Sort file:- Dover, December, 2023.

Page Updated:- Saturday, 16 December, 2023.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Barry Smith and Paul Skelton

Earliest 1713

Red Cow

Latest June 1971

1 Folkestone Road / Military Road / St Martin's Hill in 1871Census


Red Cow

This interesting picture of the junction of Priory Place, Worthington Street and Military Road dates from about 1895. In the centre is the milk shop. Here it is pictured when the proprietor was C. Fry who, apart from selling milk products of the Priory Farm dairy, sold lemonade, soda and ginger beer. On the right is Ye Olde Red Cow Inn and yard which stood on the corner of Folkestone Road and Priory Place.

Red Cow

From the Kentish Gazette, Wednesday, 29 June to Saturday 2 July, 1768. Price 2d


Notice is hereby given, That the ANNUAL MEETING of the UNION-SOCIETY at FOLKESTONE will be held at the Sign of the “RED COW,” in Folkestone, on Monday the 11th of July next, when and where the members of the said Society are desired to meet by Ten o'Clock in the Forenoon, in order to proceed to Church to hear a SERMON preached by the Reverend Mr. Langhorne, after which to return to the said House, where a DINNER will be provided.

AND WHEREAS it hath been represented to the said Society, that sundry Persons would have entered for the said Society if the Age of FORTY Years had not been reduced to THIRTY-FIVE; Therefore it is ORDERED, that for the future, any sound and healthy Person not above Forty Years of Age, whose Residence is not above Thirty-five Miles from the said Town, by paying the usual Entrance, may be admitted a Member thereof.


From the Dover Telegraph, 30 December 1843.

Red Cow advert 1843

The above advert was kindly sent to me by Lorraine Sencicle.


The original, "Ye Olde Red Cow Inn", was set back from the road with a yard.


It was there long before buildings appeared in Folkestone Road in 1843. It is known that in 1810 a piece of meadow land near the pub was used to form Priory Street.


From the Kentish Post or Canterbury News-Letter, December 7 to December 11, 1751.

A Notice in the ‘Post' reads that “Stray'd on Thursday the 5th Instant [Cows and Heifers] from the Sign of the Red Cow in Dover………..



We also know that in 1805 it was kept by a character known as 'Mighty Merit' and in 1791 by Thomas Starr, but the above passage from the Kentish Post pre-dates all other mentions of this pub.


Kentish Gazette, 19 April 1803.

STOLEN, Out of the stable of the "Red Cow," Dover, on Saturday night, or early on Sunday morning.

A BLACK MARE, almost Fifteen Hands high, the property of John Merrit; supposed to be stolen by a young man who wore a smock frock, an old hat, and an old pair of shoes, full of nails.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 30 April, 1836. Price 7d.


Sarah Hogben, aged 23, charged with stealing a blanket, the property of Samuel Pierce, landlord of the "Red Cow," on the Folkestone Road; where she had slept. The blanket was restored by her relations, and she acknowledged the theft to Southerden, the officer who took her into custody. The prisoner said she had committed the offence from destitution.

Guilty, but recommended to mercy. One month's imprisonment.


From the Kentish Gazette, 7 April 1840.


Last week, at Dover, the widow of Mr. Thomas Merritt, formerly of the "Red Cow."


From the Kentish Gazette, 23 May 1843.


May 15, at Dover, Mrs. Hills, wife of Mr. Hills, of the "Red Cow Inn."


From the Kentish Gazette, 19 December 1843.


GEORGE HAMMOND returns thanks to his Friends, the Public, for the patronage bestowed on him since he has taken the above House, and respectfully solicits a continuance of public favours, assuring those who may honour him with their patronage that every attention will be paid to their comfort, combined with moderate charges.
Good Beds, Wine and Spirits, Ales and London Porter; Good Stabling and Lock -up Coach House.

Coaches leave for the Rail to every Train.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 13 June, 1846. Price 5d.


