120 London Road, Temple Ewell
Above postcard kindly sent by Roger Reeve, showing horses outside the
Railway Bell, postcard post marked 03 June 1936.
Above postcard, again kindly sent by Roger Reeve and showing the garden
of the Railway Bell, post marked 28 June 1918.
Above photo by kind permission Dover Library ILL/63. Please note, it was
then referred to as the "Railway Hotel, date unknown.
HIGH NOTE: Catherine Woodward and Francis Gorham outside The Railway Bell Ref: pd 91977
Dover Mercury 2/May/2002
Old pub's owners ring the changes
TWO centuries of hospitality and a return to an earlier name were
celebrated at The Railway Bell pub, Kearsney, on Tuesday by owners
Francis Gorham and Catherine Woodward, and their customers.
Francis explained: ''A lot of regulars still called the pub by its old
name, even though it had been The Pickwick since May 1983, when it had
been bought by Whitbread as part of its Wayside Inn chain.
has got to be couple of hundred years old, and an old coaching inn, and
it's had a number of names in that time.
"With the coming of the railway, tradition has it that there was a bell
at the pub which would be rung 10 minutes before the train was due at
the station across the road and that's how it first came by the name of
The Railway Bell."
Francis and Catherine already own the Lydden Bell and they plan to make
The Railway Bell chime with people's tastes in pubs today.
This will mean no loud music, no swearing and a new menu with good food,
freshly prepared throughout the day.
From the Dover Mercury, 2 May, 2002.
THE Railway Bell on London Road, has returned to its original name
after being known as Pickwicks since 1983.
Now boasting an all day food menu, the popular pub held its official
re-launch last Tuesday when it staged an 80s night to raise money for
the Temple Ewell Players.
For more information please call the Railway Bell on 01304 822016.
Landlady and landlord, Catherine Woodward and Francis Gorham are
pictured with manageress Deborah Whitehouse.
From the Dover Express, 23 October 2003.
DAREDEVIL pub patrons have managed to raise over £2,000 for charity
by bungee jumping in the dark. The brave jumpers, regulars of the
Railway Bell pub in London Road, took the 200 foot plunge to raise money
for the Kent Air Ambulance on October 10. The crane and launch basket
were set up in the pub's car park, with participants falling towards
tarmac at an alarming speed before being bounced back up by the bungee
As well as the sponsored jumpers taking part, bungee enthusiasts
from around the county were also attracted to the event, making the
night a busy one for all involved. Pub manager Deborah Whitehouse
(right, holding Tee-shirt) was
thrilled with the event's success.
Photo above and below left by Paul Skelton 10 November 2007
Sign on the right by Paul Skelton, taken 1 December 2013.
Built at the time of the laying of the railway track through River
(1861ish), Kearsney and Temple Ewell to London from Dover and known unofficially by
locals as the "Kearsney Bell" due to a "Lydden Bell" being a few miles up
the road at Lydden.
From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 14 July, 1871. Price 1d.
ASSAULTING A CONSTABLE
John Cornish, 20 years of age, a soldier in the 2nd Battalion Rifle
brigade, quartered at Dover, was charged by K.C.C. Edward King with
being drunk and disorderly at the “Railway Bell,” River, and assaulting
him while in the execution of his duty.
It appeared that the prisoner got in behind the bar of the public-house
and becoming belligerent stripped himself to his skin, and declared
himself ready to fight all corners. The police were called in, and in
getting him out of the house King was assaulted.
The Magistrates sent him to prison for seven days, owing to the good
character given him by the sergeant of the company.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday,
26 March, 1875.
SUICIDE AT EWELL
A coroner's inquest was held on Tuesday afternoon at the "Railway
Bell Inn," Ewell, before T. Delasaux, Esq., Coroner for the County, on
the body of Thomas Claringbould, carpenter, aged 47 years, who shot
himself about five o'clock on the previous morning. Deceased formerly
resided at Dover, where he was well known, but for several years past he
has lived in one of the detached villa, residences at Ewell, occupied by
Mr. Shuttle. The following were sworn on the jury:- Mr. R. Tritton, Mr.
T. Shepherd, Mr. G. Down, Mr. W. Ayers, Mr. W. Wraight, Mr. G. Simpson,
Mr. R. T. Forward, Mr. J. W. Bacon, Mr. E. Maxted, Mr. J. Pierce, Mr. G.
Gammon, and Mr. C. Langley. The latter gentleman having been chosen
foreman, the jury proceeded to view the body, which was lying, saturated
with blood, on the floor beside the bed where the rash act was
committed. From the position of the wound it is supposed the deceased
must have leaned on the muzzle of the gun and fired it by means of a
brace attached to the trigger. On the return of the jury room the
following evidence was adduced:-
Louise Nye: I belong to River, and am in the service of Mr. Shuttle,
who is a widow. The deceased lived at Mrs. Shuttle's, who has brought
him up as a lad. I have lived with Mrs. Shuttle twelve months. Deceased
has lived in the house all the time I have been in Mrs. Shuttle's
service. Yesterday morning about five o'clock I heard the report of a
gun, apparently from the bedroom of the deceased. I immediately went
there and saw the deceased lying on the floor quite dead. During the
whole time I have been with Mrs. Shuttle deceased has appeared low and
melancholy, but from what cause I do not know. I last saw him alive at
ten o'clock on Sunday night, just before I went to bed.
