Sort file:- Dover, March, 2021.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 31 March, 2021.


Predicted 2001

Litten Tree

Never opened

17-19 Bench Street


Proposed Litten Tree

Litten Tree Sign


This was a pub that never actually opened.

The licence was gained to open a public bar in the covered market in Bridge Street (still closed 2009), but nothing seems to have happened since the story was first mentioned in the local papers, way back in 2001.


From the Dover Express 24 January 2001.

Group planning new town pub.

A NEW watering hole called The Litten Tree is planned for down-town Dover.

The Dorset-based SFI Group wants to open a public house on premises below the Income Tax offices in Bench Street, Dover.

The company is to seek magistrates' approval at transfer sessions at Folkestone next month for a licence to sell alcohol at 17-19 Bench Street.

At one time the address was an indoor market which struggled to survive for years.

The construction of the premises required the demolition of a row of existing businesses.

This caused a row when one businessman, Fred Greenstreet, initially refused to sell to the development company.

He was accused of holding up progress in the town. But later years showed there was no great demand for premises in Bench Street.


From the Dover Express, 14 February 2002.

Do we really need another pub in town?

DOVER boasts a fine selection of pubs - and the recent success of the beer festival showed that locals certainly enjoy their ale.

Plans are afoot to create a new pub in the site of the disused Indoor Market - but some existing publicans in the town have voiced their concerns.

Are the needs of the town already being satisfied or does Dover require a new watering hole? NADINE MILLER and WAYNE McCABE went out and about to see what people had to say.

ESTATE agent FRANCES ABBOTT, 25, said: “It would be beneficial for Dover to have a new pub.

“It’ll probably bring in valuable tourism as well as helping project a positive image of the town.”

Dover Cruise Welcome Group manager RAY TILTMAN, 54, said: “A new pub could be determined as fair competition.

“If the Market Square is the centre of information, entertainment and food catering, then why are they moving businesses up the town?”

Dover resident SUSAN ROSS, 49, is a midday supervisor at Melbourne Primary School. She said: “I don’t think it’s a good idea to have another pub. We have enough in town already.

“There are also too many youngsters drinking under age. Another venue will do little to help stamp out the problem because they’ve too many places to go now.”

Security guard PAUL SHERMAN, 24, said: “We’ve got loads of pubs here already in Dover so one more probably wouldn’t hurt would it?

“It will probably help build up our tourist industry as it sounds like it’s going to be quite a big venture.”


From the Dover Express 2 July, 2002.

Publicans call time on planned boozer.

It will hit anyone providing food and drinks'


Covered Market 2002

ARE YOU BEING SERVED? publicans Roy Gilham ("Prince Albert".) Dan Warwick ("Flotilla and Furkin"). Ken Brandy ("unknown") and Lee Hathaway ("Roman Quay") outside the proposed new pub.


LOCAL publicans have voiced concerns that a new pub in Bench Street will harm their businesses.

A planning application has been received by the council to change the old indoor market premises into a large bar called The Litten Tree.

The new venture's backers, the Dorset based SFI Group plc, has plans for a smart pub with a library area and a dance floor.

Roy Gilham, licensee at The Elephant and Hind and The Prince Albert in the town centre said: "We will object. We are worried about the effect it will have on business.

"Some pubs took a hammering when Wetherspoons opened so it is only natural to be a bit concerned. I have no doubt that it will hit any outlet providing food and alcohol.

"It will probably wind up the residents as well because there will be a large volume of people spilling out at chucking out time.

"One has to ask whether the local cab firms will be able to cope with the numbers who might need their services. These are all things which need to be addressed."

Local publicans and bar managers met recently to discuss the proposed development and prepared a flier for residents who may have missed publicity about the plans.

Town Centre Manager Mike Webb, while pleased that the site would be taken over and given a new purpose, echoed the caution voiced elsewhere. He said: "I have to say it's a case of wait and see. This may be one pub too many and the residents have got to be consulted properly. I am pleased that at least the site is finally going to be used but I have to listen to concerns too." Town centre constable Ian Woodland said there was unlikely to be any police objections to the plan but he would want to work alongside the owners to prevent crime.


From the Dover Express 18 April, 2002.

Having one too many

Contentious pub plans are passed


A NEW pub in Bench Street which local landlords fear will damage their trade has been granted planning permission by Dover District Council.

The Litten Tree - which is part of a nationwide chain - will have a midnight closing time from Sunday to Thursday and 1am on other days.

The new pub will convert the old indoor market into a large themed pub which will have a dance floor and a smart 'library' area.

The new venture's backers are the Dorset-based SFI group and the granting of permission last week was not unexpected as there were no serious objections from police.

Landlords were afraid that the new premises will hit any local outlet selling alcohol and food.

Local publicans met in January to discuss the issue shortly after it emerged that the planning application was being considered.

There were concerns whether there would be enough cabs to take people home late at night should the town centre get busy with extra drinkers.

Town Centre Manager Mike Webb said: "We have to accept it, whatever the decision, and hope that the owners will join Town Centre Management and get involved with ShopWatch.

"There are views on both sides but we will have to wait and see how things pan out I'd like to think we can work with them and hope it will bring a much needed boost to that part of town. But on the other hand, it could also be seen as one pub too many."

He said he was delighted the site, which has been vacant for some time, is finally being put to use.

Police say they look forward to meeting the owners and working with them to prevent crime.




Never opened.


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