Early on Saturday morning last, as the market butchers from Romney to Dover were on their road and had reached near Farthingloe, the horse of a Mr. Smith fell, by which the driver was thrown off the cart, and received some severe bruising, but no bones were broken. The horse on recovering his feet, and before he could be secured, started off at a furious rate, with the bit dangling before him, and was not stopped till he reached the "Red Cow," where the cart came in contact with some scaffolding poles, by which a shaft was broken, and the horse much injured. He was then secured, and further mischief thereby prevented.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 2 February, 1848. Price 5d.


Henry Organ, licensed hawker, was charged with cruelty to a dog. Mr. Rowland Rees deposed that on the previous afternoon, he saw defendant on the Folkestone Road, driving three dogs in a cart, one of which he was whipping unmercifully, although the poor brute appeared scarcely able to crawl, and was dragged on by the other dogs. On remonstrating, defendant made use of very abusive language, and witness considered it his duty to the public that the case should be brought before the Magistrates.

Organ, in his defence, said that he bought the dog on the previous day, and on taking it out for a trial it was sulky, and would not draw at which he became much irritated, and in consequence made use of language to complainant for which he was very sorry, and now apologised. He could assure the Bench that the dog had not  been over-driven, as he had not been more than two miles on the road.

Mr. Look, landlord of the "Red Cow," stated that he had known defendant, who was lodging at his house, for some time; and he always evinced greater kindness towards his dogs than was usual with hawkers; and that on the day in question he had not been out with the dogs more than an hour.

The Bench, in consequence of this, and the contrition expressed, dismissed the case on payment of 5s. costs.


Kentish Gazette, 13 August 1850.

Coroner's Inquest.

Another inquest was held on Friday afternoon before the same coroner, at the "Red Cow," Dover, on the body of James Tredford, aged 26, a wagoner in the employ of Mr. Thomas Foord, of Broadmead, near Folkestone. Deceased, in driving a wagon with two horses, was standing on the shafts, when he fell down, and both wheels passed over him. Mr. Foord, master of deceased, said he was a very steady man, and had never seen him the worse for liquor. The horses were very quiet, and had been driven by deceased for the last four months.

Verdict:— "Accidental death."


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 1st January, 1853.


Charles Toms, 23, ostler, pleaded guilty to a charge of stealing 11d., the property of his master. Mr. Look, of the "Red Cow Inn," Dover, and was sentenced to three months imprisonment.


South Eastern Gazette, 7 August, 1860.

Fatal Accident to a Child.

An inquest was held on Tuesday morning last, at the "Red Cow Inn," Folkestone-road, on the body, of Annie Jane Jones, infant daughter of Mr. R. H. Jones, of the firm of Anderson and Jones, gas contractors. It appeared that the deceased child had been at play in her father’s garden, which is skirted by the river Dour, and approaching too near the edge, the stream being swollen by the late heavy rains, she fell from the bank and was almost instantly carried out of sight by the rapid current. Although missed immediately, and every search made for the body, it could not be recovered for nearly an hour. The child got to the water through a gate which was used for watering the plants in the garden. A verdict of "Accidentally drowned" was returned.


Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 22 December 1860.


Wednesday evening last, as Mrs. Wayte landlady of the "Red Cow," Folkestone Road was carrying some linen upstairs, she unfortunately missed her footing and fell. Being of active bustling habits, she was loath at first to believe that any other injury had resulted than a slight sprain or bruise; but as the pain continued to increase, Mr. Walter, surgeon was sent for, and he pronounced a dislocated shoulder. We are, however, happy in being able to add, from enquiries made at the latest hour, that Mrs. Wayte is progressing favourably.


From the Dover Express, 17th March, 1863.


The following is a summary of the police intelligence of the week:- On Sunday John Toon, a vagrant, charged with stealing 6s. 6d. from the till of the "Red Cow" public-house, was convicted and sentenced to one month's imprisonment.


Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Adviser, Saturday 12 September 1863.


Sept. 10, at the "Red Cow Inn," Dover, Mr. George Wild, in the 59th year of his age, much respected.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 26 December, 1863.


Ann Wylde, landlady of the "Red Cow" public-house, was summonsed on the information of police-Sergeant Barton, charged with having her house opened for the sale of liquor at ten minutes to twelve on Saturday night last, but dismissed with a caution after paying the costs.


Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 5 March 1864.