By a Juror: There appeared no difference in him on Sunday night than
on any other night.
Thomas Newman: I live at Kearsney, and am agent to Mr. Churchward.
Yesterday morning at a quarter past five, I heard a loud knocking at my
front door. I ran down directly and there saw the last witness, Louisa
Wye. In consequence of what she said I directly went to the house of Mr.
Shuttle, and on going up the stairs to the bedroom, there saw deceased
lying on the floor in the same position as the jury have just viewed the
body. He was quite dead. I saw the gun now produced on the floor about a
yard from the body, and it had been recently discharged. I have known
deceased for upwards of twenty years. During the last week he has
appeared strange in his conduct, but from what cause I do not know. I am
quite satisfied the gun was discharged by the act of the deceased.
Thomas Ray, K.C.C., stationed at Ewell: I was sent for yesterday
morning to the house of Mrs. Shuttle, and there saw the body of the
deceased. On searching his person I found the following articles; a
purse containing 16s. 6d., four dog and gun licences, two knives, three
gun caps, and several other articles.
Francis Ezekial Barton, of Dover, surgeon: I was sent for yesterday
morning early to attend the deceased, whom I found on the floor, quite
dead. I examined the body and found a gun shot wound on the front of his
chest, at the right side of his heart, which, I believe, was caused by
gunpowder and a discharge of leaded shot, which I should imagine
produced instantaneous death. From the nature and position of the wound
I have no hesitation in saying the same was caused by his own hand.
The Coroner very briefly summed up the evidence and the Jury returned
a verdict that "Deceased shot himself when in a state of mental
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 6 May, 1881. 1d.
REFUSING TO LEAVE LICENSED PREMISES
George Bradford, a labourer looking man, was charged with being drunk
and disorderly and refusing to leave the premises of the “Railway Bell”
Mrs. Downs, wife of the landlord of the “Railway Bell,” Ewell, said: On
Thursday week, the 21st of April, at ten minutes to four, the defendant
came into my house drunk, and asked to be served with two of rum, which
I refused to serve him, and he then called me bad names, and used very
obscene language, so I ordered him out of the house, but he refused to
go. I sent for my husband, and as soon as he came the prisoner ran out
of the house.
Alfred Davis residing at Ewell, said: I was in the “Railway Bell” on
Thursday week, and saw the prisoner there, drunk. He called for two of
rum, but the landlady refused to serve him, and he then called for a
bottle of ginger beer, which was supplied him, but not paying for it the
landlady told him of it, and he said he would see her b____d first, and
then would not pay for it. He used very bad language. When Mr. Downs
came the prisoner left the house.
The prisoner said the row was about an allowance he had left for a man,
and which had not been supplied.
The Bench fined him 10s. and 14s. 2d. costs, which was paid.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 14 April, 1882. 1d.
BY WHAT AUTHORITY?
On behalf of the landlord of the “Railway Bell,” Kearsney, Mr. Carder,
solicitor, applied for permission for the public-house to be open half
an hour later every evening all the year round for the accommodation of
the people who came to meet the late train that arrives at ten minutes
past ten, which is ten minutes after the house is closed by law,
enlarging on the inconvenience caused by the closing of the house at
that hour, Mr. Carder put in a numerously signed memorial, playing for
the half hour’s extension to be granted.
The Clerk asked Mr. Carder to point out the section under which the
Magistrates had the power to grant this request.
Mr Carder said he realised on the general discretion which was vested in
the Magistrates in the administration of the Act.
The Chairman asked Mr. Carden if he could quote any precedent at any
other railway station.
Mr. Carden said he was not prepared with one.
Mr. Humphries said that if time were granted in this instance, it might
be claimed by every public-house that was near a railway station.
The Chairman said they must, if they gave a decision, then give a
refusal, but if Mr. Carder preferred it they would adjourn the matter
for a month, that he might have time to search for some authority or a
The case was adjourned.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 19 May, 1882. 1d.
