Sort file:- Deal, October, 2023.

Page Updated:- Sunday, 22 October, 2023.


Earliest 1786-

(Name from)

Royal Oak

Latest 1875

Oak Street (1858)

41 Middle Street


Royal Oak

Above photo, date unknown.

Site of former Royal Oak Inn

Above picture kindly supplied by Patricia Streater, 12 February 2011. Oak Street is the turning on the left of the photo and Middle Street towards the right and with the row of houses. The twin spires in the background are from the Landmark Centre in Deal's High Street.


According to my records this pub was originally called the "Blewbore" and I am wondering whether the pub was renamed when Oak Street was built. The change of name happened sometime before 1786.

However, the Sandwich Borough Records shows Licensed Victuallers who paid for new Inn signs, 6s. 8d, and Sureties of 5 on 12th September, 1662, and again, further reference to a "Royal Oak in 1737. No address given for this one, but I am assuming it to be one and the same as this. Richard Bridger of the "Blewbore" died in 1668, the house could have changed name after his death.

Further research tells me that the house was used in 1794 to celebrate the Mayoral election of John Hollams.


Kentish Chronicles, 9 December, 1794.


On Friday last died, Mr. Thomas Waite, of the "Royal Oak Inn," Deal.


Kentish Gazette, 15 March 1803.


THOMAS BARHAM takes the opportunity of returning his warmest thanks to the numerous friends who have so liberally honoured him with their favours, and be should be wanting in gratitude not particularly to notice the distinguished partiality that has been shown him by the Gentlemen Travellers, to whom, he trusts, every attention in his power has been paid. In quitting the public line of life, he has the pleasing satisfaction to recommend to the notice of those friends, and the public in general, Mr. Thomas Rickman, who succeeds him in the business, not doubting they will find a continuation of the like attention, and the same wish to please, that he trusts has hitherto marked his public conduct.

N. B. All persons to whom T. Barham stands indebted, are requested to tend in their accounts to him at the "Royal Oak," that they may be discharged.


Having taken the above Inn, humbly solicits a continuance of that patronage that his predecessor has received, and if the most unremitting attention and assiduous desire to please, will entitle him to the favour of the public, he trusts hit endeavours will merit that support which he flatters himself he shall receive.

Gentlemen Travellers will find good accommodation and reasonable charges, with wines and liquor of the best quality — the beds constantly well aired, and every attention paid to the convenience and comfort of those persons who may please to favour him with their company.

Deal, March 7, 1803.


From the Maidstone Gazette and East Kent Courier, 17 July, 1827.

On Tuesday a man of the name of Pain, several years oster at the "Royal Oak Inn," Deal, put a period to his existence by hanging himself in the stable; no cause can be assigned for the rash act, as the deceased was remarkable for his steady and industrious habits. He has unhappily left a wife and 5 children to deplore his fate.


From the Kentish Gazette, 3 April 1838.


Last week, at Dover, at an advanced age, Mr. Thomas Rickman, many years a respected innkeeper at Deal.


From the Kentish Gazette, 14 January 1840.


The acceptance of the invitation by the two members to dine with the Radical Club, infused some spirit into our townsmen last week. The members after having dined at Sandwich came over to Deal, and having partaken of Capt. Boys’ hospitality, met their constituents in the evening at the "Royal Oak." A large party assembled, but they were greatly disappointed at the very little information their members were able to give of the state of affairs. The evening was dull until the potent liquor of mine host began to operate—there was then noise and confusion enough. Coming events cast their shadows before, and if we are able to judge by the result of the preliminary visit of the representatives to their constituency, whig prospects are very lugubrious.


From the Kentish Gazette, 7 April 1840.

DEAL. Catch Club.

The last concert of the Catch Club took place at the "Oak" on Tuesday the 31st ult. The room was very full; the number of visitors larger than on any preceding evening, being increased by the members of the Dover club.


Maidstone Journal and Kentish Advertiser, Tuesday 12 June 1849.


Important sale of the extensive Brewery of Messr's Flint, including 30 old established Inns and Public Houses, and other valuable property.

Mr. V. J., has received instructions to sell by auction, at the "Fountain Hotel," Canterbury, on Tuesday and Wednesday, 26th and 27th of June, at 12 o'clock each day, (in consequence of the death of the senior acting partner and the retirement of the surviving partners,) the valuable property known as Messrs. Flint's Brewery, in Stour Street, Canterbury, and the Inns, Public Houses, and other valuable property connected with theirwith. The first day sale on Tuesday, 26th June, 1849, will comprise the following property in and near the city.

Public houses.

Lot 1. The "City of Canterbury," situate on the road to Whitstable. Freehold.

Lot 2. The "George and Dragon," Westgate without, leasehold under Hind's charity for 17 years unexpired.

Lot 3. The "Three Compasses," Westgate within. Freehold.

Lot 4. The "Bell Inn" and Coach Office, in the High Street. Freehold.

Lot 5. The "Prince of Wales," St. Alphege Lane,. Freehold.

