White Horse?

02white-horse1_1996-issI was commenting over at the 70sTeen blog yesterday about pub signs and it reminded me of this story.

There is a pub near Chichester that used to be called ‘The White Horse’. It  has now been totally refurbished and is called ‘The Fish House’.

When it was ‘The White Horse’ the pub sign showed not a white horse or one of any other colour – it was of a cat!

I didn’t know about this until there was an article about it in the Chichester Observer. Apparently, many years ago when the pub first opened, the owners asked a friend to paint them a pub sign. Their friend, a slightly eccentric lady, painted a cat instead of a horse because she ‘couldn’t draw horses’.

I thought this was so funny that I drove out there to photograph the sign. Sadly, I no longer have the photo.

The image above is of the original sign, thanks to purr-n-fur for that.

Some of you might wonder why this amused me so much.

At the time I was working as a taxi-driver at Yellow Star Taxis. When I was researching this nonsense, I found to my amazement that of the 5 main taxi companies in Bognor Regis, only 5 Star Taxis have their own website!

Our office back then was some way out of town in a little side street. They were a great bunch of people and we had some good laughs.

One day a cat wandered into the office and made itself at home. The radio operator on duty at the time was a young lady who was a big fan of cats and was soon buying food for it. Nobody knew where the animal had come from or who owned it.

So we had adopted an office cat, it got loads of attention and was well fed, the boss was pleased too, it was good for controlling the mice.

It was with us for a few weeks and then disappeared as suddenly as it had arrived, the girls were distraught! The drivers weren’t at all worried of course, in fact they were delighted because it gave them another excuse to wind-up the operators.

My Mother and Father were about to go to Jersey for a holiday and while standing in a queue at the local newsagents, I spied some postcards with cats on them.

The holidaying cat joke was born!

I asked my Dad to take a card to Jersey with him and send it to the operator who had made all the fuss over the cat, written as if from the holidaying puss.

This was the cause of much hilarity when the young lady turned up at work with the card demanding to know who had sent it.

We were always taking people to the docks or airport and the customers were only too pleased to be in on the joke. Soon, cards from all over the world were arriving at the office.

We kept it up for some months before the young lady discovered who the culprit was, luckily she had a good sense of humour. But guess who got all the ‘cat to vets’ jobs after that?

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6 thoughts on “White Horse?

  1. I like games like that. Grumpy Ted got kidnapped once and we received ransom notes and then a postcard from Lourdes saying he was actually on retreat with a new girlfriend.

    When he was helping on our boat, we even found him reading a tiny little book of Teddy Bear porn one morning …..

    • She was very good about it, always describing over the air, her latest card from wherever tibbles was holidaying.

      PS. I met someone from Hastings today who knows your neck of the woods ‘very well’, but don’t worry, she wasn’t DaddyPaperazzi, in fact she asked if she could use some of my flower photos on her website.

  2. It was not my speeling for once the pub had that name … your pub is far more bizzrae (lol).. a White Horse depicted as a cat??? .. I can so ID with the artist I can’t draw horses either (not without them looking like some pre- historic variety or some nuclear fall out out malformation!) 😉

    • I can’t draw horses OR cats, and looking at that sign again, i’m not sure the artist could either – it’s rather a strange shape that cat! It seems to have a llama body with a cat’s head….

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