Page Updated:- Wednesday, 08 June, 2022.


Earliest 1779-

(Name from)

Jolly Farmers Inn

Open 2019+

3 High Street


01843 823208

Jolly Farmer 1902

Above photo, circa 1902, kindly sent by Michael Mirams.

Jolly Farmer 1950

Above photo, 1950, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Jolly Farmer

Above photo taken with permission from Saunders family web.


Post Office Directory 1874 gives reference to a "Jolly Farmer" at Manston, St. Lawrence.

In 1773 the pub was known as the "Crown and Anchor."

One time Cobbs tied house. Cobbs were founded in 1673, but Whitbread took them over early 1968 and closed the brewery later that year.


From the Kentish Gazette, 24 July 1779.


At the "Red Lion" in Ramsgate on Friday the twentieth Day of August next, about five o'clock in the Afternoon (if not sold before by private Contract, of which public Notice will be given) the under mentioned Freehold Estates, in the following Lots, viz.

LOT 9. All that Messuage or Tenement known by the Sign of the "Jolly Farmer," with the Appurtenances, at Manston, in the said Parish of St. Lawrence, and now in the Occupation of the Widow Fox.


Kentish Weekly Post or Canterbury Journal - Tuesday 17 October 1809.


To be sold by auction.

By Mr. Giles Grainger, at the sign of the "Jolly Farmer," in Manston, on Wednesday the 18th of October inst. about 2 o'clock in the afternoon.

A freehold dwelling house (which might at a small expense be converted into two tenements) Oast House and Garden, situate at Manston, in the Isle of Thanet, now in the occupation of John Palmer.

Full particulars enquire of Messrs. Sawkins and Dering, or of Mr. Benjamin Miller, of Manston.

Margate, 12th Oct. 1809.


From the Kentish Chronicle, 14 January, 1860.


T. T. Delasaux, Esq., one of the county coroners, held an inquest at the "Jolly Farmer," in the parish on Friday last, touching the death of Erasmus Sympson Emptage, who was found drowned on the previous day. Peter W Emptage, his brother, deposed that he saw deceased alive on Wednesday evening, at about nine o'clock when, he was rather intoxicated. The deceased did not sleep an usual at witness's house on Wednesday night, but on Thursday morning at half-past seven o’clock, witness found him in a tank containing water and when taken out he was quite dead. The deceased had been subject to fits, and he had frequently mentioned an intention to drown himself. Two witnesses spoke of seeing the deceased near his brother's house in a state of intoxication between 10 and 11 o’clock, on Wednesday night.

Mr. J. Austin, surgeon, deposed that he examined the body of the deceased, but found no marks of violence thereon. He was clearly of opinion that the deceased died from suffocation.

Verdict, "Found drowned."


From the Thanet Advertiser, Friday 19 June, 1936.

Work at an inn. Builders claim.

Judgement for a firm of Margate builders against the former licensee of the "Jolly Farmer Inn," Manston, was awarded by his Honour Judge Clements at the June sitting of Margate County Court.

Plaintiffs, Mrs. Frederick Jones and Son, Builders of Zion Place, Margate, claimed 15 5s. for work done from Mr. Frederick Lodge, former licensee of the "Jolly Farmer," who now holds a licence of the "Watermans Arms," Sheerness.

Plaintiffs made up some paths in the yard of the inn but defendant denied ordering the work, saying he assumed the order was given by the Brewers, Messrs. Cobb and Co.

Mr. Frederick Albert Jones, senior partner in the plaintiff firm said defendant did not ask for an estimate and did not suggest that he should mention the matter to Messrs. Cobb and Co.

Mr. M. Borg, for defendant, said his clients case was that he invited Mr. Jones to submit a price with the intention of asking the brewers to pay the whole or the proportions of it. A representative of Messrs. Cobb and Co. called at the house and shortly afterwards the men began work. Defendant assumed the plaintiff have received orders from the Brewers.

His Honour allowed the claim.


From the Thanet Advertiser, Friday 30 October 1942.

Blitz on Malta. Thanet Man's Graphic Story.

From the sorely-tried island of Malta Lance Corporal Robert Walter, son of Mr. R. G. Water, licensee of the "Jolly Farmer Inn," Manston, has sent home a letter graphically describing one of the heaviest air bombardments of the war during March and April.

Lance Corporal Walter is serving with the Royal Engineers and of the bombardment, resistance to which earned the islands the award of the George Cross, he writes:-

"Until the middle of February raids here were regular but on a small scale. No one took a great deal of notice of them and went about their business as usual, but one evening towards the end of the month large formations of Junkers 88s came over. It was in the twilight of a beautiful evening and the planes were just a silhouette in the sky. I was in the gun-pit, which afforded a grand view for any target for attack and this night it was an Aerodrome.

