Sort file:- Dover, September, 2021.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 29 September, 2021.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Barry Smith and Paul Skelton

Earliest 1861

Mechanic's Arms

Latest 1911

Strond Street


Mechanic's ArmsMechanic's Arms

Above photos, date unknown, kindly supplied by Paul Wells.

George Hotel

Above photo show the "Mechanics' Arms" centre of picture and two doors to the left with the flagpoles, the "George Hotel.".


I have to say first that this sign was reported in Buckland Road in 1861, 1865 and 1867. (Click here). The Strond Street amenity was fully licensed by 1869. From 1874 it opened at five a.m. I have now managed to trace it back as far as 1861, so it seems the two where open at the same time. Hope my research doesn't reflect this confusion.


Redundancy was proved in 1911 when Dover Harbour Board were compensated with 50 they being the freeholders. The lessee was paid 100 and the sub-lessee, Alfred Leney 262. 41 was allotted to the tenant.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 26 February, 1869.


John Heilman, a German shoemaker, living in Military Road, and Henry Heilman, a boy of about twelve years of age, his son, were charged with stealing one bottle of Irish Whiskey, one bottle of cloves, and one bottle of shrub, from the "Mechanics' Arms" public-house, Strond Street.

Edward Sutton, landlord of the "Mechanics' Arms," Strond Street, said the prisoners came into his house at five minutes to eleven the previous night, and the elder called for a pint of beer. They remained for about five minutes. The man had a carpet bag with him. On witness turning his back for a minute, to go into the bar parlour, he heard the clink of a bottle, and on getting back to the bar he missed the bottles produced, which had been standing on a shelf over the counter. the man was then doing something with the carpet bag, which was between him and the boy. Witness accused the prisoners of stealing the bottles, and he saw another bottle, which had also been standing on the shelf a moment before, under a seat behind the prisoners. Witness called to his wife to go for a policeman, and caught hold of both prisoners; but the man succeeded in getting away. The carpet bag was left in the boy's possession, and on the policeman arriving it was found to contain the three bottles produced. Witness gave the boy into custody of the policeman, and on going  along the Pentside their way to the station-house they met the other prisoner, whom he also gave into custody.

Police-constable Levett deposed to taking the prisoners into custody.

The prisoners were also charged with stealing a jar of tobacco, the property of Mrs. Elizabeth Monger, tobacconist of Snargate Street. In this case it appeared that the prosecutrix had missed the jar of tobacco on the previous evening about half-past nine o'clock, and that it was found after prisoners were taken into custody at the father's house, 23, Military Road. In the carpet bag found in the prisoners' possession some scrapes of tobacco corresponding with the tobacco in the jar were discovered.

The prisoners were committed to trial at the next Quarter Sessions on both charges.

The prisoners were then charged with stealing three decanters containing spirits, the property of Mr. Charles Pain, landlord of the "Wellington Inn," Biggin Street.

The prisoners, it seemed, committed this offence under circumstances similar to those in the first case. They had entered the bar at about ten o'clock on the previous night, and having been supplied with a small quantity of rum, for which the elder prisoner paid, took advantage of the landlord's absence to steal the decanters in question, which were subsequently found by the police when the house of the older prisoner was searched.

In this case the boy confessed that he took the bottles.

The prisoners were committed for trial in this case also; and it was stated that there were several other charges against them. It was thought by the Bench, however, that these cases would be sufficient upon which to commit them.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 11 February, 1870.


William Steven's a tramp, was charged with stealing from the Mechanic's Arms Public House, Strond Street, a cloth coat, a cotton handkerchief, and a bradawl the property of the landlord and worth 5s.

William Humphrey's the landlord of the "Mechanics' Arms" identified the articles as his property. The bradawl and the handkerchief were in the pocket of the coat, which he had hung in the taproom on the previous morning. He saw the prisoner in the house in the course of the evening and after he had gone and the coat and the contents were missed. Immediately on missing the articles he gave the information to the police and this led to the prisoners apprehension.

George Maxted a labour living at 51, Oxenden Street said he was at the "Mechanics' Arms" about eight o'clock on the previous evening. When he entered the prisoner was drinking in front of the bar; but the prisoner shortly afterwards came into the tap-room and took the coat produced from a nail on which it was hanging. He afterwards sat down in a chair for a while; but he very quickly got up again, and throwing the coat over his shoulder left the room and went out of the house. Witness drew the landlord's attention to the circumstances and information was given to the police. The prisoner had been drinking.

Police Sergeant Bailey deposed to taking the prisoner into custody on the previous evening about nine o'clock at the "Lord Nelson," Public House in St. James Lane. He was wearing the handkerchief round his neck and had the coat also in his possession. Witness took him to the station-house where he begged very hard of the prosecutor to let him go.

The prisoner pleaded guilty to the charge, but said he should not have taken the coat had he not been under the influence of liquor.

In reply to the magistrates, Sergeant Bailey said the prisoner was not drunk when he apprehended him.

The magistrates sent the prisoner to gaol for twenty-one days, with hard labour.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 8 September, 1871. Price 1d.



In the case of Mr. Stephen Craddock, to whom the license of the “Mechanics Arms” was transferred, he was reminded that there was already one conviction against him in respect of another house he had recently kept, and he was cautioned to be careful for the future.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 6 January, 1882. Price 1d.


An inquest was held on Wednesday, afternoon last, at the “Union Hotel,” Commercial Quay, before the Borough Coroner (W. H. Payn. Esq.), on the body of a man, name unknown, who had been picked up in the harbour.