Mr. W. Mowll applied on behalf of the landlord of the “Railway Bell,” at
Ewell, for an extension of half-an-hour at night, the house closing at
present at ten o’clock. He stated that an application had been made by
the landlord at the last Sessions, but the decision had been reserved
till that day. The extension was required more especially for
Saturday’s, when there is a down train which arrives at Ewell at 10.15,
bringing persons of that village from Canterbury Market, and the
landlord was unable to serve them with refreshments. He was also obliged
to turn their horse and carts, which are left there, out into the front
at ten o’clock to await the arrival of the owners by the train, and
frequently they were left all that time in the rain. He had a memorial
with about twenty signatures of persons living in that locality to
support the application. If the Bench could not see their way clear to
granting the application for each night he would be satisfied with
After a short discussion the bench decided to refuse to grant the
Mr. Mowll said that there was another matter that had arisen out of
this application at the last Court, it had come to the landlord’s
knowledge that Captain Ruxton, of the County Police, had received a
letter which was the grossest possible slander on this house, and in
which it was stated that this house is the resort of women of immoral
character, and was in fact a bad place, the landlord and landlady being
accused of drunkenness, but on sending the letter to the captain he had
refused to give the name of the information, as it had been the
landlord’s intention to proceed against the person, as under the
circumstances it was plainly proved to be untrue. Superintendent Maxted
had visited all the houses in the district with reference to the matter,
and had been told by all that such was not the case. He (Mr. Mowll)
would ask the Bench for the information as it was a libel.
The Magistrates Clerk said he did not believe Captain Ruxton would take
any notice of any order from the Bench, but he might if the application
were granted at the Board of General Sessions, which was held every
Mr. Mowll said that Superintendent Maxted, who had informed the landlord
of the complaint, had made an exhaustive enquiry into the matter, but
found that the charges were without foundation. This case arose out of a
remark made by the Superintendent at the last application.
The Magistrate’s Clerk said that the Superintendent had merely said that
he had received complaints to the house. He had since found out that
they were not true.
The Bench said that they could do nothing in the matter except advise
the applicant to go to the Board of General Sessions, but with regard to
the application of extension of time, they had not been influenced by
any such report of complaint as made, but they did not know of any
statute by which they could grant the application.
From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 3 November, 1882. Price 1d.
FOUND DROWNED AT RIVER
Mr. T. T. Delasaux, County Coroner, held an inquest at the “Railway
Bell,” Kearsney, near Ewell, on Saturday morning last, respecting the
death of a Dover tradesman named Pascall, whose body had been found in
the Dour near Mr. Mannering’s mill at River. Edward Pascall, son of the
deceased, identified the body, and said that his father was 50 years of
age, and a cabinet maker, living in Dover. The deceased had left home on
the Thursday morning, and had not returned. James Martin, a cowman in
the employ of Mr. Jennings, at River, gave evidence with reference to
finding the body. He stated that at about half-past seven o’clock on
Friday morning he was near Mr. Mannering’s mill when he saw something in
the river, which he took to be a coat, but on pulling it ashore found
that it was the body of the deceased. With assistance he conveyed it to
a shed near, belonging to Mr. F. Phipps.
It appeared that the deceased was missing on Thursday, and as it was
known that he had gone to River, Instructing Constable Ross was directed
to make enquiries, and he traced him from various public-houses, and one
would be led to suppose that the deceased had fallen in while the worse
The Jury returned an open verdict of “Found Drowned.”
From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 17 March, 1882. Price 1d.
The landlord of the “Railway Bell,” Ewell, asked for permission to keep
his house open till half-past ten o’clock at night, as the down train
arrived at ten minutes past ten o’clock, and he was frequently asked for
drink from travellers by the train.
The bench said they could not grant the application, but advised the
applicant to attend the next Court, and in the meantime the Magistrates
would talk the matter over.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 26 April, 1889. Price 1d.
GREAT ROW AT RIVER
There was a great disturbance at the “Railway Bell,” River, on Easter
Monday, arising out of the refusal of the landlady to supply some
persons who went out from Dover, with as much beer as they wanted. A
Constable was called in to turn them out, and there was a free fight
outside the house, which lasted about half an hour. The parties were
brought before the Magistrates, Dr. Astley and Mr. G. E. Toomer, at
Dover, on Tuesday, charged with the assault.
Frederick Stamp, a shoemaker, living at 36, Tower Hamlets Road, and
Martha Stamp, his wife, Alfred Hatton, in the employ of the Dover Steam
Laundry Company, and Sarah Hatton, his wife, were charged with being
disorderly on licensed premises and refusing to quit, and assaulting
Police-constable Crapps while in the execution of his duty.
Mr. Martyn Mowll appeared for the prisoner Hatton and his wife.
Jane Down said: I keep the “Railway bell,” River with my husband George
Down. The prisoners came into my house all together last evening at a
quarter to six o’clock. They called for drink, and they were served with
some – four quarts they had altogether. They were all right and quiet
when they came in. They began to make a noise after they had been in the
house about half an hour, and I told them to go out. They did not go and
prisoner Hatton came out of the tap room and wanted another quart. I
refused him as they were making such a noise. The other man Stamp then
came into the front of the bar from the tap room and asked for more
beer. I refused him also, and they all came out fo the room and swore at
me, and created a noise. My husband was in the garden and I sent for
him. The two women used filthy language towards me. I told them again to
leave the bar, and they would not go, so I sent for a Constable, and
Police-constable Crapps came. They were in the bar when he came, and I
asked them to leave in the Constable’s presence. The prisoner Hatton
said he was not going out for any Policeman, and Stamp and he said he
had been a Policeman and was not going. The Constable put Hatton out of
the door. The others followed them out. Mrs. Hatton struck the Constable
first, and they then all turned on him and struck him. They knocked him
down. The two men were striking him and knocking him down. They were
fighting outside for about half-an-hour, and the Constable’s face and
clothes were covered with blood. He drew his staff and struck both of
the men. A young man – a Marine, - who was passing, went and assisted
the Constable. The Constable took all of them into custody with the
exception of the man Hatton, who ran away.
