Page Updated:- Wednesday, 27 October, 2021.


Earliest 1740+

(Name from)

Bridges Arms

Latest 1923

(Name to)

Goodnestone Street



Bridges Arms 1896

Above postcard, circa 1896, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Bridges Arms 1896

Above postcard, circa 1896. Kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.


I have only just started the research into the pubs of Sandwich. I am hoping for more information as soon as time allows, so if you have any information regarding this pub or better still any photographs, please email me at the address below.

Originally called the "Three Crowns" this pub changed name some time after 1826 (I believe), and later still to the "Fitzwater Arms".


The following information was given by kind permission of the Fitzwater Arms.


The Fitzwater Arms was built in the 31st year of our Sovereign Lady Elizabeth, Queen of England, France and Ireland, anon 1589.

Goodnestone then, was in the hands of the Engeham family of Woodchurch and has been since the early years of Elizabeth when it was sold to Sir Thomas Engeham by William Henacre. However the mansion and certain lands were already in their possession and had been since  the reign of Henry VIII when it had passed to them by marriage of Edith Goodnestone and Vincent Engeham. The manor and the remaining lands were held by the family of Henacre, Goodnestone then being a divided parish.

It was during Sir Thomas Engehams' time that this house was built though its structure then was somewhat different to the present day edifice, having undergone alteration over a century later. Its usage was that of a bailiffs lodge, the purpose of for which it had probably been built. Records of early occupants of the house pronounced as Gunstone and one Isaac Piddock was accepted for the position of bailiff, his bailiwick was the lands within the demesne and manor of Goodnestone and the cottages that dwelled there. Richard Nethersole and his son John were also bailiffs to the manor of Goodnestone during the seventeenth century, and lived in this house.

Goodnestone passed down through the Engehams until at length it passed to Sir Thomas Engeham, descendant of the aforementioned. In 1702 he transformed it by sale to Brook Bridges esq. of grove in Middlesex, who was of the imprest during Charles IIs' reign. In that year of 1702, upon purchasing the manor of Goodnestone, he set about rebuilding the mansion and at the same time carried out extensive alterations to this house, during the course of which a new stable block was added.

Upon completion of these works a sign bearing the arms of the Bridges family was hung and an alehouse license was granted in the name of Daniel Page. At a brief hearing before Sandwich Justices, Page described as a linen weaver, registered the house under the title of the Bridges Arms. He offered two sureties of his good character to uphold and keep an orderly house from which it is said "he may suffer ale to be tippled, but shall not suffer that ale to be tippled in his house during divine service. He shall not suffer ale impured by adulteration. He shall not suffer ale to be tippled in his house from pots of illegal measure. He shall not suffer ale to be tippled in his house from pots not bearing the district stamp. He shall not suffer or harbour thieves and he shall not suffer or permit gaming in his house."

Daniel Page drew the first ale here when the house opened for business early in 1703 and remained in occupation trading as an ale-house keeper and linen weaver until his death in 1716, whereupon his daughter Susan with the consent of Brook Bridges, took over the house. In 1717 whilst still in her hands the latter died and was buried in the Chancel of the Church of Holy Cross at Goodnestone. He was succeeded in title by his son, also Brook, who on April 19 1716 was created a baronet. He was for many years auditor of the imprest of the treasury.

Susan Page served until 1724 when she married John Ratcliffe, a farmer of Goodnestone parish, she was succeeded as keeper of the Bridges Arms by Thomas Wood, innkeeper of the Fleur de Lis Inn at Faversham who drew ale here until 1735 being succeeded by Benjamin Dawson a shoemaker of Sandwich. The latter remained in occupation here until his death in 1751, and was succeeded by his widow Harriet who ran the house until her own death in 1759, she was succeeded by John Francis Harlow a blacksmith of Sandwich.