Red Cow Inn and Travellers' House. Folkestone Road Dover.

Thomas Browning has taken the above Inn, and respectfully solicits the patronage of Travelers and others, to whose comfort (by personal attention) he will pay every regard.

Well-aired Beds, Good Stabling, and Lock-up Coach-houses.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 4 January, 1867. Price 1d.


Thomas Browning, the landlord, of the "Red Cow Inn," Folkestone Road, was charged with keeping his house open for the sale of liquors until fifteen minutes past one o'clock on the morning of Christmas Day.

Police-constable Chard said that about quarter-past one on the morning of Christmas Day he heard loud talking in the "Red Cow Inn," and some one offer to toss for glasses of ale, and also heard the money thrown on the counter. He opened the door and saw six men standing and sitting before the bar with pots of glasses before them. He told the landlord he had no business to have his house open at that time. Browning replied, "You have no business here, you go out, if you don't go out, I'll put you out." He told him that it was his duty to be there, and then Browning said that he would go and fetch the Inspector, but that he was afraid to trust his wife with him (the constable). There were two other policemen outside the door, and they could hear what was being said.

By Mr. Fox: I know one who was there by name - Johnson the pipe maker. There were two men dressed as guards of the railway. I was not on that beat, but I was on duty close to the house. I have noticed the house, but did not know that the guards who come down by the late train go there to supper before they go away in the morning. Mr. browning did not say he was afraid to trust me in the house; he said he was afraid to trust me with his wife. I was indignant at being told I was drunk. I did not see anything drawn or sold whilst I was there. I only heard some money on the counter.

Mr. Smith: Is it a fact that you were drunk?

Witness: No, Sir, I was sober.

George Harman, police-constable No. 12, proved hearing the conversation between the last witness and the landlord of the house in question.

By Mr. Fox: I have not had a conversation with Chard upon the matter. I saw Mrs. Browning; she was behind the bar. I do not know that the guards go there to supper after the last train.

By Mr. Smith: I only know one person there.

Mr. Coram said that there was evidence he proposed to offer on the part of the police.

Mr. Fox then submitted that there was no case at all. Mr. Browning was on that night, supplying refreshment to travellers, and these travellers were guards of the railway. These men went to the defendant's house every night to supper and they are entitled to do so, and the landlord cannot refuse to serve them. These persons have to return to London shortly after three o'clock, and therefore they are entitled to be supplied with necessary refreshments. There is not the slightest evidence that any beer or liquors of any description was sold or served, and if the police wanted to have independent testimony why did they not call the man Johnson, for he doubtless would have told the truth. It was their duty to do so, but for reasons of their own they had not dome so. It was rather singular that the two policemen, who had been called for the prosecution, had spoken exactly the same words, although it must be remembered one was not in the house. When two witnesses differed slightly it was more generally supposed that they were witnesses of truth, rather then when they came up with their words cut and dried in their mouths, and each gave their evidences in the same terms. However he did not wish for one moment to impute that they had spoken anything but the truth (laughter). He thought the Bench would agree with him in saying that it was rather unfair to Browning that the policemen should so far have misinterpreted his words, and make him say that he would not trust the man Chard alone with his wife, was it at all likely - when there were six men in the house at the same time, according to the sworn testimony of the police - that he would have said such a thing? The words made use of by Browning, according to his (Mr. Fox's) instructions, were that he would go to the superintendent but that he would not leave the policeman in the house. But apart from all that he thought the Bench would take the fact in its true light - there was no beer or any liquor served or sold at the bar during that time; and therefore there was no infringement of license. As the charge against the defendant was for opening his house for the sale of liquors, and as the sale had not been proved he contended there had been no offence committed.

Mr. Latham said the Bench considered the case proved, and argued that if houses were to be kept open of a night for railway guards, there would not be a house in the town closed at its proper hour. The defendant would be fined 10s. 6d. and 10s. 6d. costs.

The money was paid.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 10 June, 1870.


John Claringbould, a shoemaker, living at Union Row, was charged with assaulting his wife, Ann Claringbould.

