The Green Dragon, Flaunden

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The Green Dragon
The Green Dragon - - 1150743.jpg
The Green Dragon, Flaunden
The Green Dragon, Flaunden is located in Hertfordshire
The Green Dragon, Flaunden
Location within Hertfordshire
General information
TypePublic House
LocationFlaunden, Hertfordshire
Coordinates51°41′48.97″N 0°31′58.91″W / 51.6969361°N 0.5330306°W / 51.6969361; -0.5330306Coordinates: 51°41′48.97″N 0°31′58.91″W / 51.6969361°N 0.5330306°W / 51.6969361; -0.5330306
Completedc. 1700
The Green Dragon, Flaunden

The Green Dragon is a Grade II listed public house in Flaunden, Hertfordshire, England.[1] The rear wing, a timber framed structure, is the oldest part of the building and dates from the early 17th century.[1]


Formerly a residential house, what is now the Green Dragon was built in the early 17th Century, with the front range rebuilt in the early 19th Century and a side extension following in the 1980s. Much of the interior of the pub still contains the original timber frame, whilst the frontage is red brick, and the roof red tile.[1] The tap room was rebuilt in 1838, whilst much of the rest of the pub has remained unchanged since the 19th century.[2][3]

Among the Green Dragon's past clientele are two infamous figures, Nazi politician Joachim von Ribbentrop and Soviet spy Guy Burgess. Von Ribbentrop was a regular at the Green Dragon during the 1930s when he stayed at his weekend house in nearby Latimer during his time as the German Ambassador to the United Kingdom.[4][5] Due to his involvement in the Nazi regime, von Ribbentrop would be sentenced to death as a result of the Nuremberg Trials. As a result of Hermann Göring committing suicide, von Ribbentrop became the first of those sentenced to be executed; he was hanged on 16 October 1946.[6]

Burgess meanwhile often visited the Green Dragon when he stayed in Flaunden with his boyfriend, Peter Pollock, who lived in the Sharlowes farmhouse not far from the pub.[4] Burgess would defect to the Soviet Union in May 1951, however, he is reported to have met with fellow Cambridge Five member Donald MacLean in the taproom of the Green Dragon the day prior to their defection.[5]

The Green Dragon has been under the custodianship of one family for three generations, having been run by Bob and Ida Burgess since 1932, before being passed on to their daughter Barbara.[7] During the late 1930s when Barbara was a child, she played in the garden with two young girls who were staying at Latimer House. Unbeknown to Barbara and her parents at the time, these two girls were the daughters of King George VI and would grow up to become Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Margaret.[8][7]

Present Day[edit]

The Green Dragon is listed on the Campaign for Real Ale's National Inventory of Historic Pub Interiors register, and is the only pub in Hertfordshire to be listed as having an "interior of national importance".[9] This is due in large part to the snug being made up of two or more high backed settles, of which there are only a handful left in the country.[10]

The pub prides itself on being a "focal point for traditional rural pursuits",[11] and has previously been used a meeting point for the Aylesbury Vale Hunt, whilst during the game season the snug is visited by shooters following a day of sport.[11]

William Nickell, grandson of Bob and Ida Burgess, is the current custodian of the pub,[7] following Barbara's death in 2015.[12]


  1. ^ a b c Historic England. "The Green Dragon Public House (1100433)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Green Dragon". WhatPub / Campaign for Real Ale. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  3. ^ "Green Dragon Taproom". The Green Dragon. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  4. ^ a b "Stalin's Hertfordshire spy: Guy Burgess". Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  5. ^ a b "Green Dragon History". The Green Dragon. Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  6. ^ "Final moments of Nazis executed at Nuremberg". The Guardian. 11 September 2009. Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  7. ^ a b c "The Dragonistas: Eight decades of continuity". The Green Dragon. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  8. ^ "Landlady to mark 85 year milestone with pub party". Hemel Today. 18 November 2012. Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  9. ^ "Historic Pub Interiors - Hertfordshire". Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  10. ^ "Historic Pub Interiors - Green Dragon, Flaunden". Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  11. ^ a b "Green Dragon - Life and Times". Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  12. ^ "Green - Deaths Announcements". Retrieved 21 December 2017.

External links[edit]

Media related to The Green Dragon, Flaunden at Wikimedia Commons