Home Hotel service COLUMN: The story behind Robert Bingham and Bingham’s Hotel

COLUMN: The story behind Robert Bingham and Bingham’s Hotel

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Bingham’s Hotel offered a bar room which served fine liquors and cigars and a coach service picking up train passengers from the station down the street

Robert Bingham was born in Ontario in 1814, the son of recent English immigrants. Although born of humble stock, he was an ambitious and business-savvy man who became a successful hotelier in Bradford in the 19th century.

Bingham arrived in Bradford around 1860 to establish an inn with the accurate but unimaginative name of Bingham’s Hotel. However, he did not build the hotel from scratch. Instead, he took over an established inn that began life in 1831 at Edmanson’s Tavern, and has continued to welcome road-weary travelers ever since. What Bingham did, however, was elevate the hotel to new heights with amenities such as a bar room that served fine liquors and cigars and a coach service picking up train passengers from the train station down the street.

Yonge Street was the main thoroughfare from Toronto to Barrie and so Bingham’s Hotel was extremely busy, which allowed the establishment to thrive. Robert has prospered and had the luxury of owning one of the grandest homes in Bradford (the same house that once belonged to the Reverend Egerton Yonge, whom we met last month).

Robert Bingham died in his bed in 1892, aged 78, left to mourn by six children.

And his hotel? It is still there, at 71 and 73 Holland Street East, although now occupied as residential units