Sort file:- Canterbury, December, 2022.

Page Updated:- Saturday, 17 December, 2022.


Earliest 1573

Maiden's Head

Open 2019+

28 Wincheap Street


01227 450224

Maiden's Head 1961

Above photo, 1961, kindly sent by Tim Timpson.

Maiden's Head 1961

Above photo, 1961, kindly sent by Tim Timpson.

Maiden's Head 1961

Above photo, 1961, kindly sent by Tim Timpson.

Maiden's Head 1961

Above photo, 1961, kindly sent by Tim Timpson.

Maiden's Head 1965

Above photo by Edward Wilmot 1965.

Maiden's Head date unknown

Above picture taken from the Historic Canterbury web site

Maiden's Head sign 1991

Maiden's Head sign July 1991.

Above with thanks from Brian Curtis

Maiden's Head 1981

Above photo, circa 1981, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Maiden's Head 1983

Above photo, circa 1983, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Maiden's Head 2012

Above photo showing the "Maiden's Head" in 2012. Picture taken from

Maiden's Head card

Above Whitbread card, 1973 and series unknown.


The number has changed over the years and has been listed as numbers 14 in 1861 and 12 ten years later in the 1871 census. Today it is numbered 28.

The building has been an inn as early as the 17th century and was probably one of the first to be built outside the city walls.

It is said the building dates to 1446. It first became an inn, or at least the owner Thomas Stokes gained a license to sell ales on the premises, in 1573. The pub itself consists of two timber framed buildings one parallel to the road and one extending backwards. It is possible that the building at the back, which once stood elsewhere was pressed into use here when the building became a pub to serve as a brew house. Later still a malt house was added beyond this. The malt house is shown at it's fullest extent on the 1874 Ordnance Survey 1:500 map.

Listed in the licensing list of 1692 and offering billeting for 4 soldiers in 1693.

The premises was sold in 1742 and was described as being an alehouse in Wincheap with a Malthouse and Stabling.

Purchased again in 1754 by Rigden's Brewery for 330 and still owned by them in 1826. The rent book of Messrs. Rigden, Delmar and Pierce stated that rent in 1805 was 10 per annum and land tax of 1 12s. 0d..

Reports from the Archaeologist Trust who conducted research during a 1984 refitting of the pub stated the following:- It is just possibly that the timber-frame at the back was re-erected at this time as a brew-house (a brick chimney stack was later added to the north end.) Later still, perhaps in the 18th century, a malt-house was added beyond this.

An article in the local papers of circa 1973 states the pub was once called the "Head Maiden's" due to the chief woman of entourage stayed there on occasions of royal visits to Canterbury.


Kentish Chronicle, 20 January 1829.


Jan 12, in Wincheap Street, Cant

erbury, Mrs. Finch, wife of Mr. Finch, landlord of the "Maiden's Head" public house.


From the Kentish Gazette, 7 August 1838.


August 2, at Hythe, aged 70, Mrs. Hallebread, widow of Mr Hallebread, formerly landlord of the "Maiden’s Head," Wincheap, Canterbury.


From the Kentish Weekly Post, 17 May 1741.

Wednesday May 20.

To the worthy FREEMEN of the City of Canterbury who are Interest if Sir THOMAS HALES.


You are desired to meet the Friends of Sir Thomas, tomorrow Morning, being the Day of Election, at either of the following Houses, viz.

The "King's Head," in High Street,

The "Fountain," St. Margarets,

The "Dolphin," Burgate,

The "Rose," St. Georges,

The "Black Boy," Burgate,

The "Flying Horse," Dover Lane,

The "Three Compasses," St. Peter's,

The "Golden Lyon," St. Peter's,

The "Mitre," High Street,

The "Rising Sun," St. Dunstan's,

The "Black Swan," North Gate,

The "White Swan," North Gate,

The "Tolerated Soldier," North Gate,

The "Fox and Seven Stars," St. Alphage,

The "Saracen's Head," St. Pauls,

The "Maiden Head," Wincheap,

The "Two Brewers," St. Mildred's,

The "Seven Stars," St. Alphage,

The "Three Tuns," St. Margaret's.


