As well as being surrounded by historic buildings, The Lord Leycester Hotel itself has a fascinating history spanning six centuries. What started as the Jury Street House in the late 1500s has now evolved into Warwick's first choice hotel.

85 Years of Service 1926-2011

16th & 17th Century - Jury Street House

At the heart of The Lord Leycester Hotel is a stone building that was originally called Jury Street House. Built about the time of Queen Elizabeth I, in the late 16th Century, the house was the property of Ward of Barford, a wealthy Elizabethan merchant.

In 1694 the Great Fire of Warwick destroyed the town's centre. It was the half metre thick stone walls of Jury Street House which stopped the fire from continuing down the street to the half timbered houses beyond.

18th Century - Capital Manor House and The Three Tons Inn

The centre of Warwick was rebuilt in the 18th Century in the Georgian style that has made it famous to this day. Following the Great Fire, the building was purchased in 1726 by Lord Archer, of the Arden family of Umberslade. The building underwent extensive alterations including the addition of the Georgian frontage that can still be seen today. In the deeds of the marriage settlement between the Dowage Lady Archer and the Earl of Plymouth in 1793 are many noted names including Lord Clive, the Duke of Norfolk, the Earl of Oxford, Lord Winterton and the Earl of Powis. At that time the building was known as Capital Manor House. When the Arden family had finished using the property as their home they converted it into The Three Tons Inn.

19th Century - Elegant Town Houses

In 1800 The Inn was sold for £900 to John Evans, a Quaker, who divided the property into two elegant Georgian town houses which became known as 17 and 19 Jury Street. By the mid-1800s 19 Jury Street was a girls boarding house for Warwick High School. In 1880 John Allin Smith purchased 19 Jury Street from the Evans family. The property eventually passed to his wife, Charlotte Chapman Abbotts.

Early 20th Century - The Lord Leycester Hotel is Founded

In 1925 Arthur Henry Tyack, the then owner of The Warwick Arms Hotel, bought 19 Jury Street from Mrs Abbotts for £1,800. His intention to develop the house into a top class hotel for the town was realised in 1926 when the property opened as The Lord Leycester Hotel. In 1927 Mr Tyack purchased 17 Jury Street and, combining it with number 19, reinstated the building as a single property. In its early days as a hotel Henry Ford stayed, whilst visiting his motor factory in Leamington Spa. (A copy of the hotel's first brochure is displayed in the main corridor.)

In the 1930's the hotel was extended with additional bedrooms overlooking the church and lovely gardens (which were unfortunately converted to the car park during the 1940s).

The War Years

During the Second World War the hotel was requisitioned for use by the Ministry of Production. In 1943 the Hotel was handed over to the US military who built the "tower" extension and used the property as an Officers's Club.

Late 20th Century

At the end of the war the hotel was handed back to Mr Tyack. The hotel was once again operated by The Lord Leycester Hotel Limited now owned by Messrs Stephen Joseph and Ernest Joseph Nettle. When Mr Tyack died in 1951 the property passed to his executors who sold the building to The Lord Leycester Hotel Limited in 1963 via auction. (The auction details are displayed in the hotel's main hallway.)

In 1967 The Lord Leycester Hotel was acquired by Norfolk Capital Hotels. In 1969 Norfolk extended what was the restaurant at the back of the hotel to create the impressive Greville Suite, now the hotel's principal function room. (A brochure from this period is displayed in the hotel's main corridor.) In the 1980's the hotel was updated so that all bedrooms had en-suite facilities and new purpose-built meeting rooms were added.

Into the 21st Century

In 1998 it was bought by Hoby Hotels. The Lord Leycester is currently under private ownership.