Sort file:- Dover, October, 2020.

Page Updated:- Friday, 09 October, 2020.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Barry Smith and Paul Skelton

Earliest 1765-

Silver Lion

Latest 1914

1C Middle Row


Silver Lion

Middle Row, looking west from Seven Star Street towards the old National Sailors Home and Blemheim Square. On the right is the Silver Lion public house (licensee about that time being William Curling 1907-10.) In the centre a seemingly enormous telegraph pole towers skywards.

Sevan Star Street 1908

The above watercolour of Seven Star Street dated 1908 is by artist E. A. Phipson. It just shows part of the "Silver Lion" on the right.


In a cul-de-sac off Council House Street, it could be approached by the narrow passage next to the "Rose and Crown" in Clarence Place. Present in 1823, (H Atkins), and in 1851 it was described as a lodging house also. The census of 1851 actually mentions that as well as the licensee and his wife, it was also housing 13 Bavarian musicians. When sold in 1881 it was described as a freehold pub, being used as a private dwelling and shop. Wilkins purchased on that occasion and must have reopened as a pub because the following year, the renewal was opposed by the Superintendent of Police who stated that it had not been used for several years. Wilkins argued that he had spent a great deal of money on renovation and the opposition melted.


Kentish Gazette 18 June 1768.


Extract of a letter from Ash, June 14.

"The man, who robbed Mr. Philip Harriotson a few days since near Waldershare, was apprehended the next day at the "Silver Lion" at Dover; he was seized suddenly by four persons, who pretended to drink and converse with him, and two pistols and a poignard were found concealed in his breast, under his shirt, with which he intended to have destroyed some of his guards. The money, etc., that he had taken from Mr. Harriotson was in his waistcoat pocket with three bank notes of 20 each, forty guineas in cash, and several trinkets; and in a pocket book was found a letter directed to a person in London on some affair of business.

"Being carried before a Justice of the Peace, he made a ready confession of several robberies, which he had committed from the month of December last, acknowledged his name to be Jomes Frederick Hellick, a native of Frankfort in Germany, and appeared to be very penitent.

"The Justice committed him to the Castle, till an opportunity offered of conveying him to Maidstone jail, and five Constables were dispatched with him; he conversed with them very calmly and sensibly, as they ascended the Castle-hill, remarked the immense height of the cliff, and begged permission to examine the samphire-gatherers a few moments; these men had left work, and their ropes remained firmly fixed to posts at the top of the cliff, and reached the shore; on a sudden he pretended to see a surprising appearance at the opposite side of the hill, and while they turned to observe it, he grasped a rope and descended, unperceived, to the shore.

He has not been seen since. Descriptions of his person, as before, are affixed at Deal, Sandwich, etc. and a considerable reward is offered for apprehending him.

"Mr. Harriotson is recovered from his injury, and is now at Sandwich."


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 2 September, 1881. 1d.


A freehold public-house, now used as a dwelling house and shop, but licensed as the “Silver Lion,” in Middle Row, Dover, near to the Sailors' Home, was bought by Mr. G. Wilkins, for 310.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 8 September, 1882. Price 1d.


The Superintendent of the Police opposed the renewal of this licence on the ground that it had not been used for several years, and there were plenty of public-houses in the Pier District where it was situated.

Mr. Worsfold Mowll appeared for the owner, Mr. Wilkins, who said that when Dover Harbour was improved, he should re-open the house. He had spent a good deal of money on it.

The Bench decided to renew the licence.


Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald 30 April 1887.



The debtor keeps the "Silver Lion," Dover. Three years ago he lost some boats and nets. He owes about 100, and has virtually no assets. He was allowed to pass.


Later though, it proved to be an obstacle in the way of the new viaduct and Dover Corporation even contemplated buying St. John's Church instead and altering the axis of the bridge, that being less expensive.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 30 August, 1901. Price 1d.


The landlord of the “Silver Lion” public house was then called forward, and he stepped into the witness box.

