Tag Archives: Burn Bullock

Burnett Bullock

The King’s Head pub was renamed the Burn Bullock in 1975 by the owners Ind Coope. ‘Burn’ was the shortened name of its licensee, Burnett Bullock, who died in 1954. His widow carried on the pub business until she retired in 1975. The brewery renamed the pub in their honour.

The Burn Bullock pub sign, photo taken July 2017

He and his wife Lilian became licensees of the King’s Head on 20th January, 1941. They had previously been joint licensees of the Regent’s Arms in London’s West End. Her parents, Mr & Mrs Card, owned the baker’s shop across the road from the King’s Head. Burnett’s father was surveyor in the Mitcham Urban District Council.
(Source: EN Montague, pages 38-39 of Mitcham Histories: 1 The Cricket Green.)

From 300 Years of Mitcham Cricket, a historical record by Tom Higgs, published in 1985:

The former Secretary, Burn Bullock Snr. had produced a worthy son and Burn Bullock Jnr was to score his first century on the Green when only fifteen years of age. Two years later he was a regular member of Mitcham’s 1st XI. The War interrupted Burn Bullock’s cricket career but when he returned to Mitcham in 1919 he lopped the Club’s averages and played occasionally for Surrey 11s. Burn joined the Oval staff as a professional in 1921 but those were the vintage days of Surrey batsmen with the likes of Jack Hobbs, Andrew Sandham, Andy Ducat and Tom Shepherd available. Burn Bullock had few opportunities with the County side and had to content himself with Minor Counties cricket. He left the Oval in 1926 to become cricket coach on a Norfolk estate and in his first season there made 1500 runs and took 50 wickets before bringing the Norfolk side down to see his beloved Mitcham Green.

Three years later Burn Bullock returned south, became a licensed victualler, and in due course took over the King’s Head, next door to Mitcham’s pavilion. In addition to playing for Mitcham, Burn also skippered the powerful North and South of the Thames Licensed Victuallers XI and score some fifteen centuries with them. But excellent as was his playing ability it was for his outstanding service off the field that Burn Bullock is remembered in Mitcham. He served as player, committee member, Hon. Secretary and Match Secretary. Each year he brought the county side sown to the Green to play a charity match for the local hospital and raised substantial sums by this means. At the time of his death in 1954 Burn Bullock was one of the Club’s most distinguished Vice-Presidents.


From the Mitcham and Tooting Advertiser, 21st April 1954

Mr B. Bullock leaves £2,591

Mr Burnett Wedlake BULLOCK, licensee of the King’s Head, Mitcham, former Surrey cricketer, who died on 21st December last, left £2,591 gross, £2,134 net value. Probate has been granted to his widow Lilian J. Bullock, of the same address.

Lilian Bullock’s obituary was published in the Mitcham Cricket Club Yearbook for 1977.

1958 Tatler recommends Ravensbury Arms

From an article in The Tatler, entitled Dining Out

when my clutch suddenly failed completely on the slope of the Blue House Bridge Croydon Road, Mitcham, I was within one hundred and fifty yards of the Ravensbury Arms.

I must have passed it a thousand times in my life, but as it has always been so close to the start of a journey, south or south-east, I had never given it a thought.

There I found John Dawson and his wife, Stella, and announced my plight. In a couple of seconds they had summoned two bar staff and two of their customers. Between them they pushed me from the bridge, round the roundabout, and into the space in front of their pub.

The Dawsons, I discovered, have built up a great reputation for their cuisine, John Dawson having be come by sheer enthusiasm a sort of self-taught maitre chef, and nothing goes out of the kitchen unless it has his blessing. The menu for this type of pub is remarkable and includes such things as scampi at 7s. 6d., caviare at 12s. 6d., and asparagus 5s. There is a choice of six omelets (including Spanish); a considerable cold buffet, a large range of grills (including a porterhouse steak garni for 12s. 6d.), and so on.

There are red and white wines at 2s. per glass and a short, simple, but quite adequate wine list – Burgundies from 14s. per bottle, Bordeaux from 12s. 6d.

When John and Stella Dawson took over the Ravensbury in 1952 they were possibly the youngest innkeepers in the country, being 24 and 22 years old respectively. John learnt his pub-keeping from his wife’s father, a great cricketing enthusiast, “Burn” Bullock, who played for the Surrey Seconds in the early ‘twenties and then turned professional. Later he took the King’s Head which looks out over the famous cricket green at Mitcham. This is now being run by his widow, Mrs. Lillian Bullock.

Source: The Tatler – Wednesday 12 November 1958 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)