From the Kentish Gazette, 1 February 1842.

Burial Societies.

The 10 Burial Society, recently established at the "Maiden’s Head," in Wincheap, is filling very rapidly, and as the admission extends to all ages, we have no doubt will soon be complete.


From the Kentish Chronicle and General Advertiser, 18 January, 1862. Price 1 1/2d.


Samuel Ashby, a knife and scissors grinder, was charged with ill-treating his donkey.

Jane Allsworth:— I live in the parish of Thanington. My husband is a shoemaker. On Monday afternoon, between three and four o’clock I was looking out of the front door of my house, and saw the defendant go by. He was beating his donkey with a stick, which was about a yard long. When the donkey got a little way past my house it stopped, and the defendant then beat it over the nose, head, and neck with the stick. I never saw anything beaten in such a cruel way before. Defendant continued beating the donkey till be got down very near the railway bridge. When he was beside my door, I said to Mr. Wales, a carpenter, “If I had a stick I would serve him the same as he is serving that poor donkey.” I said this loud enough for the defendant to hear me. I also said, “If a policeman was to come along I would give that man into custody, and if he comes along after he is gone I will send him after him.” I do not know the cause of the defendant’s beating the donkey.

By defendant:— I was at my door when yon came by.

____ Wales:— I live in Wincheap-street, in the parish of St. Mildred. On Monday afternoon, between three and four o’clock, I saw the defendant with a donkey, drawing a barrow. I saw him hit the donkey over the head and ears with a stick very much like the one produced— (a stick about the thickness of a man's thumb.) He beat it all the way down Wincheap. He hit it whether it went or not. He ran alongside of it, and hit it every now and then.

Mr. William Mount:— I reside in Wincheap. I was coming through the turnpike in Wincheap about half-past three o’clock on Monday afternoon, with a gentleman. I shortly after met a party of gentlemen, and while we were talking, the defendant passed us with his donkey in the barrow. He was then beating his donkey, but I will not say unmercifully, at that moment. But about a minute afterwards, the last witness called my attention to him; and he was then beating it in a most cruel manner. I also heard what the first witness said, and I watched the man down Wincheap; and when he got beside the “Maiden’s Head” public-house, he beat it so unmercifully, that the donkey got on the footpath. I thought the conduct of the man so disgraceful, that I told Mr. Wales if he could not attend, I would endeavour to do so.

The defendant said his donkey was not tired, for he had been in the stable all day on Saturday and Sunday, and had only come from Chartham that day. It had got a trick of tossing his head about when anything ran across its path, and when he got opposite to where the first witness lived, some boys ran backward and forward across the road, and his donkey tossed his head about, which no doubt made the witnesses think he ill-used it. This was also the case when beside the “Maiden’s Head,” when his donkey set to backing. But it was no use his talking, for no doubt the witnesses' words would go further then his; but he would just call Mr. Bourne, of Chartham, whom he saw was in the Court, to speak to his character.

Mr. Bourne said he had known the prisoner for some time. He had never known the prisoner ill-use his donkey.

The Mayor said that the Magistrates were always glad when persons came to give evidence against individuals for cruelly to animals, but as it was a very disagreeable thing to do so, they very seldom had any eases before them. This they considered a most brutal case, and they therefore fined him 1, and 8s. costs, or in default, 14 days' hard labour. He was allowed one month to pay the money.


From the Whitstable Times, 25 May, 1901.


In the evening the Coroner held an inquest at the "Maiden's Head," Wincheap, on the body of William Dyer, aged 58, of 113, Wincheap, who committed suicide by hanging himself on the previous Friday.

