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Earliest 1500s

Victualling Offices 

Latest 1830

Maison Dieu


Victualling Offices

Drawn by W Bethell. Engraved by J C Stadler.

Published by W Bonython, Marine Library, Dover, 1825.

Maison Dieu 1833

Above engraving 1833.

Dover Town Hall

Above photo, date unknown. 


In the High Street is the noble hall and truncated fabric of the Maison Dieu founded by Hubert de Burgh in the 13th century for the reception of pilgrims of all nations. From the time of Henry VIII. (1500's) to 1830 it was used as a crown victualling office, but was subsequently purchased by the corporation and adapted as a town hall.


Kentish Gazette 22 February 1769.

Dover, Victualling-office, Feb. 23. 1769.

This is to Give Notice, that on Wednesday the First of March next, at Ten o'Clock in the Forenoon, Mr. Michael Russell, Agent for the Victualling at this Port, will be ready at his Office, at the Maison Dieu, to receive Tenders and Samples for furnishing Six Bags of Hops, for the Victualling Service at the said Port.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 25 January, 1834. Price 7d.


The order recently received by the Royal Engineer department, to give up this venerable edifice, preparatory to its sale and demolition, has excited the utmost surprise and regret. These extensive premises were for many years occupied by the Victualling Office, and some time after breaking up of that establishment here, the buildings were marked out of lots for public sale. A representation being made to the Duke of Wellington, then at the head of His Majesty's government, His grace at once saw the importance of the station as a depot for the engineer and ordnance stores. A military commission having made a favourable report thereon, a considerable sum was given by the Board of Ordnance to the Victualling department, for the transfer of the property, and the stores, having been removed there from North's Battery, the present establishment, including the commandant's residence, together with his offices, &c. have recently been finished at a great expense, the establishment being now the most complete of its kind in the kingdom; and, from its central position between the castle and heights, the advantage in the conveyance of stores might, hereafter, prove of the greatest importance. The tower of the Maison Dieu has been pronounced, by one of the first military engineers, to be the finest position for defence against inland attack, that Dover affords; commanding, as it certainly does, every road to the town.

This venerable relic of antiquity was erected by Hubert de Burgh, the famous defender of Dover Castle, during two successive sieges by the French, who were commanded by their Dauphin in person. The hospital, which has long since been destroyed by ravages of time, was intended to afford temporary relief to pilgrims on their passage to, or from the continent. It was erected in the reign of King John; but the church, of which the present edifice formed a part, was not completed till the following reign of Henry the Third, who was present at the dedication of it in 1227, when the noble Hubert resigned the patronage of it to his sovereign. The body or nave was 142 feet long and 89 broad, and was divided into two sections by seven beautiful arches, resting on lofty pillars. It is much to be regretted that the larger section, which contained the grand entrance, was taken down in 1831. The remaining section and the tower are in such a state of preservation as would defy the lapse of centuries; and at a small expense be again used as a place of public worship, which will soon become necessary from the continued increase of population in its vicinity. That such a complete specimen of ancient architecture should fall a prey to the pick-axe would disgrace any age, and particularly the enlightened taste of the present. The Duke of Wellington is understood to have given a promise, that the buildings should not be pulled down, and as it is presumed, that the engagements of a premier are respected by a successor, we dare to hope the ancient edifice will be spared; and trust the same partied who interest themselves so effectively on the former occasion, will not hesitate to renew their representation to His Majesty's present minister, who, if only on a principle of prospective economy, should pause before they destroy a range of useful offices, which, in the event of future wars, could not be replaced for ten times the amount they would fetch, if sold, "in these piping times of peace."


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 9 July, 1880. Price 1d.


An inquest was held on Friday afternoon, at the Maison Dieu hall, before the Borough Coroner (W. H. Payne, Esq.), on the body of Alfred Bayley Coleman, lying at the Hospital, who was killed by falling from scaffolding, which gave way at the Memorial Hall, the previous evening.

The Rev. J. F. Frewin was present, and Mr. Worsfold Mowll appeared for the contractor, Mr. Bromley.

Mr. browning was chosen foreman of the Jury, who having viewed the body, the evidence as follows was taken.

