The history of The Fountain pub

The Fountain Inn is a 16th-Century public house in the village of Ashurst, in the Horsham district of West Sussex, England. After a period as a farmhouse, it was converted into the village inn and was extended and given a Georgian façade in the 18th century. The Fountain Inn was listed at Grade II by Historic England e on 9 May 1980; this defines it as a “nationally important” building of “special interest”.

The building occupied by the present inn was one of several timber-framed, partly tile-hung farmhouses in the centre of the village, opposite the village pond. It became an inn under the sign of the Red Lion by 1788, and adopted the name Fountain Inn soon afterwards. In the early 19th century, the building was extended: an extra wing was added on the north side, perpendicular to the original structure, in brick. In contrast to the tiled roof of the older part, the newer wing had a slate roof. At the same time, the façade was altered from its original timber-framed appearance: the Georgian style, popular at the time, was adopted.  The façade of the newer (north and west) part of the Fountain Inn, facing the road, was clad in painted cement during the 19th-century alterations. It has a range of two evenly spaced sash windows, a hipped roof of tiles, a steep-roofed entrance porch and two gable-end chimneys. The wing to the north is of brick with a slate-covered roof and sash windows. Both parts of the building have two storeys. Inside, there is a smaller bar with a large inglenook, and a larger bar to the rear.

A popular haunt with musicians, celebrated authors and thespians

From Adele, when she lived in nearby Partridge Green, Olympian Sally Gunnell, Blackadder actor Tony Robinson, to Paul McCartney; The Fountain is a place that welcomes everyone. The author Hilaire Belloc, who wrote extensively about Sussex in his fiction and non-fiction works, mentioned the Fountain Inn in his novel: The Four Men: a Farrago; he wrote approvingly about the ale. And Actor Sir Laurence Olivier who lived just south of Ashurst, frequented the pub regularly and was often found in his usual seat to the right of our inglenook fireplace.

Ever wondered where they filmed ‘Simply Have a Wonderful Christmas’ Time by Paul McCartney?

Well it was right here, at The Fountain Inn, in Ashurst, West Sussex. Sir Paul McCartney’s iconic Christmas song with his band Wings and was recorded shortly after the breakup of The Beatles the early 1970s. Filmed back in 1979, the pub was features heavily the video for Wonderful Christmastime. The opening shot starts with our beautiful of the exterior, and sets the scene for the now, festive classic which was filmed, now over four decades ago. Despite the Wing’s band members voices not being heard on the track, their faces do appear in the music video among other revelers and local pub-goers. The lyrics set the scene of a merry time at the pub, with phrases like “the word is out about the town to lift a glass, ah don’t look down.”

Sir Paul, is filmed mingling with pub-goers, drink in hand, and even takes to the piano to kick-off a real festive sing song.