Sort file:- Faversham, September, 2022.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 07 September, 2022.


Earliest 1847-

Brent's Tavern

Closed 2021

52 Abbey Street

Upper Brents


01795 532282

Brents Tavern

Above picture taken from Google maps, May 2009.

Brent's Tavern sign 1991Brents Tavern sign

Above sign left, April 1991, sign right 2009.

With thanks from Brian Curtis

Awaiting reverse picture of Whitbread sign.

Brent's Tavern card 1955

Above card issued March 1955. Sign series 4 number 5.


Originally built for Thomas Waller, as a house for the manager of a hat factory he started in 1832, the premises overlooks the Faversham Creek and became a public house around 1855.


Maidstone Telegraph, Rochester and Chatham Gazette, Saturday 15 December 1860.


At the petty sessions on Thursday, George Jemmett, of the "Brents," near Faversham, was fined 10s. and costs for keeping his house open at improper hours on 23rd October last.


From the Dover Express, 22 October, 1869.

Theft of a Guernsey at Preston.

William Thurston, 45, Henry Swan, 28, James Swan, 24, Joseph Clark, labourers, were indicted for stealing a guernsey, value 7s. the property of Henry Summers, at Preston-next-Faversham, on Oct. 1st.

Prosecutor deposed that he was a fisherman, and lodged at the "Brents Tavern." He had a guernsey in the kitchen, which is underground, and on the following day the guernsey was gone. He identified the guernsey produced an his property.

Amelia Dane, nine years of age, daughter of the landlord of the "Brents Tavern," said that on Oct. 1st, Clark, James Swan, and Thurston, were at the house. Thurston asked her to take a pint of beer into the tap-room, and as she left the tap room she saw Clark coming up the cellar stairs. She had been in the cellar shortly before, and saw a guernsey hanging by the fire. Half an hour afterwards the guernsey was gone.

George Stevens said he had been lodging at the "Cherry Tree" public-house, at Preston. On October last Thurston and the two Swans came there. Thurston was wearing a guernsey, and he offered it for sale.

Thomas Cole, Preston, said on Oct. 1st he was at the "Windmill," and Thurston came in and offered a guernsey to him for 6s. Subsequently the two Swans came in. A man bought the gurrnsey for 5s. and a pint of beer.

Edward Packman said he bought the guernsey as stated. He asked Thurston if he had come by the guernsey honestly, and he said he had, and that he had worked hard for the money he had bought it with.

P.C. Bennett, on the 2nd Oct., took Thurston into custody. After he had cautioned him he said, "We were at the "Brent's Tavern." Clark said he had got a guernsey and gave it to James Swan, and he gave it to his brother. At the "Cherry Tree" Henry Swan asked me what the guernsey was worth. I thought it was worth 4s. Swan handed the guernsey to me, and I sold it to a man named Boughton. Witness afterwards took James Swan who said he was at the "Brents Tavern" on the 1st of October, but saw nothing of any guernsey.

The jury found Thurston and Clark guilty, and acquitted the Swans. A previous conviction was proved against Clarke.

Supt. White, of the Faversham borough police, said that Clark had several times been in trouble.

Clark was sentenced to twelve months’ hard labour and seven years' supervision of the police. Thurston to two months' hard labour.


Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, Saturday 6 May 1944.

Obtaining Clothing and Food with his Children's Ration Books.

Faversham publican sent to prison.

At the Faversham Borough Petty sessions on Wednesday, before the Mayor, Mr. P Johnson (in the chair,) Mr. J. H. Johnson and Mrs. G. M. Usher, Robert Harris, landlord of the "Brents Tavern," was summoned for between 1st of July and 31st August obtaining clothing with a clothing book which had been issued to another person. Defendant pleaded guilty.

Mr. Cole Marshall, who prosecuted on behalf of the Board of Trade, said that defendant used a clothing book which was issued to someone else and that was a breach of Article 11 of the Clothing Order.

Defendant was seen by a Board of Trade inspector, Mr. Wills, and he made the following statement:- "I am a married man. In November, 1940, my son, Reginald and my daughter, Kate, were sent away to a home. While the boy was away I applied for a new identity card on his behalf. I took the car to the Food Office but I did not disclose that he was away from home. Consequently I obtained food for him which was used by the family. The clothing coupons I used for the benefit of myself and my son, Robert. I know I have done wrong and that I've been a fool, but as I was short of coupons I took the chance."

