Sort file:- Sandwich, April, 2021.

Page Updated:- Saturday, 24 April, 2021.


Earliest 1903

Guilford Hotel

Latest 1971+



Guilford Hotel

Above postcard, kindly sent by Wendy Fox.

Guilford Hotel

Above postcard, date unknown.

Guildford Hotel, Sandwich

Above postcard, date unknown.

Guilford Hotel

Above postcard, date unknown.

Guildford Hotel, Sandwich

Above pictures kindly supplied by Sue Solley, date circa 1916. Incorrectly named as the "Guildford Hotel."

Cottage and Guilford Hotel

Above postcard, date unknown should the hotel and also the nearby cottage.

Whitehall and Guilford Hotel

Above postcard, date unknown. Showing Whitehall and Guilford Hotel.

Guilford Hotel

Above photo, date unknown.

Guilford Hotel 1971

Above photo, 1971, kindly sent by Lynn Laramy.

Guilford Hotel 1971

Above photo, 1971, kindly sent by Lynn Laramy.


Sandwich Bay Estate and Guilford Hotel.

Written by Colin Varrall.

Before 1900 the only buildings near Sandwich Bay were a former Napoleonic Battery and adjacent Coastguard cottages. In 1902 the Earl of Guilford began developing the private Sandwich Bay estate selling land for prestigious houses, which mostly accommodated weekend golfers. By 1905 the main estate roads had been laid out. There were two phases of development with the first stage beginning pre-1939. The earliest houses were large properties that had their own staff accommodation.

After the Royal St. George’s golf course had been opened plans were drawn up in 1895 for a tramway to run from the quay at Sandwich to the golf course and then on to the beach at Sandwich Bay to help golfers avoid the rough roads. The plans were opposed by the trustees of the landowner the Earl of Guilford. A tramway was eventually built with a 3ft. 6inch gauge rails from Guilford Wharf on the River Stour to Sandwich Bay with a locomotive called Waldershare after the Earl’s estate at Waldershare Park near Dover. The line was opened in 1903 to supply materials for the construction of the "Guilford Hotel" & other buildings in this exclusive private estate. The line ran until 1915 although it may have been used later during WW1 for military purposes.

The "Guilford Hotel" was built in 1906 as a seven-storey steel and concrete-framed building on the seafront. The hotel was later rebuilt on a smaller scale and was mostly used to accommodate visiting golfers playing at the local links golf courses. The hotel was considered by the Canadian Red Cross Society to become a rest home for nurses during the First World War, but the idea was never taken any further. The Dover Express and East Kent News in December 1971 stated Sandwich Bay’s luxury hotel “The Guilford” will reopen again next year. It has been bought by Upper park Loughrony Development Ltd. Following the closure of the hotel there were fears it would not reopen, but would either or be converted into flats or even be demolished. The "Guilford Hotel" was eventually demolished in the summer of 1974.

The second phase took place during the 1960s and 1970s after the Earl of Guilford had sold the land. Plots for houses became smaller, along with the newer houses that were being built. The houses are freehold by their owners with a range of covenants on them to preserve the characteristics of the area. Many of the large houses have now been converted into apartments and there are a number of vacant plots, but they are owned to preserve open space rather than future development. The roads and verges are presently owned by Sandwich Bay (Residents) Ltd.

Sandwich Bay beach has always been very popular with visitors and is a mixture of sand and shingle. There is a toll charged by the residents’ company for non-residents to use the private road and access to the beach. The Sandwich Bay Sailing and Water-ski Club located to the south of the estate, which was established in 1963.


The Guilford Hotel For Golf - Relaxation and Seclusion.

Sandwich bay, Kent.

Telephone: Sandwich 2345 (3 lines)

Telegrams: Guilsand, Sandwich.

From a pamphlet form 1968 kindly sent by Lynn Laramy.

Guilford Hotel 1968

 Showing the hotel.

The Guilford Hotel

Ideal situation.

The Guilford Hotel is ideally situated, not only is it a focal point for three of the finest championship golf links in the country, but it stands on the edge of a glorious sandy bay. It is a first-class hotel with its own private beach. The hotel is within easy reach of Dover for the channel crossing and of Lydd Airport for the car-ferry to France.


The three fine links, Prince’s, Royal Cinque Ports and Royal St. George’s are all within easy reach of the hotel, and offer an excellent game and first class facilities.


The Management offers special terms for midweek visitors and golfers. Facilities are available for banquets, weddings and special parties. The Hotel is admirably suited for conferences of up to 50 persons, with private rooms for both meetings and meals, surrounded as it is by so many opportunities for recreation and relaxation. The Manager will be pleased to provide quotations for all requirements.

For your comfort

All the Hotel’s rooms have running water and telephones. Private bathrooms are available, as well as several suites. Nearly all the bedrooms have splendid views of the sea. The spacious dining-room has a maple dance floor, and the Hotel provides a Cocktail Bar, as well as the Bay Bar and Grill Room, Billiards Room, Card Room, and a Television Lounge. A Valet service is available, and floor service for all rooms and suites.

Places of local interest

Kent has an abundance of places of historical interest. Among those worth visiting are: Rich-borough Castle, Canterbury and its Cathedral, Deal, Sandwich, Walmer Castle, and Dover Castle.

Your holiday

During the summer months Sandwich Bay has wonderful safe bathing, sea fishing, sailing, tennis and riding—everything the visitor could desire for the perfect holiday. Children are catered for by the hotel, where children’s meals are a speciality.

Guilford Hotel entrance 1968

The view from the entrance.

Guilford Hotel lounge 1968

Showing the lounge.

Guilford Hotel Bay Bar 1968

Showing the Bay Bar.

Guilford Hotel restaurant

Showing the restaurant.

Guidford Hotel Sun Terrace 1968

Showing the sun terrace.

Guilford Hotel golf course map 1968

Above map showing the golf courses locations.

Prince's Golf Club 1968

Above photo showing the nearby Prince's Golf Club.

Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club 1968

Above photo showing the nearby Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club.

Royal Saint Georges Golf Club 1968

Above photo showing the nearby Royal Saint Georges Golf Club.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 10 December, 1971.


Sandwich Bay's luxury hotel "The Guilford" will re-open again next year. It has been bought by Upper Park Loughrony Development Ltd.

When it closed in mid October there were fears that it might not re-open and would either be demolished or converted into flats.

As exclusively reported in the Dover Express, a club section may be developed with sports facilities such as a swimming pool and squash courts.

A sauna bath may be included and a dingy park included on the foreshore.


The hotel was considered by the Canadian Red Cross Society as a rest home for nurses during the First World War, but the idea was not taken any further.

The hotel was very popular with golfers being so close to the Royal St. Georges and prince's golf courses, and has accommodated the likes of Val Doonican, motor racing drivers, including Graham Hill and Peter Gethin, although I believe they stayed in the adjacent flats. Ian Fleming also used to stay here, and George Bernard Shaw made a fool of himself by chasing an actress here, Mrs Patrick Campbell, whilst she was trying to learn her lines for Barrie’s play "The Adored One". After putting up with the love-sick playwright for several days, she dumped him, something Shaw took very badly.

I am informed that the building was demolished in the summer of 1974.


Guilford Hotel merge photo

Above merged photo by Locations Photography, 2011.

Guilford Hotel site 2011

Above photo 2011, showing the site of the Guilford Hotel.



STOBBS C Murray Mr 1971+


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