Ann Claringbould, a young woman who seemed in delicate health, and carrying a young baby in her arms, said: I live at Union Row, and am the wife of the defendant. Last night we were returning home about eleven o'clock, when he wanted me to go with him into the "Red Cow" public-house. I refused, and he struck me. I proceeded home, and the prisoner followed me about an hour afterwards. On coming into the room he dragged me out of bed and knocked me about a good deal. The defendant was the worse for liquor; but knew what he was about. I had to seek the protection of the landlord of the house where we lodged, and I afterwards dressed myself and went to the station-house, where I gave information to the police.

In reply to the Magistrates, the complainant said that he husband had repeatedly ill-used her before.

She called James Ashcroft, who said: I am a mariner, and live at 21, Union Row. defendant and his wife lodge with me. Last night the wife of the defendant came home, and said that her husband had ill-treated her at the door of the "Red Cow" because she would not go into the house and drink with him. That was a little after eleven. About a quarter past twelve the defendant came home, and I immediately afterwards heard a great disturbance in the bedroom he and his wife occupy. The wife shortly after ran to me for protection. Her nightdress was torn all to pieces and she was struck in the mouth. This is not the first or second time the woman has run to me for protection, and the house has been constantly disturbed by the defendant's treatment of her.

The defendant, in reply to the charge, said that his wife was "not civil" to him, and that that was the reason he had struck her; but he did not hurt her, and he had never hurt her on a previous occasion.

The Magistrates thought the cruel assault had been committed, and sentenced the prisoner to fourteen day's imprisonment, with hard labour, without option of fine.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 1 July, 1870.


Thomas Stainsbury and John Bassett, a couple of suspicious looking young men, were charged with being in the town for the purpose of committing a felony. In the prisoners' possession was a quantity of flash notes, together with some imitation jewellery and an imitation watch, and the grounds upon which they had been detained were disclosed in the following statement.

Samuel Thomas, a respectable looking young man said he had travelled with scissors and needles, and other things used in tailoring business, and was staying at the “Red Cow.” He deposed: yesterday evening, about half-past five, I met Stainsbury near the Docks. I was going along the street, when he accosted me, and asked me if I knew where the boat was going to Calais. I said I did not, for I was a stranger and had only come into the town for that day. He said he was also a stranger, and that he had come to Dover in order to cross to Calais. He walked alongside of me till we came to the “True Briton” public-house, at the corner of Commercial Quay, when he asked me to have something to drink. I said I would rather not, as I scarcely ever took anything to drink. “Oh,” he replied, “you must come, or you will offend me.” I said no several time; but the prisoner at length took hold of my hand, and insisted on my going into the public-house with him. I suffered myself to be persuaded, and entered the public-house in the prisoner's company. He called for two glasses of ale, and while they were drawing it he pulled out of his pocket what appeared to be a watch, and said, “It is twenty minutes to six by my watch; but I think that is not right, - what is it by yours?” I pulled out my watch, and said, “It is ten minutes to six by mine.” I saw the prisoner looking very hard at my watch, and that aroused my suspicion. He paid for the glasses of ale, and then said he must go out for a minute. He laid his walking stick and one glove upon the counter, and went out, but returned again very shortly. He sat down by my side, and in about two minutes afterwards the other prisoner came in, wearing green spectacles. He pretended to be strange to us both, and stood a few minutes at the bar before speaking to either of us. He accosted the other prisoner as a stranger; but I soon found them both speaking to me at the same time, one on either side. I did not like my position, and got up.

Mr. Mowll: I think you showed yourself very sagacious.

The Witness: I had hardly tasted the beer. I rose up and said that I must be going, as I was in a hurry. They both rose at the same time, and both talked to me so vehemently that I could not make my way to the door without forcing myself between them. I made attempts to go several times before I succeeded. Before this Stainsbury had pulled out a roll of bills having the appearance of bank notes, and said he had recently come into a large property; and these notes were just what he had put into his pocket – about 500 – to have a spree with. (A laugh.) He said he had been in London for a few days, and had there met a number of young men in the same accidental way as he had met us, and to whom he had made presents. He remarked that the principle presents he had made were hats, with his name inside, and walking sticks with his name engraved on them. (Loud laughter.) When I pushed my way out of the house, prisoners followed me without finishing their beer. They followed me along the street one on either side, till I stopped and said I would not go any further with them. I saw them again afterwards, and Bassett had them removed the spectacles.

