Sort file:- Canterbury, December, 2022.

Page Updated:- Saturday, 17 December, 2022.


Earliest 1741

Mitre Tavern

Latest Nov 1981

(Name to)

12 The Friars


Mitre 1950

Above photo circa 1950, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Mitre Tavern 1961

Mitre Tavern 1961, kindly sent by Tim Timpson.

Mitre Tavern 1961

Mitre Tavern 1961, kindly sent by Tim Timpson.

Mitre Tavern 1965

Above photo taken by Edward Wilmot in 1965.

Mitre sign 1975

Mitre sign August 1975.

Above with thanks from Brian Curtis

Whitbread sign.

Mitre card 1953Mitre card 1955

Above card issued March 1953. Sign series 4 number 25.


A "Mitre Inn" was mentioned in the Quarter Sessions List of 1692, and its location I have found was in the High Street. This "Mitre" is addressed as the Friars, which is close to the High Street, so it could be one and the same. This one was mentioned in the Licensing Lists of 1845 and 1846 and is one of the few inns to carry any sign with Cathedral connections.

The Inns of Canterbury by Edward Wilmot's,1988, mentions a document, date circa 1945 that gives the description of clientele at the pub as being "Artisans, shoppers and commercial."

I am informed that by the late 1970s, trade in this pub was so limited that it only sold bottled beer!

This house changed name to the "Canterbury Tales" in November 1981.


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 Chronicle 22, October 1859.

Thomas Fox, a labourer, was charged with stealing a pair of boots, value 4s. It appeared that the prisoner went to the "Mitre Tavern," St. Peter's, on Sunday, and this morning (Monday) Richard Baker, who lodges there, saw the prisoner walking along High-street in his (Baker's) boots. The prisoner's defence was that he bought them from a recruit. The Bench convicted him and sentenced him to 21 days’ hard labour in the city goal.


From the Whitstable Times, 3 December, 1870.


Thomas Brookwell was summoned for refusing to quit the premises of the “Mitre” public-house, St. Peter's, when requested to do so by the landlord, Stephen Solly. Mr. Minter appeared for the defendant. The complainant said that on Monday afternoon last the defendant came into his house, and called for a pint of beer, which he served him with. After the defendant had been there a short time he (witness) found him sitting in the middle of the room asleep. He aroused him, and found he was drunk. He asked him if he wanted to catch a train, and he replied that he wished to go to bed. He refused him a bed in his house, and requested him to leave the house. He would not do so.

By Mr. Minter:— When he sent for the police the defendant resisted. He went to a Mrs. Lewis and said that unless he got compensation he should take out several summonses. Before this case was decided upon, the defendant was charged with assaulting the complainant. The assault followed the other affair. The complainant alleged that the defendant seized him by the collar, and endeavoured to put him out of the house.

By Mr. Minter:— When he saw a policeman he did not mention to him that the defendant laid his hands on him as he now described. He said to the superintendent that the defendant had assaulted him. Mr. Minter, in his defence, contended that the charge was a paltry, trumpery, and frivolous one, and that it was not sufficiently made out. The police, although engaged in the case, were not called, because the complainant knew they could not corroborate his statement. The complainant instead of standing there to prosecute, ought to be there as defendant in a charge of endeavouring to extort money from Mrs. Lewis. The defendant was almost an idiot, caused by drink and he was as harmless as a lamb. The Bench convicted the defendant of both charges, and fined him 10s. in each case, and costs, which amounted to 30s.


Kentish Gazette, 15 February 1876.



Before G. Russell, Esq., Judge.

The plaintiff in this case was formerly a gardener and later a publican in the city of Canterbury, but now resides in Dover; and the defendants are brewers at Canterbury.

The action was brought to recover 19 18s. 1d., which the plaintiff alleged to be due to him as a royalty on beer sold to a third party.

Mr. Mowll (Dover) appeared for the plaintiff; Mr. R. W. Flint for the defendants.

Mr. Mowll, in stating the case, sais it was one of those unfortunate actions in which he thought his friend had no defence, and his friend retorted upon him and said he had no cause for action.

Some time in 1870 or 1871 the plaintiff came to Canterbury and purchased the "Mitre" public-house. He had not sufficient capital and Messrs. Flint advanced him money on mortgage, for which he paid 5%, having his beer from them at free house price. He continued in the house for three years and then let it to a man named Benjamin Robus. The plaintiff placed two conditions before Robus, either that he might have the house at 16 a year and go to Messrs. Flint for his beer, or have it at 32 and go where he liked for his beer. Robus agreed to take the house at 16 and plaintiff went to Messrs. Flint and arranged for them to supply Robins with beer at the tithe-house price of 34s. per barrel, the plaintiff to have the half-crown which formed the difference between that price and 31s. 6d. per barrel, the free-house price. Messrs. Flint agreed to pay and did pay this half-crown per barrel, as what the plaintiff called "royalty," for more than three years, when they stopped, although they continued to supply beer to Robus, and it was for the royalty on beer supplied to Robus that the present action was brought.

The defence was that the money that had been paid to the plaintiff was not a royalty, but a payment by Robus to Messrs. Flint, on account of Solly, to whom they repaid it; that they received it because the plaintiff thought it would be a safer way than trusting to Robus for his increased rent. There was no agreement with the plaintiff by the defendants to pay him this royalty, and when Mr. Robus claimed to have his beer at 31s 6d. per barrel, saying that if it was refused he would go elsewhere, the payment was discontinued. previous to that the defendants had made no arrangement with Robus that he should have his beer from them, and he stood to them in the light of a free customer.

His honour gave judgment for the plaintiff for the amount claimed with costs.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 4 September, 1931. Price 1d.


Mr. J. Richardson, of the "Mitre," Canterbury, was granted an occasional licence for a marquee at Aylesham, from 12.30 ton 7. p.m., on September 26th, on the occasion of a hospital gymkhana.




MASON Thomas 1847+ Bagshaw's Directory 1847

ENSTON John H 1851 (listed as shoemaker only age 30 in 1851Census)

NORTON John 1858+ Melville's 1858

ANDREWS Thomas 1861-67+ (age 40 in 1861Census) Post Office Directory 1862

SOLLEY Stephen 1870-71+ (age 45 in 1871Census)

ROBINS/ROBUS Benjamin 1874+ Post Office Directory 1874

ROBINS/ROBUS Mary Ann 1878-82+ CensusEdward Wilmot CanterburyPost Office Directory 1882

BELCHAMBER John 1891+ (age 57 in 1891Census) Post Office Directory 1891

HARLAND William Richard 1903+ Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903

RICHARDSON J E 1913-22+ Post Office Directory 1913Post Office Directory 1922

RICHARDSON Jack 1930+ Post Office Directory 1930


Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1862From the Post Office Directory 1862

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

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

Edward Wilmot CanterburyInns of Canterbury by Edward Wilmot, 1988


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