Viking Longboat

A fine mosaic for the Longship pub

I remember two interesting features in the Town Centre: one was the mural of a Viking longboat which decorated the side of the Long Ship public house just as you left the main part of the town, also on St. George’s Way, and the other the mural which still exists on the side of what used to be a large Co-op department store, now Primark.  Sadly, the decorative face of the pub was removed by building vandals and just thrown into a skip, a few years ago.   Why are companies allowed to do this, I wonder?

This page was added on 11/07/2011.

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  • I cannot believe that this mosaic was destroyed! It should have been listed.

    I remember first seeing this in the mid sixties and thought it was beautiful.

    By Ian Brockbank (19/03/2023)
  • It was a terrible sacrilege – why didn’t the council do something to protect mosaic or at least retrieve the situation and arrange for a replacement!

    By Steve Chesters (18/03/2022)
  • Just watching the 1968 film “Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush”. Thought it was set in Milton Keynes but a scene showing the mural confirms it was in fact, Stevenage.

    By Phil Nash (17/10/2020)
  • Leaving Stevenage in 1965, i still frequently visited my parents but do not recall returning to that side of the town centre. Have just this month found this site and cannot believe the Viking mural no longer exists. It was a local landmark, a piece of art, and the pub itself a meeting place for the younger generation. I would never walk or drive past the mural without acknowledging its beauty. And sometimes went inside for a pint !!!.

    By michael gorham (01/12/2019)
  • The mosaic was a superb thing and its destruction is regrettable and now seems an act of vandalism. The licensees of the pub were always very tolerant of their generally young clientele. I suspect they went out of business because none of us ever had any money!

    By John Thorn (31/07/2019)
  • The mural should be rebuilt. Simple as that.

    By Greg Cullen (22/05/2019)
  • I agree that losing this mural was a great pity, the current view of ground level parking does not have the same allure.

    By JacMac (01/12/2018)
  • Sadly this ‘vandalism ‘ of iconic landmarks is all too common .I can remember passing by the mosaic each day on the way to college as it took shape , and how it became a major talking point . The Longship, and many of our ‘lost ‘ pubs in town , will always bring back fun memories ,tho often blurred ! of an era we will never see again . They call it ‘progress ‘

    By Viv Cooper (19/11/2017)
  • It was a great pub for us in a formative years, right next to the Cop shop! So many nice and sometimes unnice memories. I couldnt believed it had been demolished, and dear dear Aubrey,the barman, from Bristol, I hope life was kind to him !

    By Christopher Patrick batchelor (06/10/2017)
  • Alas, that link on John Galleymore’s comment is dead – does anyone have a working link?

    By Martyn Cornell (28/02/2015)
  • Hi I have found one picture so far in my fathers old pics (he was a fireman at stevenage) it shows the Longship in the background with the ship still intact can be viewed here –

    By John Galleymore (25/09/2012)
  • I read with amazement that the mosaic on the Long Ship pub was removed and destroyed. The mosaic was so large and eye catching it seems a shame that it was not preserved.

    By Terri Anderson (25/06/2012)
  • It was a mosaic depicting oarsmen in a long ship approaching the shore where soldiers, including a knight on horseback, await the enemy attack. This colourful work by William Mitchell was commissioned by St George’s Taverns in 1966.  He also created two underpass reliefs.

    Has anyone got a colour photo of the mosaic?

    By Pauline Maryan (09/11/2011)
  •  That was one of the biggest mistakes that have happened in Stevenages 70 year history. I can’t believe it happened - idiots

    By marc weston (21/09/2011)