Sort file:- Sandgate, March, 2024.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 27 March, 2024.


Earliest 1798

Ship Inn

Open 2020+

65 High Street


01303 248525

Ship 1911

Above photo celebrating coronation of King George Vi on 22nd June 1911.

Ship 1920s

Above photo 1920s.

Ship Inn 1930

Above photo 1930 showing Joseph C Sherrod outside, kindly sent by Lynne Rogers.

Ship locals 1951

Above photo showing Landlady Mrs. Sherrod and locals, 1951.

Above photo, 1963, also showing gap where "Royal Kent Hotel" stood.

Ship Inn 1968

Above photo 1968, kindly send by Rory Kehoe.

Ship 1970s

Above photo 1970s.

Ship watercolour 1990

Above watercolour by Diane Setek, circa 1990.


Above photo, date unknown.

Ship Inn in Sandgate

Above photo date unknown.

Ship Morris Dancers 1999

Morris Dancers outside the Ship in October 1999.

Ship dinging room 2020

Above photo showing the dining room of the Ship, June 2020.

Ship Inn sign 1990

Above sign 1990.

Above with thanks from Brian Curtis


Built around 1798.

Reputed to house a ghost called "The Fish Lady," who is said to pester customers she doesn't care for. It is believed she is a former landlady, and as the pub used to also house a fishmongers, this tale is certainly plausible. Another ghost having been seen is a soldier in Victorian uniform.

It was along this street that supplies came in for the 1st Light infantry in the eighteenth century. In 1798, the troops were based at Shornecliffe Camp when John Hogben was landlord and a popular inn it was then. The camp had been built in 1794 in preparation for the Napoleonic Wars. The Ship was also as popular during the Crimean War when the British German Legion was raised and camped nearby. In the 1920s, under the landlord Henry Beer, it was described as The World Famous Ship Inn, Sandgate.

According to a former barman, the following tale has been taken from

"I used to work at the Ship Inn whenever Stewart would have a night off. On the particular night in question me and my fellow barperson – a girl called Nikki – had closed up and were cashing up the till. Above the till is a CCTV monitor that looks down the corridor towards the toilets. As Nikki and I were at the till I noticed someone on the CCTV standing just outside of the kitchen door. To be honest the image was not clear but Nikki confirmed that there was someone standing there. I asked Nikki to watch the CCTV as I went to investigate. Firstly I looked out of the bar door and noticed the corridor was empty – damn who ever it is has disappeared into the kitchen and to be honest with the amount of knives etc. in there I wasn't really looking forward to going in after them.

"Anyway, puffing out my chest and standing my full 5 foot 6 inches I proceeded down the corridor. As I approached the kitchen I prepared myself for the worst when I heard a scream coming from the bar. Worried that this intruder had somehow managed to nip into the back bar and was busy stealing Stewarts money or ravishing the barmaid I rushed to the bar where Nikki was standing as white as a – dare I say it… ghost – and I asked what was the trouble?

"With a huge tremor in her voice she said that she watched me on the CCTV monitor and apparently I walked straight through the person stood in the corridor!!! With that we left the pub… pretty quickly… Oh and I even left my house keys behind and had to wake Wendy the following morning at 6am so that I could get into my car and go to work!!!"


Kentish Gazette, Tuesday 15 December 1807.


John Prebble respectfully announces to his friends and the public that he has taken the above inn; and trusts by attention and civility, joined with good accommodation and reasonable charges, that he shall merit and receive their future favours.

Neat wines and spirituous liquors.

Dinners dressed on the shortest notice.

Good stabling, with neat post chaises, able horses, and careful, drivers.


From the Kentish Gazette, 14 October 1845.

SANDGATE, Oct. 4. Sudden Death.

We regret to have to record the very sudden decease of Mr. Joseph Baldwin, many years principal Groom to T. T. Hodges, Esq.; he spent the evening on Friday last with a few friends at Richardson's "Ship Hotel," and retired at half-past nine, bidding the party good night, alas! for ever, for very melancholy to relate he was a corpse by seven o'clock in the following morning. He was a man of quiet and unobtrusive habits, and very generally respected. Mr. B. we are sorry to add, has left a long afflicted poor wife, wholly unprovided for, but we feel assured her ease will receive at the hands of Mr. Hodges all the consideration that humanity and liberality can suggest.


Kentish Gazette, 14 December 1847.


Monday 6th Inst., being the 10th anniversary of the Sandgate Benefit Society, the members dined together, at the "Ship Hotel," and after spending an harmonious and happy evening retired to their respective homes. This Society has effected much good and progresses prosperously. Long may it continue to do so.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 25 November, 1848. Price 5d.


