Sort file:- Ramsgate, September, 2023.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 27 September, 2023.


Earliest 1849-

Derby Arms

Closed 2014

72 Margate Road


Derby Arms 1904

Above photo showing "Derby Arms" on the left, circa 1904.

Ramsgate Viaduct 1925

Above photo 1925, showing the viaduct being built, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Derby Arms 1932

Above photo, circa 1932, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe. Shown in the livery of Gardner's Ash Brewery and described (in Gardner's publicity booklet "From a Corner of Kent") as being ideal for those taking their holidays in Ramsgate.

Derby Arms 2015

Above photo 2015, with the Viaduct in shot. kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Derby Arms

Above photo taken with permission from Saunders family web.

Derby sign 1991Derby Arms sign 2012

Above sign left, December 1991, sign right 2012.

With thanks from Brian Curtis


This pub predates the viaduct which overlooks it by over half a century. It was rated to James Collyer as early as 1849 and named after Edward George Stanley, 14th Earl of Derby, former MP, scholar and fan of the turf.

Exterior has blue plaque in place, dedicated to writer and broadcaster Frank Muir, who grew up there.

The pub I am informed by Michael Mirams, closed some time in 2014 and is currently (2015) boarded up.



Derby Arms 2015

Above Google image, July 2015.


Thanet Advertiser, Saturday 21 July 1877.

John Solley and Charles Sully with charged with being drunk and refusing to quit the "Derby Arms," Margate Road, when requested to do so, on the 11th July.

The first named defendant did not appear in answer to the summons, and a warrant was issued for his apprehension.

The case against the other defendant was then proceeded with, and John Knowles, the landlord said the defendant came to his house on the day in question in the afternoon. He was drunk, and the witness's wife refused to serve him. He became very abusive, and as he would not leave the house a constable was called in, and the defendant then went away

He was fined 2s. 6d. and 9s. costs.

Eliza Knowles was charged with refusing to quit the "Derby Arms" on the 3rd instant, and on the case being proved she was fined 2s. 6d. and 9s. costs.


Thanet Advertiser, Saturday 14 January 1882.

Drunk on Licensed Premises.

William Crockett was also charged for being drunk on licensed premises, on the 27th December last.

Mr. Parry appeared for defendants who pleaded not guilty.

P.C. Cashford said that at 10 p.m. on the day in question he visited the "Derby Arms," St Lawrence, then kept by George Peake. He saw defendant at the bar in a most stupid state of drunkenness. He called the attention of the landlord to defendant who was then ordered by the landlord to keep quiet and leave the house. Witness was was in company with P.C. Archer. There were no customers in the bar besides defendant; a person named Spain was not present at the time.

By Mr. Parry:- He saw defendant drink something out of a pewter pot. He left the house before defendant. Before he went into the house defendant served him with something in a pewter pot. Defendant was quite drunk when he called the landlord's attention to him. He was also making a noise.

By Superintendent Buss:- He had been outside the house for 2 hours previous to entering. P.C. Archer corroborated.

Mr. Parry said he was instructed that defendant was not usually very "bright" and on the night named went into the public house and had a pint of beer. He was not at all noisy, but was there, he believed some time.

George Peake said that on 27th December last he was landlord of the "Derby Arms." He remembered defendant being in his house. When defendant first came witness was not present. At the time the Constable came the defendant was not drunk. There were three others present when the Constables came in and amongst them being Mr. Spain and Mr. Cox. Defendant cause no disturbance whatever, but he had a process habit of chattering, which it was difficult to stop. He did not serve defendant with any drink during the evening and did not notice the constables more than once. He first went into the bar about 9 o'clock; the barmaid was serving previous to that.

By Superintendent Buss:- Defendant was in front of the bar, and the others were by the side of him when the constables came in. He did not serve defendant with any drink. His barmaid told him she had served defendant with a pint of beer. She had since left. Witness believed he wished defendant to leave because he was chattering so fast as to annoy his customers. When the constables came in they called for a pint of ale.

