Page Updated:- Tuesday, 24 January, 2023.


Earliest 1777-


Closed 2011

Plough Lane/Roman Road

Upper Harbledown

Plough 1980

Above photo, 1980, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.


Plough at Upper Harbledown by Nigel Chadwick (Creative Commons License)

Plough bar

Above photo showing the bar area. 2011.

Plough 2012

Above photo, circa 2012, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Plough 1d token 1870s

Above 1d token circa 1870, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Plough sign 1986Plough sign 2003

Above sign left, July 1986, sign right 2003.

With thanks from Roger Pester

Plough cocktail stick 1960sPlough cocktail stick 1960s

Above photos showing the top half of a cocktail stick from the 1960s, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Former Plough 2016

Above photo 2016, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Former Plough 2016

Above photo 2016, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Plough Beer-mat 1982

Above beer-mat 1982, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Plough Beer-mat 1982

Above beer-mat 1982, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.


Kentish Gazette. Saturday 27 September 1777.

Wanted immediately. To pair of Sawyers.

Who understand cutting ship planx.

They have a Winter's Work by inquiring of George ???ols, at the "Plow," Harbledown, near Canterbury.


From the Kentish Weekly Post or Canterbury Journal 7 September 1819.


Free Public Houses and other estates,

To be Sold By Auction, By Messrs. White, (Without Reserve).

Pursuant to certain orders of the Vice Chancellor of Great Britain, and before the Major part of the Commissioners named and authorised in and by a Commission of bankrupt awarded and issued against Matthew William Sankey, of the City of Canterbury, brewer, dealer and chapman, at the Guildhall, of the said city of Canterbury, on Wednesday next, the 22nd day of September next, at eleven o'clock in the forenoon, (subject to such conditions of sale as shall be then and there produced.)
The following very Valuable Freehold Estates, in Lots.

Valuable Brewery free public houses and other Estates to be sold by auction by Mrs white without reserve.

Lot 17. A Messuage called the "Plough," with the Stable, yard, garden, and appurtenances, situate in Harbledown, in the said County, and now in the occupation of William Pilcher.


Kentish Gazette 14 April 1801.

Early yesterday morning some villains broke into the cellar of the "Plough" public-house, at Harbledown, and stole thereout a quantity of spirituous liquors to the value of 12.


Kent Gazette, 15 January 1839.


Dec. 13, at Smith's Hospital, Longport, Canterbury. Mr. Pitcher, at an advanced age, formerly landlord of the "Plough" public-house, Harbledown.


Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, Saturday 16 January 1869.

Harbledown. Robbery From The Person On A Highway.

At the county magistrates' office, on Tuesday, before P. Martin, Esq., Thomas Baker, a rag and bone collector, of Canterbury, was charged with having stolen about 30s. From the person of William Castle, at Harbledown, on the previous evening.

It appears that the prosecutor and prisoner met at the "Plough" public house, and the prosecutor having bought a rabbit there, the prisoner saw that he possessed the quantity of silver. He followed him towards Canterbury, overtook him, and we began hustling him about, under the pretence of assisting him along the road. Presently the prisoner left, and then the prosecutor missed his money. He was traced to Canterbury by P.C. Page, K.C.C., and found at a public house in Military Road.

On charging him with the theft, he denied it, and said he had no money about him.

The Constable proceeded to search in, which, by overcoming much resistance, he succeeded in doing, and found upon him 27s.4 1/2d., principally in half crowns - the same kind of money that the prosecutor lost.

Prisoner was remanded till Saturday.


From the Whitstable Times, 11 October, 1902.


James Baker was charged with refusing to quit the “Plough Inn,” Harbledown, on the 22nd September, when requested to do so by the landlord, Thomas Norris.

Prisoner pleaded guilty.

There was another charge against prisoner, that of being drunk at Summer Hill on the same date. He pleaded guilty to this charge also.

P.C. G. Neame stated the facts of the case.

The Bench fined defendant 1 and 9s. 6d. costs, or fourteen days' hard labour in the first case, and 10s. and 8s. costs or seven days in the second.

Prisoner was allowed a week in which to find the money.


Dover Express 16th August 1946.


Dennis Ellender (20) of 5 Station Road, Adisham, was seriously injured on Saturday night in a head-on collision near the “Plough Inn”, Upper Harbledown, near Canterbury, between his motor cycle and a motor van driven by Mrs. M. A. Gurr of 19 Preston Road, Faversham. The force of the impact catapulted Mr. Ellender from his machine through the windscreen of the van. He was taken by ambulance to the Kent and Canterbury Hospital with multiple head injuries and a fractured knee-cap. He is reported to be making favourable progress.


Situated in Upper Harbledown, the pub closed in 2011 and has been converted into flats.

Following information kindly supplied by Rory Kehoe:- The lady named on the beer-mat, Andree Collins, was the de facto manager of the Plough but the actual tenant was her son, who lived in Cardiff and ran a couple of nightclubs there. In around 1982, Andree had a major Pools win and if memory serves, scooped c.300,000 (around 2 million in 2021 value) Wealth may have brought happiness but it also made Andree a target for criminals and about a year after her win, she was robbed. Apart from being badly shaken up, Andree was robbed of some of her jewellery. More trouble was to follow and in around 1984, the Plough was firebombed. Nobody was badly hurt and the Fire Brigade was able to save the Plough but in doing so, had to smash the pub's windows, which included the last remaining example of one, advertising "Ash's Canterbury Ales."

In later years, the Plough became a Thai restaurant and bar, a licensed B&B and various forms of pub, none of which really caught the drinking public's imagination. The subsequent combination of low turnover and excessive PubCo rent did the rest, hence the Plough's failure, closure and conversion to flats. Yet another dry village.



???OLS George 1777+

PILCHER William 1819+

WELLARD James 1832+ Pigot's Directory 1832-34

DUNKIN William 1838-51+ (age 48 in 1851Census) Stapletons Guide

BISHOP Henry 1855-58+ Post Office Directory 1855Melville's 1858

SAYER Thomas 1861-62+ (age 51 in 1861Census) Post Office Directory 1862

FOX William 1871+ (age 50 in 1871Census)

HEARN Henry James 1881-91+ (age 56 in 1891Census) Post Office Directory 1882

NORRIS Thomas 1901-11+ (age 45 in 1911Census) Whitstable TimesKelly's 1903

MILLER Maurice C 1938+ Post Office Directory 1938

???? Sylvia & Gordon 1960s

COLLINS Andree 1982+


Pigot's Directory 1832-34From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34

Post Office Directory 1855From the Post Office Directory 1855

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1862From the Post Office Directory 1862

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903

Post Office Directory 1938From the Post Office Directory 1938

Whitstable TimesWhitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald



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