Annie Dyer, widow of deceased, deposed that her husband was formerly in the employ of Mr. Foster, of Dover, but for the last two years and a month he had not bean able to do anything. Two years ago she called in a doctor who said he was suffering from heart disease and brain trouble. On Friday last he was more calm and collected than he had been for a long time. In the evening he asked her to leave the room while he had a smoke, a thing he was accustomed to do. She was away in the garden about twenty minutes and when she returned she found the door fastened. She called to deceased and looked through the keyhole seeing his feet. She then burst the door open and called to her neighbour. She then saw deceased had hung himself with a rope. She called for a knife and cut the rope herself.

James Cotton, retired signalman, of 114, Wincheap, stated that on Friday evening he was sitting at home when Mrs. Weston, a neighbour, came and said "For God's sake fetch a policeman." He asked what for and she replied "The old gentleman had hung himself." Witness went down the street and saw P.C. West, who went back with him. They found deceased lying on the floor with a rope round his throat double. The constable tried artificial respiration till the doctor arrived.

P.C. West deposed that just after 7 o’clock on Friday evening the last witness told him a man had hung himself in Wincheap. Witness went to 113, Wincheap, and found deceased lying on his back with a cord round his neck. Witness took it off, undid his collar, and used artificial respiration for a minute or two when the doctor arrived. There were no signs of life in deceased when witness first saw him.

Mr. Z Prentice, surgeon, stated that he had attended deceased for the last two years for heart disease and weakness of the brain. Witness last saw him on the 5th inst. when he seemed quite rational. Witness was sent for on Friday evening and found deceased lying on the floor dead. There ware marks on the forehead and nose from which he was bleeding a little. Witness tried artificial respiration but it was of no use. The cause of death was strangulation. There were marks of a cord round his neck. Witness never thought he would commit suicide.

The Coroner, in summing up, said that deceased had evidently been suffering from brain affection for some considerable time and no doubt felt life was a burden to him, and so in a state of mental incapability hung himself.

The jury returned a verdict of "Suicide whilst temporarily insane."


Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, 05 February, 1938.


Sequel to Whitstable Fatality.

In the King's Bench Division last week, Albert Vernon Williams, a professional footballer, and licensee. "The Maiden’s Head" Wincheap Street, Canterbury, brought a claim against Mrs. Muriel Sybil Smith, a widow, of Downside, Gordon Road. Whitstable, and Reuben Henry Lacey, St. Nicholas Road, Canterbury, for damages for personal injuries sustained in a motor car accident.

Mrs. Smith was sued as the administratrix of the estate of her husband, Frederick M. Smith, who was fatally injured in the crash.

In March last year Mr. Smith descended Borstal Hill, Whitstable, and at the bottom turned towards Gordon Road.

A car driven by Mr Lacey, with whom was Mr. Williams as passenger, was proceeding from the direction of Whitstable, and there was a collision at the junction Mr. Smith was thrown into the road and died the following day from intracranial haemorrhage and laceration of the brain.

It was stated on behalf of Mr. Williams that as a result of the accident he suffered much personal injury which affected his status as a footballer.

Mrs. Smith denied negligence on the part of her husband and the defendant Lacey denied negligence and in the alternative pleaded that Mr. Smith’s car was the cause of the accident.

Mr. Justice MacNaughten found Mr. Smith to blame and dismissed Lacey from the suit.

His Lordship suggested that the parties might agree on the question of damages. If they could not he would do his best in the matter.

The parties came to terms.


From Saturday, 30 June, 2012

A PUB that played loud punk music into the night has been allowed to keep its entertainment licence – with strict conditions.

The owners of the "Maiden's Head" in Wincheap were pulled before the council's licensing panel after a student claimed she could not study because of "noise and rowdiness" at the venue.

​Music events can only be held twice a month at the "Maiden's Head" in Wincheap.

Virginia Lloyd

Virginia Lloyd Owen, 60, claimed she could not study.

Wendy Beharry

Wendy Beharry took over in March


Virginia Lloyd Owen, 60, who is studying at the University of Kent, said she had problems with the pub, which holds live music and karaoke nights, since moving to Canterbury in May 2010.

