Page Updated ASH (Canterbury):- Tuesday, 08 February, 2022.


Earliest 1860+

(Name from)

Lion Hotel

Latest late 1990s

60 The Street


Lion Hotel 1875

Above showing the Lion Hotel 1875.

Lion, Ash circa 1900

Lion in Ash, date circa 1900.

Lion postcard

Above postcard, date unknown.

Lion 1920

Above postcard, circa 1920. Kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Lion 1937

Above photo, 1937.

Lion Hotel

Postcard photo kindly sent by Mick Large, postmarked 1953.

Lion Hotel in Ash, 1955

Lion Hotel in Ash, 1955.

Lion Hotel

Above photo, date unknown.

Lion Hotel sign 1991

Lion Hotel sign July 1991

Above with thanks from Brian Curtis

Ash map 1896

Above map 1896.

Former Lion 2018

Above photo, kindly taken by Rory Kehoe, May 2018.


According to a carved board, in the lounge of the "Lion Hotel," the inn was built in 1665, but parts of it appear to be much older. The "Lion" was a Commercial Inn during the nineteenth century, and catered for the many coaches which passed through the village en route to Canterbury.

I have reference to a "Red Lion" in Ash as well, and am inclined to believe that the two are indeed one and the same. The more research I do the more I am inclined to say that the name changed from the "Red Lion" to the "Lion" some time after 1860, probably during the reign of Edward Goldup.

From 1882 to at least 1899 Post Office Directory 1874Post Office Directory 1882Kelly's 1899 this was referred to as the "Lion Commercial Inn and Posting House".


From the Kentish Chronicle, 12 May, 1860.


On Monday afternoon a meeting of the committee and members of the Volunteer Rifle Corps was held at the "Lion Inn" Assembly Rooms to inspect the clothing and to conduct other matters relating to the company, all being under the command of Lieutenant W, Gillow, of Woodnesborough. The clothing being served out to the members, they for the first time appeared in their uniform, which, as to fit and general appearance, redounded highly to the credit of Messrs. Bubb, army and navy clothiers, of Ash, and a well-merited compliment was paid to this firm by Lieut, Gillow, for the accuracy and punctuality with which they had executed their contract; everything being made on their premises at Ash. The corps mustered in good numbers and presented a very martial appearance. The village was "all out" as they marched through the street, returning thence to Sandwich. The quietude of the old town was much enlivened by the martial tramp, and many compliments were passed congratulatory to the appearance of Ash, Sandwich, and Woodnesborough National Guard.


From the Whitstable Times, 18 May, 1901.


Supposed Infanticide.

The East Kent Coroner (Mr. R. M. Mercer) held an inquest on Tuesday at the "Lion Inn," Ash, on the body of an unknown male child, which was found wrapped up in a brown paper parcel along the bank of the Stour at Ash by Charles Dodd, a labourer. Evidence was given by Mr. T. Eyton Jones, surgeon, to the effect that the child had a separate existence, but had lived a very short time. The cause of death was suffocation by immersion.

The jury returned an open verdict.


Dover Express 2nd July 1909.


Wingham Petty Sessions Before H. F. Plumptre, C. W. Firebrace, I. F. Godfrey Esqrs, and the Rev S. G. H. Sargent.

F. Small of the "Charity Inn," Woodnesborough, applied and was granted a licence to sell intoxicants at a flower show on July 20th. The Chairman said it was not a very desirable thing with respect to flower shows, but the booth had been well conducted in the past and the licence would be granted.

Similar permission was given the landlord of the "Lion Inn," Ash.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 2 December, 1921


The license of the "Lion," Ash, was granted an occasional licence to supply refreshment at the Village Hall on December 22nd, for a dinner being given by the Farmers Union.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 6 July, 1923. Price 1d.


The "Lion," Ash, applied for an extension for the Royal Marine sergeants' outing on July 18th, so that they might continue in harmony for an additional hour. Opposition was raised by the Police on the ground that it might be the forerunner of other application. After considerable discussion the Bench refused the application.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 19 October, 1923. Price 1d.


An occasional licence was granted to the "Lion," Ash, to sell intoxicating liquor at a dinner of the farmers' Union at the Village Hall.

Lord FitzWalter, after consultation with the Bench: The Bench are Inclined to think farmers should be home by 11 o'clock.

The applicant: You made the same joke last year, my Lord.

Lord FitzWalter: I am afraid it is rather played out. Your application will be granted until 10 o'clock.

The applicant emphasised that this was in the Parish Hall, not on licensed Premises; but the Bench declined to alter their decision.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 4 January, 1924. Price 1d.


An extension was granted for the "Lion," Ash, for the Bellringers' supper on January 29th.


Dover Express 03 September 1926.

The "Lion" Inn, Ash, applied for September extension from 6 to 11 p.m. on September 30th for the annual dinner of the Ash branch of the National Farmers' Union in the Parish Hall.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 8 October, 1926. Price 1d.


The usual licence was granted to the "Lion," Ash, for the Nonington and District Agricultural Society's ploughing match at Goss Hall farm on November 4th.


From Dover Express 09 December 1932.


A meeting of the local branch was held at the "Lion Hotel" on Monday evening, Mr. H. Saint presiding. It was reported that the concert at Woodnesborough was successful. A Minute relating to the Group Dinner was rescinded. The dinner was arranged for January 7th and the annual general meeting for January 9th.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 18 July, 1941


Edwin Alfred Davey, "Lion" Hotel, Ash, was summoned for allowing light t show from his premises at 11.45 p.m. on 14th June.

Defendant said that he did not know it was showing.

Police War Reserve Burch said that the light came from the rear of the premises. Defendant said, "I hope you won't report me, Harry, I am sorry, and I shall see it doesn't occur again." Witness added that the light came from another room.