Police-constable Hemming said he apprehended the prisoners on the previous evening, in consequence of their suspicious conduct, and found on them the flash notes, the green spectacles, the imitation watch and chain, and the other articles produced.

The prisoners were sent to the House of Correction for two months, with hard labour.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 25 June, 1886. Price 1d.


Thomas A. Bakley, a labourer, living at Military Road, was charged with being drunk, disorderly, and using obscene language the previous night in Folkestone Road.

Police-sergeant Nash said: Last night, about 11.20, I was on duty in Folkestone Road. I heard a disturbance by the “Red Cow” public house. On going there I found the prisoner surrounded by a crowd of people. He was using obscene language, and wanted to fight some one. I tried to persuade him to go away, but he refused, and said he did not care for any Policeman. His wife, who was there, also tried to get him home, but he refused to go. With the assistance of a Police-constable, I took prisoner to the station.

Prisoner, who was formerly a Police-constable of the Borough, said he had had a little too much to drink, and did not remember anything he had done.

The Bench fined him 5s. and costs 6d., or in default seven days' imprisonment.

Time was given for the money to be paid.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 31 March, 1893. 1d.


An inquest was held at the Town Hall, on Monday afternoon on the body of Ambrose Moss, who met with his death on Saturday night, by falling down a flight of stairs at the “Red Cow Inn.” The Coroner (Mr. Sydenham Payn, Esq.,) swore the following gentlemen as a Jury to try the case: Mr. R. Adams (foreman), Messrs. C. Rugley, William Goldsack, John Doyle, A. G. Spain, G. C. Spain, R. W. Lowe, W. Grant, Albert Tapley, J. R. Adams, G. L. Croft, W. H. Hogbin, R. Ayers, and W. C. Warden.

Caroline Moss deposed: I live at 92, Graham Road, Wimbledon. I have seen the body of deceased; it is that of Ambrose Moss who was a draper by trade, 51 years of age. I last saw him alive on the 21st of February, when I saw him off from Herne Hill station. He has been in Dover in business. He never had any illness except rheumatic gout. I had two letter from him last week. He had for some time complained of a pain round his heart, but it was not considered sufficient to require medical advice.

George Minshull said he was a draper's assistant, living at 39, Sydenham Road, Stockport, S.W. He had known deceased as a great friend for about two years. Witness had been with him in Dover on a matter of business for about a month. They had lodged at the “Red Cow” two days previous to this occurrence. On Friday they went for a walk in the morning. Deceased had complained about a pain in his side. Witness went out during the afternoon the deceased remained in the house. Witness returned at 7.30. They remained in the smoking room during the evening. Deceased had nothing whatever to drink. About 11 o'clock he said “good night” and left the room. A few minutes afterwards witness heard a fall and on going to see what it was, found the deceased lying on the floor at the bottom of the stairs.

Mr. W. Hobday, landlord of the “Red Cow Inn,” said that the deceased stayed at the house on the Thursday evening. Witness saw him during the day. He saw the deceased at the bar about half-past ten. About 11 o'clock whilst witness was putting the bar to the front door he heard a crash, and on looking round saw the deceased lying at the foot of the stairs. He was doubled up with his head under him. Witness tried to raise him up but could not. He appeared dead and witness carried him into a lobby at the back, and sent for a doctor. Deceased was perfectly sober.

George east, 51, Military Road, said he was a Fly Proprietor and occupied the stables at the “Red Cow.” He was in the house on Friday evening last. He saw Moss in the parlour about half-past ten. Witness spoke to him, and deceased said he felt tired and should go to bed. Witness went into his stables then, and about 11 o'clock Mrs. Hobday called witness in, and said that Mr. Moss had fallen down stairs. Witness saw him and helped to carry him into the lobby. He was unconscious but breathed twice after they got him into the lobby and then appeared to die. He had complained a day or two previous about suffering from his heart.

