Sort file:- Tenterden, March, 2024.

Page Updated:- Sunday, 24 March, 2024.


Earliest 1769

(Name from)

Eight Bells

Latest 2007+

(Name to)

43 High Street


Eight Bells drawing 1929

Above drawing circa 1929.

Eight Bells drawing 1974

Above drawing 1974.

Eight Bells 2007

Above photo, 2007.

Eight Bells 2007

Above photo 2007, by Jim Bell.

Eight Bells sign 1991Eight Bells sign 1994

Above sign left, October 1991, sign right, December 1994.

With thanks from Brian Curtis

Eight Bells 6b beer tokenEight Bells 6b beer token

Above photos showing an 1800s beer token worth 6d. Kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.


Originally a hall house, converted in the 15th century as an inn known as the "Angel," with 2 chimney stacks being erected circa 1550 and an upper flooring inserted. In 1735, it was renamed the "Six Bells"  to compliment the number of bells in the close by St Mildred's and again in 1769, when, with the church acquiring two more bells it became the "Eight Bells".)

The western wing (at the Bells Lane end) was drastically altered in the 18th century and the 19th century. The eastern end which goes north-south has more of the original chambers surviving. The frontage was refaced with mathematical tiles in the 19th century.

In 1969, the rent had become so small that the Dean and Chapter of Canterbury, successors at the Reformation to St Augustine's Abbey, ceased to collect it.

The building gained a Grade 2 listing on 8 May 1950.

Malcolm Miriams kindly informs me that the pub closed some years ago and is now (2015) a Café Rouge.


Tenterden's Eight Bells pub called last orders after hundreds of years in 2007, and the premises became Café Rouge later that year.

Plans to convert the 18th century building into a national restaurant chain were met with fierce opposition when they first emerged.

Fears that the historic character of the high street would be eroded if modern companies moved in were shared by both the town council and residents' association.

But Ashford Borough councillors later approved the plans after a series of amendments were made to the application - which included retaining the white and black look of the Grade II-listed building.

A controversial petition was launched by the former restaurant manager to paint the building red and white, although the site kept its historic colours.

A Café Rouge spokesman said: “We can confirm the closure of our Tenterden café, and are working closely with the landlord to market the property.

"Our team are aware and we are working to re-locate colleagues at other restaurants where possible.

"We would like to thank them for their service over the years, and of course our café guests, for their custom and loyalty.”


From the

22. Edward YOUNG (?senior) died May ye 14th, 1740, in ye 74th year of his age. [born 1666?]

[Edward was a Publican in The Eight Bells in Tenterden, 1728 and a Clerk in 1740 - from]


From the Kentish Gazette, Friday 8 February, 1788.

At the "Eight Bells," Tenterden.

Dancing and Card Assembly. Will be on Tuesday the 19th of February, 1788.

Admittance, 3 shillings.


Kent Gazette Reports 6 December 1805.


Saturday last, at Tenterden, after a long illness, in the 46th year of his age, Mr. Stephen Wratten; master of the "Eight Bells Inn."


Kentish Gazette, 13 May, 1806.


Thursday last, at Tenterden, in the 18th year of her age, Miss Charlotte Wratten, daughter of Mr. Wratten, of the "Eight Bells Inn," of that place.


From the Kentish Gazette, 4 April 1848.


A coroner’s inquest was holden at the "Eight Bells Inn," on Monday week, on the body of Silas Cuff, aged three years, who accidentally fell into a pond.

Verdict " Accidentally drowned."


Canterbury Journal, Kentish Times and Farmers' Gazette, Saturday, 5 July 1862.


June 19, at the parish church, Mr. William Wilson, landlord of the "Eight Bells Inn," Tenterden, to Sarah, eldest daughter of William Foster, of Lewes.




An old directory of 1836 stales that Charles and John Holland's waggon left the "Eight Bells" every morning for London, and on Thursday at 12 noon.

An weekly corn market was formerly held here on Fridays, but this has been discontinued for some years.




YOUNG Edward 1728+

WRATTEN Stephen to Dec/1805 dec'd

COLLINS John 1828-32+ Pigot's Directory 1828-29Pigot's Directory 1832-34

PAINE Thomas 1841+ (age 50 in 1841Census)

MOUNT Thomas 1851+ (age 28 in 1851Census)

MILSTED Stephen 1854+  ("Bells")

WILSON William 1858-71+ (age 64 in 1871Census)

WILSON Herbert G 1881+ (age 18, but just a lodging house)

GREEN Francis 1882+

HADLOW Isabella Mrs 1891+ (age 50 in 1891Census)

PAY Thomas 1903+ Kelly's 1903

GOWER Frederick Thomas 1911-13+ (age 47 in 1911Census)

HATCH James 1918+

HATCH Emily Mrs 1922-30+

SAWFORD Claude Alister 1938+


Pigot's Directory 1828-29From the Pigot's Directory 1828-29

Pigot's Directory 1832-34From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903



If anyone should have any further information, or indeed any pictures or photographs of the above licensed premises, please email:-