By Mr. Mowll: Hatton came into my house with the others. They were in
the house about an hour and a quarter before the Constable came. The
prisoners were sober when they came in, as far as I could see, and they
were not drunk when they left. No filthy language was used before I
refused to serve them with more beer. I refused to serve them because
they were making a noise. The prisoner Hatton and his wife were dancing
and I asked them to stop, but they did not do so. When they got outside
the fight commenced, and it was not until a quarter of an hour
afterwards that the Constable drew his staff. My husband could not
assist as he was suffering from rheumatism. The other people did not
assist, but only looked on. The Constable struck both the men. When the
Constable fell, the men also fall down. He was knocked down three times.
The Policeman fell underneath the first time. He kept his staff. There
were a number of ladies and gentlemen in the house.
By Stamp: I saw the Policeman knocked you down first, and when he
knocked you down you were fighting with him.
William Walter Crapps, whose face appeared to be much bruised, said: I
am a Police-constable, and was on duty last evening about seven o’clock.
I was at home, and was sent for to go to the “Railway Bell.” When I got
there I found all four prisoners in the house. The two women in
particular were using filthy language to Mr. and Mrs. Down. They were
all making a noise. Mrs. Down asked them to leave, and the two men said
they should not go. I then asked them to leave and also the woman, but
they refused. I asked Mrs. Down if they were to leave, and she said
“Yes.” Stamp said he would not be put out by any man. At the same time
Hatton struck me in the chest and face. I caught hold of him by the
shoulders and ran him out of the door. When near the doorway Mrs. Hatton
had got the other woman’s baby in her arms and struck me twice in the
ear with her right hand. I swung my hand round to keep her off and she
fell down with the baby. With that they all set upon me. Mrs. Hatton
got, up left the baby on the ground, and came and struck me. They all
kept striking me until the blood got into my eyes that I could scarcely
see at times. In the struggle the two prisoners and myself went down
three times. They struck me while I was on the ground. I then drew my
staff in self-defence when I got up. I struck at Hatton, and believe I
struck him on the head. Someone said, “Give it to the b______.” And
Stamp was striking me. I struck him two or three times with my staff,
and Hatton ran away. A soldier came to my assistance. I took all the
prisoners into custody except Hatton. Hatton surrendered himself. My
coat is covered with blood. They struck me with their fists.
By Mr. Mowll: The woman Hatton had struck me twice before I pushed her
down. It might have been pushing the woman down that caused the
In answer to Mrs. Stamp, witness said he did not drink any beer which
she said she offered him.
Henry Harlow, belonging to Nonington, said: I am a Marine and stationed
at the Chatham Division. I was out on leave, and was going past the
“Railway Bell” last night about seven o’clock. I saw the Constable there
– he was just going inside the door. I heard some high words, so I stood
and watched. I saw the Constable push the prisoner Hatton out of the
house. Hatton’s wife struck the Constable twice in the face, and the
Constable pushed her away, she fell down with the baby in her arms. The
men and women struck the Constable, and then Mrs. Hatton got up and also
struck the Constable, whose face was covered with blood. The Constable
fell with the men two or three times. I saw him draw his staff and
strike the men. In my opinion it was necessary for him to draw his
staff. There were nine or ten civilians near, but none went to his
assistance. Seeing he was getting the worst of it, I went and asked him
if he wanted any help. He said “Yes,” and I then assisted him in taking
them to the Police station. The man Hatton ran away.
The Chairman commended the witness for assisting the Constable.
Mr. Edward Fry said he had known Hatton for about two years, and knew
him to be an honest and sober man.
The Bench fined Hatton 14s 7½d., his wife 18s. 5½d; Stamp, 16s. 11½d.,
and his wife 18s. 5½d, including costs.
Fourteen days were allowed to Stamp and his wife for payment.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 7 February, 1890.
ENFORCING THE MUZZLING ORDER
On Saturday, before W. L. Lowndes and E. F. Astley, Esqrs., at Dover,
Mr. Richard Harvey Hammond, of River, was summoned for having on the
27th January allowed his dog to be in the public highway at River
unmuzzled, in contravention of the Muzzling Order.
The defendant admitted the fact.
Police-constable Crapps, stationed at River, said: On the 27th January,
he saw the defendant’s dog in the road near the “Railway Bell Inn,”
River, unmuzzled. He had also seen it several times before in the public
road without a muzzle, and had called at the defendant’s house, and left
word about the dog being unmuzzled.