Mr. H. Smith was chosen foreman of the jury, and the body having been viewed, the following evidence was taken:-

Thomas Craddock, landlord of the “Mechanic's Arms,” Strond Street, said: At about a quarter to five o'clock on Monday last, the deceased came into my house and asked me for relief, as he said he was a carpenter out of employment . I and a fisherman gave him a penny each. While talking to me he told me that he had pawned his coat for 2s. 6d., and had a wife and six or eight children, and had not tasted food for the previous two days, and was wondering what he was going to do for the night's lodging. The deceased then left the house, and I have not seen him since till to-day at the dead-house. He looked destitute when he came into my house.

By the Foreman of the Jury: The deceased further told me he came through Hastings, and was receiving eight shillings a week from the Carpenter's Association.

Stephen Newington, a mariner, said: At about half-past seven o'clock yesterday morning, I was walking over the Wellington Bridge of Dover Harbour, when I saw the body of the deceased floating in the water below. I ran for the Police, leaving a man with a boat-hook keeping the body close to the wall. On returning I assisted the Police and others in getting the deceased out of the water and to the dead-house. His hat had been pressed tightly over his head.

By the Foreman: Some paper taken from the pocket of the deceased was dry. He was quite dead and his hands were cold, but the body was still limp. It was found about four feet on the inside of the bridge. The man I left the body with thought he ought not to take the body out till the police saw it.

A Juror: A case of waiting till he was properly drowned.

Another Juror: Five shillings for a dead body, and nothing for a live one.

Vincent Davison, a sailor in the employ of the Dover Harbour, said: Yesterday morning at about half-past seven o'clock I saw two men standing by the Wellington Gates. I said, “Hulloa, what is up here,” and they pointed to the body of the deceased. One of the men was holding it close to the wall with a boat-hook, and I procured a rope and fastened it round the body, and shortly after the police came and assisted in getting the body up on the quay. He was quite dead.
By the Foreman: He didn't seem stiff. One or two men could not get a man up the quay alone. I was there about a quarter of an hour before the police came.

Police-constable Pilcher: At eight o'clock yesterday morning I was on duty at the top of Snargate Street, when the witness Newington told me there was a body floating in the water by the Wellington Bridge. I went and found witness Davison with a rope round the body. With assistance I got the deceased out of the water. I found the man was very warm, and I sent for Dr. Duke, and had the body removed to the dead-house. The doctor came shortly afterwards and examined the deceased. I searched the body, and found the piece of paper produced, and a pawnbroker's ticket for a coat, pledged for 2s. 6d. at Mr. Barnard's, last Lane, in the name of Robert Brown, of no fixed residence, on the 2nd January.

Edwin Duke, surgeon, said: At about eight o'clock in the evening, I was called to the dead-house to see the deceased. I examined the body and found that both arms and legs were cold and flexible, but the trunk was slightly warm. He appeared to have been dead about an hour. I could detect no marks of violence whatever and I attributed the cause of death by drowning.

The Jury, after a short discussion, returned an open verdict of “Found Drowned.”


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 1 May, 1891. Price 1d.


At about noon on Saturday, a boy, seven years of age, named Cole, son of the landlord of the “Mechanic's Arms,” fell into the Harbour near the "Union Hotel,” and had a very narrow escape from drowning. A quay labourer named Peter Smith, hearing the cries ran to the edge and jumped into the water, and was able to bring him safely to shore.

On Monday morning, a boy named Albert Sutton, living at 4, St. John's place, fell into the Harbour near the same spot, and was rescued by Mr. Thomas Gillman, of 30, Commercial Quay.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, 3 February, 1911.



This was a notice of objection to the "Mechanics Arms," Strond Street, on the ground of redundancy.

Mr. R. Mowll said that he appeared, but he was not to press an objection to the licence being taken away.

The Chief Constable said hat the "Mechanics Arms" was fully licensed, and situated in Strond Street. The brewers were Messrs. A. Leney and Co. The present tenant was Mr. A. Farrow, and it was transferred to him on June 12th, 1903. The rateable value was gross, 26; nett, 21. The licensed house in the immediate neighbourhood were the "Prince Imperial," the "Barley Mow," the "Union" (Commercial Quay). There was a club room upstairs.

Inspector Lockwood said that in six visits he found ten customers.

The Magistrates without retiring, stated that the house would be sent forward to the Compensation Authorities to deal with.


From Dover Express 21 July 1911.


The East Kent Licensing Compensation Authority on Wednesday confirmed the decision of the Magistrates at Dover as to the closing under compensation awards of the "Eight Bells," New Street, the "Clarence Inn," Council House Street, and the "Mechanic's Arms," Strond Street.




HILL William 1861+ Census (Also Millwright)

SUTTON Edward 1869

HUMPHREYS William 1870

Last pub licensee had CRADDUCK Thomas 1871-82+ (age 60 in 1881Census) Post Office Directory 1874Post Office Directory 1882

DOLBEAR James 1884-Sept/90 Next pub licensee had Post Office Directory 1891

COLE Joseph Sept/1890-99 (age 44 in 1891Census) Pikes 1895Kelly's Directory 1899

SHARP George 1890 end (?)

JONES Frederick 1901-Mar/02 Dover ExpressPost Office Directory 1903

BONNER Thomas Mar/1902+ (Late gardener of Chesham, Bucks)

Last pub licensee had PHARRO Alfred June/1903-11 Next pub licensee had (age 60 in 1911Census) Dover Express


Post Office Directory 1874From the Post Office Directory 1874

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Post Office Directory 1891From the Post Office Directory 1891

Pikes 1895From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1895

Kelly's Directory 1899From the Kelly's Directory 1899

Post Office Directory 1903From the Post Office Directory 1901

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:-