Tabard

2 Bath Road,
Chiswick,
W4 1LW

This pub’s entry on the London Regional Inventory was deleted when it was reassessed a few years ago. However, it is briefly described at the end of the description of another Regional Inventory pub in Chiswick, the Duke of York as follows: “Tabard, built in 1880 by the great architect Norman Shaw as the pub for the new, refined garden suburb of Bedford Park. Although very substantially refitted the beautiful William De Morgan wall tiles survive. The counter seems original but the bar-back and seating in the rear, lower area are good modern work in an Arts and Crafts style. The right-hand bar has obviously lost a partition (hence the two entrance doors).” The Tabard is also a grade II* listed building and the listing description is as follows: “The Tabard public house and No.2 Bath Road. A row formerly comprising a public house, private house and stores, now a public house and offices. 1880 by Richard Norman Shaw, as part of Jonathan Carr's development of Bedford Park. Red brick with rough-cast, tile-hanging, tiled roofs. A three storey row, divided into seven gabled bays, recessed in the centre. The Tabard: the western two bays comprise the Tabard, with gabled return to the west. Ground floor with entrance porch carried on Tuscan columns, flanked by many-paned windows. First floor with projecting bow windows flanked by round windows; projecting painted pub sign suspended from a moulded beam. Projecting twin-gabled overhang to upper floor above moulded cornice: tile-hung, with five light mullioned windows in each gable. Similar return to the west, partly hidden by a later fire escape. Tile-hung rear extension. Central two bays: Brick-faced up to second floor level. Pair of six-pane doors within gauged brick shouldered surrounds with pediments; four 416 pane sash windows to ground floor with keystones and aprons. First floor has four 616 pane sash windows with hoods, keystones and aprons, set between Doric pilasters supporting an entablature; upper storey is jet tied and rough-cast. The easternmost three bays were originally used as stores, now offices. Extensively glazed ground floors, over lunettes to basement; three eight-light leaded oriel 'Ipswich' windows on brackets to first floor; seven-light windows with arched centres to jet tied second floor. Return to Flanders Road of similar treatment, with large garage door to ground floor; rear elevation with oriel windows to first floor. INTERIORS: interior of Tabard includes numerous items of note. These include: entrance lobbies with glazed doors and overdoor strapwork reliefs; painted tile decoration by William de Morgan to walls; moulded dado rails, door and window surrounds; panelled bar counter with metal foot rest; alcove with console-framed arch; bolection-moulded chimneypieces with nursery rhyme tiles and mirror; panelled rear alcove. Extension to left incorporates former ground floor of neighbouring house: two adjoining rooms with tongue and groove panelling up to dado rail; skylight to rear. First floor: currently in use as theatre, reached via stairs with panelling up to dado rail. Features include large chimney piece with moulded surround incorporating painted tiles with egg and dart moulding; fielded panelling up to dado rail; two panel doors; window seat. Interiors of No.2 Bath Road modernised as offices; upper floors not inspected. HISTORY: These buildings, together with St Michael's Church, were designed as the social centre-piece of Bedford Park and proved highly influential for subsequent suburban developments. Inspired by Staples Inn in Holborn, these buildings are in Shaw's English Domestic Revival (or 'Queen Anne') style and were to be widely imitated in Britain and the United States of America. The Tabard was a pioneering 'improved' pub and represented a rejection of the Gin Palace in favour of a more traditionally inspired and respectable inn. REFERENCES: Building News, 2nd Jan and 31st Jan. 1880; Andrew Saint, Richard Norman Shaw (1976),209; Mark Girouard, Sweetness and Light (1984), 202.”

The Tabard featured on the Daytime Crawl of Chiswick and Brentford in February 2005, and the Style, Substance and E Numbers: Daytime Crawl of Greenford, West Ealing, Acton and Chiswick in February 2009.