THE IRON DUKE
The Iron Duke is a Grade II listed Art Deco pub with a fascinating history. The pub was the work of architect Arthur W. Ecclestone, who was responsible for designing several other notable buildings in the local area including the The Clipper Schooner in Great Yarmouth (1938) and the Never Turn Back in Caister (1956).
The pub was built for Lacons Brewery which was based in Great Yarmouth, and at its height produced 25 million pints of beer a year, had 300 pubs throughout East Anglia and 50 in London. It closed in 1968, but the name has recently been revived by a local brewer operating on a much smaller scale. The use of the falcon in relief panels and sculptural decoration on Lacons establishments became an instantly recognisable image for local people.
Construction began in the late 1930s but was halted due to the outbreak of the Second World War. Despite being incomplete, it was granted a licence in 1940 to serve the soldiers manning anti-aircraft guns on North Denes. Building work was completed in 1948. The pub's counters are made from teak from Admiral Jellicoe’s Dreadnought Battleship, HMS Iron Duke (1912). This was the flagship of the Grand Fleet which led the British fleet in the Battle of Jutland, from which the pub takes its name.
The pub has been vacant since 2008 but in December 2020 Great Yarmouth Borough Council agreed a loan enabling Great Yarmouth Preservation Trust to purchase the building. We will be undertaking emergency repairs to ensure the building is wind- and water-tight, before undertaking feasibility work to develop a scheme of repair and sustainable reuse.