Superintendent Buss said it was only fair to say that the constables went to the house on two different occasions. He thought Mr. Peake was making a mistake.

Mr. Peake said he could not swear to the date of the evening, but on the evening last he was cautioned he told defendant to leave the house because he was talking so fast as to annoy the customers. He could swear that on the day he was cautioned the constables had a pint of ale.

Henry Spain said he was a paper-hanger and lived at Clarence Terrace. He remembered the 27th December. He went into the "Derby Arms" about 9 o'clock, and saw defendant and 4 others in front of the bar. Defendant was not drunk. He did not see the constables come in. Witness left about 10 o'clock.

Mr. Parry said there was evidently some mistake in the dates.

Defendant was then fined 1s. and 13s costs, a week being allowed him to pay the money in.

George Peake was then charged with unlawfully permitting drunkenness on his licensed premises, the "Derby Arms" on 27th December.

Mr. Parry said that defendant, acting on his advice, would plead guilty.

Find 10s. and 9s. costs.


Thanet Advertiser, Saturday 3 October 1891.


The adjourned licensing sessions for the Ramsgate division of the county was held at the Town Hall on Wednesday morning. The following justices were present:- Mr. H. B. Hammond (chairman), Capt. L. W. Vaile, and Mr. H. Weigall.


The next application was one made by Mrs. Arthy, of the "Derby Arms," for a renewal of the license of that house.

Replying to the Bench, Superintendent Buss stated that on the 17th September applicant was fined 40s. and 14s. costs for an offence under the licensing laws.

The Clerk observed that the license had not been endorsed.

Mrs. Arthy said she was not responsible for the conviction which had been recorded against her. She intended now to transfer the house.

The Chairman said the Bench were not at all satisfied with the manner in which the house had been conducted, and unless the reports concerning it improved, the renewal would be refused another year. He hoped the person to whom the house was to be transferred was of respectable character. They would grant the application.


Thanet Advertiser, Saturday 29 August 1891.

A Case Dismissed.

Emma Arthy was summoned on an adjournment for allowing intoxicating liquor to be consumed at the "Derby Arms" during prohibited hours.

Defendant pleaded not guilty.

P.C. Creedy said that on the 6th of August, at 11:35 p.m. he was on duty in the Margate Road. Seeing the door of the "Derby Arms" wide open he visited the house and found three men in the bar, the manager and his niece being behind it. There was a glass of beer standing on the counter which a man named Marshall drank. Witness then asked the "manager" why the house was open so late and where the landlady was, and he replied that they had been out for the evening and had just returned in a cab, which was standing outside the door. He also said that Mrs. Afthy had gone to look for them, meaning himself and a lodger, who was standing in front of the bar. Witness ask Marshall who paid for the beer and he said he did not know - it was his and he should drink it, which she did. There were other glasses on the table. Mrs. Arthy came in and he asked her why the house was open, when she said she did not know it was open. Witness drew her attention to a woman who was sitting in a chair and defendant then closed the house. She said she'd had closed it before she went out.

Cross examined witness said one of the men, named Wrightson, was coming away from the bar as he entered, but he came in again. The house was generally closed about 10:55, in fact, sometimes as early as 10. Since the house had been in the present hands it had been fairly well conducted. One of the men was drinking beer. Two of the men claimed to be drivers of the carriage. He saw no money pass.

In defence James Hopkins was called. He said he had resided at the "Derby Arms" about 5 months. On the evening of 6th August he went out with another lodger named Vickerstaff. They returned to the "Derby Arms" in a cab, driven by a lad named Marshall. They found the house closed and most of the lights out, but upon knocking they were admitted by defendant niece. Inside the cab were also Mr. Wrightson and a woman to whom they had given a lift. Witness asked the driver if he would have a drink, and upon his accepting, witness himself drew him a glass of ale. No one had any beer except the driver and the house had only been open a few minutes when the policeman came in.

