Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.


Earliest ????

Wealden Hall

Open 2020+

773 London Road / New Hythe Lane


01732 840259

Wealden Hall 2010

Above photos, 18 March 2010, taken by Eric Hartland.


From the 28 July, 2014.

A man has been arrested over the attempted murder of a policeman after the officer was run over as he tried to make an arrest.

The driver of a Volkswagen Golf ploughed into the officer, dragging him along the ground, before speeding off, as he sought to apprehend him as part of an on-going inquiry.

The unnamed policeman suffered a cracked vertebrae and severe grazing from the incident outside the "Wealden Hall" pub in Larksfield, Kent, early Saturday evening. He was rushed to hospital where his condition is serious but stable.

Kent Police launched a huge man hunt, scrambling helicopters and all available officers, to catch the driver.

He initially evaded captured but yesterday a 27-year-old man from Rochester, Kent, handed himself in at Maidstone Police station.

Witnesses have described how the officer lay in the road as members of the public rushed to help.

Builder Evo Ivanov told the Daily Mail: ‘The road was all closed off and there was a man lying in the road.

‘People were giving him first aid.

‘There were lots of plain clothed policemen around.'

Police refused to let patrons who had been eating and drinking at the "Wealden Hall" pub leave the pub car park, according to one witness.

She said: ‘My son was in the pub at the time and the police weren't letting anyone leave the car park.'

One pub worker, who asked not to be named, claimed police had been following the suspect ‘all day' as part of a wider investigation.

He said: ‘Police had been following him the driver all day. He pulled into the pub car park to try to shake them off and when they tried to arrest him he drove off and hit one of the police officers.

A Kent Police spokesman said: ‘A 27 year old man from Rochester has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder following an incident between a gold Volkswagen Golf and a police officer who was carrying out an enquiry with the driver of the vehicle at the time.

‘The male officer, who was out of his car at the time, was taken to a London hospital where he is in a serious but stable condition.

‘Kent Police would like to thank members of the public for all their help, best wishes and responses so far.'


From the By Sian Napier, 8 September 2015.

Driver Lewis Goldswain jailed after PC John Fordham left clinging to car as it sped off.

A driver who sped away from a pub car park in Larkfield with a plain clothes police officer clinging to the side of his car has been jailed.

A witness said he saw PC John Fordham being flung around like a rag doll, while another said he saw the officer hit a traffic light with such force that he thought he could not have survived.

Lewis Goldswain, 28, a father of three young children, was jailed for three years and three months at Maidstone Crown Court on Monday after he admitted causing serious injury by dangerous driving on July 26, 2014.

Lewis Goldswain 2015

Lewis Goldswain was jailed.

The court was told that PC Fordham has been left in pain following the incident in which he was crushed between the car and a traffic light pole.

He fractured a vertebra in his spine and fractured his thigh and the injury to his back has caused internal bleeding for which he will need surgery.

John O’Higgins, prosecuting, said PC Fordham was on plain clothes duty when he saw a gold coloured car suspected of being involved in drug dealing.

He followed it to the Wealden Hall pub car park in London Road, Larkfield.

PC Fordham approached the gold VW Golf which had the engine running and showed his warrant card and said he was a police officer, Mr O’Higgins said.

“The driver looked startled and moved sharply forward,” he added. “PC Fordham reached into the car to try to grab the keys.

"The driver shot off, crossed a traffic island and hit some railings with the top half of PC Fordham’s body still in the car.

“The driver went into reverse and as he went past a traffic light PC Fordham was crushed between the car and the light pole and fell to the ground where he was left lying in the road.”

Witness Mark Torok went to PC Fordham’s aid and placed his own car in the road to protect the officer.

Goldswain was seen driving at speed in the area with his car bumper hanging off.

His car was found in a garage area in Halling, about a mile from his home in Vicarage Road.

The day after the incident Goldswain handed himself in to police. He said he stopped in the pub car park to take a phone call when a man approached and put his hand towards his car keys.

Goldswain said he thought he was going to be robbed and drove off. He said PC Fordham did not show his warrant card.

Mr O’Higgins said a drugs expert examined the Golf and found it had been in substantial contact with cocaine.

It was believed the car had been used for dealing and that Goldswain was involved in that on the day PC Fordham was injured.

Goldswain had no previous convictions and had a clean driving licence.

Thomas Stern, defending, said Goldswain had been continuously employed since leaving school and played an active role in his children’s lives although separated from their mother.

Judge Jeremy Carey told Goldswain: “You were in a state of utter panic because you had good reason not to be stopped by the police.

"Utterly without regard for the officer’s safety you drove your car in the hope that it would get rid of him.

“It did, in circumstances which could have been fatal.

"PC Fordham suffered very serious injuries and to say that this was a terrifying experience is something of an understatement.

He feared for his life with good reason and you made no attempt to get assistance for a man lying grievously injured.

“You should be deeply ashamed of the spineless way you left this man in the street.”

Goldswain was also banned from driving for three years and will have to take an extended driving test. His car was also forfeited.

A charge of causing grievous harm with intent, which Goldswain had denied, was left on file.

Judge Jeremy Carey said he wanted publicly to commend PC Fordham’s actions.

Commenting at the end of the case Judge Carey said: “PC Fordham, in my judgement, represents all that is good and worthwhile in those who serve as police officers in the course of duty.

“It would have been easy for him to have stepped back but instead he took steps to disable this vehicle and paid a very high price as a result.

"He is commended by this court.

“This positive commendation for this officer will appear on his police record.”

Judge Carey also praised Mr Torok who, he said, showed commendable humanity and a cool head in what he did.

“He acted in a laudable way in the steps he took,” Judge Carey said.


I have just added this pub to that list but your help is definitely needed regarding it's history.

As the information is found or sent to me, including photographs, it will be shown here.

Thanks for your co-operation.




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