Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.


Earliest 1866-

Neville Arms

Latest 1867+

Wrotham Road/Hook Green



This pub once stood along the Wrotham Road near to Hook Green.

That's all the information I have been able to find at present.


The following has been taken from the 1975 book by Jim Carly.

The precise location of this house has yet to be determined. It seems to have had only a brief career as a public house. The first reference to it so far traced is in Kelly's Directory for 1866, when Mr. John French was shown as the licensee. He was probably the brother of Thomas French, who at the same time was the licensee of the "Railway Tavern." The Directory for 1867 gives the same information, but after that nothing more is known. It was not shown in 1862, nor in 1878.

The name the "Nevill Arms'" is possible a reference to the Nevill family. According to Burke's Peerage, 104th edition, Lord Abergavenny of Eridge Park, Tunbridge Wells, is now the only peer belonging to the peer historic house of Nevill. One of his subsidiary titles is Viscount Nevill. The ancestry can be traced back to one MALDRED, a brother of Duncan 1st, King of Scotland. Later generations acquired estates in Kent. Among these were Sir Edward Nevill of Addington Park, in the time of Henry VIII. Another member of the family, William 4th Earl of Abergavenney was at one time Rector of Birling. His descendants lived at Birling Manor, Leybourne Castle and in various other villages in Kent.

The name 'Nevill' occurs several times in Hook Green. There is Nevill House and Nevill Cottages in Norwood Lane, and Nevill Place (the parade of shops) in Wrotham Road. These are said to have been built by a local trader who bestowed the name 'Nevill'

In gratitude for financial help from the then Lord Nevill, but they were all built much later than the so far mysterious "Nevill Arms."

There are two properties which might have been the "Nevill Arms." Both of them face onto Hook Green, and both have cellars. One is White House, and the other Hook Green Farm. The latter property was definitely owned by the French family (and was occupied by a member of the family until quite recent times), and therefore seems the more likely. It is possible that brother John French sought to emulate his brother Thomas, who became the licensee of the "Railway Tavern" when it opened, and started a rival pub in his house. We may never know. What is known is that John French was buried in Meopham Churchyard on 22nd September, 1883 at the age of 76. Other members of the family were burled in the preceding years - one was another John French who died at the age of 42, and was buried on 5th June 1882 and the other, a child of 8, was Clara Nevill French, who was buried on 4th November, 1874. If, as seems possible she was the daughter or grand-daughter of our short-term, licensee either the pub was named after her, or she after the pub!

Another possible source of the name Nevill has recently come to light. Robert Barrett, one-time owner of Meopham Court, and some land at Hook Green, including Aborfield (then a much larger property than now) left part of his estate at Hook Green in trust for his wife, who according to an abstract of title, later lived at Nevill Park, Tunbridge Wells.


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

Thanks for your co-operation.



FRENCH John 1866+


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