The Black Swan Inn opened for business in 1740 and operated primarily as a coaching inn. Carriages could be rented by the day and horses stabled for those passing through the town. In addition, the yard at the rear of the building was the place to go to hire a hearse with horses and accompanying carriages. Residents included Charles Dickens and Rex Whistler, whose paintings can still be seen on the plaster work of some of the rooms. Many significant events took place in the building. The current dining room once hosted Pickering court house and in 1836, The Black Swan hosted the celebrations that accompanied the inaugural journey of the Whitby and Pickering Railway.
It went on to be the site of Pickering’s first Masonic lodge (and has some unusual architecture which alludes to this) along with the Cyclist Touring Club (CTC). Prior to the prevalence of motor vehicles, The Black Swan was recognised as a renowned place for touring cyclists to stay and still bears record of this by way of the cast 'CTC Headquarters' plaque on the wall. Operating as a commercial hotel, it passed from private ownership to Braims Brewery of Tadcaster at the turn of the 20th century. Subsequently Braims was acquired by John Smiths Brewery and so The Black Swan became part of their estate and ultimately deteriorated through lack of investment. In 2015 it once again became privately owned and so began a process of rolling renovation to return it to its former prominence in the town. With 9 comfortably modern letting rooms, a popular restaurant, brew-house and cocktail bar, the Black Swan assures today's visitor of a visit to remember.
For menu information please see the main Black Swan Website, link below.