Mr. Hammond said he had complied with the requirements of the order, and
obtained a muzzle for the dog. He gave instructions to the lad always to
muzzle the dog when it was let out. The dog however, on the day in
question had run out without the muzzle.
The Bench imposed a fine of 1s. and 8s. costs.
The money was paid.
Henry Addaye, residing at Alkham, was summoned for a similar offence, on
Defendant pleaded not guilty.
Instructing-constable Ross, stationed at Alkham, proved the charge, and
said he met the defendant on the 22nd January at South Alkham. Defendant
had a terrier dog with him not muzzled, and witness told him that he had
previously cautioned him he should report the case.
The Magistrates fined the defendant 10s. including costs; and the money
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 26 January, 1900.
DEVELOPMENT OF KEARSNEY
KEARSNEY, Ewell, and River, three linked villages which are now almost
joining hands with Dover, are becoming the fashionable suburb of this
ancient Borough. As far back as 1821, Mr. J. M. Fector, a Dover banker,
selected this locality as a residence, and built for himself the mansion
known as Kearsney Abbey, which he occupied, and which has since been the
residence successively of Mr. Churchward, the Marquis of Ely, and now of
C. W. Curtis, Esq., J.P. At the time when the Abbey was built there were
only two other mansions of any note in the locality, namely, Old Park,
the new residence of Mr. J. Every, and Archer’s Court, the domain of Mr.
G. Stringer. Since then there has been a wonderful development, mad both
by extensions and new buildings. Along Crabble Hill villas and bungalows
have sprung up, forming quite a suburb of itself. A little further away
at the lower corner of Whitfield Hill, Woodlands, since it has become
the residence of Sir William Crundall, has been greatly improved and
surrounded by extensive grounds, in which thousands of trees have been
planted. A little to the South-West on the other side of the main
Canterbury Road Mr. Eugene Carder has built for himself a very fine
country house. About Kearsney Station a considerable building estate has
been opened, and several handsome villas have already appeared. In Ewell
itself no great amount of modern buildings has been done, but the Church
in recent years has been restored, and the schools built.
The greatest building movement at Kearsney is now about to commence, Mr.
Alfred Leney having decided to erect on his newly acquired estate at
Kearsney Nest a new residence, which for size and importance will put
the Abbey in the shade. It will be built of Hastings stone and we hear
that the contract price of the work is £10,000. Tenders for building
were invited, the highest, we hear being £13,000, and the one accepted,
Mr. Paramour’s, being the sum above mentioned. This house will
necessarily occupy a considerable time in building, for before one stone
can be laid on another several thousand tons of earth will have to be
removed to prepare the foundations. The residence will have a most
charming outlook on the sylvan scene, where the southern tributary of
the Dour runs along its front from Bushy Ruff.
To add to this activity in this locality we hear that something like a
thousand pounds is to be spent on improving the “Railway Bell Hotel”
near Kearsney Station, which has recently changed hands. Passing into
the lower part of the River the trail of the builder will be found
there, and growing up close by is the new building estate within the
Borough of Dover, which is being developed around the Athletic Ground.
The next thing will be an extension of the tram line to accommodate this
rising and fashionable suburb of Dover.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 16 February, 1900.
ANOTHER FIRST OFFENCE
John Cameron O’Hara was summoned by Inspector Hampshire, of the Royal
Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, for cruelly working a
mare on January 13th at River, while it was in an unfit state, suffering
from sores on the shoulders.
P.C. Mackie said that on January 30th he saw defendant driving a horse
attached to a cart loaded with bricks at River near the “Railway Bell.”
He saw the horse had something the matter with it, and he found two
sores on the shoulder and one on the withers.
Prisoner said that the horse had been in the stable for four days, and
that the sores had apparently healed, but the rough road from the
Brickfield at St. Radigund’s to River had broken them.
George Lewis, jun., was summoned for causing the horse to be worked.
Defendant pleaded guilty.
The Inspector said that he saw Mr. Lewis the next day and he then said
that the horse would not be sent out again. He had not had to speak to
Mr. Lewis said the former carter in charge of the horse ill treated it,
and he discharged him for this on January 26th, and from that time till
January 31st it was kept in the stable. On the day in question he
telephoned to the Brickfield to take some bricks to River and the horse
was sent without his seeing it.
Inspector Hampshire: You said you saw the horse when it left.
Defendant said that he saw it when it came back.
He was continuing his statement when the Inspector interposed with the
remark that he had pleaded guilty.
Mr. Bradley: Inspector Hampshire you must allow this man to make a
statement as well as yourself!
The Bench eventually imposed a penalty of 10/6 on O’Hara, and 18/6 on
Lewis, and gave the latter the information that he was responsible for
his servants’ acts.
Mr. Lewis said every carter was supposed to look after his horse.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 18 May, 1900.
