The Three Conies
The Three Conies was a drovers’ inn providing overnight accommodation for livestock drovers and their stock. Scots Pine trees are often associated with drovers’ inns, supposedly to mark their location for travellers. Pines trees stood in the former accommodation land opposite the inn.
The property is believed to date from at least the 17th century; the stone sundial above the former front door shows the date 1622. One of the earliest documented references to the property is an advertisement for the sale of a dwelling in the Northampton Mercury in September 1738. The 1777 Militia List also refers to the “Thre Coneys”.
The inn was run by the Linnell family from the 1770s until 1847. Income was supplemented by farming activities, as with many successor landlords.
Unfortunately it is left to the imagination to picture the inn with its former thatched roof. A parish meeting held at the inn in 1968 refers to the thatch on the inn’s outbuildings.They were probably the last thatched buildings in the village.
A stone mounting block for horse riders stood in the present car park until well into the 1900s. The Three Conies has hosted many hunt meets and the Bicester Hunt had sub-kennels attached to the inn. The kennels were in use in the late 1800s.
Prior to 1850, magistrates held meetings at the inn. Later they transferred to the Dolphin Inn at nearby Middleton Cheney.
The inn has been owned by the Oxfordshire brewery Hook Norton Brewery Co. Limited since 1920.
(Main photograph: The Warren houses and The Three Conies, 1996)