"In they came, 75 planes in waves of five came over our heads and commence their dive. For the next hour it was difficult to describe what happened as so much took place. Searchlights coming into action heavy and light A.A. guns sending up their shells with deadly accuracy, small guns pumping up tracers at illuminated planes, balls of flame (German aircraft) dropping from the sky. And so the first large-scale air attack on Malta came to an end. From where I was it was a very enjoyable and spectacular show. Little did we know what was in store for us during the next few weeks.

Formidable Barrage.

The next morning they were four large-scale raids, each centred on the aerodromes, and these raids continued for a whole week. Then came the incessant indiscriminate bombing of the city I was stationed in. The first rade materialized on a Thursday afternoon at about 3 p.m. The sirens sounded and we manned our gun. We did not have long to wait before the heavy A.A. guns gave us the direction of the first wave of 25 planes, and as soon as they commence their dive another 25 came in from the opposite direction. We singled out one plane and fired. Things happened so fast and there were so many planes over our heads that we did not know which to fire at next. Now dust clouds were blowing over from the centre of the city, which had taken the brunt of the attack. We could not see or hear anything above the noise of the world's most formidable barrage, which at this moment was at its height; stones were falling, shrapnel coming down like rain and planes dropping out of the sky. It was terrifying, and more planes were coming in. We saw very little of this wave because of the clouds of dust which now enveloped us. However, it was the last of the raid and before the "All Clear" sounded, light and heavy rescue squads were at work. A.R.P. services on the spot, police carrying out their duties, and numerous people offering their assistance in every possible way. They were great.


"Then women and children came out from the shelters to see their homes, furniture, loved ones, churches and personal belongings smashed, torn to pieces like paper by the heaviest bombs. Of course they were crying, and it was a very touching scene. Soon tears were dried and a different expression took their faces. A fierce look of determination, for revenge. The Germans have destroyed a city which meant so much to them and they are determined to get even.

"And so this campaign went on, day after day, bombing indiscriminately, but all to no avail, until the end of April, when things return to normal except the scar the Germans had left on the gallant people's hearts.


Thanet Times, Tuesday 19 December, 1978.

Drinks Thieves Raid Two Village Pubs.

Thieves raided two village pubs on Thursday.

More than 1,000 worth of spirits was stolen from the seller at the "Crown and Sceptre Inn," Acol, during the afternoon.

The thieves broke in through the delivery hatch whilst licensing Mr. Ronald Evans and his wife were upstairs.

During the night, 400 worth of wines and spirits was taken from the "Jolly Farmer," at High Street, Manston.


From the By Katie Boyden, 27 June 2019.

Beacon Bingo manager lost his job but now plans to breathe new life into Jolly Farmer in Manston.

Graeme Corner is the new general manager and he's already started making changes.

Graeme Corner 2019

(Image: Ian Scammell)

A Margate community was torn apart after the iconic Beacon Bingo closed its doors for good - but its former boss hopes to draw locals to his new venture.

Graeme Corner, 48, has worked in Thanet since 2010, when he took on the manager’s position at Beacon, but to the shock of staff and customers the bingo hall closed for good earlier this year.

Now Mr Corner hopes to breathe a new lease of life into another well known isle venue – the Jolly Farmer in Manston.

He said: “It was a shock to everybody when Beacon closed, it was a lively club, busy, well patronised, and it’s a shame to no longer see a bingo hall operating in Margate.

Jolly Farmer 2019

The Jolly Farmer Manston under new management of former Beacon Bingo Manager Graeme Corner.

I’ve always been a licensee, so when the opportunity came up with the new owners of the Jolly to take it to the next level I jumped at it.”

Mr Corner, a married dad-of-two, is now the general manager of the Jolly, and has already started work to draw in new punters.

He said: “The beer garden lends itself to parties and live music.

“I’ve already introduced weekly events, quiz nights, the things a community business needs – we’re not just a pub, it’s the centre of the village.”

He has also introduced a monthly food challenge – June was the Hot Wings Challenge, where brave punters try to eat a plate of one million Scoville chicken wings, and in July customers will be challenged to tackle a 40oz steak with all the trimmings.

Chef and licensee 2019

Chef Peter Walford and Graeme Corner with the man vs food 40oz steak.

The food will be cooked by well known chef Peter Walford, who used to work in London and is bringing his tasty dishes to Thanet.

Mr Corner hopes his new approach to the pub will help to rebuild its community feel, and hopefully even give the old Beacon Bingo regulars somewhere to meet.

He added: “We’ve gone into the premises and we want things that will get people talking – a reason to jump in the car and say they’re going to go to the Jolly Farmer.


From the By Stela Gineva, 17 JUL 2019.

The outrageous 40oz steak sold at Ramsgate's Jolly Farmer - and what happened when I tried it.

Only two people have managed to complete the gut-busting challenge so far.

Mountain of food

The mountain of food I was presented with.

Every month, a Manston pub puts on a different food challenge which customers can choose to take part in.

The Jolly Farmer, in High Street, serves up a selection of spicy chicken wings - but this month, it's the massive 40oz steak.