KEARSNEY RAILWAY BELL
Mr. Arthur Harby attended and submitted for formal approval plans of
works being carried out by Messrs. A. Leney and Co. at the “Railway
Bell,” Kearsney. It was a matter of courtesy that these plans should be
submitted to the Magistrates, but by an inadvertency they had not been
placed before the bench earlier. The works were now in progress, and
they comprised the alterations to a country house to meet more modern
From the Deal, Walmer & Sandwich
2 June, 1900. 1d.
FATAL RESULT OF A BICYCLE ACCIDENT.
The East Kent Coroner (Mr. R. M. Mercer) held an inquest at the
"Railway bell," Kearsney, on Tuesday, touching the death of Harold
It appears that a man named George Hogbin was driving a water cart
beside the tram shed on the Barton Road, Buckland, on the 11th may, when
the deceased, who was a solicitor's clerk, came along riding a bicycle. He came up from behind the water card, and got between the cart and a
milk van which was standing by the roadside. To avoid the cart's horse
the deceased turned his bicycle sharp round and went into the right hand
shaft of the van. He fell off his bicycle, but got up and walked along,
pushing his machine. When asked if he was hurt the deceased said he
thought he had only got a good shaking. Dr. John Rubel was called to
attend the deceased on the 11th may, and found him suffering from shock. He ordered him to bed until the 18th. He was then better and got up, and
on the 19th he went for a long walk without the doctor's knowledge. He
was suffering from injury to the liver, caused by the collision. Death
took place on the 28th, and was due to the accident, heppolytis, and
The jury returned a verdict accordingly.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 30 November, 1900. Price 1d.
BURIED ALIVE AT RIVER
An inquest was held by Mr. R. M. Mercer, the east Kent Coroner, at the
“Railway Hotel,” Kearsney, on Wednesday evening, on the body of Walter
James Marley, a labourer, who was killed by a fall of earth, in a stone
pit, which buried him. The Jury consisted of Messrs. B. Burbridge
(foreman) , W. Clark, J. Robson, F. Peters, W. Smith, W. Lefevre, T.
Hymers, W. Simpson, E. Dann, H. Hopper, S. Smith, H. Stanley, and F.
Deceased’s father said deceased’s age was 22 years.
William Shapely said that he was at work on the afternoon of Tuesday
with deceased in a stone hole, at Mr. Leney’s orchard. Witness had said
the deceased that they would fill one more barrow that day, before
knocking off to sift the stones. Deceased was in the hole, which was 14
or 15 feet deep, getting out flints, and witness went off with a
barrow-load and shot it 40 yards away. As he returned he saw the earth
from the top of the hole sliding down. Witness shouted to deceased who
made a rush. But was caught by the earth and witness, unable to reach
him, ran for a hand line. The earth came gradually at first, but then
came down with a rush. When witness got back with the line deceased was
covered completely. All the men then set-to and dug deceased out in a
very short time. Witness thought the earth was safe. They had often
tried to bar it down when it was like that, but found it very difficult
to dislodge. They had not undermined the side which fell, that was dug
as straight as the wall of a room. Witness was 24 years of age, and had
worked for Mr. Clark, at Chilton, at similar work. They had worked at
getting the top off nearly all day on Monday. Witness was paid
piece-work, 1½d. per yard top soil, 1s. per yard stone, 9d. per yard
breaking, and 1s. per yard gravel. Witness was quite sure they had not
undermined the side which fell, they had, however, undermined 1¼ feet
the other side.
William Lane, 9, River Street, River, said he worked at the same work in
another hole, and helped to dig out deceased. He was found doubled up as
though sitting, but with his head down. They were ten minutes digging
him out, and the doctor came three or four minutes afterwards.
The Coroner asked a number of questions as to the method of payment.
Witness said if they worked all day moving top soil they would only earn
about 1s. each, but it would give them two days work getting stones out
at 1s. 9d. a yard. In a good week they could earn £2 5s. 5d. between
The Coroner: That is very fair.
Witness further said he was 19, and had never worked at this before.
Mr. A. Long said he was summoned at 2.20 and arrived at 2.30 at the
scene of the accident. Deceased had been dug out but was dead. There
were two severe injuries to his head, and from the appearance of one on
the forehead that might have caused death, and if it did not do so at
once deceased would have been rendered unconscious before being
suffocated by the earth.
The Coroner, in summing up, said that had elicited from his questions as
to the pay, that the men evidently regarded getting stones out as more
profitable work than getting the top soil away, and had dug the hole one
side perpendicular and the other side undermined. There seemed to be no
negligence on the part of anyone, except the men in not removing
sufficient top soil.
The Jury returned a verdict of accidental death.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 6 January, 1905. Price 1d.
SAD DEATH AT RIVER
On Saturday evening, an inquest was held at the “Railway Bell,” at
Kearsney, by the Borough Coroner, Sydenham Payn, Esq., on the body of
Mary Ann Harbour, who for many years has been a resident of the parish.