The Chairman (addressing him): You were convicted on the 30th November last and fined 1, and the Magistrates cautioned you to be careful in the future. On this occasion we will renew your license.

The application withdrew.



The secrecy of the dealings at such times always leaves a bitter taste but it can be said that they paid 6,800 in 1914 for three licensed houses in Beach Street and Middle Row. It can also be said that this house was in their possession that year.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, 5 February, 1915.


The cases of the five houses which had been served with notice to attend under the Compensation Act, were next considered.; The first taken was of the "Silver Lion."

The Chief Constable said that this was a fully licensed house situated in Middle Row, and the owners were the Dover Corporation. the present tenant was Mrs. L. McKeen, and was transferred to her from her former husband in 1903. After stating particulars as to the house he said it was situated in a cul-de-sac and only approached by a narrow passage by the "Rose and Crown" public house, Clarence Place. The house next door was in a dilapidated condition and a closing order had been made by the Corporation, so that the house was practically the only house in Middle Row.

Inspector Lockwood stated that on Saturday, January 23rd, at 2.50 p.m., there were nine customers; on Monday, 28th, at 4.25 p.m., one customer; and on the 28th, at 7.35 p.m., nine customers.

There was no appearance in opposition to the application and Mrs. McKeen asked no questions.

The Magistrates decision was reserved till the conclusion of the hearing.


The Magistrates then retired to consider their decision, and on returning the Chairman said that the Magistrates had decided to give a licence to the "Town Hall" for both music and singing on condition that free admission was given. The licence of the "Gothic" and "White Lion" would be renewed. The "Silver Lion," the "Black Horse," and the "Grand Sultan" would have to go to Canterbury.



When it was referred that year the town were recompensed with 886. Mrs. Louise McKeen - the former Mrs. Curling - received 123. It would seem to be the only building left in the Row but the war brought a reprieve. It was not authorised for demolition before March 1922.


From the Kentish Post, April 9-13, 1763. Kindly sent from Alec Hasenson.

Notice:- The "Silver Lion Inn," Dover, is opened, in a pleasant situation.

This may well be the very opening advert for this house.


From the Kentish Post, May 8-11, 1765. Kindly sent from Alec Hasenson.

George Hubbard, at the "King's Head Inn," Dover, has taken the "Silver Lion Inn," opposite, where there is a pleasant prospect to the water-side.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 31 December, 1842. Price 5d.


John White, butcher, aged 65, and homas Gammon, labourer, aged25, charged with receiving at Dover, 8 fowls, knowing them to have been stolen, the property of John Bishop, of Gutteridge farm, Denton.

Prosecutor being called deposed, that on the 1st of December, he missed 8 fowls, (1 cock and 7 hens.) The fowls roosted in an open lodge in the yard. Saw some fowls at the Dover station house, on the following Monday, which he believed to be his property, as the colour was similar to those he had lost.

George Bishop, brother of the last witness, had no doubt the fowls were those stolen, particularly the cock bird, and a Poland hen with a black head. Observed foot-marks near the hen-roost, and on the bank some red clay, which they had passed over, had left marks on the chalk.

Isaac Butler, driver of the Union Coach, deposed that about 7 o'clock in the morning, a man stopped him on Ewell hill and asked him to take a parcel to Dover. The man came from a stile leading towards Denton, and gave him a parcel, which was a blue bag. A bag was then produced, which witness identified as the one given to him. Judged the contents to be dead fowls, as the bag was quite warm. believes the prisoner Gammon to be the man who gave him  the bag. He wore a waistcoat like the one then produced in Court. The bad was addressed "To Mr. Gammon, Silver Lion, Dover."

Thomas Houghton, book-keeper at the Union Coach Office, received the parcel from Butler, which he took  to the "Silver Lion," as addressed.

Jane Eliza Pike, servant at the "Silver Lion," received the parcel from the last witness, which she took to her master, who gave her 1s. 2d. to pay for the carriage. About a quarter of an hour afterwards, Mrs. White, wife of the prisoner, came for the bag which was given her, and for which she repaid the carriage fare.