Mrs. Vickerstaff corroborated.

William Marshall, the coachman, also gave evidence in support of defendant's case.

The Bench retired and upon their return the Chairman said the case was a very proper one to bring before the magistrate. There was, however, some doubt and the defendant would have the benefit of it, and the case will be dismissed. She must in future be careful not to allow lodges to draw beer just as they liked.


Thanet Advertiser. Saturday 18 September 1897.

Serving a policeman with drink. A publican heavily fined.

At the Ramsgate Police Court yesterday (Friday) before Mr. H. Weigall (in the chair), Councillor A. J. Richford, Mr. G. Vye, and Mr. S. R. Wilson, George Hothersall, landlord of the "Derby Arms," was summoned for that he, on September 11th, being a licensed person, did unlawfully supply Police Constable Reid with intoxicating liquor during the period he was on duty, without authority from the Superior Officer. Defendant pleaded not guilty and was represented by Mr. J. Emery.

P.C. George Paine said in consequence of instructions received from the Chief Constable he kept observation on the "Derby Arms" on the evening of 11th September. About 10:50 he saw P.C. Reid come down the road and look into the window of the private bar. Defendant's daughter came to the door and appeared to speak to the Constable. She returned to the bar and came back in a minute and handed him something but he could not say what it was. He walked out into the road and the girl went back into the house. The girl then came out almost immediately with a quart beer can in her hand and placed it on with windowsill of the Princes' Road, side of the house. She went in and Reid whet across and took the can and drank something from it. He was on duty and had his armlette on. He went back into the Margate Road and then defendant came out of the side door and closed it. The Constable went back and had another drink over of the can. Sergeant Cox came down the road and seeing the can went and looked in it. Witness waiting for some time but nobody came to take away the can, and, about 12 o'clock knocked the door. He failed to get an answer but called on defendant the next morning, Sunday, and said he should have to report him for serving a Constable with intoxicating liquor while on duty, and told him what he had seen on the previous night. Defendant asked if he could not let him off with a caution, that being the first time, and said he would rather have given 50 and have been caught so easily, and added. "I always close my house at the proper time." Witness asked if his daughter was in, and he said she was in bed and would go and fetch your. He did so. All the conversation that followed was in the defendant's presence. Witness asked the daughter if the Constable had paid for the beer she had put on the windowsill, and she replied that she had not taken any beer out for a Constable, but gave one some biscuit and cheese at the door, which he paid for. She said the beer she placed on the windowsill was for a navvy looking man, but she did not know his name or who he was. Defendant then said, "When they were busy they sometimes placed beer outside in order to clear the house quickly," and also stated that "he might have been in the taproom at the time the beer was taking out." Witnessed told him that only five or six people came out of his house that night, and therefore there was no necessity to place it there because he was busy. He also asked defendant if he had ever had any complaints of the beer being stolen from the sill, and he replied that he had not. On the Saturday night witness examined the can on the sill and found it contained a small drop of beer.

By the Chief Constable:- He kept observations on the house till nearly 12 o'clock, but did not see anyone having the appearance of a navvy go to the sill for the can.

The witness was not cross-examined.

P.C. Frederick Reid said about 10:50 p.m. on the day in question he was on duty in the Margate road. Feeling hungry he went to the "Derby Arms" and asked the landlord's daughter for a biscuit and cheese, which she brought to the door and he paid for it. She then asked if he would like to have a drink, or words to that effect. He said "yes," but told her he could not drink it in the house, and she must bring it outside. Just afterwards she brought out a pint of ale and beer in a quart can and placed it on the windowsill. Witnessed went and drank some of it, and seeing P.C. Bishops close by he went and asked if he would have half of it. He said "No," stating that he had had some at home. Witness then returned and finished that beer, and then went back to Bishop. Whilst standing there P.C. Cox came down the road and seeing the can picked it up and looked in it. Witness went across and told him it was right, and then walked on his beat.