Lot 6. The "Weavers Arms," Broad Street, freehold and partly leasehold.

Lot 7. The "White Swan," Northgate. Leasehold under St. John's Hospital for a short term, at a ground rent.

Lot 8. The "Kings Head," Northgate. Freehold.

Lot 9. The "Swan Inn," at Sturry (close to the railway station). Freehold.

Lot 10. The "Ship," St. Martins Hill, freehold.

Lots 12. The "Star Commercial Inn and Tap," St George's, close to the Cattle market and Dane John. Freehold.

Lot 13. The "Blue Anchor," Old Dover Lane, near the Cattle market. Freehold.

Lot 14. The "Fleece Inn," High Street, opposite to the Corn market. Freehold.

Lot 28. Three neat Cottages opposite the Brewery, with large gardens extending to the river.

Lot 29. The "Two Brewers" public house and Spirit Warehouse, adjoining the last lot.

Lot 31. The "Black Dog" public house, Castle Street.

Lot 34. The "Duke's Head" Public House, Wincheap Street.

Lot 35. The "King's Head," Public House, Wincheap Street.

Lot 37. The "Royal Exchange," public house, Stour Street.

Lot 38. The "Kentish Arms," public house, and 5 cottages in Jewry Lane. Leasehold for a short term at a low rent.

Lot 40. The "Duke William," at Ickham, abiout five miles from Canterbury. Freehold.

Lot 41. The "Royal Oak Inn," at Deal. Freehold except a small portion.

Lot 42. The "King's Arms," Beach Street, Deal, and Cottage in the rear. leasehold for a short term, at a Ground rent.

Lot 43. The "Fleur De Lis," near the Railway Station, Dover. Leasehold for a term of 6 years, at a Ground rent of 3.

Lot 44. The "Two Brewers," Limekiln Street, Dover. leasehold for a term of 46 years, at a ground rent of 3.

Lot 45. The "Fountain Inn, adjoining the Market place at Dover. Freehold.

Lot 46. The "Lord Nelson," Radnor Street, near the harbour, Folkestone. Freehold.

Lot 47. The "Bricklayers Arms," Fancy Street, Folkestone. Freehold.

Lot 48. The "Castle Inn," at Sandgate. Leasehold for a short term, at a ground rent of 7s. 6d.

Lot 49. The "King's Head Hotel and Tap," at Margate. Freehold.

Lot 50. The "New Inn," at Elham, on the road to Hythe. Freehold.

Lot 51. The "King's Arms," at Milton near Sittingbourne. Freehold.

The Public Houses are for the most part in the occupation of unexceptionable tenants, and the majority of them are doing trades, both in beer and spirits, considerably above the average run of Country houses. (None of them have been beer shops; they're all old Licence Houses, with connections of long standing, thereby affording ample security for the permanency of the trade). The Premises generally are in a superior state of repair.

Particulars and Plans, price 1s. each, may be had of Messr's. Furleys and Mercer, Solicitors, Canterbury; at the "Fountain Hotel;" and of Mr. V. J. Collins, 3, Moorgate Street, London.


Kentish Gazette, 2 October 1849.

To Inn Keepers and Others.

To be let, with immediate possession, and on very advantageous terms.

"ROYAL OAK INN," DEAL, an old-established house, with good stabling, and well situated for business.

Apply to Messrs. Flint, Stour Street, Canterbury.


Kentish Gazette, Tuesday 2 April 1867.

Mr. Brassey and the Liberal Electors.

A meeting of the Liberal electors of Deal and Walmer was held at the "Royal Oak Inn," Middle Street, on Wednesday evening, R. Hazel, Esq., in the chair. Mr. Brassey was present and addressed the meeting at considerable length. He was most enthusiastically received by the numerous company assembled. Several of the electors expressed their satisfaction with the address of Mr. Brassey and his clear and lucid enunciation of his political opinions, and at the close, of the motion of Mr. Lush, seconded by Alderman Brown, a vote of confidence and promised support in the event of an election was unanimous accorded to Mr. Brassey. A vote of thanks having been presented to the Chairman for his conduct in the chair, the meeting separated.


From Laker 1917, P. 201

On August 6th, 1794, John Hollams, lieutenant, Deay Coy. (Deal Castle Coy. of Volunteers) was chosen Mayor of Deal. In the voting the company  assembled and fired three volleys in honour of the event. They then marched to the "Royal Oak Inn" where the Mayor and Corporation were banqueted and there mounted a Sergeant's Guard.


From an email received 17 November 2013.

I worked for most of my career in HM Customs & Excise always in London. About 8 years ago, we bought a flat in Deal and have greatly enjoyed staying there. We came at the end of September and happened to look in the new "antigue/house clearance" shop behind the Co-op. I was amazed to find an 1823 Commission given to Henry Epps by the Commissioners of Excise. It seems to be the original, with stamped paper seals.

Royal Oak 1823 Commission

A wonderful piece of history. I have no idea where it came from.

Best wishes,

Richard Allen.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 23 November, 1833. Price 7d.

