The Buck and Vine dated back to the middle of the 19th century. It was a beer house when James Mangnall took it over, but he decided to put in an application in August 1854 to convert it into a public house which would have enabled him to sell wine and spirits as well as beer. While Kay Street had numerous beerhouse, only the Falcon and the Roebuck were public houses along with the Four Factories on nearby Turton Street and the Three Tuns on Chapel Street. But the nearby Elephant and Castle had also applied for a licence – and so had 21 other beerhouses in Bolton. Unfortunately, the applications were heard by famous teetotaller Robert Walsh. Not only was he less than keen on converting beerhouses into fully-licensed public houses he was in favour of closing 90 percent of Bolton’s beerhouses. He had calculated on the way into the hearing that Bolton had one beerhouse for every 106 people. In his view, one for every thousand people would suffice. All 23 applications were thrown out.
James Mangnall didn’t hang around. He left the Buck and Vine and by 1861 it was being run by William Clegg. Clegg was formerly a roller cover at Claremont, off Bridgeman Street, and when he left the Buck and Vine it was to take over a pub in his former locality, the Coe Street Tavern.
By 1870, the Buck and Vine was under the control of the Kennerdell family. Edward Kennerdell had worked as an iron turner in Howell Croft before getting into the pub business. He died in 1872 and the pub was taken over by his widow Ann. She ran it until she died in 1903 at the age of 72.
The Buck and Vine was owned by Wilson’s when it closed in 1960. With such a large number of pubs on Kay Street - even at that time – pubs needed an immediate catchment area. For some years the Buck and Vine had been virtually alone. The Globe Iron Works and Dobson and Barlows had gone. Chemist Street (formerly Chymist Street), which linked Kay Street with Waterloo Street never had many residential properties on it, while nearby streets such as Britain Street and Green Street had been demolished.
A 1928 aerial view of the area can be seen here. Although the pub isn’t marked it is actually positioned behind the blue marker denoting Kay Street.
Kay Street is now a dual-carriageway and has been so since the early-nineties. The original Kay Street is the north-bound carriageway. The south-bound carriageway is the newer construction and at around this spot, next to the service station, it passes through the site of the Buck and Vine.