And it comes with all the trimmings.

Salad, a bowl full of the chunkiest fries, and a portion of coleslaw.

The manager Graeme Corner couldn't reveal next month's challenge, and says it is a surprise.

But, feeling hungry (and brave) I thought it was time I gave it a go, who doesn't like steak, anyway?

If you manage to eat the food within 25 minutes, you win your 24.95 meal and they put up your photo on the wall of fame.

If you don't, you've got to pay up - no wall of shame, thankfully!

Graeme said 34 people have attempted this month's challenge in the last two weeks and so far only two have succeeded. One managed it in 13 minutes!

I'd called ahead on the day (July 17), so not too long after I entered the premises and took my seat, I was served literally a mountain of food.

Prior to this, I ordered a lime and soda and one of the patrons said if I win, he'd buy me a drink.

Free drink too, I thought.

The stakes were too high now.

Now on the plate, there was the massive steak; a 40oz steak is not something I'd ever seen in real life, but let me assure you, it's not a one meal type of dish.

On top of it, there were the deep fried onion rings, then a small bowl of coleslaw on the side.

Buried underneath the steak was more salad.

And, to top it off, a large bowl of fries comes with it all.

Twenty five minutes, I thought. That's a long time.

I asked the manager for his top tips on winning a food challenge. He said to start with the sides. Get them out of the way first and then focus on the meat.

As if, I thought looking at the chips alone. I'm not sure the pictures do them justice!

But I wasn't about to psyche myself out. This was my first food challenge and why not start a winning streak?

And so it began I bit into a chip and thought, yummy, this won't be an issue.

Coleslaw was next, with the odd sip of lime and soda - couldn't fill up on liquids but had to wash it down somehow!

I ate and ate and ate and chipped away at the sides, but five minutes in when Graeme came to take a snap of my stuffed face, I had barely made a dent in it all.

Slow and steady doesn't win the race when you're up against the clock!

I'm just glad my parents weren't there because I definitely wasn't chewing like a lady. Oops.

Anyway, as much as I wanted to stick to my strategy, I was getting bored of the chips and my medium rare steak looked too juicy to resist.

It was liberating in a way, this food challenge. I could eat mountains of food like a total slob (within reason) and no one would judge me. Much.

In fact, every time I turned towards the bar, the patrons gave me an encouraging thumbs up.

The lovely waitress wished me luck every time she passed by as well.

Sooner than later, Graeme yelled 'half-time' from the bar and I could not believe it! Was he joking? Half time? I wasn't even a fifth of the way through.

I rewarded myself with more meat, because the sides are delightful - but please, that steak was glorious.

Anyway, it wasn't until the 20 minute mark that I realised I was full and every bite was a struggle. But no, I wasn't going to stop eating. Winners never quit and quitters never win.

"Go on, you can do it!," Graeme said.

I mean, it was nice and all but I wasn't even half way through at this point.

Now, it was just about how much I'd fail, I decided.

I kept going, feeling a bit lethargic at this point. They were the longest five minutes of my life.

13 minutes, it took someone to eat this. 13 minutes. How on Earth.

"3...2...1....Aaand beaten by the clock," Graeme said.

I wanted to collapse over my plate as the food coma started settling in almost instanteneously.

To my credit, I'd eaten the massive onion rings, all of the coleslaw, and most of the chips. And though you can't tell from the photo, I had a good chunk of that steak too.

A very lucky dog had the rest, so no steak was wasted during this food challenge.

I waddled over to the front and paid for my steak, swallowing my shame.

I felt about 10 pounds heavier. But look, I was beaten by the clock. I did not quit. I did not set that fork down.

Anyway, the challenge is on for all of July. So who knows, I could go in for round two at some point.


During the Covid 19 crisis of 2020, this pub was able to offer a take away service in June, possibly earlier.



FOX Mr to July/1779

FOX Mrs (widow) July/1779

HEWETT George 1851+ (also journeyman carpenter age 62 in 1851Census)

HEWETT Sarah 1861-Jan/65 (widow age 54 in 1861Census) Thanet Advertiser

SOLLY Richard Jan/1865-74+ Thanet AdvertiserPost Office Directory 1874

EASTLAND/CROSSLAND William 1841-47+ (age 60 in 1841Census)

SOLLY Richard 1867-72+ (age 42 in 1871Census)

MIRAMS George 1881+ (age 44 in 1881Census)

WELLARD Stephen 1890-97+

AMBROSE Charles A 1901+ (age 35 in 1901Census)

PARTRIDGE Walter Samuel 1903+ Kelly's 1903

LODGE Thomas 1907-22+ (age 53 in 1911Census)

LODGE Frederick 1929-36 Next pub licensee had

WALTER Reginald G 1938-42+

TAYLOR V E 1951-55+

MESSENGER George 1957+

CORNER Graeme 2019+


Post Office Directory 1874From the Post Office Directory 1874

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903


Thanet AdvertiserThanet Advertiser


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