Dr. A. Long, Surgeon, said that he was called to the deceased of Friday evening, shortly after 11 o'clock. He went to the “Red Cow,” and found the deceased lying in the room called the lobby and quite dead, death having recently taken place. Witness had examined the deceased, and found no marks of violence. From the force of the fall deceased had broken his neck. Witness thought from the evidence, that deceased might have had some attack from his heart which had caused him to fall. The deceased was a heavy man. The real cause of death was from a fracture from the neck.

The Jury returned a verdict of “Accidental Death.”


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 17 April, 1896.


James Everett and Henry Beattie, boys of 14 years of age, were brought up on remand, charged with picking a woman's pocket, at the Town Hall, and also with picking pockets at the “Red Cow Yard,” both on Wednesday evening.

Everett had been convicted of larceny three times, and the Magistrates thought that it was a case for an Industrial School, and the facts have been sent to the Town Council for them to consider whether they would pay the maintenance. This was the first appearance for Beattie.

The prisoners both pleaded “Guilty,” and the Magistrates decided to remand Everett until Friday, and Beattie's parents were bound over under the First Offender's Act to bring him up for judgement if called upon.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 26 August, 1904. Price 1d.


On Thursday evening an inquest was held by Sydenham Payn, at the “Red Cow Inn,” in the body of Mrs. Pink, the landlady, who was found dead on the floor beside her bedside on Wednesday at mid-day. Mr. J. R. Adams acted as foreman of the Jury, and the evidence was as follows:-

Reuben Betts said that he was of independent means, and had been staying for the last five months at the “Red Cow” as a friend of the landlord, who was too ill to attend the inquest. He identified the body as that of the landlady of the “Red Cow,” Mrs. Sarah Elizabeth Pink, wife of Frederick Pink. Witness last saw the deceased alive on Wednesday at 11.30 a.m. She was then lying on her bed partly dressed. About 1.30 he was called to the bedroom by two young ladies. They had found her on the floor and lifted her onto the bed. A doctor was sent for meanwhile, but witness seeing she was dead, went to help the husband, who was taken ill on hearing of it. Deceased had been upstairs about two days.

The Coroner: Was she suffering from the effects of drink?

I should say so.

The Coroner: May I take it she was greatly addicted to drink? You can't help yourself, you know, in answering?

Yes, I am afraid she was so.

Maud Witham, staying with her sister at the “Red Cow,” said that about 1.30 on Wednesday she and her sister came upstairs to tidy themselves, and they looked in intending to ask Mrs. Pink what she would have for dinner. Deceased was not on the bed so they looked on the other side of it, and they saw her lying on the floor with her head bent over on to her chest. Witness and her sister picked the deceased up and placed her on the bed. They then noticed that she was lifeless, and went to call Mr. Pink, who came up and told them to send for a doctor. Witness last saw the deceased about 11.30 that morning on the bed. Earlier in the morning the deceased had come to witness's bedroom and asked her to undo her blouse, having apparently been to bed dressed. She was then well, but she had obviously been under the effects of drink. Mr. Pink, who is subject to fits, was taken ill after the deceased was found to be dead. There was no sign of poison about the room where deceased was found. Witness could not say when deceased last had food, as, though she frequently was able to take her meals, she used to go down to get something at night.

Mr. C. Wood, surgeon, said he was sent for at 1.50 on Wednesday afternoon, and at once went to the “Red Cow,” where he found the deceased lying on her bed fully dressed. She was warm, and evidently quite dead. She had a very strong smell of alcohol. Her features were composed. Later in the afternoon he fully examined the body. With the exception of a slight bruise on the back of the right hand there was no mark of injury or accident. The body was fairly nourished. The husband told him she had had no doctor. Witness said that there was nothing to indicate the cause of death, but he imagined that deceased arousing from a condition of stupor attempted to get out of bed, and fell in the position in which she was found, with the result that the head pressing over the chest caused her breathing to be interfered with and suffocation to ensue.

The Coroner, in summing up, remarked incidentally that a public house was rather a funny place for one to stay in who was addicted to drink.

A verdict was returned that deceased died from suffocation caused by falling out of bed.


Dover Express 21st May 1909.


