The Red Cow's been around for well over 200 years. Cattle grazed on this marshy edge of town until the end of the 18th century. They moved on, but one prized Red Cow lives to this day as she gave her name to this inn built at Marsh Gate.
When Queen Victoria came to the throne, the Young family bought the Cow, installing a fine carved wood and gilded-glass central bar stocked with celebrated ales from their Wandsworth Brewery. The area soon earned a dubious reputation, the Red Cow being renowned as a haunt of "thieves and vagabonds."
This place of dark deeds with its tiny public and private rooms, the 'Snuff Bar', 'Jug and Bottle' and '4 Ale Room' that typified old English pubs has long gone, but the original bar and Young's bitters live on to this day. Thankfully though, the locals are a lot friendlier!
“On all my travels I never clapped eyes on a more beautiful spot than this. Here would I live, and here would I die.”
– Captain George Vancouver
For centuries, the panoramic view over the Thames Valley from Richmond Hill has enchanted royalty, writers, artists and visitors alike. Just a few steps and you'll enter Richmond Park, thousands of acres of unspoiled park and woodland, once the hunting ground of kings and still home to red and fallow deer.
Down the hill and you're on the Thames and into Richmond town. Take a riverboat to Henry VIII's Hampton Court. Discover the site of Elizabeth I's riverside palace and Richmond Green echoing with the ghosts of jousting knights. Take a trip along the towpath to explore Kew's Royal Botanical Garden's. Head out on a rowing boat or patronise the charming riverside cafes and inns.
Whatever the season, whatever the weather, you'll join those who've been charmed by what writer James Thomson called “this matchless Vale of Thames”.