168 Holgate Road
The Fox is a Victorian heritage pub with a link to York’s railway history. Soon after the Fox was built in 1878 a large railway carriage works was built behind, and the pub became the local for the 3000 workers employed at the plant. The closure of the works in 2002 meant the pub lost a lot of its trade, but under the hands of Ossett Brewery its future is looking bright.
Five of the mostly blonde Ossett beers are sold along with Tetley Bitter and three or four guest beers, often including the local Rudgate Mild. There is no pub food but outdoor caterers are there most weekends. There is a quiz every Wednesday, a weekly folk night and occasional live bands.
The pub looks much as it did when it was built with its brick exterior and elegant porch with a carved fox above (photos 1 & 2). It is also mostly unaltered inside, with the original public bar, front and rear smoke rooms (photo 3), rear snug (photo 5) and front snug (the tramcar room). Tetley who owned the pub until the early 2000s designated it as a Tetley Heritage Inn in 1984 as the blue plaque on the porch testifies (photo 2).
Ossett Brewery took over in 2014 and gave it a welcome refurbishment without altering the layout. I think the attractive stained glass windows showing a fox were added at this time (photo 6). The famous highwayman Dick Turpin was executed in York 1n 1739 and he gets a whole room to himself, with comic book covers dating from the early 1900s and assorted memorabilia about his life and death (photo 4).
Click photo to enlarge