On the previous day the neighbours noticed that no one was about at 2,
Avenue Terrace, where she lived, and her sister being informed, an
entrance was effected, and the unfortunately lady was found lying dead
on her bedroom floor, having apparently fallen dead on getting out of
bed. Mr. Toms was foreman of the Jury, and the following evidence was
Mrs. E. Jacolette, wife of Mr. M. Jacolette, photographic artist,
Northbrook House, Biggin Street, Dover, said the body at 2, Avenue
Terrace, was that of his sister, Mary Ann Harbour. She was 60 years of
age, and a single woman. It was Miss Harbour’s house, and Mrs. Minter
lived with her. Mrs. Minter had been away to Canterbury to spend
Christmas with her friends, and Miss Harbour was left alone. Witness
last saw her a month ago. She was very well then, but said that she was
not equal to coming to Dover very often. She was not of very strong
health. She could cook very well herself, but witness could not say if
she would take much trouble to prepare food for herself. She had every
means to get food, and she went without, it was her own fault. On Friday
afternoon, about four o’clock, Mrs. Goldfinch, a neighbour, sent a
message to witness that the house was closed and the blinds down.
Witness came over by the six o’clock train, and found the house locked
up and the blinds down. When they could not make anyone hear, witness
thought it best to get a carpenter to have the window opened. One came,
and he opened the window, and got through and opened the door. The
carpenter and Mrs. Goldfinch went upstairs first. She followed, and saw
the deceased in the back bedroom, on the floor, almost at the front of
the bed. She had been to bed, and was in her night clothes. There was a
teapot and some toast and biscuits. The teapot was empty, and the cup
and saucer had not been used. She was lying on her left side. Witness
had not the slightest reason to suppose that she took her own life. She
was comfortably off.
Dr. A. Long said he was called in about 7.30 on the previous evening. He
was taken into the bedroom described by the last witness, and found the
deceased lying on the floor, she having been dead for some hours. She
was lying on her left side, with both legs and arms bent up, but no
expression of pain on her face. It was apparent that she had quietly got
out of bed, and walked round the room and fell down. There were no
external marks on the body. Witness thought she fell down through sheer
disability. She was very thin, but she was of spare habit. Witness had
attended her about ten years ago for influenza, and saw her also about a
week ago, but not as a patient. When he attended her she was very weak,
and the same thing might have happened then. He attributed death to
weakness caused by the cold acting on her weak heart. There were no
suspicious circumstances as far as he could see.
One of the Jurymen said that he saw the deceased on Thursday morning
when he called for orders.
Mrs. Jacolette said that a Mrs. King had met the deceased out on
Thursday, going to the Stores.
The Coroner, in summing up, pointed out that the cause and manner of
death seemed to be clear. Probably, in the absence of Mrs. Minter, she
hardly looked after herself as she should have done, and in her weak
state was seized with an attack of syncope, and there being no one to
render her assistance, died.
The Jury returned a verdict in accordance with the medical evidence.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 16 July, 1915. Price 1d.
UNLAWFUL USE OF WATER
At the Dover Police Court on Monday, before Mr. M. Pepper (in the
chair), Captain R. B. Cay, R.N., and Messrs. H. Hobday.
Charles Hogg, of the “Railway Hotel,” River, pleaded guilty to a summons
for, on the 24th June, then being a person supplied with water from the
East Kent Water Company, unlawfully fixing a hose pipe to the supply
without first obtaining the permission of the said company. A second
charge was preferred against the defendant for using the water for other
than domestic purposes.
Mr. Ernest Chitty, appeared to prosecute and it was a serious case at
the present time when the company had to supply a large number of troops
in the district. It was a serious matter that people should have
unauthorised use of the water. It was well know that if water was
required for garden purposes the water was supplied by meter. Defendant
had a large garden and two lawns and not only did he get the ordinary
warning which is got by printed notices on the demand notes, but last
year a special notice was attached that the water should not be used for
garden purposes. In addition to that on the 14th, or 15th, or 16th of
June he was found having a hose attached to the supply and watering the
garden and he was warned about the matter, the Company decided not to
prosecute on that occasion. However, on the 24th, the same thing was
found to be going on, and, although the Company did not want to be
vindictive against this man they wished it to be a warning. If people
wanted water for their garden they have it by paying a minimum of 7s.
6d. a quarter, and to pay by meter.
George Harmer Gilham, 12, The Avenue, Kearsney, local manager to the
East Kent Water Company, said on or about the 16th June in the evening
he saw a hose pipe connected through defendant’s window and water going
on to the lawn. Witness warned him that it must not be done again unless
he paid for it and had permission. On the 24th of June he saw the same
hose pipe through the window and watering the lawn. He went to the house
and saw the son, and the son’s wife, he thought it was. He thought he
heard defendant in the house.
The Bench inflicted a fine of £1.
Defendant: The first summons I have ever had, and I am 67 years of age.