He asked for leniency and said he was an old soldier in receipt of 100%, disability pension, 2 a week. He joined up again in this war and was stationed in the district until February 17th, 1941. Mr. Marshall added that people seem to do these things without realising how foolish they were and laid themselves open to large penalties.

Defending them pleaded guilty to two charges of obtaining ration food, to wit, bacon, sugar and preservatives otherwise than by producing to the person supplying the goods a valid coupon, and also with using a fation document with intent to deceive Steven Epps, between December 20th, 1943, and February 5th this year.

Mr. H. Gardener Wheeler, who prosecuted for the Ministry of Food, said that during 1942 two of defendants younger children went to Eastry Children's Home and while there a ration books was lodged with the authorities. For some reason or other defendant got the idea that he could get another ration book for Reginald. Application was made to the Registration Office and he obtained a duplicate identity card which he took to the Ford Office, and in due course he was issued with a ration book for Reginald. That book was registered with Mrs. Wood and rationed foods were obtained. So things went on and in the course of 1942 and 1943 defendant drew rations on his own book and Reginald's. Then came a day when the children were discharged from Eastry and defendant realised that if he registered the two book with Mrs. Wood she would guess something was wrong, so he registered them with Mr Epps, and drew rations from both. If defendant was convicted he asked the Bench to take into consideration offences on 6 other dates so that the whole matter could be cleared up. He would point out strongly that there were not trivial offensive, but that this man had deliberately obtained rations.

Defendant said he had had a lot of domestic trouble as his wife went away and left him with two little children.

Inspector Jaynes said that defendant was aged 60. He was a married man living apart from his wife and he had to bring up two children. Since 1942 he has conducted the "Brents Tavern" in a satisfactory manner. Prior to that he was a fishmonger at Ashford. There were no previous convictions.

The mayor said it was a most difficult case. When he heard that he was an old soldier with a full disability pension he tried his utmost to see if there was any redeeming feature, but really this matter had been going on for so long that it was only common sense to realise that it was premeditated. If he had yielded to a sudden temptation they would have helped him, but this was a serious offence and he had let himself down. They had never had such a serious case before them and and they had no alternative but the send him to prison for one month on each count. The first sentence would run concurrently and the last three consecutively, so he will go to prison for 3-months altogether.

Defendant:- Can I appeal? I have no one to look after my children.

The Clerk advised him to consult a solicitor.

The Mayor said he did not think that if he appealed any Court will be more lenient, in fact he thought the sentence wound be increased.


From the By Bess Browning, 28 January 2016.

Faversham pubs' 'lockdown' on day of crash victim Michael Shepherd's funeral leaves family upset.

The brother of a young father-of-four whose funeral was held this week says pub landlords in Faversham should be "ashamed" after they closed their doors to them.

There were extra police on the streets and the majority of pubs in the town centre were on "lockdown" on Tuesday, closing to mourners following the wake of Michael Shepherd, 27, who was tragically killed in a crash on New Year’s Day.

Police and landlords said it was in a bid to avoid trouble - but officers later admitted there were no reports of any disturbances.

Michael Shepherd 2018

Crash victim Michael Shepherd.

Wetherspoons, The Vaults, The Bear, the Railway Hotel and The Limes shut their doors and turned off the lights at around 3pm and remained closed for most of the evening.

Michael’s brother, Jake Shepherd, said: "It is completely out of order and so unexpected. It upset a lot of people.

"The pubs closing after Michael’s funeral makes him look like a bad person. But that couldn’t be more wrong.

"He has never caused trouble in those pubs. The people who used to own The Limes when it was The Chimney Boy were even at the funeral itself, and we had the owners of the Brents Tavern there too, which did stay open for us.

"There wasn’t any trouble at all yesterday. Everyone was just having a nice time, having a laugh and remembering Michael.

"A lot of us have said we no longer want to use those pubs that closed. They should be ashamed."

Michael was killed in a crash in Teynham in the early hours of New Year’s Day, alongside 23-year-old Karl Buchan.

The driver remains in hospital in a serious but stable condition.

Hundreds attended Michael’s funeral at Charing Crematorium, with more than 80 having to stand outside because it was so packed.

When the heartbroken congregation arrived back in town, they found their favourite pubs closed.

Landlord of the Vaults David Thompson said: "Police didn’t ask us to close - we took that decision due to a large funeral in town.

