty good test for the sobriety of the customers of the ancient inn!