Mr. Tom Bishop of the "Red Cow" asks us to contradict a general report that he is about to leave Dover. He absolutely denies what is opposed to the truth.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 23 February , 1912.


Alfred Valentine was charged with drunk and disorderly conduct.

Police-constable Vincent said: On Saturday afternoon, when I was in a tram car on the Folkestone Road route, the defendant, who was also inside the car, began to jeer and insult me about my uniform. I took no notice, but as he commenced again, I spoke to him about it. The defendant threatened me if, he said, I said he was drunk. The defendant tried to get off near the “Red Cow,” and again threatened me, and I took him into custody.

Defendant, who said he did not remember anything about the affair, was ordered to pay the costs, 6s.



Outward coaches to Ham Street, starting from the "London Hotel", picked up passengers here and in 1882, coaches from New Romney to the inn ran every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, returning the same day. It was rebuilt at the turn of the century, or possibly in 1895 when Priory Place was widened. At a sale in May 1910, when it held a thirty five year lease from January 1906, it realised 2,400 In 1912, when Lewis was the host, the motor and livery stables next door would no doubt be an accessory.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 10 April, 1931. Price 1d.


A Morris Cowley, driven by Mr. R. Hague, a commercial traveller, and an East Kent ‘bus driven by Mr. E. Misele, of Coastguard Cottages, St. Margaret's, collided at the junction of Priory Place and Priory Street about 2 o'clock on Thursday. Both vehicles were damaged, the Morris having its front knocked in and the panels of the ‘bus being damaged.


Dover Express 8th June 1945.


At Dover on Friday, Joan McMahon (24) of 16 Monins Road, was fined 5s for riding a bicycle without lights on May 16th at 11.45 p.m. Defendant told the policeman that she had walked through the town from East Cliff, but mounted her machine at the “Red Cow” as sometime before, she had been attacked by a soldier in Folkestone Road.


From an email received from Nina McSweeney, 21 September 2009.

The most exciting thing for me was your mention of Thomas Browning, landlord of The Red Cow in 1866. I'm assuming he wasn't heard of after 1867 as that's when he ran off to France?

I know his running off caused a scandal, but I'm not sure if it would have been in the newspapers. I'm hoping it was!

I really appreciate your help, and the whole family will be delighted to know we finally have a name for "The man who once owned The Red Cow".

Nina McSweeney.



There's mention in my Grandmother's diary of a Grandma Elvy, who could possibly be the mother of Frank Browning (ex wife/girlfriend of the publican Thomas Browning?), but she could equally be a Grandmother on the maternal side, or as my Mum suggested she may just be an elderly friend as they were often called Grandma.


Red Cow licensees 1950

Above photo from Robert Bushell, showing William Ditton and his wife, circa 1950.

Red Cow 1960s

Above photo, circa 1960s.

From an article in the Dover Mercury by Joe Harman. Originally published circa 2000.

Red Cow

Travellers refreshed at Red Cow.

IT IS now 30 years since the Red Cow, at the bottom of Folkestone Road, closed its doors and was demolished.

We know it was there in 1792, when Thomas Starr was the landlord, and it may have dated from 1762, when Folkestone Road was formed.

It was a stopping place for stagecoaches and had a yard and stables for that purpose. The inn was re-built in 1859 when Priory Street was laid out on meadow land.

Another re-build took place in 1895 when Priory Place was widened.

The yard was used for political meetings and I am told that Ramsay McDonald (twice prime minister) once addressed the public there.

Red Cow 1950

Above photo from Robert Bushell, circa 1950.


This was just another closure as a result of redevelopment in June 1971. The town took possession that month and it was taken down in October the same year so that the road could be widened. The new York Street with dual carriageways opened to traffic on 10 December 1972 and now joins Folkestone Road at this point the dust having long settled.


Red Cow 1966

Above photo 1966, kindly sent by Paul Beecham.

Red Cow October 1971

Above photo by Andy Yarrow, October 1971. He says 2 weeks before being demolished.

Red Cow 1971

Photos above and below are of the Red Cow during demolition 1971. By kind permission of the over Library.

