GeoGuessr – St. Osyth (The White Hart)

This is part of the GEOGUESSR 1 series of posts.

This building looks as though it has been derelict for some time, but the White Hart has only been closed for around four years. Located on Mill Street in the town, this pub had an excellent reputation and it’s a real shame that this is another drinking house lost to the community. It certainly looks now that it’d be nearly impossible to viably return this into being a pub and I imagine that its future lies as a residential property.

It’s known that the building was used as a pub from at least the 1760s, and likely much earlier. Some elements of the building date back to the 1500s, so there’s a lot of history which has been lost in terms of it being a building used by the community. It is though a listed building, so at least the structure of the property should be secure.

The former pub is located near to a mill, and it’s also where the coroner’s inquiry into the death of a local man took place. On Monday 24 June 1878, William Codd, the Coroner for East Essex, looked into the death of the 16-year old George Carter, who had drowned in the mill’s pond. The death had taken place the day before and it was witnessed by a local butcher, Henry Carter, who was the deceased’s brother. They were both swimming in the pond, albeit without permission, when George got into difficulty.

The decision in this case was one of “accidental drowning”, but it’s a reminder of the history that exists in locations such as this. Henry Carter walked into the White Hart to get help and he had to tell the landlord that his brother was dead. It’s hard to imagine what went through the mind of Henry Carter on that day, during the coroner’s inquiry and for the rest of his life.

The Carter family lived on Colchester Road in St. Osyth, with the parents being Isaac and Harriott, and at the time of the 1871 census, the children were William (then aged 12), Henry (then aged 10), George (then aged 8), Isaac (then aged 6), Arthur (then aged 4) and David (then aged 2). That’s a lot of boys, and very evenly spread out.