A FEISTY landlady and a murder case were among the stories a Worcestershire historian and former Pershore teacher discovered when he explored the history of some of the county’s village pubs.

Richard Churchley’s Having a Drink Round... Feckenham, Inkberrow and Astwood Bank uncovers some interesting facts about the area’s pubs and lost hostelries.

It is not the first book he has published on local watering holes, but Mr Churchley is confident that readers will be interested in his latest offering.

“I already had a great deal of information about pubs and publicans in the area, but have also been able to gain much new information from old newspapers including the Worcester Berrows Journal,” he said.

“My favourite bit is hard to say, but I particularly like the fact that I have found information about lost hostelries. The Bell in Rous Lench, near Evesham, was even mentioned in a murder case.

"I was pleased to discover that the Wheelbarrow Castle, Radford, near Inkberrow, was already known by that name as early as 1718. The facts about the Wheelbarrow Castle discovered in various newspapers exemplify the ups and downs of a village pub including bickering between drinkers, one of whom had run off with the other man’s wife, the suicide of the landlord, unwitting licensing infringements and a feisty landlady who pursued some men who tried to pass off a note from a bankrupt bank.”

The book is available for £6 from Mr Churchley by e-mailing him at rachurchley@totalise.co.uk or visiting churchley.org.uk.

It is also available from the Village Shop, Feckenham, near Redditch, and the Forge Shop and the Post Office, Inkberrow.

Mr Churchley will be giving an illustrated talk at Feckenham Village Hall for Feckenham Forest History Society on Tuesday, February 12, at 7.30pm.