It seems that Samuel Taylor, young and inexperienced, had run the business into the ground within five years of taking it over. And look who was offering to pay £500 for the goodwill of the pub - a certain Mr. Howe. Isn't that funny. Howe had taken on the pub before his daughter married Thomas William Alexander - that wasn't until 1882. Odd then that they should have said that the father was living with his daughter and son-in-law when it was really the other way around. When the Duke of Newcastle sold the Royal Oak in 1888, the newspaper reports stated that Howe was the tenant, paying £70 a year rent.
"Re SAMUEL TAYLOR, of Newark. — An adjourned meeting of the creditors of Samuel Taylor, licensed victualler and wine and spirit merchant, Newark, was held at the George Hotel, Nottingham, on Tuesday afternoon, when Mr. Leman, accountant, Nottingham, occupied the chair. — Mr. Hodgkinson (Messrs. Pratt and Hodgkinson, Newark) represented certain large creditors; Mr. Cockayne (Nottingham) appeared for the debtor; and Mr. F. Lees (Nottingham) for the debtor's wife. — Mr. Cockayne repeated the offer of a composition of 6s. in the pound made at the last meeting, and added that further than that he was powerless. It rested with the creditors to say what they would do in the matter, and whether they would have the debtor turned out of his place. — Mr. Hodgkinson read a letter from Mr. Tallents, the agent of the property occupied by the debtor, under the Duke of Newcastle's trustees, with reference to the matter, and also one from Mr. Howe, which contained an offer to take the Royal Oak public-house (held by the debtor) at the usual valuation and paying £500 for good-will. — Mr. Cockayne, on behalf of certain creditors, proposed and seconded that the composition of 6s. in the pound be accepted, but to this an amendment was moved by Mr. Hodgkinson, and seconded by Mr. Lane, that the affairs be liquidated by arrangement, and that the composition be not accepted. — In reply to a question, the Chairman said that according to Mr. Howe's letter they would get £500 for goodwill besides the usual valuation. — Mr. Davis, provided that a tenant would be accepted other than Mr. Howe, said he would give £600 to keep the place in the family. He urged upon the attention of the meeting the youth of the debtor, and the fact that he ought to have had some supervision.— The Chairman asked Mr. Davis whether he thought there would be any difficulty with the owners if his offer to take the house was made. — Mr. Davis said that was a difficulty remaining to be solved.— The Chairman said it seemed to him that if the estate was to go into liquidation it was for the trustee to do the best he could for the creditors. — A Creditor asked whether, if the composition was accepted, the present tenant would be discharged.' — The Chairman remarked that in Mr. Tallents' letter it was stated that the financial position of the debtor was such that he would not be able to remain in the place. It was his opinion that the estate would not realise more than 5s. in the pound, and that was why he wanted a definite understanding as to the offer for the goodwill. He added, in reply to another question, that they would not get 6s. in the pound unless they got the bonus referred to. — Mr. Cockayne, after some delay, said it was quite clear that the question was one of bankruptcy or liquidation, and he hoped that the offer he had made would be borne in mind. He objected to the introduction of Mr. Howe's name into the matter at all; it was simply a question for the Committee of Inspection as to what should be done. If the creditors decided to turn the debtor out then if another person came forward with a better offer, he ought to be allowed to take the place. — Mr. Hodgkinson only wished for what was best for the creditors to be done, but with regard to the house they must consider whether any would-be tenant would be accepted by the landlord. — A Creditor stated that he should be very sorry to see the family out of the house, for they had been in it many years, and had spent a great deal of money on the property. — It was eventually resolved that the affairs should be liquidated by arrangement; that Mr. William Hirst of Newark, accountant, be appointed trustee, with the following committee of inspection : — Messrs. Beard (Nottingham and Notts. Bank, Newark). Pink, Radford Messrs. Bass and Co.), Ironmonger, and J. Mc Naught Davis; that the discharge of the debtor be granted; and that Mr. Cockagne be entrusted with the registration of special resolutions."
Nottinghamshire Guardian - Friday 23 September 1881, page 11.
I'm not sure why Taylor's lawyer wasn't keen on Mr. Howe's offer. It sounds like an easy extra 500 quid for Taylor. As Howe did indeed take over the pub, I can only assume that his offer was accepted.
I'm starting to think that the pub was cursed. In the 1880's things turned out badly for all the tenants.