Sort file:- Dover, March, 2021.

Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.


Earliest 1948-

Sugar Loaf

Latest 1950+

44 Biggin Street


Former Sugar Loaf 2014

Above Google image, May 2014, showing 44 Biggin Street, one time the "Sugar Loaf."


This was really a cafe or restaurant, and I'm not sure whether it had a drinks license but it certainly had a music and dancing license. It's telephone number being Dover 5 indicating that it was one of the first to have such facilities.


The Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 10 September, 1948.


Fire, which broke out at the "Sugar Loaf Cafe" in Biggin Street during Monday night completely gutted a large part of the building, and caused damage to stock and equipment estimated at thousands of pounds.

Although the following morning there was comparatively little damage to be seen by passers-by in the main street, charred beams, debris and blackened walls were all that remained of the rear of the building.

The promptness with which the outbreak was tackled by the Kent Fire Brigade, under Station-Officer Smith, prevented the flames from damaging the restaurant on the ground floor, the room immediately above it, and from spreading to adjoining properties.

Mr. Frederick Denton and his wife the proprietors of the "Sugar Loaf," did not live on the premises, which had been left unoccupied for the night. It was Mrs. Taylor, the occupier of a flat in the next building, who first raised the alarm. She awoke just before 1.30 a.m. and noticed smoke eddying past the window of her room. Her husband. Mr. Frank Taylor, immediately phoned the Police, who notified the Brigade.

A pump escape, turntable ladder and salvage tender raced to the scene. Flames were leaping from the roof of the building and back windows and a red glow could be seen through the windows at the front. Firemen attacked the flames with hoses outside while Station Officer Smith and Leading Fireman Toms forced a way in.

Most of the damage had been done before the firemen arrived. The bakehouses and kitchens, which were above the restaurant, were gutted. A big gas oven, weighing over 30-cwt. had crashed from the upper room of the building to the second floor, smashing another oven as it fell. The roof had gone and most of the back rooms burnt out.

In a quarter of an hour Station Officer Smith was able to send a message back to the Fire Station that no further assistance was required and the fire was under control.

To protect the restaurant as far as possible from water, salvage sheets were spread over the furniture and stock, and other sheets folded and suspended above "guttered" the water outside. At the rear of the building other firemen were ensuring that the debris and damaged walls were safe from further collapse. It was not until one o'clock in the afternoon that the firemen eventually left.

Mr. Denton, the proprietor, had been on the scene most of the night, and had given what assistance he could to the firemen.

He raised a sympathetic laugh from a group of early morning workers who had gathered outside when he said, "I’m still determined to open the shop to-day."
His employees, most of whom were unaware of the fire, turned up for work as usual at about eight o’clock, and thanks to the care taken by the firemen, were soon able to make a start on getting the restaurant in order.

Regular customers missed their morning coffee, but the premises were opened in the afternoon.

A person who lives close to the "Sugar Loaf" subsequently said he smelt smoke shortly before midnight. He walked round the buildings, saw no sign of any fire, and returned to his home.

Station Officer Smith points out that any person suspecting an outbreak of fire should immediately notify the Fire Brigade. "A few minutes start may mean a life saved or thousands of pounds worth of damage averted."

If the informer is mistaken the message "False alarm but with good intent" is recorded.


The Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 8 July, 1949.

Sugar Loaf advert 1949

The Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 10 March, 1950.

Another local application, which was granted was that by Mr. P. A. G. Aldington on behalf of the "Sugar Loaf," Biggin Street, for a music, singing and dancing licence from 11 a.m. until 11 p.m. instead of the present music licence operating from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Frederick William Denton, husband of the applicant, Mrs. Florence May Denton, said that the application was made because it was felt that there was more scope offered by the granting of such a licence. There was also an increasing demand for tea dances, and occasionally, dinner dances.

Chief Inspector Young offered no objection on behalf of the Police, but suggested that the number using the first floor — the subject of the application — should be restricted to 70 people. If more than 70 did use it at one time it was felt that it would be difficult in case of emergency.



DENTON Frederick William 1948-50+


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