Page Updated:- Tuesday, 23 March, 2021.


Earliest 1990s

(Name from)


Open 2020+

High Street

St. Margaret's at Cliffe

01304 853404

Smugglers at St Margarets at Cliffe
Smugglers at St Margarets at Cliffe

Smugglers sign

Smugglers Garden

All photos above by Paul Skelton 10 November 2007.

The garden of the Smugglers used to be where the skittles was played. Unfortunately no sign of the alley any longer.


I (Paul Skelton) can remember playing Skittles on this alley quite a few times when the pub was called the "Carriers Arms", and it always looked as if the alley was running up hill. I also believe I drank one of the last pints of Fremlins Tusker at this pub, although brewed by Whitbred at the time, it did taste very distinctive. I would also like to add that the team I was playing skittles for at the time recorded a record loss in the 1980's of being beaten by 98 skittles. I hasten to add our main team, including myself, were on holiday at the time and half the team reserves and friends kindly stepped into our shoes, so I wasn't playing that fateful match.


This is little about the history of the Smugglers Public House written by the author their Web Site, who lived opposite the Pub for 35 years in another house associated with the art of Smuggling.

The village of St. Margaret's-at-Cliffe Nr Dover, Kent is oozing with history, both back to the Norman days, where less than50 yards, from the Smugglers, stands one of the best examples of Norman churches, dating back to the year 1000AD. In addition to the Norman and Saxon links to St. Margaret's-at-Cliffe, the village was a centre of operations in the dark days of smuggling. In those days, circa 1700-1800AD, it involved huge quantities of illicit booze, mainly rum being smuggled, with St. Margaret's-at-Cliffe being at the centre for importation and distribution. Because of the village ties and, indeed this property, the Pub was renamed from it's previously known name of the Carriers Arms, to what it is known today, The Smugglers.

The Carriers Arms, as it was known before the Smugglers, had the typical two drinking areas, as most of the pre 1980's Public Houses did. As you enter the Smugglers, on the right was, the Private Bar. This was small and reserved for the 'Upper Class'. Although this area is now part of the main bar area, it can still be seen where the original dividing walls and entrance door were.

Carrying straight on, as you enter, another door allowed you access to the main Public Area bar, where the likes of most of the villagers, used to socialize and enjoy a pint.

Recent internal refurbishment over the past years, have seen several additional features added to the Smugglers.

Centre of the bar serving area, the traditional square or rectangular shaped bar was replaced with an oval bar, which is constructed in the shape of a 'large beer barrel'.

The restaurant, area itself, has been added by the present owners, which is light, airy and comfortable, in which to enjoy a relaxing meal from the extensive menu.

The garden area used to be the home to a skittles ally. The Smugglers skittle team, along with their dart teams, used to be a team to be reckoned with in years past, before they were disbanded. A selection of memorabilia photos and trophies are still displayed just outside of the restaurant area.

The garden has now been turned into partially the restaurant and also an outside seating area, where meals can also be served. The garden area can be covered if the weather turns cooler or inclement and can of course be the venue for weddings or other functions.

The Smugglers at St. Margaret's-at-Cliffe has recently applied and obtained a licence to enable weddings or civil ceremonies to be held on our premises.

Above information kindly reproduced from their web site at the following location:-


I am informed that May 2014 the pub was for sale with a freehold of 825,000. December 2015 the for sale sign has been removed.


From the By Phil Hayes. 13 August, 2015.

Smugglers Inn fire:

Crews fight flames in St Margaret's pub kitchen.

FIRE crews spent two hours battling a kitchen blaze at a pub in St Margaret's last night.

The firefighters were called to the "Smugglers Inn" in High Street at 11pm on Wednesday, August 12.

The crews used breathing apparatus, two hose reel jets, the fog spike and a thermal imaging camera to douse the fire in the first floor.

They left the scene at 1.11am this morning (Thursday, August 13).

The cause is not known at this stage.

There are no reported injuries and the extent of the damage is not currently known.


From the Dover Mercury, 20 August, 2015.

Pub kitchen back open after fire.

The "Smugglers" in St Margaret’s will begin serving food again on Friday, August 28 following the kitchen’s closure due to a fire.

The kitchen was forced to close for refurbishment after a blaze last week.

Firefighters were called to the establishment in the High Street at 11.30pm on Wednesday, August 12 after staff who were locking up discovered the fire.

Owner Peter Killin said: “There were staff here who were just locking up when they noticed the smell.

“They called the fire service straight away.”

Three appliances attended.

Crew manager Adrian Hawkins said: “It was a fire in the ventilation ducting in the kitchen.

There was a build-up of fat and it caught alight. We sent our breathing apparatus crew in there to put it out.”

The firefighters left the scene around 1pm.

Mr Killin added: “It was quite minor but the smoke got everywhere.

“Every one of the firefighters gave immaculate service.

“They were very quick to respond and were very helpful.

“I take my hat off to them.”

The pub’s bar was not affected by the fire, and remained open throughout the period the kitchen was closed.




KILLIN Peter 2009+


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