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The origins of The Stonemasons Inn is as a row of fifteenth century buildings, probally all cottages. It is uncertain when the buildings were first used as a hostelry but the position on the outskirts of the town and near a busy road junction would have been a prime one for many centuries.
The present use certainly dates from at least 1780 and the inn has variously been called Vinson's,The Mason's Arms, The Trap and latterly The Stonemasons Inn.
Petworth itself predates The Domesday Book (1086) and was earlier known as Peteorde. In mediaeval times this was a busy market town and much of its prosperity has been linked to its proximity to Petworth House, built for the Percy family in the fourteenth century and rebuilt by Charles Seymour, Duke of Somerset, between 1688 and 1696. Many of the most outstanding buildings in the town were built many centuries ago and together represent an architectural history of England.