Red Cow 1971
Cocktail stirrers 1970

Above photo showing cocktail stirrers circa 1970.



COLBRAND Vincent 1713+

STARR Thomas 1791-92+ Dover and Deal Directory and Guide 1792

MERIT/MERRITT "Mighty" Thomas 1803-05+

PIERCE John (Samuel) 1823-39+ Pigot's Directory 1823Pigot's Directory 1828-29Pigot's Directory 1832-34Pigot's Directory 1839

HILL Johnathan 1840-43+ Pigot's Directory 1840

HAMMOND George Dec/1843+

LOOK William 1847-52 (age 60 in 1851Census) Bagshaw's Directory 1847Dover Telegraph

WAY Elias 1854

MARSH William B 1958 Melville's 1858

MIDDLETON Palmer before 1858

WAYTE Henry 1860-62 (age 40 in 1861Census) Dover Express

WILD George Jan/1862-10/Sept/63 dec'd Dover Express

WYLDE Ann 1863+ (probably be wife of George Wild)

BROWNING Thomas Mar/1864-66 Next pub licensee had

RICHARDSON William George 1874-July/91 dec'd (age 57 in 1891Census) Post Office Directory 1874Post Office Directory 1882Dover Express

RICHARDSON Mrs (widow) July/1891+ Dover Express

HOBDAY Walter 1895-99+ Pikes 1895Kelly's Directory 1899

BROOKER Mr H C to Aug/1901 Post Office Directory 1903Dover Express

MILES Charles Aug/1901+ Dover Express (Of Croyden/Reigate)

CHAPLIN George W 1903 Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903

PINK Frederick 1903-Sept/04 Dover Express

EXELL Charles Sept/1904-05 end Dover Express (Late of Aldershot where he kept the Cavalry Brigade Canteen for 14 years.)

BISHOP Thomas 1905-Dec/10 Dover Express

LEWIS Josiah Dec/1910-13+ (age 62 in 1911Census) Dover ExpressPost Office Directory 1913

LEWIS Mrs Anne 1914-24 end Post Office Directory 1922Pikes 1923Pikes 1924

STOCKLEY Herman 1924-8 end

HART William 1928-30+ Post Office Directory 1930

DITTON Frederick James 1932-50+ Pikes 1932-33Post Office Directory 1938Pikes 1938-39Pikes 48-49Kelly's Directory 1950Kelly's Directory 1953

DITTON P J 1939-Aug/53 Dover Express

O'NEILL Edwin Robert Aug/1953-56+ Kelly's Directory 1956Dover Express

BESTE J G 1959-61

WILSON Harold 1962-71 end

MANBY Alan A B Closed June 1971

However, seen mentioned in the Library archives 1974 Library archives 1974 obviously an overlook, but mentioned Allied Breweries Ltd as suppliers and owners


Dover and Deal Directory and Guide 1792Dover and Deal Directory and Guide 1792

Pigot's Directory 1823From the Pigot's Directory 1823

Pigot's Directory 1828-29From the Pigot's Directory 1828-9

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

Pigot's Directory 1839From the Pigot's Directory 1839

Pigot's Directory 1840From the Pigot's Directory 1840

Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1874From the Post Office Directory 1874

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Pikes 1895From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1895

Kelly's Directory 1899From the Kelly's Directory 1899

Post Office Directory 1903From the Post Office Directory 1901

Post Office Directory 1903From the Post Office Directory 1903

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903

Post Office Directory 1913From the Post Office Directory 1913

Post Office Directory 1922From the Post Office Directory 1922

Pikes 1923From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1923

Pikes 1924From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1924

Post Office Directory 1930From the Post Office Directory 1930

Pikes 1932-33From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1932-33

Post Office Directory 1938From the Post Office Directory 1938

Pikes 1938-39From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1938-39

Pikes 48-49From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1948-49

Kelly's Directory 1950From the Kelly's Directory 1950

Kelly's Directory 1953From the Kelly's Directory 1953

Kelly's Directory 1956From the Kelly's Directory 1956

Library archives 1974Library archives 1974

Dover ExpressFrom the Dover Express

Dover TelegraphFrom the Dover Telegraph


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