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Home > Devon > Barnstaple > Bull Inn

Bull Inn

Date of photo: c.1873

Picture source: Clive Schneidau

The Bull Inn was situated on Bourport Street. In Blackmore's 'Lorna Doone' the highwayman Tom Faggus supposedly used this pub as his lair.
My great aunt Florrie and her husband ran the Poltimore Arms, formerly The Bull Inn, Barnstaple when I was a child, This was a real working mans pub.

I was told a story by my grandmother about Florries Ghost.
A chap called Bob lost a leg in the second world war and was pretty annoyed about it, he used to come into the pub for a pint and a cigarette most nights for years, Florrie would hear the tap tap of his crutches and pour his pint as he was coming through the door.
Bob always sat by the door because he didn't trust the Jerries, if they were coming for his other leg he said he wanted to see the bastards coming.
Bob died, my aunt and customers went to his funeral.
Three days later my aunt busy with opening up, heard the tap tap of bobs crutches and automatically began to draw his pint, she heard the door swing open, his crutches tap across the floor, the chair scraped the floor as he turned it around as he always had.
she said 'evenin bob' he replied 'evenin flar' she looked up suddenly remembering she had seen Bob buried three days before.
There was no-one there. and she had goosebumps galore.
Florrie, rarely shaken by very much in life, calmly put his pint on the bar, lit a cigarette and put that on the bar too and said out loud, thats for you Bob, you pop in whenever you like. he did so for years.
Sue Pengelly (October 2018)

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