William Gurney, landlord of the "Silver Lion," received the nag from the last witness, and perceived that it contained fowls. When the girl told him Mrs. White came for the bag he gave it to her, as he knew Gammon lodged there. Was ill at the time and not able to make further enquiries.

E. C. Correl, superintendent of police, deposed, that after making enquiries for the bag at the "Silver Lion," he went to White's home, where he saw both prisoners. Not finding anything in the cupboard, asked Mrs. White if she had not received some fowls, and she answered, No. Then went into a back room, with policeman Hills, who there found 7 fowls plucked; and one on a table in another room. White and his wife both denied any knowledge of them.  Saw Gammon upstairs, who appeared in a dirty state, with fresh mud on his boots. White's boots were more dirty than Gammon's.

The evidence was corroborated by police-constable Hills and Ridley Friend, who further said that he saw blood on Gammon's trousers. Mrs. White told him she brought one of the fowls of Mr. Rayner. The shop appeared like a poulterer's, as there were turkeys in the window.

William Gurney recalled. The fowls were unplucked when taken away by Mrs. White.

George Bishop being recalled, and shown the heads of the fowls, identified them as those stolen from his brother.

Mr. Dickenson addressed the Jury on behalf of the prisoner, contending that the evidence of Butler was not sufficient to identify Gammon as the person who gave the parcel, and urged the impossibility of the direction being written at that time of night.

The learned Recorder then summed up the evidence at great length, and observed, that the number of fowl stolen corresponded in every particular with those found at the prisoner White's house. During the Address White fainted, and fell into the arms of the gaoler.

The jury after a short consultation returned a verdict of "Not Guilty."


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports Advertiser, 22 March, 1845.


FRIDAY. - Henry Redsull, charged with having in his possession a quantity of contraband cigars. - Robert Bounding, coast-guard boatman, deposed that he went to the "Silver Lion" public-house, when prisoner asked him to buy some cigars. He gave information of this to his chief boatman, James Rule, who, on crossing the Red Pump square, saw the prisoners carrying a box, which, on examination, was found to contain about 2000 cheroots. - Redsull, in his defence, stated that they were given to him by a man at Deal to sell, but he did not know if they had paid duty. Remanded till Monday.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports Advertiser, 13 September, 1849.


On Sunday afternoon last, at four o'clock, a jury was empanelled before G. T. Thomas Esq., Coroner for the Borough, at the Silver Lion, at the Pier, to investigate the circumstances attending the death of James Goodman, an engineer's apprentice, of H.M. steam vessel Confiance.

The jury having been sworn, and Mr. R. C. Fuller appointed as foreman, they proceeded to view the body, which was lying at a house near, and on their return to the inquest room

The Coroner observed that he purposed, on this occasion to take only the evidence of the Surgeon by whom deceased was attended, and then adjourn the inquiry till the Commander of the Confiance was communicated with, that the attendance of such of the crew as could furnish evidence of the accident that resulted in the death of deceased might be secured.

Edward Jones Esq., surgeon of Dover, was then called and deposed as follows:- Yesterday morning, about 4 o'clock, deceased was brought to my house on a litter by several men, consequently by an other, who stated that they were part of the crew of H.M. steam tug Confiance. I had him removed to the house of a man named Perry, at the Pier, and there attended him. The officer informed me that at about nine o'clock the previous evening the deceased, while attending upon the engine, slipped and fell among the machinery. On examining the deceased, I found a large lacerated wound in the left leg, and a smaller deep one over the lower part of the back-bone. These were the only external injuries, he was perfectly sensible and continued so until about five minutes before his death, which occurred about half-past nine o'clock yesterday morning. The injuries I have stated were insufficient to account for his death, they bore the appearance of being caused by the wheels and beams of machinery. From the symptoms present I apprehended the deceased had received some serious internal injury. He made a statement to me, but it was not given in the belief that he was dying.

