Page Updated:- Monday, 06 March, 2023.


Earliest 1873-

(Name from)

King's Arms

Open 2020+

Village Street / Church Street


01959 523100

King's Arms 1908

Above photo, circa 1908, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

King's Arms

Above photo, date unknown.

King's Arms drawing

Above pen and ink drawing, date unknown.

King's Arms 1939

Above photo January 1939. From the Kent and Sussex Courier.

King's Arms 1969

Above postcard, circa 1969, kindly supplied by Rory Kehoe.

King's Arms 2017

Above photo 2017.

King's Arms sign

Above sign, date unknown.


I do have reference to a "King's Head," also in Shoreham, dated 1779, but don't know whether this is the same premises as this one, this having changed name, or perhaps a misprint in that reference of 1779. The Shoreham History web site suggests that it did change name.

Once supplied by John Bligh's Holmesdale Brewery but they sold out to Watney's in 1911.


From the accessed 6 March 2023.

There are references to the King’s Arms from the late 18th century, when it was called the "King’s Head." It’s not listed as a public house in the census of 1841, suggesting it may have been a relatively lowly alehouse at that time – although, like the "George," it also hosted important village gatherings. For instance, it was the site of a controversial meeting in 1810 to plan a new turnpike road past its door – a road that would have benefited this pub and meant that its rival, the "George," could have been badly cut off from traffic and customers.

Kings Arms 1900

The King's Arms, c1900

Thomas Adams 1920s

Thomas Adams in the 1920s by Franklin White

​By the early 20th century, the "King’s Arms," the "George," and the "Crown" were the only pubs in the village managed by licensed victuallers who were able to sell wines and spirits.

In the 1920s, landlord Thomas Adams was a former policeman who kept a truncheon under the counter in case of trouble, according to local artist Charles Franklin White, who lived further up Church Street. Adams would also offer favoured customers a free drink if they could beat him at a game of dice. “When you walked into the "King’s Arms...", said Franklin White."... out would come the dice to toss for a pint.”

King's Arms 1970s

Picture c1970.

​Once upon a time, the "King’s Arms" was known by villagers as the “visitors’ pub”, but since the closure of the "Royal Oak" (in 2009)at the top of Church Street it’s become popular with locals too. The life-sized model of the “Jolly Ostler” in a box set into the wall outside, a curiosity for passing tourists, dates from the middle of the last century. (An ostler was a groom who looked after customer’s horses, although Shoreham was too off the beaten track for the "King’s Arms" to have been a “coaching inn” with daily carriages of travellers breaking their journey here.) The opening in the wall may previously have been used for off-licence sales.

Jolly Ostler 1955

Above photo showing the Jolly Ostler that was on display in 1955. Kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.



WOOD T to Aug/1873 Kent and Sussex Courier

WOOD H Aug/1873+ Kent and Sussex Courier

HOWICK William 1881+ (age 27 in 1881Census)

RANDALL William 1901+ (age 45 in 1901Census)

ADAMS Thomas 1920s


Kent and Sussex CourierKent and Sussex Courier



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