The coronavirus pandemic has brought about the unfortunate closure of countless bars and restaurants, and even this centuries-old English pub was not immune.
Oxford’s “The Lamb and Flag” opened in 1566, and moved to its current location in 1613, where it has entertained students, faculty, and locals for hundreds of years.
Long before the pandemic, J.R.R. Tolkien — the author of “Lord of The Rings” —spent his fair share of time there along with his fellow-future-author and friend C.S. Lewis, according to Reuters. The pub is currently owned by St John’s College, one of the schools within the greater University of Oxford.
Steve Elston, deputy bursar of St John’s explained that over the last year the pub has suffered greatly, and is no longer financially viable. At this point, England is in its third national lockdown and Reuters reports that “University life has been severely disrupted even outside of official lockdowns.”
The news is also a heavy blow for locals — especially Dave Richardson who is part of the Oxford Branch of the “Campaign for Real Ale.” Richardson emphasized that locals had visited the pub for generations, and said it was “a place where people come to talk to each other, to enjoy the traditional, historic surroundings.”
St John’s College has used profits from the pub to fund scholarships for graduate students for the last 24 years. The team insisted the scholarships would continue, but funds will now come directly from the college.