The Jolly Farmers

Photo above - postcard showing The Crossways, Forncett in 1917

The Jolly Farmers


At some time between 1851 and 1861 the Knights family set up a beer house at the crossroads on the Turnpike in Forncett End. The Knights family had run a windmill (known locally as the White Mill) on this site since at least 1839 and the location of the mill on the turnpike probably lent itself very well to the possibility of a second business selling beer.

In 1861 John Knights (then age 35) was listed in the census as a Miller and Beer House Keeper. When he died in 1879 his wife Judith took over as the licensee while her sons (George Robert and Knight Henry) ran the mill. Judith died in 1910 (age 79) and her son George Robert was then the licensee until 1925 when he passed away (age 69). His sister Agnes then took up the baton and it would appear that when she died on 15th September 1930 the Jolly Farmers ended a period of some 70 years being run by the same family. Wilfred Fox was the licensee in 1937 and 1939

The Jolly Farmers, circa 1910

The Jolly Farmers, circa 1960
The Jolly Farmers, circa 1960

The building was significantly rebuilt in the 1960s.

The Jolly Farmers today
The Jolly Farmers today