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The Swan was built in 1790. From the early 20th century postcard view (illustrated below) it would appear that the building has been substantially renovated in the 20th century. A new roof is evident, as the original hipped roof has been replaced with end gables and it would also appear that the building may have been since given a brick skin, although the quality of the photograph makes that difficult to say with complete certainty. The building is one of the traditional public houses of Witham, still performing its original function.

 

Janet Gyford (A History of Witham) describes The Swan as: ‘153 built about 1790 right side has faint remains of words 'Home Brewed beer' in black, just above the three iron crosses. Had Second World War pill box in front guarding the bridge’.

 

The Dictionary of Pub Names defines The Swan as: ‘In use a tavern name since the 14C, either as a direct allusion to the majestic bird itself or to a coat of arms which featured it. In the latter role it as much favoured by Henry VIII and Edward III’.

 

Sources: Janet Gyford; The Dictionary of Pub Names; Witham & Countryside Society.

Text and Photographs: John Palombi and Cyril Taylor unless otherwise accredited. Illustrations: John Finch and Julie & John Denney. Translations: Google.com. Original Concept: Joy Vaughan, Witham Town Centre Strategy Group. Narration: John Rhodes
 

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