Page Updated:- Sunday, 07 March, 2021.

Published 16 October 2003


BELOW: Memories reader Mrs Wilmott lent me this interesting aerial view of the East Cliff area, with the Warren and coastline in the background, which was taken before considerable development, but after the Leas Pavilion was built. The "Airpic," mounted on a greetings card was produced by Air Marketing International Ltd, of Redbourn, Hertfordshire, who can be contacted on 01144 1582 793007.
FIFTY years ago the Folkestone Herald was looking back to the time, then not that long ago, when there were cowsheds and goats in Rendezvous Street and the town was still trying to cast aside an image as a smugglers’ haunt.

“Less than 70 years ago there were cowsheds in Rendezvous Street and a familiar sight was young Alfred Lake driving Farmer Burbridge’s cows and bullocks up Dover Road to graze on the meadows where the houses at East Cliff now stand,” said the Herald.

‘Alternatively he would drive them down into the Warren,” said the writer, who was telling the story of Alfred Clement Lake, aged 80 and his two wives.

“Today the former farmer’s boy is looking forward to a well-earned rest after nearly 70 years of farming and catering,” he wrote.

“Next week when the equipment of the Cheriton Restaurant comes under the auctioneer’s hammer 80-year-old Alfred Clement Lake will retire officially, but his wife, Mrs Trixie Lake, has other ideas. She will start looking for a job as a cook.”

For over 30 years Mr and Mrs Lake were associated with the catering trade in Folkestone. When the Council opened the Warren tea chalet, the couple took charge.

For three years they served thousands of visitors to “Little Switzerland” with teas.

Then the couple moved to East Cliflj still selling refreshments from a hut on the site
where the East Cliff Pavilion was later built.

Nine years before the outbreak of war they were proprietors of the Zig Zag Cafe on the Marine promenade.

The venture ended with the outbreak of war, but Mr and Mrs Lake were soon in business again in Tontine Street, and during the war years served thousands of troops and sailors stationed in the town.

After the war they opened the Criterion Restaurant and Hotel in Cheriton Road, but by 1953 the doors of the hotel were closed.

Inside the restaurant cups and saucers, knives and forks, and the rest of the equipment were neatly arranged in lots in readiness for auction.

Seafront goat carts

“But Alfred Lake’s connection with the Folkestone catering trade goes back much further than the day he married Miss Trixie Rush, in 1920,” said the Herald.

It was his second marriage. His first wife was a daughter of his old employer, Edwin Burbridge.

When farmer Burbridge died, Mr Lake and his wife carried on the farm and branched out as caterers in the Warren, close to the railway halt.

The 1914-18 War brought an end to their little chalet in the Warren, and no longer was Mr Lake able to graze his cattle there. During that war the first Mrs Lake died.

“Mr Lake still remembers the days when he helped Mr Burbridge sell sea-water to the
town’s west end residents and visitors; the days when donkeys pulled bathchairs up the Road of Remembrance, and children rode in goat carts along the seafront.”

He recalled too, the fun that was caused when the goats and donkeys wandered from the yard in Rendezvous Street up to the old Rose Hotel. There, the customers took a special delight in getting the donkeys drunk!

“But the donkeys favourite place of call, was a corn factors on the opposite side of the road.”
•Old Boy of the Dover Road School, Memories reader Ron Dutt, of St Michael’s Street, is having a party with a buffet to celebrate his 70th birthday in the A.VS. Club, at 14-16 St Michael’s Street, on Friday, October 24.

It’s the day before he becomes 70, and he is inviting to join him, any old friends, former classmates and fellow evacuees who, like him, were taken, with their school contemporaries to the safety of South Wales, early in the Second World War.
Farmer drove animals through town centre

Serious Sandgate damage - as gale hits coastline

| ALFRED Bevan convalescent home in

_L7\/0 Sandgate suffered serious damage in a gale, the south-western end of the lower terrace being demolished, while the rest had been undermined by the sea. Thirty yards in front of the promenade, the steps and apron had been hurled aside, huge granite steps, weighing several hundredweight, had been lifted up and, despite protection of groynes, iron railings 3inches (7.5 cm) in diameter had been snapped in half. Folkestone fisherman Alf Poole was reported to have lost 50 of his nets when a German liner ploughed its way through the spot where he was fishing. Hundreds of people gathered and over 70 Buffs Volunteers turned out, to