By the Chief Constable: He had not had permission from his superior officer to have refreshments while on duty. The defendant's daughter did not ask if he had permission. He was wearing his armlet.

Cross-examined by Mr. Emery: Bishop was not there when he arrived. Witnessed did not know Paine was keeping observation. He had been on this beat before, but not seen cans on the sill. He believe this was his first experience at the house.

Re-examined by the Chief Constable: He had had drink before at this house while on duty.

The Chief Constable said he would close the case with a calling further evidence. There was only Sergeant Cox, who came round and met the Constable there whilst on the beat.

Mr. Emery said he did not think, after the Bench had heard the evidence for the defence, they would have the slightest hesitation in dismissing the case. Reviewing the evidence he disagreed with the statement that the girl looked out of the door first. His client knew nothing at all of the circumstances, for he was not in the bar at the time and did not know what had occurred. He did not know it until Paine mentioned that he had reported him for a breach of the law, and therefore his statements were only based upon assumption of what might have occurred, and did not prejudice him in anyway. Mr. Emery went on to state that the defence was that the beer was placed on the sill for a customer.

The Chairman: Do you suggest that the policeman stole the beer, then?

Mr. Emery said he was not there to defend the Constable. His client was charged with a criminal offence. The Constable, if he did not steal the beer, knew that if he went to the house on duty it would be a criminal offence for the publican to serve him, yet he came there and boldly gave evidence that he went to the house and took a pint of beer off the windowsill.

Lilian Hothersall, daughter of defendant, said she was serving in the bar on September 11th in the evening. Reid came to the door and asked for some biscuits and cheese. Should had not been out to see if he was there. She took the biscuits and cheese to him on a plate. He then returned into the bar a man put down two pence for a pint of beer and asked for it in a bottle. She said she had not got a bottle but would put it in a can on the windowsill outside.

The Chairman: Did you know that man?

Witness: No. Continuing, she said their customers frequently asked for a drink just before going and to prevent them having it in the house they put it outside and they went out and got it.

The Chairman: Do you do that for all people you don't know?

Witness: To anyone. She had that they put the cans outside and took them in again in the morning. She first heard of an offence on the Sunday morning.

Cross-examined by the Chief Constable: The man who ordered the beer was a shabby-looking fellow, and quite like a navvy. She had not seen him since and would not know him again if she did. She had not heard of any complaints that he had lost the beer. Asked why she put the beer on the side window sill instead of near the door, and being reminded that the man was a stranger, she said that she did not know.

In reply to the Chairman, witness said she did not ask the Constable to have any beer.

Mrs. Emma Forfar said she was staying at the "Derby Arms" for a week end. Just before 11 o'clock she went down into the bar, and said to Miss Hothersall, "It's time." A man in the bar put down two pence saying, "A pint o' beer in a bottle." She said, "All right, I'll put the beer outside." Witness said. "It's time," and she then looked around and got a can to put it outside. Witness then left the bar.

The magistrates retired to consider the case, and on returning into court the Chairman said: "It is the unanimous opinion of this Bench that this case is fully proved. You must know you are responsible for the actions of your servant. We are quite willing to believe that you knew nothing about this individual case, but we look on it as a very grave offence. You will be fined 5 and costs 13s. As this is the first offence, we shall not endorse your licence.


Thanet Advertiser, Saturday 15 March 1902.

Charge Against an Italian Woman.

Maria Schirvo, married, of 6, Kent Villas, Central Road, was summoned for sending and Anunziato Schirvo, a person under the age of 14 years to the "Derby Arms" public house for the purpose of obtaining a pint of beer not being sold in a corked or sealed vessel, on March 2nd.

Mr. Bonugli acted as interpreter.

Defendant pleaded not guilty.

Detective Sergeant Paine said on the date named he saw a girl carrying a large bottle in the direction of the "Derby Arms," and the afterwards saw her coming back with a bottle filled with beer. Witness followed the girl to her home and asked her, in the presence of her mother, how old she was. She said "Fourteen." Witness then asked the mother how old the girl was, and she also made the same reply. The defendant's passport (produced) showed the child was 12 years of age.