An inquest was held last week at the "Ship Hotel," Sandgate, upon the body of Mrs. T. B. Richardson, wife of the landlord of the above hotel, who expired after a few hours of illness on Saturday morning. The deceased was apparently well till nine o'clock on Friday evening, when she was suddenly seized in a fit, and Mr. Roscoe was immediately called in, but she never rallied, her death being attributed to apoplexy.

Verdict - "Died by the visitation of God."


From the Kentish Gazette, 28 November 1848.


Nov. 17. at Sandgate, of apoplexy, Martha, wife of Mr. William Richardson, landlord of the "Ship Hotel," at that place, aged 37 years, leaving an affectionate husband and a numerous young family to deplore their awfully sudden and irreparable loss.


From the Kentish Gazette, 28 November 1848.

SANDGATE, Sudden Death.

An inquest was held last week at the "Ship Hotel," upon the body of Mrs. T. B. Richardson, wife of the landlord of the above hotel, who expired after a few hours illness on Saturday morning. The deceased was apparently well till nine o’clock, on Friday evening, when she was suddenly seized with a fit, and Mr. Roscoe was immediately called in, but she never rallied, her death being attributed to apoplexy.

Verdict, "Died by the Visitation of God."


Kentish Gazette, 5 June 1849.


Richardson:— May 24, at Sandgate, Mary Mason, widow of Mr. William Richardson, of the "Ship Inn," whom she survived only four months, aged 32 years.


Maidstone Gazette 21 October 1851.

Petty Sessions, Wednesday; Before R. Hart Esq., Mayor, J. Bateman, W. Major and S. Mackie Esqs.

The licence granted from William Medhurst, Ship Inn, Sandgate, to Augustus Neve.

Note: Name known at either Ship, Sandgate.


Maidstone Journal 2 November 1852.

Petty Sessions, Wednesday: Before W. Smith Esq., Mayor, David Major, William Major and William Bateman Esqs.

The only business transacted was the transferring of two licences, viz.; the "South Eastern Pavilion Shades" from Fuller to Richard Hambrook, of Folkestone, fly proprietor; and the "Ship," Sandgate, from Augustus Neve to Richard Burt, late of Horsmonden.


Southeastern Gazette, 4 January 1853.


Fatal Accident to a Tradesman.

On Tuesday afternoon last, Mr. John Grimwood, baker, Mr. Richard Best, landlord of the "Ship Tavern," and Mr. Brown (brother of Mr. Grimwood), started in a pony cart from Sandgate to Folkestone. They first went a short distance on the lower road, but afterwards returned, and intending to take the upper one, they had got to within a few yards of the lodge of Darnley House, when Mr. Best remarked that he thought something was coming down the hill from Folkestone very fast. Mr. Grimwood drove his pony on to the side of the road, and in a moment a cart with two horses ran into the pony cart, and the collision was so great that they were all thrown out, Mr. Grimwood falling against the wheel and receiving a fracture of the skull; the other persons received but trifling injuries. Medical assistance was obtained, and on examination it was found that Mr. Grimwood was quite dead. The horse and cart that caused the accident belonged to a farmer at Romney, and had been employed to carry the sailors and baggage of some poor shipwrecked fishermen; whether the horses running away arose from negligence of the driver, we are unable to state. A coroner’s inquest was ordered to be held on the body on Friday morning. A jury was summoned, who were in attendance all day; but no coroner came. They were again summoned on Saturday evening at seven o’clock. The deceased was about thirty-one years of age, and has left a wife and family of three children, with the prospects of a fourth. The affair has cast quite a gloom in the quiet town of Sandgate, the peculiar position of the road preventing the possibility of avoiding such an accident.

Coroner’s Inquest.

An inquest was held on Saturday last, at the "Ship Tavern," Sandgate, at seven o’clock in the evening, before T. T. Delaaaux, Esq., on the body of Mr. John Grimwood. Some misunderstanding as to where the body was found, between the coroners of the borough and county, was explained to the jury, who had been detained the whole day previous waiting for the arrival of the coroner.

Mr. Ford attended from Mr. Hart's office, to watch the proceedings on behalf of the family of the deceased.

Richard Best deposed:— I keep the "Ship Tavern," Sandgate. On the 28th of last month, about three o’clock in the afternoon, I was in a light chaise cart with the deceased and his brother-in-law, Mr. Brown. We intended to go to Folkestone, but had proceeded only a short distance when I heard something coming down the hill. I told the deceased so, and he drove to his proper side and stood still, the deceased said "We shall have a spill," and in a moment a cart drawn by two horses came upon us, throwing us all out, the deceased falling to the ground. As soon as I recovered I ran for a doctor, and could not find one. I went to Dr. George; he was at home, but he sent a message out that he was too ill to come, and recommended me to go for his partner, Mr. Moseley, I did so and he was not to be found.