"Some of the people attending are barred from the pub, and we wanted to avoid any unpleasantness on what must be a very sad day for the family."

The Leading Light Wetherspoons had a sign in the window which read "closed due to maintenance issues. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause".

But spokesman for the pub Eddie Gershon said afterwards: "A decision was taken to close the premises after receipt of information from police regarding an event taking place in the town which they were expecting to attract large numbers of people.

"We apologise for any inconvenience caused to our customers on the day."

Landlord of the Dover Castle in Teynham, Phil Hope, which is opposite where the accident happened, said he closed for a different reason.

He said: "I put up a notice to say we were shutting out of respect for Michael Shepherd and his family, friends and loved ones.

"Because of where it happened, it’s personal to us, so that’s why we closed."

Landlady of the Brents Tavern Angie Simmons stayed open.

She said: “Michael used to drink here and his friends and family do.

"A group of his friends came here after a memorial walk to Teynham after the accident, so we expected to have people back here after the funeral.

“They were not any bother at all after that walk, and they were not any bother on Tuesday.

“Of course they were a little loud but they’re young and we are a pub, we expect that. They were as good as gold. There was no aggro at all.

“The police rang us to advise us and asked us what we would be doing.

“I told him we are a pub, we open every day, and we would be continuing as usual.

“Everyone has to run their business as they see fit, but I think it is a bit disrespectful to just shut down the town because of a funeral."

“Some were very upset. It just shows what the pubs and police think of the youngsters in Faversham.

“But a lot of them are lovely, respectful people.

Angie Simmons

Angie Simmons landlady of the "Brent's Tavern."

“I was saddened to hear that they were treated in this way when they were just trying to pay their respects to their friend and family member.

“Our regulars were in here at the same time and so were the quiz team, and everything worked fine.

“We brought out some sandwiches and crisps for them and we think they had a nice time.”

Police spokesman Steve Knight said: "Division-wide officers were in Faversham town centre on Tuesday to support local officers and help provide a visible policing presence."


From the By Keith Hunt, 8 November 2017.

Tony Goodwin jailed for life for hammer murder of Harry Messenger in Faversham.

A thug who killed his elderly neighbour and friend in a frenzied hammer attack has been jailed for a minimum of 13 years.

Passing a life sentence, a judge told Tony Goodwin he had attacked Harry Messenger in his own home “with great brutality” while fuelled by alcohol.

Judge Jeremy Carey added: “I can safely conclude, having heard your evidence and about the character of Harry Messenger, that you lost your temper about something relatively trivial.”

Tony Goodwin 2017

Tony Goodwin. Picture: Kent Police.

Goodwin inflicted 18 wounds to Harry Messenger’s head, face and neck, as well as 13 puncture wounds to his chest with the claw hammer.

The 63-year-old former painter and decorator claimed he was acting in self-defence and said it was “impossible” he caused so many injuries.

But a jury convicted him of murder yesterday after deliberating for more than six-and-a-half hours.

Goodwin insisted, despite the overwhelming medical evidence: “Eighteen times - no. I couldn’t believe it for a hundred million years. Three blows I remember - that’s it. Nothing else.”

Harry Messenger 2017

Harry Messenger was murdered in his home in Crispin Close in Faversham.

Shortly after the attack at 75-year-old Mr Messenger’s bungalow in Faversham, he sent a text to his brother, admitting: “No, I just murdered someone...”

It was not until more than 12 hours later that he phoned the emergency services saying he had “a bit of a dispute” with his neighbour in Crispin Close.

Maidstone Crown Court heard the two men were good friends and visited each other regularly in the cul-de-sac.

At just after 3.30am on May 19 this year another neighbour heard three bangs that sounded as though they were coming from Mr Messenger’s bungalow.

It was at 4.11am that Goodwin sent a text attempting to get in touch with his brother.

The trained first-aider said in evidence he checked Mr Messenger’s pulse before leaving and could not find one.

Asked why he left it so long to call the emergency services, he replied: “I didn’t think he was dead.”

He claimed his friend had charged at him like a bull and acted like a “mad dog”.

The violence started, he said, after they talked about Mr Messenger’s son being in a pub fight.

“It went on from there,” he continued. “I said: ‘Did you not go and see how the other guy was?’ I haven’t seen him get like that before - agitated, very jumpy. It was like I said the wrong thing.