Pay their tributes at the funeral of respected olkestone citizen, George Holdom, 38, builder and undertaker, of Guildhall Street, who was kicked to death by a horse with which he collided cycling under the Central Station arch. The horse was in the shafts of a four-wheeled West End Fish Company trolley. Holdom, pictured by the paper in his uniform as a Colour Sergeant in the Buffs Volunteers, had himself been a juror at an inquest only the previous day.
Roof-top teas scheme for Leas Cliff Hall slammed

a QAQ MURIEL Moore, managing director of Moore's, Folkestone Ltd, protested in a letter to the "Herald" about a plan by the Town Council to sanction the sale of teas on the roof of the Leas Cliff Hall overlooking the sea, saying it was unfair competition and would "cheapen our lovely shop window, reducing the Leas to the level of the seaside resorts where the shops are all along the seafront." Herald advertisements for rival Folkestone and district coach-works and motor dealers, featured illustrations of a Martin Walter Ltd's Weymann bodied "enclosed limousine de luxe on a 6.5 litre Bentley chassis and a three-quarter folding head coupe on a 20/70 Daimler chassis, and Maltby's Motor Works' custom built saloon limousine and landaulette bodies on 32/34 six-cylinder Minerva chassis. It was National Motor Snow time and both they, and Martin Winser and Folkestone Harbour garages, had stands at Olympia. George Cooper's orchestra, which had played regularly at the Marine Gardens Pavilion for eight years, was switching to Grove Cinema, Hythe. George Cooper resigned from the Playhouse, Folkestone. Wins of 5-0 over Gillingham Reserves and 6-1 over Brighton Res, took Folkestone to the top of the Southern League.

National success for Leas Pavilion star Lizzie Brough

1QEQGEORGE and Arthur Black Ltd, JL?790 London theatrical promoters, bought the rights of Mrs Elizabeth Brough's new play "The Secret Tent," which was staged at the Strand Theatre. Mrs Brough (nee Addyman) was well known to playgoers in Folkestone and nationally, being associated with her husband Arthur for decades in Folkestone's Arthur Brough Players, in shows at the Leas Pavilion and other theatres. The "Herald" in an illustrated feature told how a Folkestone man, John Henry Challis, sought and made his fortune in the "Gold Rush" in Australia, and is honoured by a large memorial in Folkestone cemetery, where he was buried, in 1880. Born at Shorncliffe, the son of an officer in the 9th Regiment quartered here in case of invasion by Napoleon, he left the town for 40 years to live down under.' In retirement he toured Europe and died in France. Sydney University received over 276,000 from his estate. Home Guard chief Lt-Col. W.D. Joyce (ex-Indian Army) was trying to drum up interest in defence, warning that the UK had entered two World Wars ill-prepared for such conflict.
200,000 investment in saving life, at Dungeness

<* Q7QALICE Upjohn was the name of the I Onew 100,000 lifeboat christened at Dungeness. The all-weather Rother class boat, 37ft long, was paid for by Miss Ursula Upjohn of Brighton in memory of her mother. It was handed over by her cousin Commander Ralph Swann, former chairman of the RNLI, which paid for a new lifeboat house and tractor, bringing the investment in Dungeness to over 200,000. The potato market has had its chips as far as local farmers are concerned - a "Herald" story began 25 years ago when the paper reported on the plight of producers who could get only 1 p a pound for potatoes which retailed in shops at 4p. Half hundredweight bags of potatoes could be bought at the farm for about 1, but farmers said they needed at least 2p a pound to break even and Kent NFU was urging more support from the Potato Marketing Board. The future of the old Folkestone Town Hall was in the melting pot as suggestions were made that it become a Shepway District Council information centre after ceasing to be a magistrates court house in a few months time. That would be much better than the use of a portable building at the Civic Centre, said one councillor.

If anyone should have any a better picture than any on this page, or think I should add one they have, please email me at the following address:-