Page Updated:- Sunday, 09 October, 2022.


Earliest 1688-

Porcupine Inn

Closed 2013

24 Main Road


Above postcard, circa 1900.

In the centre is William Turner's coal office, on the left is "Jobbin's", the bakers shop, on the right is the ancient "Porcupine" public house, licensed as long ago as 1688. These premises dated from about 1800 and were replaced by the present building in 1922.

Above photo date unknown.


Reference has been found to this pub in the census of 1891 and 1901.

I also have reference to another pub called the "Porcupine" in nearby Penge. I believe they are not the same pub.


From the Era, Sunday 15 March, 1846.

A match has been made between two gentlemen of Mottingham, Kent, and two of Bermondsey, to shoot at six birds each, for 25 sovs a-side. The match to come off at the “Porcupine Inn,” Mottingham, at two o'clock on Wednesday next.


Kentish Mercury, Saturday 14 May 1881.

Inquest. Body of a child found at Mottingham.

On Tuesday afternoon, Mr. Carttar held an inquest at the "Lord Northbrook," Burnt Ash Road, Lee, on the body of a female infant unknown.

It appeared that at 2:15 on the afternoon of Friday last, the attention of Police Constable Duck, 196R, was called by John Cann, landlord of the "Porcupine" public house, Mottingham, to the dead body of a female child, which had been found in a ditch by the side of the road, by Thomas Hammond, of No. 1, Mottingham Lane Cottages, whilst engaged in cutting nettles. The body was taken by the Constable to Dr. Chittenden, and from thence removed to the mortuary at Leigh Cemetery, Hither Green, Lewisham.

The jury, having been sworn, proceeded to view the body, involving a walk of about 2 1/2 miles.

Hammond said the body was wrapped in linsey, a portion of a woman's dress. He just made a hole in the rapper after taking it from the ditch, and on seeing it was a child placed it on the top of the bank, and gave information to Mr. Cann.

Police Constable 196R deposed to being called by Mr. Cann, and taking the body to Dr. Chittenden.

Dr. Chittenden, said the body was brought to him, and he found the child had been dead 1 or 2 months, and much decomposed. He
thought the child had been born in one of the fields, as the cord had not been cut, and he believe the child had died from suffocation, the features being much contorted, as if the neck had been tightly grasped. Should think it was the child of a tramp from the dirty state of the wrapper.

The jury returned a verdict of "Found dead in a ditch."


From the Bromley and District Times, 23 January, 1891.


This old established high road inn is now under entirely new management.

The proprietor solicits the patronage of his neighbours and the travelling public, and guarantees the very best wines, spirits, Beers, &c.

Good Stabling, Accommodation, Bowling Green and Tea Garden.

Large room for club dinners, supper parties, luncheon supplied.

The above is situated in a pleasantly locality, only 8 miles' drive from London, and five minutes walk from Eltham station.

Proprietor W. H. RUSSELL.


From the By Rebecca Bursnoll. 25th March 2013.

Mottingham mystery of Porcupine pub closure.

Porcupine locals 2013

Frustrated drinkers at the Porcupine.

ANGRY pub-goers are protesting against the unexplained closure of a Mottingham pub which is more than a century old.

The Porcupine, in Mottingham Road, is rumoured to be replaced by consumer giant Tesco following its closure last week.

But, despite speculation, no planning application has been filed for the site and owners Enterprise have been unable to comment on the length of its closure. Meanwhile, the pub building has been put up for sale.

John Parkes, of Castleton Road, said: "I think it’s a bit of a disgrace really. It’s our local, I’m 70 and it’s always been here.

"It’s a joke, it’s the only pub around here, a good village pub. A lot of people go in there, so there’s no real need for this to happen."

David Bigley, of Mottingham Road, said: "It’s a great pub, in the summer the garden is full of families with children. We’re not very happy about what’s happening.

"It’s gone downhill rapidly, now we’ve heard they’re going to board it up. We don’t want that, we want our pub back."

The public house has swapped hands many times, though residents said they did not always feel managers were best suited to the job.

My Bigley, aged 56 and a Mottingham resident since 1980, added: "It has had nothing but scum managers running it down, who have made it into a pigsty.

"It’s always been put in the wrong hands, instead we want decent managers in there to tidy up. The potential has always been there for it to be the great pub it is.

"The landlord and staff were booted out two week ago, we haven’t seen them at the pub since. Days later the place was a full house of old faces for St Patrick’s Day."

Ronny Lee, of Bilsby Grove, said: "My family’s been going there since 1933, it’s a damn shame it’s closing. Where do we go from here?"

"I’ve grown up here, it’s been my local pub for the last 60 years. We want to stop it from happening after all these years."

Residents fear a Tesco Express will be the future occupants of the site, however a spokesman for Tesco said no deal had been made and nothing had been signed.

69 year-old Mick O’Hara, of Alnwick Road, said: "What can we do? Not a lot. We want it to stay open over Easter, it’s part of the community."


From the Tuesday 30 April 2013.

The Porcupine, Mottingham could be replaced by another Lidl in Bromley.

Over 300 local residents in Mottingham, South London, were furious on Thursday night at a public meeting with representatives from the LiDL supermarket and their local councillors and MP, ex Pubs Minister Bob Neill, to be told that the chain is intending to flatten their much-valued local pub and replace it with a retail shed.

