Sort file:- Sheerness, September, 2022.

Page Updated:- Saturday, 10 September, 2022.


Applied 1874

Ranleigh Arms

Never opened




Built on the United Land Companies Estate at Broadway, I don't believe this building ever gained a license. The first unsuccessful application was in 1874.


East Kent Gazette, Saturday 20 September 1879.

Applications for licences. Ranleigh Arms, Sheerness.

Mr Charles Johnson Goodings, builder of Battersea, renewed his application, made unsuccessfully in five previous years, for a licence for the house called the "Ranleigh Arms," built on the United Land Companies estate, and situate at the Broadway, Sheerness. This year it was a triple application, as Mr. Gooding asked - first, for a full licence; secondly, failing that for a licence to sell beer on the premises; and thirdly, if unsuccessful in both of the preceding applications, for a licence to sell beer to be consumed off the premises.

Mr. John Copland, of Sheerness, supported the application, which was opposed by Mr. Douglas Kingsford, barrister. It was understood that Mr. Kingsford was instructed by Mr. Vincent H. Stallon, solicitor, Sheerness, on behalf of the Sheerness Licensed Victuallers' Association. The total abstainers appear to have joined in the opposition, as the names of several well-known teetotallers appeared in a petition which Mr Kingsford presented, while Rev. R. Clarke, Primitive Methodist minister, Sheerness, also announced that he had a petition against the "Ranleigh Arms."

Mr. Copeland, in opening this application, said the "Ranleigh Arms" was the only public house which could be built on this estate of 15 acres, and urged that the house should be licensed to meet the wants of an area of 320 houses, the only public houses at all there being the "Napier," "Royal," and "Seaview." He produced a petition in favour of the application; plan of the estate, together with a photograph of the "Ranleigh Arms" (which does duty year after year,) which is of the rateable value of 60 and of the gross estimated rental of 80, and said that the gross estimated rental of the houses on this date amounted to nearly 3,600. He appealed to their worships to renew the applicant and Mr. H. Smith, the owner of the house, for their patience in coming there year after year and in waiting for the development of the estate by granting the application.

He then called Mr. Gooding, who stated that he was the occupier of the house.

Cross-examined by Mr. Kingsford, he said there were four or five rooms furnished. He recently stayed in the house a month with his family, and he came down on Saturday last again. He had a "care-taker" in charge of the house. He had never paid either rates or rent for the house. He was not to pay rent until the house was licensed.

To the bench:- Since the application was made last year 20 additional houses had been erected and occupied on the estate, and others were in course of erection.

Mr. Kingsford said he was instructed to oppose this application, upon the same grounds as last year. At every licensed meeting a cry was raised about the development of this estate, and the bench were asked to grant the licence on that account, but he contended that the applicant had not proved any substantial development. Why, too, if the "Ranleigh Arms" were needed for the accommodation of the houses on the estate, was the proposed inn erected at one end and the estate developed at the other! He should, however, show by a petition signed by inhabitants of the neighbourhood that they did not require the assistance of the "Ranleigh Arms" with regard to their supply of liquors. The fact was the "Royal Hotel" luncheon bar was within a distance of 143 yards and the "Sea View Hotel" within 123 yards; while within an area of 300 yards there were no less than thirteen inns. On the merits of the case, therefore, he contended that no need for the "Ranleigh Arms" had been shown; but, beyond that he was bound to put forward the legal objections he had raised in previous years, and which, he contended, was fatal to the application. The law required that the applicant for a licence should be a householder in the place, that he should be personally asserted to the poor rates, and that he should be the real residents occupy of the house and respect to which the applicant was made. Mr. Gooding went through the solemn farce every year of coming to Sheerness and taking up the residents for a few days at the "Ranleigh Arms," but he himself admitted that he paid neither rent nor rates, and in his declaration described himself as residing at Battersea.

The Chairman remarking that the circumstances of the application had undergone no changes since last year, and the magistrates had decided to refuse all three licences. They gave their reason for the decision with regard to the application for a licence to sell beer off the premises, in writing, as required by the Act, viz., "Refused on the ground that the applicant is not the real resident occupier and rated in respect of the premises."

Mr. Kingsford then asked there worships to allow costs for opposing the application. It was no personal distress himself to come down here every year, but it put his clients to expense.

Mr. Copeland objected, and said that really Mr. Kingsford was appearing for a body of monopolies, who, having got their licensees, wanted to to square everyone else out.

The Chairman said the bench had no power to allow cost, and Mr. Pemberton added that he did not think the magistrates would have given them even if they could have done so.


Faversham Times and Mercury and North-East Kent Journal, Saturday 20 September 1879.

Sittingbourne Petty Sessions.

Mr. Charles Johnson Gooding, builder, of Battersea applied, for the sixth consecutive year, for a licence for the "Ranelagh Arms," Broadway, Sheerness (a house on the United Land Company's Estate,) and was again unsuccessful; the Bench stating that the circumstances of the application were precisely the same as in 1878. Mr. Copeland, solicitor, appeared in support of the application; Mr. Douglas Kingsford, barrister (instructed by Mr. Vincent H. Stallon,) opposed, on behalf, it was stated, of the Sheerness Licensed Victuallers' Association, Sheerness. The total abstainers joined the licensed victuallers in the opposition.

Mr. Elliot Breechley, landlord of the "Hearts of Oak," Sheerness, applied to the Bench to transfer the spirit licence of the "Army and Navy Inn" (which has been closed as a public house, and turned into a coffee tavern) to his house.

Mr. Stallon, who was acting for the opposition in the preceding case, supported the application in this; and was opposed by Mr. Douglas Kingswood.

The Bench at once refuse the application.





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