By the Foreman:— I am sure that was the message. I believe Dr. George saw the deceased afterwards. I think that the deceased was thrown against the wheel of the cart.

By Mr. Ford:— It was a heavy dung cart; the accident occurred near Daroley-lodge. I did not see the driver of the cart; if he had been near I must have seen him; the cart appeared to be empty. I believe that if any one had had the management of the horses, the accident would not have occurred. The extent of the road I could see was about five or six rods. There is a curve in the road. The horses were galloping as if they had run away.

Thomas Brown deposed:— I live in Islington, and am a law stationer. I was in the cart with the last witness and the deceased. (The coroner then read the evidence of the last witness, which this witness corroborated, adding that he saw a man, who looked like a waggoner, on the footpath, running as if he was after the horses; this was about three or four minutes after the accident). Witness continued:— I remained with the deceased and raised him up; the collision was so sudden that it was like a flash of lightning.

James Todd deposed:— I am a general dealer, and live at Hythe. I walked with a man driving a cart drawn by two horses; he was walking along the footpath. A man passed by on horseback, which started the leader, who first trotted and then galloped; the sideboards of the cart rattled, which made them go faster; the waggoner could not have prevented their starting. We walked from Folkestone sometimes on the road and sometimes on the footpath. I do not know how many feet the bank is high, but the driver could not, from the position he was in, have any control over the horses.

By Mr. Ford:— As a person accustomed to driving, I do not think it prudent to leave the horses’ heads going down a hill; if the driver had been in his proper place at the time the horses started, I think he could have controlled them.

Daniel Painter deposed:— I am a hatter, and live at Folkestone. I was on the road from Sandgate to Folkestone, at about three o’clock in the afternoon of the 28th, and when within twenty yards of the brow of the hill, I saw two horses and a cart coming at a fast rate toward me, the driver running from the pathway endeavoring to overtake his horses. Shortly afterwards I saw a man running in the same direction. I do not recollect meeting a horse. A pony might have gone up Coolinge-lane. The driver was ten or fifteen yards behind the cart, and was running fast.

Henry Lawrence deposed:— I am a fisherman at Sandgate. I was on the bank opposite to where the accident happened near to Darnley cottages. I saw a cart and two horses come down the hill, and run against a cart in which were three men; they were all thrown to the ground. I saw the driver come by, some time afterwards. I cannot say how many minutes it was. I was confused at the time. I saw Todd coming towards Sandgate.

At this stage of the evidence, Mr. Ford, on behalf of the family of the deceased, asked for an adjournment, as evidence could, he thought, be produced, giving some further information.

The request was accordingly adjourned to twelve o’clock to-day (Tuesday).


Southeastern Gazette, 11 January 1853.

SANDGATE. Adjourned Coroner’s Inquest.

On Tuesday last the inquest on the body of Mr. John Grimwood was resumed, when the following additional evidence was adduced:—

Edwin Brown, groom, deposed:— I live at Folkestone; as I was coming from thence to Sandgate on Tuesday last, at about half-past two o’clock in the afternoon, I overtook and passed a cart drawn by two horses. On my passing, the fore horse started. The horses were going at a foot-pace before I passed. I saw the driver on the footpath; he was abreast of the rod horse, a little further down the hill. I looked back and saw the horses had run away. To prevent being run against I turned up Coolinge-lane. I saw the driver run after the horses down the road, and I heard him call out to them to stop. I afterwards passed down the road, and saw the deceased lying on the road.

By Mr. Ford:— I was slowly trotting, about five or six miles an hour. The driver, where he was, could not possibly have any control ovor the horses; if the driver had been in his proper place, the accident might have been prevented.

By a juror:— There was a man with the driver at the time I passed. The footpath is about 4 1/2 feet high.

Edward George, M.D., deposed:— On Tuesday afternoon I found deceased apparently dead. I put my hand to his wrist; his pulse was still beating; in two minutes afterwards it ceased to beat. I found a severe lacerated wound upon the forepart of the head, and I believe a fracture without depression of the bone. There was a fracture of the right fore arm, but I consider death arose from concussion of the brain, which might have been produced by a fall.

By a Juror:— About six or seven minutes elapsed between the first time I was called, and when I attended the deceased. I was not aware that the accident happened so close to my house, or I should have tried (notwithstanding my illness) to have gone to the deceased at once.