LiDL's manager said, wrongly, at that meeting that Bromley Council had already given the go-ahead to demolish the historic building. It is believed that an inn has stood on the site since the C14th and that parts of the cellars may remain under the Porcupine dating from that time. The risk of severe damage or loss to important local archaeology is therefore key.

A demolition notice has appeared on the building today. Bromley Council have 21 days in which to respond. Sadly free-standing pubs which are not protected by heritage listing can be demolished without the need for any planning application and without consultation with the local community. CAMRA is campaigning to have this aspect of planning law changed.

As a community pub welcoming a wide variety of users from local amenity groups, as well as families and couples, singletons and groups of friends old and young, this is precisely the sort of premises championed by CAMRA and which we will fight to keep. Campaigners have already made an application to Bromley Council to have the Porcupine registered as an Asset of Community Value on Friday last week.

At a meeting between CAMRA and Bob Neill MP yesterday at Westminster, he was urged to propose that Bromley Council exercise necessary planning controls to prevent the demolition and the conversion of the building to retail use. While Pubs Minister, Bob Neill championed the use of such controls (called 'Article 4 Directions') to save pubs. CAMRA will continue to provide support and encouragement to the campaigners.


From the Friday, 8 July, 2016

Lidl to sell Porcupine site.

Porcupine protesters 2016

Following the Planning Inspectorate’s decision in December 2014 to turn down Lidl’s planning appeal – through which they wished to demolish the historic Porcupine Pub to make way for a large store - the site has frustratingly remained unoccupied.

Throughout the campaign to save the Porcupine, I worked alongside the local councillors, David Cartwright and Charles Rideout, as well as Liz Keable and the Mottingham Residents’ Association (MRA), to register the Pub as an Asset of Community Value (ACV) and to ensure Lidl’s application was refused. Thankfully, Lidl have now officially lodged an Owners Intention to Sell with Bromley Council, which because the Pub has ACV status, triggers an interim period in which the local community can register its desire to be treated as a potential bidder for the site.

One of the most concerning aspects of Lidl’s appeal was the oversight and disregard they gave to the wishes of local residents, demonstrating a complete lack of understanding of how integral the site is to the community. The strength of opposition to the proposals laid out was made abundantly clear throughout, but none more so than by the overwhelming turnout of residents at the appeal, something I saw for myself when I gave evidence at the Civic Centre.

As is set out in my formal letter of objection and my proof of evidence to the Inspector, the pub had intentionally and cynically been run down by Enterprise Inns to justify asset sell-off, and there is no reason a well-managed and profitable public house could not be set up again on the site. This is now the local community’s chance to rally behind the Pub, bid for the site, and reinstate the Porcupine.

I am aware that the Bromley CAMRA Group are already working on plans for this, and are looking for people to help them raise the necessary finance. If you would like to help, further details can be found through the link below:

I will also continue to work with the local councillors and the MRA to do everything I can to achieve the return of the Pub we have fought for for so long. I will, of course, post any updates as and when I can.


From the By Tom Bull, 25 June 2019.

Lidl plans leave future of Mottingham’s Porcupine in the balance.

Lidl 2019

Lidl wants to build a supermarket on the site of the Porcupine. Picture: Lidl.

Lidl is trying again to bulldoze an empty pub in Mottingham much to the despair of neighbours.

Porcupine air shot

The Porcupine Inn, Mottingham Road, has been closed for almost six years. Picture: Google Maps.

Angry pub-goers protested against closure of the Porcupine in 2013.

A campaign was quickly set up to save "Porki" from being handed over to a supermarket.

Lidl have already tried once to get planning permission for the site in Mottingham Road, but this was thrown out by Bromley Council.

Despite appealing to the government, Lidl failed to get the necessary green light - and opted to sell the site instead.

A campaign got the site listed as an "asset of community value", but no one came forward with alternative proposals so Lidl has decided it will try again.

"Despite the initiatives detailed above, the site of the Porcupine Inn has now been vacant for almost six years," planning documents explain.

The continue: "Lidl is now seeking again to promote redevelopment of the site to bring it back into productive use, to deliver a valuable neighbourhood food store for the community."

Lidl says bringing the site back into use will provide jobs and secure the future of the site.

The supermarket says it has revised the issues that stumped its last application when it was taken to a government planning inspector, which was mainly due to the impact on surrounding roads.

However, many people remain unconvinced, with more than 60 objections so far listed.

One objector said: "Our main concerns for this proposal still surround the increased traffic in the area. As a resident in Mottingham Lane we urge the planning committee to witness our lane during school dropping off times and picking up. It is almost a no-go area at these times."

Another said: "It should be open as a family pub again, we don't want a Lidl. It'd be a shame if the pub gets knocked down."

However, some neighbours have backed the scheme - with one saying: "We need this shop here. There aren't any low cost shops in the area and it's what everyone wants. It will promote the area and cause it to flourish economically. The pub isn't in use and no one has wanted to buy it to keep it as a pub so the best thing to do is create something, such as Lidl, that will help the community."

A decision is expected in the coming months.


Porcupine demolition 2022

Above photo, July 2022, showing the demolition of yet another public house. Kindly sent by Chris.

Porcupine Inn location 2022

Above photo showing the location in 7 October 2022. lidl building under construction.



HARRIS Ann 1841+ (age 55 in 1841Census)

GOLDING David 1858+

ROOTS Stephen Aug/1866+

RUSSELL William H 1891+ (age 52 in 1891Census)

LOMAS William 1901-03+ (age 44 in 1901Census) Kelly's 1903

TORBETT Alf 1868+



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:-