P.Sgt. Ainger said that defendant had previously been warned.

Fined 5.


Dover Express 10th May 1946.

EAST KENT NEWS British Legion.

A meeting of the Woodnesborough and Ash British Legion was held on Monday at the “Lion” Hotel, Mr. H. Saint presiding. It was decided to hold monthly meetings through the summer months to cope with the influx of new members. Ten new members were elected at the meeting. The National Savings for April was 90 making a grand total of 14,739. It was decided to send delegates to Rallies at Deal and Westgate.


From the Deal & Sandwich Express' dated October 29, 2009.


The future of one of Kent's most historic pubs looks increasingly uncertain this week as the fire-damaged structure threatened to topple into the street.

Fire damaged Lion 2009

The Lion in Ash dates back to the 16th century. It was turned into an Indian takeaway in the 1990s but went up in smoke earlier this year.

The Listed Historic Building of Kent was raided by Dover immigration officers last year when it was operating as an Indian restaurant and takeaway called Lagaan.

Not long afterwards all the leather chairs and some of the tables were removed and a few days later the structure went up in flames.

The cause of the blaze is being investigated.

On-site workers at the pub said: "We have been called in to make the building safe and have attached a steel to the side of the wall to make sure it stays upright and doesn't pose a risk to anyone walking on the pavement."

The law requires a listed building to be returned to its original state when damaged by fire or some other accident or natural disaster.

But in some cases where a historic building has been completely destroyed, planning permission can be granted for new housing to be constructed.

Kindly sent to me by Patricia Streater.


Lion at Ash, 2009

Photographs above and below taken from Google Earth, 2009

Lion at Ash, 2009
Former Lion Hotel 2010

Above photo taken by Paul Skelton, 11 September 2010.

From an email received 14 September 2010.


My Great Great Grandfather was Edward Goldup landlord to this pub from 1874-82.

My Great Grandfather was Albert Edward Goldup who died in Madras India in 1891.

I travelled to see and possibly have a pint at "The Lion Inn" in 2009 on my way back from France, for old times sake, but alas by then it had burned down.

I have all the information through census reports as to who was living in the pub during this time, and wondered if it was of any use to you at all.

Kind Regards Mr. White.


From an email received, 11 March, 2013.

We were the landlords of the "Lion Hotel," Ash from 1999-2004, then unfortunately sold it, to become an Indian restaurant. For many years people had tried to de-licence it to become houses and permission was not given. It seems a shame to now give permission when the place has been destroyed, such a beautiful building.

Thank you

Miss S Turner


From the Dover Mercury, 25 April, 2013. 80p.


IT has been a pub, an Indian restaurant, has been ravaged by fire and is now being converted into two homes.

This week's Now and Then 1875 photo (top of page) is of the "Lion hotel" in Ash which is believed to have opened in the 16th century.

According to Ash, An East Kent Village by David Downes, the building was officially called the Lion Commercial Inn and Posting House from 1882 to 1899.

In 1755 it was one of six places in the village that was used to house soldiers, along with the "Ship," the "Chequer," the "Duke," the "George" and the "Bull's Head."


In the 1800s the proprietor Edward Goldrup ran Goldrups omnibus business which left the "George and Dragon" and "Saracen's Head," both in Canterbury, to arrive at Ash every day at 4pm.

Many services had to be reduced after the railways came to east Kent but Alfred Howard still managed to run his ‘handsome and well-horsed' omnibus from the "Lion" to Sandwich three times a day in 1899.

There was a fatal accident at the inn during August in 1901. Two men were clearing the top of the sandbank behind the building when the sand gave way and threw them into the garden below.

During the Second World War Ash was designated to be an area to hold up invaders for two days.

Road blocks were put up outside the church and at Guilton.

The "Lion" was one of three machine guns posts, the other two being the stables at Memories and at Guilton Farm.

The owner of the "Lion" was fined 5 in 1941 for allowing light to escape his building during a black out.

Edwin Alfred Davey had previously been warned by the police and so the hefty fine was given.

Lion Hotel and scaffolding

Above photo shows the scaffolding on the former pub, which later became a restaurant.


By now a grade II listed building, the hotel became an Indian restaurant Lagaan in the late 1990s but was damaged in a fire in January 2009, which was investigated by the police. Forty fire-fighters tackled the blaze. During its time as a restaurant it was raided by Dover Immigration officers.

Fire damaged

The Ragaan damaged by fire.


Planning permission has now been given for two semi-detached houses with four bedrooms and room for parking.



October 2012 there was a change of use application, for conversion and rebuilding of existing building to form two semi-detached dwellings and erection of a detached car port.


Former Lion Hotel 2014

Above photo, May 2014, kindly sent by Erik Hartland.



Last pub licensee had GOLDUP Edward 1860-82+ (age 50 in 1881Census) Post Office Directory 1874Post Office Directory 1882

HOWARD Alfred 1899-1903+ Kelly's 1899Kelly's 1903 (age 61 in 1901Census)

HOWARD S A Mrs 1911+ (widow age 66 in 1911Census)

STREETER Edward 1913-14 Post Office Directory 1913Post Office Directory 1914

MARTIN William Fred to Jun/1921 Dover Express

DAVEY Edwin Alfred Jun/1921-42 dec'd Kelly's 1934Dover Express

DAVEY C E Mrs 19 Jun 1942+ Dover Express

MINTER A E 1950+ Dover Express

TURNER Miss Steph 1999-2004


Post Office Directory 1874From the Post Office Directory 1874

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

Post Office Directory 1913From the Post Office Directory 1913

Post Office Directory 1914From the Post Office Directory 1914

Kelly's 1934From the Kelly's Directory 1934

Dover ExpressFrom the Dover Express


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