James Todd, re-examined, further stated that the man who drove the horses when the fatal accident occurred, was then in the room, and he pointed him out to the jury.

The man alluded to, after being duly cautioned, made a statement to the following effect:— My name is John Post. I am a waggoner in the employ of Mr. John Mortley, farmer, who has a farm at Romney. I was coming towards Sandgate on Tuesday last, and when I was a short distance off some cottages, a young man came down the hill on horseback, he passed my horses. The fore one started, and flew-off to the other side of the road. I came off the footpath, nearly opposite the house, and ran after them to try and stop them. They were stopped in Sandgate. When I got to them, I caught hold of the leader, and he plunged and tried to start again. I gave my name to the policeman, also my master’s, and he told me I might go.

The coroner having summed up the evidence, the jury retired, and returned the following "special verdict":— "We, the said jurors, find that John Grimwood was accidentally killed on the 28th December last, by the running away of the horses of a cart belonging to Mr. John Mortley, of Romney, and that John Post, as the driver of the said cart, was guilty of great negligence by walking on the footpath instead of in the road near his horses."

At the request of the jury, John Post, the waggoner, was called in and cautioned as to his future conduct.

In connexion with the above fatal accident, we have learnt some particulars which show the value of life assurance and the danger of procrastination. It is the custom of offices to allow some days after the premium becomes due for its payment. The deceased, who was insured by the Indisputable Policy Company, for 500, had delayed the payment of his premium till the last day, so that the insurance had fallen before his relative went to pay the premium. It is gratifying, however, to be able to state, from information received from the agent of the company, who happened to be the foreman of the inquest, that on his making the circumstance known to the board, they immediately directed him to inform the widow that they would consider the assurance as still effectual.


Southeastern Gazette 15 August 1854.

Local News:

At the petty sessions, the following license was transferred; The Ship Inn, Sandgate, from Richard Best to George Ward.

Notes: Best previously unknown at Ship Hotel, and earlier date for Ward.


Dover Chronicle 19 August 1854.

Petty Sessions: The following licences were transferred: The "Clarendon Hotel," from the agent to the assignees of Ward's bankruptcy to Mary Ann Malcolm; the "True Briton," from John Andrews, deceased, to his widow; the "Rose Inn," from William and Richard Medhurst to Richard and Ann Medhurst; the "Ship Inn," Sandgate, from Richard Best to George Ward; the "Shakespeare Inn," Folkestone, from Thomas Richards to John Blackman.


Folkestone Chronicle 20 October 1855.

East Kent Quarter Sessions, Tuesday: Before James Beckford Wildman Esq.

Caroline Hunter, 21, and Mary Ann Hunt, 28, single women, two unfortunate creatures of the lowest class by their appearance, charged with stealing a table cloth, value 7s., the property of George Ward, at Cheriton, on the 13th October, 1855.

Mr. G. Ward, the prosecutor, stated that he kept the Ship Inn, Sandgate, and was mess man to the officers of the British Foreign Legion, now encamped at Shorncliffe. The table cloth produced was his property, and used on the mess dining table; it has his mark on it, his name in full being written thereon. He did not know the prisoners, not had they to his knowledge access to the rooms where the cloth had been used.

Mr. B. Collins, landlord of the White Lion at Cheriton, deposed that the prisoners offered the cloth to him for sale.

There appeared to be very little to implicate Hunt beyond being in company with Hunter when the cloth was offered for sale to Mr. Collins.

The jury found both prisoners Guilty, but on the Chairman asking the prosecutor a few questions as to whether the women were ever seen about the camp or near the place where the cloth had been stolen, Mr. Ward said they would not have been allowed in the camp on any consideration. The facts were, that a portion of the Legion being about to leave for embarkation, a dinner took place, at which a more than usual number sat down, and the cloths were left on the tables till a late hour after dinner. Early the following morning a party of men, known as a fatigue party, were engaged in clearing the room, at which time he supposed the cloth was stolen, and it was likely to have found its way into the hands of the prisoners through some of the men so engaged. This statement altered the features of the case, and some of the jury observed that had this been stated before it might have had an effect on their verdict.

The Clerk of the Court observed that the prisoners were also indicted for “having in possession, knowing it to be stolen”, and the Chairman directed the jury to consider the evidence as it affected the prisoners of receiving knowing it to have been stolen, and on this point the jury gave a verdict of Guilty, and the prisoners were each sentenced to one month's imprisonment with hard labour.


South Eastern Gazette, 9 October, 1860.

