English Heritage

The following is the full English Heritage listing for the Spotted Dog.

“251/0/D1 UPTON LANE E7 

Timber-framed building, later a public house, dating in part to the late-C15 or early-C16 with subsequent phases of the late-Georgian, Victorian and post-WWII periods.

EXTERIOR: The central range of the main frontage, a timber-framed two-bay hall with open crown post roof, is the earliest part of the building and dates to the late-C15 or early-C16. There are two doors, both with C19 joinery, leading into the building here and the tiled roof eaves come right down to their architraves; there is a brick stack to the right of this range too. This early core is flanked by two-storey cross-wings, also timber-framed, that to the right contemporary with the central hall and that to the left dating from slightly later. Both have jettied, weather-boarded upper storeys with horizontal sliding sashes in the gables and rough-cast rendered ground floors; both jetties rest on later supports, a brick return wall to the left-hand wing and iron posts to the right on the eastern return. The cross-wing to the left has a four-centre arched door and a large window with marginal glazing on the ground floor, that to the right just a window opening, with an entrance on the canted corner to the return. This return, facing east, has a late-C19 bay window on the ground floor and more sashes on the first. Further along the return is an extension, weather-boarded in keeping with the original, but dates to 1968 and lacks special interest. Above it the gables of the Victorian part of the building are visible, complete with bargeboards and finials. The return to the west has two Edwardian porches and a brick chimney flue, also of a C19 or later date, as well as further sash windows. Beyond is the addition of the late-Georgian period, possibly a house originally, a stock brick range with a slate hipped roof, gauged brick arches to the sash windows and brick pilasters. The windows to the right have been altered or bricked in and the door altered too; it once had a canopy and porch. A two-storey extension with metal casements dating to the second half of the C20 abuts this building to the north. Alongside this are a single-storey 1980s function room and a garage. None of these three parts of the building have special interest. On the contrary, the Victorian sections, visible above ground floor and identifiable through their stock brick elevations with red brick dressings, timber sash windows, decorative bargeboards to the gables and slate roofs, do contribute to the interest of the building. 

INTERIOR: In the single room of the central hall, the roof is partly-exposed. This is a crown post with lateral head braces and the timber is hand-sawn but without particular embellishment in the form of chamfers, stops, or other carving. To the right, set under the tie beam, is an inserted stack with hearth, timber bressummer, iron grate and oven. To the left, the wall has a later opening in its upper part looking through to the roof trusses of the cross-wing. A serving bar and back bar along the back of this room appear Victorian in date, as is some of the other joinery; other elements are modern. The floor is paved with York flagstones. The cross-wing to the left has a crown post roof with studs and braces to the walls. The ground floor ceiling is supported by Victorian iron colonettes and contains later fireplaces and panelling. The cross-wing to the right has a tie beam and moulded wall plate but no other elements of the roof are visible. There is a simple late-Georgian timber fireplace in the upper room in this wing, some plain partitioning of the same date in another and a sash window in a third room which may indicate the old end wall of the range. On the ground floor the principal beams in the ceiling are moulded and there are various items of panelling and other joinery including fireplaces dating to no later than the C19. Inside the later sections to the rear, both late-Georgian and Victorian, there are no fireplaces, bar counters or staircases of historic interest as the building was refurbished in the second half of the C20 and much of the fabric dates to this period. 

The interior of the Victorian section of the pub is characterised by a medley of timber-framed structures including one section that appears to be a jettied external wall of a timber-framed building, but that does not relate in its location to the late-medieval parts of the building. Some of the timbers are old, others newer, and most are painted with brown paint. A photograph of 1967 shows a gap in the external wall in this area and the timbers do not appear to be present; photos from 1968 show the interior as it is now. It is likely that most of the internal fabric in this part of the pub was assembled from timbers, perhaps salvaged from elsewhere, in the refurbishment of 1968. It lacks special interest.

HISTORY: Originally a house, the Spotted Dog was later converted to a pub, possibly in the early-C19 when it appears on Clayton’s map of 1821 labelled ‘The Dog’. On an earlier map, by Chapman and Andre of 1777, it is not given a name, despite other public houses nearby being marked, so it was presumably a private abode at that time. A range (which appears domestic and may have originally served as the publican’s house) was added in the late-Georgian period, before 1840. 

In 1839 the proprietor was a William Vause whose family held the lease until 1917. Vause advertised his business to Londoners in search of resort: a C19 poster survives showing the building and boasting of its ‘spacious dining room and billiards’ and ‘good accommodation for cricket and other field sports’. The billiards room may have been a modification of the late-Georgian range; it appears on later photographs with a timber lantern on the roof, which may have lit the games room. At that time the Spotted Dog overlooked playing fields to the west and gardens to the north. Under the Vauses, the old pub was enlarged further, probably in the decades between 1867 and 1896 when its footprint alters on the Ordnance Survey maps. 

The area around the Spotted Dog changed dramatically in the late-C19 and early-C20, and by the outbreak of WWI the claim on the Victorian poster that the pub was located in ‘one of the most pleasant parts of Essex’ was no longer true, not least because from 1888 the Spotted Dog has been in the County Borough of West Ham. Terraced houses lined nearby streets, the cricket field became the home of Clapton FC (the club remains there to this day) and the pub sold off some of its gardens. The pace of change accelerated in the second half of the C20 and further additions and alterations were made to the building, including major internal refurbishment and extension in 1968, before it fell out of use at the end of the C20.

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION: The Spotted Dog public house is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* a well-surviving, if simply constructed, late-C15 or early-C16 house comprising central hall and flanking two-storey cross wings, these with weatherboarded jetties;
* interesting interior including exposed timbers, hearth with bressummer, other fireplaces and historic joinery including a Victorian bar and back bar;
* particular poignancy as a rare-surviving late-medieval building in this area, evoking the rural character that could be enjoyed here until the middle of the C19, when this part of old Essex was lost to the expanding capital.”

Source: English Heritage


A romantic winter postcard from better days…

Sporting Links

We managed to unearth this programme from a 1952 football match at the Spotted Dog ground – now Clapton FC, of course.




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