Miss Lily Hothersall, daughter of the licensee of the "Derby Arms," said the girl came to the house and said she wanted a pint of beer. She had been a few days previously and said she was 14. Witness believed her. Through the medium of the interpreter defendant pleaded ignorance of the law, but the Bench doubted the genuineness of this want of knowledge, and fined her 17s. including costs.

The money was paid by a friend in court.


Thanet Advertiser, Saturday 31 October 1903.

A Noisy Customer.

Edward Settersfield, labourer, of Arnett's lodging house, was charged with being drunk and disorderly in Margate Road on October 26th.

He pleaded not guilty.

George Henry Hothersall of the "Derby Arms," said prisoner came into the bar and asked for a half pint of beer. Witness thought he was under the influence of drink and asked him to leave the premises refusing to serve in. prisoner then abused him, using very abusive and obscene language. Witnessed called in a Constable and requested prisoner again to leave the premises. He did so, and continued to use very bad language outside, and the Constable took him into custody. Witness had had trouble with the prisoner before and had refused to serve him.

Prisoner denied he had been previously refused at the house.

P.C. Gambrill (No. 17) said he was on duty in the Margate Road on the previous afternoon when he was called to the "Derby Arms" to eject the prisoner, who was drunk. Witness asked him to leave and when outside, he became very disorderly in his behaviour and used a lot of bad language. Witnessed took him into custody and he continued his conduct until they reached the station, swearing in a loud tone. There were a good many people about at the time.

Prisoner denied using the language of attributed to him. He went into the house and called for a half pint of beer and Mr. Hothersall said, "I shan't serve you." He asked the reason and the reply was, "It doesn't matter. I shan't serve you." They had a few words, and the Constable was called. The Constable at once caught hold of him (prisoner) by the shoulders and marched him off to the station. Several times he offered to walk along quietly.

P.C. Gambrill:- You attempted to lie down several times on the way to the police station.

Alfred Settersfield, prisoners brother, who was not present at the "Derby Arms," said he saw the prisoner in custody afterwards. The Constable had hold of his brother pretty tight and pushed him more than was necessary. Prisoner was not drunk, but he and witness had been out selling herrings that day, and they had had a few half pints and no food. Since prisoner have been home from India, a little beer got into his head.

The Mayor said there would be a conviction, and the Chief Constable reported five previous convictions - chiefly at Margate - for drunkenness, refusing to quit licensed premises, and stealing.

The Bench imposed a fine of 10s. including costs; in default 10 days' imprisonment.

Prisoner asked for time, but the application was objected to by the Chief Constable, and the fine was paid.


East Kent Times 9th May 1941.


Licensee of the Derby Arms, Margate Road, Ramsgate, Kent for thirty-two years, Mrs Elizabeth Jane Greig died last week, aged sixty-nine years.

She was twice married and her second husband is now abroad.

The funeral took place at Ramsgate Cemetery on Saturday, conducted by the Vicar of Ramsgate (The Rev C R Farnsworth), following a service in St Lawrence Church.



BRANN David Cover 1871+

KNOWLES John 1874+

HILTON Charles H 1881+ (age 30 in 1881Census)

PEAKE George to Dec/1882

CRAIG W 1882+

NORMINTON Jane Ann Mrs 1890-91+

ARTHY George F 1891+ (age 50 in 1891Census)

ARTHY Emma to Oct/1891

HOTHERSALL Alice Mrs 1891-Nov/1904 (age 42 in 1901Census)

HOTHERSALL George Henry 1897-03+

LUKEHURST Louise William Nov/1904-07+

WEBBER Frank Herbert 1913-18+

WEBBER Elizabeth Jane 1922+

GREIG Elizabeth Jane Mrs 1929-39+ (nee Webber age 69 in 1939)

DAVIES R E 1951-55+

SPIERS A C 1957+




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