FOLKESTONE. Quarter Sessions.

These sessions were held on Tuesday, before J. J. Lonsdale, Esq. Recorder. There were but three prisoners for trial.

John Bastock surrendered to take his trial for stealing a live cock, at Sandgate, the property of Mr. Ward, "Ship Hotel." Mr. Anderson prosecuted. Mr. Biron, instructed by Mr. Minter, defended.

The case, which lasted some time, was simply this. Prisoner knocked down the fowl, which was in Mr. Valyer's stable, and carried it into Mr. Keeler’s beer-shop, where he threw it down on the table, and it was not seen afterwards. When prisoner was apprehended he offered to pay for it. Several witnesses gave the prisoner a good character for honesty, and he was acquitted.


From the By Vicky Castle, 21 May 2019.

Man pictured on roof near Folkestone pub moments before being 'led to safety'.

Officers said they were called to reports of a 'disturbance' in the area.

A distressed man was seen on the roof of The Ship Inn in Sandgate, Folkestone.

A photo has emerged showing the moment a man took to the roof near a pub in Folkestone.

man on roof of Ship Inn 2019

Sandgate High Street was shut last night (May 21) as the incident took place.

Police, firefighters and other emergency crews raced to the scene outside The Ship Inn just before 8pm.

Witnesses said police were turning cars around while the man was on the roof.

Officers said they were called to reports of a "disturbance" in the area.

A woman, 56, was arrested on suspicion of assault and is still in custody.

The man on the roof was led away to safety by healthcare professionals.

A spokesman for Kent Police said: "We were called at just before 8pm last night to a disturbance in Sandgate High Street.

"A 56 year old woman from Sandgate was arrested on suspicion of assault and remains in custody.

"A distressed man who at the time was on top of a nearby building was led away to safety by healthcare professionals."


From an email received 13 April 2022.

Joseph C and his wife Ethel Diana nee Senior (my great aunt) took on the license of the pub in 1930. Sadly he died between Oct & Dec 1932.

Ethel had a girl called Dorothy Horney living with her and although I'm not certain I have a recollection that I was told she was an unofficial adopted daughter.

Dorothy married George A Warden in 1942 in Biggleswade, Beds which is where my great grandmother and the other members of the family lived. George & Dorothy took on the pub in 1953 till 1985 but my great aunt continued to live with them.

I remember visiting her with my parents sometime between 1962 and 1965 and although I'm not certain of the year I know I was under 13 as I wasn't allowed in the bar when it was open because you had to be over 13 in those days.

Hope this adds to the information you have about the pub.

Lynne Rogers.


They are now (2016) brewing their own beers under the brewery title of "Amazing Brewery Company."


I believe there may be a little confusion over some of the licensee names for this one up to 1864, as there was also another premises called the "Ship Hotel" in the same area at the same time.



HOGBEN John 1798+

PREBBLE John 1807+

ROBERTS Richard 1823+ Pigot's Directory 1823

PIETY Richard 1828+ Pigot's Directory 1828-29

MARSH Stephen 1830

PODEVINE Sarah 1832-39+ Pigot's Directory 1832-34Pigot's Directory 1839 (posting & commercial)

WORTHINGTON Henry 1837-43 (beer retailer & fishmonger)

ROBERTS Tabitha Walker 1843

RICHARDSON William 1847-48 Bagshaw's Directory 1847

LUCAS James 1851+ (age 48 in 1851Census)

BLENCOWE William 1851+ (age 45 in 1851Census)

MEDHURST William to Oct/1851

NEVE Augustus Oct/1851-Nov/52

BEST Richard Nov/1852-Aug/54

WARD George Aug/1854-58 Folkestone Chronicle

HOGBEN George 1858-81

RUSSELL Charles 1881-90 Next pub licensee had

MINTER Mr 1890+

MANLEY Sidney Ernest 1899+ Kelly's 1899 (beer retailer)

SHARMAN Frederick C 1901-13+ (age 28 in 1901Census)

SHARMAN Mr A F C 1914-18+

DAVIS D 1923+


BEER Henry 1927-30+

SHERROD Joseph C 1930-Dec/32 dec'd

SHERROD Ethel D Mrs 1934-53+ Kelly's 1934 (beer retailer)

WARDEN George A Dec/1953-Apr/85

WHIFFIN Stewart Apr/1985-2/Mar/2020

CURRY Darren 2/Mar/2020+


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

Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847

Kelly's 1899From the Kelly's Directory 1899

Kelly's 1934From the Kelly's Directory 1934

Folkestone ChronicleFrom the Folkestone Chronicle


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