The second charge was withdrawn on the bench making a conviction of the
The Chairman said the bench had taken the two charges into
Originally the "Railway Bell" and also referred to as the
"Railway Hotel" and then "Pickwicks"
(May 1983) but now reverted back to the "Railway Bell" again.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 10
December, 1937. Price 1½d.
SHARE OUT DINNER
Mr. Weston, licensee of the "Railway Hotel," Kearsney, applied for an
extension from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m., on December 8th , for a dinner and dance
in connection with the annual share out.
The Chief Constable said there was no objection.
The Mayor: Won't be much left, will there?
The application was granted.
From the Dover Express and East Kent News. 31 March 1939.
The West Street Foxhounds will meet at 11.30 a.m. on Thursday, April
6th - Bell, Kearsney, (by invitation).
From the Dover Express and East Kent News. 4 July 1952.
NEW SITE FOR "SUICIDE SEAT"
The Chairman, Alderman A. J. Fenn, reported to the Works Committee on
Tuesday that he and the Borough Engineer had agreed that the only
suitable alternative site for the seat at the bottom of Whitfield Hill
was by the Railway Hotel.
At its last meeting the Committee had agreed that the seat should be
removed from the bottom of Whitfield Hill after one member had said it
was almost suicidal to sit there.
From the Dover Mercury, 18 August 2005.
Pubs bid to open round the clock.
TWO of Dover's pubs and a 'supermarket' have asked for the right to serve alcohol 24 hours a day.
Under the Government's new licensing regime, all pubs, clubs and businesses serving alcohol and hot food after
and offering public entertainment, can ask for variations in the times they serve alcohol.
The Britannia pub in Townwall Street, and the Railway Bell in London
Road, Kearsney, have applied for licences that would allow them to
serve alcohol at all times of the day and night.
And Tesco in Whitfield wants to offer its shoppers the choice of buying
alcohol whenever they visit the store.
Both licenses cite very different reasons for their applications,
dismissing any thoughts of round-the-clock binge drinking.
Sarah Webb, licensee of the Britannia near the harbour, said: "We are looking to cater for people who work
shifts and do not want to go to a nightclub. We know from our
customers that many would like a quiet drink, outside
Francis Gorham, licensee of the Railway Bell, said his application was
not about keeping the pub open 24 hours a day, seven days a week."
He added: "This is about being able to decide, as responsible
licensees, a suitable time to close the pub. One night that could be
3am, another 11pm."
Following the August 6 deadline for licence applications,
the district council has received 480 applications out of an expected
650 for the Dover district.
Many pubs have applied for longer hours, especially at weekends. The Flotilla and Firkin, in Bench Street, wants to close at 3am on
Fridays and Saturdays, while the Old Endeavour, in London Road, has
applied to stay open until at 2.30am on Fridays and
From the Dover Express, Thursday, 24 February, 2011. 60p
BELLS AT THE BELL
Wedding co-ordinator Kylie Marsh, owner of Gorgeous to Go, the gift
and wrapping service, has recently launched Wedding Bells at The Railway
Situated in the popular village of River near Dover, Kylie intends to
make the most of this traditional British pubs lovely location and
combine it with her planning skills to offer a truly bespoke service.
"The setting really lends itself to country-style weddings, explains
Kylie. "But I am more than happy to come up with a bespoke design or
theme - whatever your wish is."
Kylie likes to really get to know her clients and is available for
consultation 24/7. She is quick to point out what a wonderful wedding
need not cost the earth. With a book full of contacts, she will always
go the extra mile to ensure best possible deal on everything, from
teaspoons to toilets!
Kylie will take the strain and stress out of all your wedding
planning, leaving you free to enjoy the whole experience from beginning
Wedding Bells at The Railway Bell will be hosting a Wedding Fayre on
March 26. 2011, from 10am to 4pm. Held within the actual venue, there
will be a range of specially selected exhibitors from the local area,
all able to give you a taste of what they can provide. Admission is free
and there is parking available.
For more information, contact Wedding Bells at The Railway Bell on
DOWNS Richard 1874+
DOWN George 1882-Jan/1900
CURTIS Mr S Jan/1900+
stationmaster at Kearsney)
CURTIS Mary J 1901-Dec/04
ELPHINSTONE Alfred Dec/1904-07+
TERRY Edward 1913+
FURNEAUX A to Aug/1914
HOGG Mr Charles Aug/1914+ (
LEATE??? T Sept/1919
WESTON John Sept/1919-48+
HAMMOND Alfred W 1969-81 Whitbread Fremlins 74
GORHAM Francis & WOODWARD Katherine 2002-Nov/12
New licensee name as yet unknown Nov/2011+
GEVAUX Pauline 28/June/2013+
From the Post Office Directory 1874
From the Post Office Directory 1882
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1889
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1890
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1891
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1895
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1896-97
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1898
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1899
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1899-1900
From the Kelly's Directory 1899
From the Post Office Directory 1901
From the Post Office Directory 1913
From the Post Office Directory 1914
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1923
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1924
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1932-33
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1938-39
From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1948-49
From the Dover Express