She demanded a review of the licence in September 2010 when new conditions were imposed. But she called for a second review after claiming the licence holders were flouting the new rules.

At a meeting at the Guildhall last Tuesday, the city council's licensing sub-committee opted to let new landlady Wendy Beharry keep her licence.

But they insisted music events must be scaled back to only two a month, ending by 11.30pm.

And they said no music events could be staged until a sound monitor was installed to cut off the noise at 70db.

An environmental health officer is to check the noise from Mrs Lloyd-Owen's garden. If it can still be heard, the pub will be forced to apply for planning permission to install double glazing.


Has been supplied by George Beer, Rigdens' Fremlins and Whitbread but now owned by Enterprise Inns since 2000 and gained a grade 2 listed status on 3 May 1967. It is in a conservation area.

I have just been informed (October 2013) that the pub has closed, but it is hoped to be open again in a couple of months time.


Maiden's Head 2013

Above photo, July 2013. Kindly taken and sent by Dougie Pratt.

Maiden's Head 2013

Above photo, July 2013. Kindly taken and sent by Dougie Pratt.

Maiden's Head 2013

Above photo, July 2013. Kindly taken and sent by Dougie Pratt.

Maiden's Head 2013

Above photo, July 2013. Kindly taken and sent by Dougie Pratt.

Maiden's Head 2013

Above photo, July 2013. Kindly taken and sent by Dougie Pratt.

From an email received 24 March 2014.


Just to give you an update - The Maidens Head re-opened mid-February, following us buying the freehold off Enterprise Inns.

The new licencee is Richard West.

We will soon be making a kitchen so we can offer food.

We've really improved the place, and we've also done the double-glazing thing to avoid problems with the neighbours.


Giles Toman (joint owner). Amherst Enterprises Limited.



STOKES Thomas 1573+ Historic Canterbury web site

JOLLY Stephen 1742+ Edward Wilmot Canterbury

HALLEBREAD Daniel 1805+ Edward Wilmot Canterbury

FINCH John 1824-1847+ Pigot's Directory 1824Pigot's Directory 1828-29Pigot's Directory 1832-34Stapletons GuidePigot's Directory 1840Bagshaw's Directory 1847

KNOWLER James 1858 Melville's 1858

GIBSON Henry 1858-71 Post Office Directory 1862Historic Canterbury web siteGreens Canterbury Directory 1868

STOKES George 1881-82+ CensusPost Office Directory 1882

BROWNING Thomas 1889-91+ Historic Canterbury web sitePost Office Directory 1891

SHEPPARD C J 1903+ Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903

LLOYD Mrs M 1913+ Post Office Directory 1913

MILLS W G 1917-22+ Historic Canterbury web sitePost Office Directory 1922

MOORES E M 1930+ Post Office Directory 1922

WILLIAMS Albert Vernon 1938+ (also professional footballer) Post Office Directory 1938

BURFORD Mark 17/Sept/2010+

BEHARRY Wendy March/2012-Oct/2013

WEST Richard Feb/2014+

STERLING Jeremy 1/Dec/2016+


Pigot's Directory 1824From the Pigot's Directory 1824

Pigot's Directory 1828-29From the Pigot's Directory 1828-29

Pigot's Directory 1832-34From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34

Pigot's Directory 1840From the Pigot's Directory 1840

Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1862From the Post Office Directory 1862

Greens Canterbury Directory 1868Greens Canterbury Directory 1868

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Post Office Directory 1891From the Post Office Directory 1891

Post Office Directory 1903From the Post Office Directory 1903

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903

Post Office Directory 1913From the Post Office Directory 1913

Post Office Directory 1922From the Post Office Directory 1922

Post Office Directory 1930From the Post Office Directory 1930

Post Office Directory 1938From the Post Office Directory 1938

Stapletons GuideStapleton's Guide 1838

Edward Wilmot CanterburyInns of Canterbury by Edward Wilmot, 1988


Historic Canterbury web siteHistoric Canterbury web site


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