Like most of Flushing, the Seven Stars was owned by the Trefusis Estate who gained these lands from the second half of the 13th Century, with Robert George William Trefusis signing over the lease to Samuel Croxall of Mylor in 1789.
The handover document mentions it as an inn with ‘dwelling house’, having a ‘stable’, a newly built room above the stable
In the lease document from 1789, it mentions a Samuel Trenerry, who is an apparent mariner who was living in the ‘dwelling house’ at the time of the lease change: ‘the dwelling house adjoining to and communicating with the yard belonging to the said inn, which dwelling house is in the tenure and occupation of Samuel Trenerry, mariner’.
It was sold for a consideration of £225 back then and the yearly rent was £2 and 2 shillings per annum.
The pub was also subject to frequent flooding during large spring tides up until 1908, when it was raised three feet, before it would not be uncommon to see barrels floating in the entrance of the of the inn.
Miss Beatrice Victoria Hallett leased the property in 1938, at which point it stayed in this ownership until 1982, when it changed from A. Eustice to J Barter.
The name Flushing comes from how the English saw the name of Vlissingen in the Netherlands. As it is the sailors from this port that built the quays and walls for the Trefusis family and which still remain to this day.
From there, the rest of the town is slowly built and eventually the Seven Stars in, which is in the ownership of the Trefusis Estate up until 1790, when it is sold on to a private buyer.
The facilities and trades required to maintain and service sailing ships, and supplies for their journeys, as well as the moorings, wharves, and warehouses, were all provided to attract the Post Office to base the Packet Service here.
Accommodation was built for the engineers and subsequently rented to the officers of the Packet ships. Hence the number of Georgian houses in the village.
‘The ferry, originally rowed, was given a Royal Charter in 1672 to carry passengers and livestock to and from Falmouth. The Waterman’s Rest was built to shelter the Watermen who rowed passengers around the harbour. It is now leased to the Village and open to the public.’
‘The Tap, fed from a reservoir, provided fresh water for the Packet and Naval ships. The Great Cellars was originally a four storey building with warehouses and accommodation above for crew.
The cottage on the corner of Barkey’s Ope by the lamp post, The Bark House, was where sails, ropes and nets were preserved in the tannin from oak bark.’Between the 17th and 19th many well-known seamen and famous captains of the Packet ships rented rooms in Flushing at the many inns.
Amongst the turbulent history from 1600s to the 20th century, Flushing varied in its importance and uses as a small town opposite Falmouth. From an area for inns for the Packet Ships’ captains, the landing area for Dutch engineers, a smugglers haven, a naval presence and more.
However, the town has always been permeated by maritime trade and buccaneers frequenting the small piers and quays of the town, and the Seven Stars building has been at the heart of all of this flourishing action: ‘The story of this village of Flushing is the story of the men of the sea. Over the centuries Cornishmen, Celtic in race and language, had to wrest a living from their rugged land, or from the cruel seas surrounding it. This has produced a tough race of independent men and a history rich in acts of heroism.’
There was a Custom’s House in the village that was on the high tide line, where goods and trades would be processed and taxed deductedCaptain John Bull, one of the most famous Packet Ship captains, lived in Flushing and had one of the largest Packet ships wrecked in a storm off of Barbados, The Grantham.
‘It became the regular practice to smuggle goods on each trip on every route, despite the efforts of the Post Office and Customs to stop it. From Captain down to the humblest sailor, each was allowed an amount of goods he could take with him on a voyage, and Falmouth merchants made a thriving business out it, arranging for merchandise to be sent down from London, and giving ordinary sailors credit on their purchases.’
Captain Kempthorne was an important Packet Captain that lived in Flushing and defused an angry mob of miners once, but eventually died after being captured by a French fleet.
‘Nelson had often been in the village, for he was friendly with Admiral James of ‘Woodlands’, and with many of the Naval and Packet Captains then living in the village. He must surely have attended some of the social functions which were constantly being held in the village’.
Horatio Nelson, famous British captain, was familiar with the village and perhaps had even been to a ball or for a drink in the Seven Stars for a few evenings.
There is also stories of the mutineers heading into Flushing during this period of the 1st and 2nd Napoleonic wars – this was due to the government outlawing the exploits of goods on the Packet ships that both the captains and men were doing, which led to confiscations that caused many of the men to refuse to sail and eventually leading to mutiny, which led to the Royal Navy being called in order to deal with the mutineers in who had gathered in Flushing.
‘The centre of the mutinous crew appears to have been at Flushing, and the Town Crier was heard in the streets calling the men to a meeting at the ‘Seven Stars’. At this meeting Richard Pascoe and John Parker were chosen to act as delegates for the mutineers, and were instructed to lay their complaints before the Postmasters General in London.’
‘While the meeting was taking place, certain Naval Officers who were convinced that the mutiny was the work of a handful of men, sailed round to Mylor for secrecy, waded and marched to Flushing. Nevertheless warning had reached the men at the ‘Seven Stars’, and they had dispersed before the Navy arrived, Pascoe and Parker departing by fast coach for London’.