The inquiry was then adjourned to Wednesday afternoon, at half-past 2 o'clock - the Coroner in the interval to adopt the necessary measures for obtaining the attendance of one of the crew who say the accident.


On the re-assemble of the jury, the inquiry was proceeded with by the examination of William Lowther, senior engineer of the Confiance, who had attended from Woolwich, and stated - I knew the deceased, who was an engineer's apprentice, on board the Confiance, and was 18 years of age. On the 4th instant, at about half-past 9 in the evening, the Confiance being off Beachy Head, the deceased, while oiling the cranks, was drawn into the engine, but whether from his clothes catching or his foot slipping I cannot say. He was alone, and on deck at the time: I was in the engine room, and had eased the engines in order that he might oil the crank. The first that I saw of the deceased was when he was falling from the hatchway, down the foreside of the connecting rod, on to the plate beneath the forked tail of the engine. I immediately stopped the engine, but from the "way" the vessel had on I could not stop it sufficiently quick to prevent the fork-tail from striking deceased. He was struck with considerable violence across the stomach and lower part of the body - so much so that the plate, which is five-eighths of an inch thick, and of cast-iron, (but hollowed) was broken. He did not receive more than one blow. When the engine was stopped he was instantly taken out, and did not appear at the time to have suffered much, as he said to the man who took him up "I am all right," and he was then taken forward to his berth. As we had no medical man on board, we immediately run for Dover. The deceased fell about half-past 9, and we arrived here about 3 on the morning of the 5th. I did not see him landed. I noticed a wound on his left leg, and one on his back. I think they occurred previous to his falling on the plate, since he must have been carried over by the crank .He was quite sober, there was a swell on, and a light motion on the vessel, but not enough to disturb the deceased, who was used to the sea. The deceased was sick on board after the accident, and vomited some blood.

By the Foreman: We did not try whether deceased would stand or not.

By the Coroner: I was standing between the engines at the time of the accident, expecting to hear deceased say, "All right." The engines were of 50-horse power each, and were not effected by the fall of deceased.

At the close of this evidence the Coroner observed that the only vacuum in the evidence was from the time of leaving the Confiance till deceased was taken to the surgeon. If the jury were of the opinion that it was at all material, he would write again to the Confiance for the attendance of the crew who came ashore with deceased.

The jury expressed themselves satisfied that what had already been stated, and returned the following verdict:- That the deceased, James Goodman, died from injuries received by accidentally falling into the engine room of Her Majesty's steam vessel Confiance.




Last pub licensee had HUBBARD George 1765+

ATKINS H 1823 Pigot's Directory 1823

NICHOLS John 1826-28+ Pigot's Directory 1828-29

Last pub licensee had BARNES John 1832-39+ Pigot's Directory 1832-34Pigot's Directory 1839

LUMBARD Daniel 1840 Pigot's Directory 1840

GURNEY William 1842-43+

PAYNE George 1847 Bagshaw's Directory 1847

TIERLAN Henry 1851 (age 40 in 1851Census)

TIERLAN Mrs 1851-52 end

HORTON Edmund or T 1852

BROWN William 1853

STIFF Charles 1854

HICKS Jabez H 1856-81

WILKINS G Mr 1881-82+ Dover Express (owner)

HICKS Absalom (brother of Jabez) 1881-87+ (age 64 in 1881Census)

JANES Geoffrey 1890

HOWLAND Alfred Aug/1890-99+ (also shipwright age 37 in 1891Census) Dover ExpressPikes 1895Kelly's Directory 1899

CHITTENDEN W 1901 (age 40 in 1901Census) Post Office Directory 1903

Last pub licensee had CURLING William 1907-Jan/10 dec'd Pikes 1909Dover Express

CURLING Mrs Louisa Jane Jan/1910-11 (widow and administrator age 39 in 1911Census) Dover Express

McKEEN Lewis 1913 end Post Office Directory 1913

McKEEN Mrs Louisa 1913-15


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

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

Pikes 1909From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1909

Post Office Directory 1913From the Post Office Directory 1913

Dover ExpressFrom the Dover Express



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