“He started to get up. He was foul mouthing, which is not like him. I remember him coming past me. I thought he was going to the toilet.”

Goodwin, who denied murder and an alternative charge of manslaughter, claimed Mr Messenger then punched him and struck him on the side of the head with the hammer. There was a struggle, he said, before he grabbed the hammer and hit back.

The judge said he accepted the evidence of another neighbour, Shannon Gibson, that she had seen Goodwin behaving aggressively to his friend two weeks before the murder.

“Both of you drank heavily on occasions and when in drink you and he on occasions behaved intemperately towards each other,” he continued.

On the night of the attack Goodwin went to Mr Messenger’s home at about 9pm, having spent three hours in the nearby Brents Tavern.

Mr Messenger had also been drinking. By the time of his death he had downed the equivalent of two bottles of red wine and vodka chasers, and would have been nearly three times the legal driving limit.

He had also overdosed on the strong painkiller tramadol.

Judge Carey said he concluded it was “at least possible” it was the victim who first got the hammer, normally kept in a kitchen drawer.

“Your relatively minor facial bruising is evidence of something amounting to a scuffle between you, which may have occurred when he got the hammer, or when he produced it and threatened you with it,” he told Goodwin.

“I am satisfied you could have left his home at any point, even when he had the hammer in his hand, and you stayed because you were angry with him."

Goodwin showed no reaction as he was led to the cells.

Speaking after the verdict, investigating officer Detective Inspector Ivan Beasley, said: "This was a sustained and brutal attack.

"The multiple wounds found on the victim including the fatal wound to his head, inflicted by such a weapon as a hammer, proved Goodwin intended to kill Harry Messenger.

"The severity of this attack, the text message he sent from his phone soon after and then the time he took to report this matter to the police voided any claim he was acting in self-defence.

"I hope this verdict is of some comfort to the victim’s family and friends."



I have been informed that the pub closed in 2021 after the licensee for 35 years retired. After being empty for a short time, the premises is now occupied by a day nursery.


From the By John Wellard, 23 January 2022.


Many locals of Upper Brents (myself included) and the nearby Barnfield Estate have mourned the closing of the Brents Tavern earlier this year. A fine example of a traditional local, the Brents was more than just a pub. Well run by landlords Angie and Clive it also served as a community centre where various groups including the local RAF Association, The Upper Brents Residents Association and a pensioners' lunch club could meet. Well managed, impeccably clean and tidy and with beverages at prices (it being a free house) verging on the philanthropic and a remarkable selection of liqueurs and spirits, the Brents was also a popular venue for birthdays, wedding receptions and wakes where Angie would lay on a spread to do the occasion proud. Thus the Brents Tavern will be sorely missed by its regulars.

Angie & Clive Simmons

The Brents was also unique in having a "bottle and jug" service - a counter to the rear where on ringing a bell off sales including confectionary and various snacks and consumables could be purchased. Landlady Angie was also renowned for helping some of the locals who were having difficulties in filling in various documents demanded by governmental departments or local authorities - especially those concerning welfare and social services. Landlord Clive is probably most famous for his collection of assorted classic and chronicly stationary vehicles parked in front of the impressive Brents Georgian edifice. Many hopefuls would call by to tempt Clive into selling them - especially the two Lotus Elites which over the years had morphed into being small eco systems. All without success. But finally, all but the elegant Jolly Green Jowett have gone to make way for the future playground of the day nursery into which the Brents Tavern will soon be converted.

While ex-regulars are now obliged to find second homes, it should be remembered that Angie and Clive are at a stage in life where, like so many of us, the prospect of a more leisurely lifestyle becomes increasingly attractive. Running a pub - especially one like the Brents, is an incredibly taxing and time-consuming responsibility and they both deserve a long and fulfilling retirement for their services to the community. Good luck Angie and Clive!

Well done and many thanks!




SHERLOCK Mrs Maria 1847+

LARAMAN Robert William 1855+

JEMMETT James 1860+

DANE Godfrey 1861-71+ (also waterman age 32 in 1871Census)

CROWLEY John 1881+ (age 40 in 1881Census)

HIGGINS Robert 1891 (age 57 in 1891Census)

FOSTER William Foster 1899-1903+ Kelly's 1903


MERRONY Charles Merrony 1922+

STRINGER Percival L 1930+

KNELL Edward Walter 1938+

HARRIS Robert 1944+

SIMMONS Clive & Angie 1986-2021



Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903


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