grid reference TL 852 642Something we've got wrong about this establishment? Something more you think we should know about it? Please email us
listed building grade I
CAMRA West Suffolk & Borders branch.
last updated 30/12/2019
Bury St Edmunds Cupola House
also traded as as: Victoria Taphistorical closure era: 21st century
closed about 2000
7 The Traverse
Built as a private house in 1693 by Thomas Macro, and for many years used by an apothecary, this Grade 1 listed building was used as a wine merchant's house in mid-19th century and then as a pub. It was reportedly known as the Victoria Tap in the 1890s.
It has undergone various changes in recent years both to the dormer windows and the addition of tiles on the upper part of the building. From mid-1990s onwards it was increasingly used just as a restaurant. Sadly it was all but destroyed by fire in June 2012. Work began in January 2014 two-year project to restore the building, the results of which were finally unveiled in July 2016.
The horse-drawn cart (in one of pictures) is a delivery from the Greene King brewery.
The pub is often linked to the author Daniel Defoe who visited the town in 1704 after serving time in prison for the publication of his ironical pamphlet "Shortest Way with the Dissenters" in 1702, which was judged to be critical of the Anglican Church; however some claim that no documentary evidence can substantiate this association, despite the blue plaque on the wall.
The Victoria is listed at 20 Meat Market in 1881 census as a Wine & Spirit Merchant. (May not have been a pub at the time).
It has been linked to Clarke's brewery in the early 20th century, owned by Greene King & Sons after they acquired Clarke's brewery in May 1917, until the 1990s.
The pub is shown (though unnamed) on this old OS map from about 1903 (larger map)
(Most pub, location & historic details collated by Nigel, Tony or Keith - original sources are credited)
Old OS map reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.
A cupola is a type of dome on the roof and the word is derived from cupa - a Latin word for a cask or tun.