Page Updated:- Sunday, 02 July, 2023.


Earliest 1881-

John Barleycorn

Latest 1881+

43-45 High Street


Above Google image, August 2016. 43 right, 45 left.

Barleycorn Cottage 2018

Above Google image, September 2018. barleycorn Cottage is number 43 on the right.


Reference has been made to a "John Barleycorn" and also a "Sir John Falstaff" and I am under the impression that they are related in one way or another, but as yet don't know how. However, the 1881 census says the name is "John Barleycorn" and that's the same name as the licensee for the "Sir John Falstaff" and either end of 1881, so perhaps this name was just what the locals used to call it.

Further information suggests that it is what is now "Barleycorn Cottage" at 43 High Street.

Denise Curtain informs me the following:- "The "John Barleycorn" was not the same premises as the "Sir John Falstaff." The "John Barleycorn" was at 43 High St, Rolvenden, several doors along from the "Sir John Falstaff." My daughter lived in the cottage there and it had a cellar where the rounded archways for storing barrels were still visible. My father is 93 (2023) and was born in Rolvenden and says he can’t remember the "John Barleycorn" which apparently was more of an unofficial drinking den than a pub - certainly judging by the size of the cottage that it later became it was tiny.


From an email received 16 June 2021.

I lived at 43 High Street from 2006 to 2010. Barleycorn Cottage.

According to my Grandad, it was the oldest drinking house in the village, the John Barleycorn. He was adamant it couldn’t be called a pub though, but a drinking house. It had the original cellar when I lived there, complete with water pump as it flooded when it rained. And alcoves in the cellar walls where there was wine racks / bottle racks originally. My grandad thinks the drinking house then consisted of numbers 43 and 45 (my uncle owns 45) but they were split into two separate cottages. The walls were very thin and you could see where original doorways to 45 had been covered.

43 and 45 High Street are almost opposite the Village Shop.



MARLEY Alfred 1881+ (age 66 in 1881Census)




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