The Catch and Glee Club, at the "Royal Oak," has commenced for the seventh season, with a very considerable increase of patronage; and Epps continues his usual urbanity. The third evening was on Tuesday last, when as on the former meetings, there was a very crowded room; and the overtures, Sophonisha, Italian in Algiers, William Tell, and Sargino, were delightfully performed. The leader, Mr. Harrison, will have his concert on Tuesday, the 10th December, until when, the Club do not again meet; every member wishing to shew that encouragement due to the service of so deserving a young man, and on which occasion the usual beauty and fashion will doubtless grace the room.

A Glee club is a musical group, historically of male voices but also of female or mixed voices, which traditionally specializes in the singing of short songs—glees—by trios or quartets. The first named Glee Club was founded in Harrow School, in London, England, in 1787.



Pigot's directory 1840 situates it in Middle Street, while the Deal, Walmer & Sandwich Telegram of 1858 shows an advert that states the following:- "ROYAL OAK" Tavern and Hotel, Oak Street, (opposite the pier) Deal. I. Hicks, proprietor, Billiards &c.


This is a pub and not to be confused with the "Royal Hotel" in Deal. The "Royal Hotel," is of course in Beach Street.


From Almanack 1865.

John Pain, ostler at the "Royal Oak," Deal, hanged himself in July, 1827.


From the Dover Telegraph, Saturday 23 November 1833.


Our Catch and Glee Club, at the Royal Oak, has commenced for the seventh season, with a very considerable increase of patronages; and Epps continues his usual urbanity. The third evening was on Tuesday last, when as on the former meetings, there was a very crowded room; and overtures, Sophonisha, Italien in Algiers, William Tell, and Sargino were delightfully performed. The leader, Mr Harrisson, will have his Concert on Tuesday, the 10th December, until when, the Club do not again meet; every member wishing to shew that encouragement due to the services of so deserving young men, and on which occasion the usual beauty and fashion will doubtless grace the room.

From New Handbook to Deal. 1852.

"At the corner of Oak Street is the "Royal Oak Inn," which has  Concert Room, where the celebrated Catch Club hold their meetings and Balls occasionally take place."



(The Hibernian Catch Club is a male-only Catch musical club founded c.1680 in Dublin, Ireland by the vicars-choral; it claims to be the oldest surviving musical society in Europe. Membership was historically exclusive, restricted until 1770 to members of the vicars-choral. When participation was expanded in the late eighteenth century members still had to be appointed by committee, and included many prominent members of the Irish nobility, gentry, and professions. Info by Wikipedia.)


From the Deal, Walmer & District and Kingsdown Telegram. 25 July, 1863.

Annual Dinner of 3rd (Deal and Walmer) Cinque Port Volunteers at "Royal Oak Hotel."


From the Deal, Walmer, and Sandwich Mercury, 28 September, 1872. 1d.


Frederick Davis, a respectable-looking young man, belonging to Upper Walmer, was brought up charged with being drunk and disorderly at Deal on the previous evening.

P.C. Pettet deposed: I was on duty last night at eleven o'clock, and was called to the "Royal Oak," public-house. I went there, and found the prisoner, Frederick Davis, in the tap-room with others. They said he had offered another out to fight, and a man named John Ashington had his garment off. I told the prisoner he had better go home, and he then left the house. About ten minutes afterwards I heard a noise in Lower Street. I went there, and saw the prisoner stopping another man, and said he would knock him down with his umbrella. I found he was very drunk, and I took him into custody. He did not make any noise then, but he had been making a great noise in Lower Street.

The Magistrates fined the prisoner 10s., including costs, or in default seven days' imprisonment.

The money was paid.



1875 and some time thereafter the Deal Licensing Register reported that the house hadn't applied for a licence.

Balls and concerts were frequently held at the inn although closed many years before the building was damaged by shell-fire on 21 June 1944.



WAITE Thomas to Dec/1794 dec'd

FENNER & FLINT Brewers (owners) 1786

SOLE Edward 1786+

BARHAM Thomas to Mar/1803

RICKMAN Thomas Mar/1803-04+

EPPS Henry 1820-23+ Pigot's Directory 1823(Deal Licensing Register 1828)

EPPS John 1826-39 Pigot's Directory 1828-29(Pigot's Directory 1832-34Pigot's Directory 1839 & excise office)

LOWIN Henry Holt 1839-47+ (age 40 in 1841Census) Pigot's Directory 1840Bagshaw's Directory 1847

GAMBRELL Thomas 1850-52+ (age 49 in 1851Census) Dover Telegraph

KENT Frederick 1855+

HICKS John to Sept/1858+ Deal Telegram

LINNETT Thomas Sept/1858+ Deal Telegram

BURCH John 1861+ (age 35 in 1861Census)

FINNIS William 1861+ (age 50 in 1861Census)

BROOKS W 1865+

LANGLEY ???? 1873+


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

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

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

Dover TelegraphFrom the Dover Telegraph

Deal TelegramFrom the Deal Telegram

Deal Licensing RegisterDeal Licensing Register



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