During the latters' time as keeper of the Bridges Arms further works were carried out to the Manor House and Goodnestone Park was laid out in a taste befitting the period. The work was commissioned by Sir Brook Bridges, bart who represented Kent in two successive Parliaments. He was the fourth Brook Bridges, the first as already mentioned died in 1717, the second in 1728 and the third in 1733. John Francis Harlowe served here until 1776 and was succeeded by Jacob Bassett who was here until 1791. In that year Sir Brook Bridges, bart died ad passed his estate to his eldest surviving son Sir Brook William Bridges, bart. He, in the same year assigned the lease of the Bridges' Arms to John Minter, a brewer and maltster of Ash-Next-Sandwich, who installed his son Henry into the Bridges Arms as keeper.

The latter kept the house until the death of his father in 1804 when he inherited the brewery. In July of that year of 1804 the Bridges Arms was sub-leased to John Hudson who served here until 1816 being succeeded by James Horton innkeeper of the "Three Colts" public house at Sandwich. The latter remained in occupation here until 1927 innkeeper of the "Cinque Ports Arms," High Street Sandwich. He ran the house until 1837, handing over in that year to William Raynor. In 1848 whilst in his hands the brewing company of Gardner and Godden took over the brewery at Ask-Next-Sandwich and were granted the lease of the Bridges Arms.

William Raynor served until 1862 when he was succeeded by James Clements. He remains to date the longest serving keeper of this house, dying here in 1913. In 1899 he witnessed great changes at Goodnestone Park when the last Sir Brook Bridges died, the baronetcy was terminated and the manor passed to their descendants, the Pulmptree. Clements was succeeded by his nieces, the eldest Mary being the registered license holder. They served here until 1918 when they were succeeded by by Alfred J. Page. In 1924 whilst still in his hands Henry Fitzwalter Plumptree was created Lord Fitzwalter and the name of the house was changed to the Fitzwalter Arms.

Click to continue.


From the Kentish Gazette, 28 July 1846.


Rayner.— July 14, Ann, wife of Mr. Rayner, of the "Bridges' Arms," Goodnestone.


From the South Eastern Gazette, Tuesday 3 December, 1861.


The annual meeting of the farmers of this neighbourhood took place on Thursday evening, at the "Bridges Arms," to decide the sweepstakes of five shillings each for the person, who by good cultivation produced the best field of turnips in the neighbourhood. J. B. Plumptre, Esq., occupied the chair. The proceedings commenced with a good substantial dinner, and after the loyal toasts were disposed of, the chairman called on Mr. Simpson, judge, who announced Mr. John Bushell as the successful competitor. In returning thanks, Mr. Bushell said he had put forth his best efforts to obtain the prize. he should not have exerted himself so much had it not been for the stimulas afforded by that association, which he looked upon as the cause of his producing a beautiful field of turnips.

The evening was spent in discussing various subjects relating to the farm, with a view to improvement. On a motion from the chair, with reference to the continuance of the society, every hand was held up in favour of renewing the competition next year.



PAGE Daniel 1703-16 dec'd

PAGE Susan 1716-24

WOOD Thomas 1724-35

DAWSON Benjamin 1735-51 dec'd

DAWSON Harriett 1751-59 dec'd

HARLOWE John Francis 1759-76

BASSETT Jacob 1776-91

MINTER Henry 1791-1804

HUDSON John 1804 July-1816

Last pub licensee had HORTON James 1816-27

Last pub licensee had WILLIAMS Jonathan 1827-37

RAYNER William 1837-1861 (age 59 in 1861Census) Bagshaw's Directory 1847Melville's 1858 (brewer in 1841Census)

CLEMENTS James 1861-1871+ (widower age 70 in 1901Census) Post Office Directory 1874Post Office Directory 1882

CLEMENTS James (son) 1891-1903+ (age 33 in 1891Census) Kelly's 1899Kelly's 1903

CLEMENTS Mary 1913-18

PAGE Alfred Joseph 1918-Dec/23 Next pub licensee had

Name changed to "Fitzwalter Arms"


Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Kelly's 1899From the Kelly's Directory 1899

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:-