Not a pub or hotel, and not for pigeons, but in Stratford is a grand old building that was once a pub and hotel for humans.
The Pigeons public house, originally The Three Pigeons seems to have been a pub on this site since at least 1776, and used to have a large windmill just behind it.
The windmill went in 1860, and the current ornate building was constructed in 1899, to a design by the London architect, Henry Poston.
While today we think of pigeons as flying rats, keeping the less ratty type of pigeon has long been a hobby, and business.
The name of the pub though might not be from the flying rats, but may relate to the old Celtic symbols for the ‘Three Graces’ – honesty, fidelity and loyalty. Certainly, there are a lot of pubs still called The Three Pigeons, so the name was of some significance. It has been said that the name “Three Pigeons” in any of its variants may have more literary associations than any other tavern name.
The pub (and an illegal nightclub on the first floor) finally closed in 2009, and in 2011, planning permission was given to turn the empty pub into flats, and a retail store, which was subsequently let to Tesco.
What’s quite nice is the refurbishment has seen some tiles made with the heritage of the pub and hotel placed in the residential side of the building.
On the other side of the road though…