Charles Coleman, joiner, carrying on business at Sandwich, said: The deceased is my youngest son, aged 27. He was married, and had two children. The deceased was working as carpenter at the Memorial Hall, in the employ of Mr. Bromley, contractor, and he was a very steady man.

Harry Richardson, foreman, working at the hall and who was standing on a ladder just inside the building, and could see the deceased through a window on the scaffolding said: Yesterday the deceased was engaged in fixing the facia board at the chapel. He was on the point of finishing, and was on the north-west side about 6.40 in the evening when I saw the staging he was on fly up, and the deceased held up his hands, and then fell into the yard of the next house, belonging to Mr. Cook. In falling he must have fallen onto a lean-to roof, and then bounded into the yard, which was paved with stones. There was another man on the staging, who also fell. I immediately ran through into the next yard, and saw the deceased lying flat on the ground. He seemed very much hurt, and his arm was broken. I lifted him up, and called for assistance. I sent for Dr. Long, who came and examined the deceased. He was then taken to the Hospital, and also the other man, neither of whom were sensible.

By Mr. Mowll: I had tried the staging myself before the men went to work on it. It was about three o'clock yesterday when it was examined, and I found it was quite safe. There were two men on the staging, and it was made to hold them. They had been on it about a quarter of an hour before the accident. We had to work by stages, as we were not allowed to build a scaffold in Mr. Cook's yard, because he would not allow it. Certainly a scaffold would have been built had I had permission, but this was a kind of fixture of ropes, with a board to the inside of the roof. The scaffolding would have been much safer. Mr. Cook has not refused me personally, but I believe he has refused.

George Petrie, a labourer in the employ of Mr. Bromley, and working at the hall, said: Wednesday evening last I erected the staging on the north-west and other sides. I tried all of them. I nailed two pieces of wood to each end of the plank, they were on so that the rope by which it was fastened would not slip. I certainly cannot account for the boarding given away. I was not there at the time of the accident. The other stagings round the hall are fixed just the same.

By the Foreman: The rope from the plank went up to a piece of wood fixed on the roof, which was both nailed with two nails and lashed with a piece of rope which is now missing.

Mr. Mowll said enquiries had been made by the contractor and foreman as to the rope, but it could not be found.

Charles Wood, House Surgeon at the Dover Hospital, said the deceased was brought in yesterday evening a little before seven o'clock. I examined him and found he was already dead, his neck being dislocated, his head fractured, he had received several injuries and his arm broken. Death was caused by the injuries received.

Mr. Mowll said a witness could be called who saw Petrie try the staging, but he did not think it necessary.

Several of the Jury complained of the missing rope.

The Foreman arose and said he thought the best plan would be to adjourn their decision until they heard the man who was lying ill at the Hospital give evidence. He would like it adjourned, and asked how long the doctor thought the man would be before he was well. Mr. Wood said about three weeks.

The Jury agreed to adjourn their verdict for three weeks from that day, to be holden at the Town hall at six, o'clock in the evening, to hear the evidence of Thomas Falconer now lying ill at the Dover Hospital.

It was reported a subscription is being got up for the widow.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 7 October, 1887. Price 1d.



Mr. Knocker applied for the renewal of the license for theatrical performances at the Town Hall. He stated that every precaution was taken, there being three main exits from the hall into the street. Water was also laid on, and a policeman was stationed there at every performance to turn the water on in case of fire. There were attendants at each door to keep the exits clear and assist the public in leaving.

With reference to the Town Hall they thought that the two licenses should run concurrently, and terminate at the same time, and they would adjourn the application until Friday, 14th instant.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 16 March, 1888.


An inquest was held at the Town Hall, Dover, on Friday afternoon, by the Borough Coroner (Sydenham Payn, Esq.), on the body of Henry Beaumont, who died from injuries he received, whilst tobogganing on Godwyn Road. The following gentlemen composed the jury:- Messrs J. Hogben, W. Jackson, W. H. Fox, Mr. Harley, T. Wright, W. Masters, W. Gilman, W. Platt, E. Russell, C. L. Adams, W. Hard, G. Spain, W. Burt, J. Parton, and J. W. Burden. Mr. W. Burt was chosen foreman of the Jury. After viewing the body, which was lying at the residence of the parents' of the deceased, Endymion House, Salisbury Road, the following evidence was taken:-

Samuel Beaumont said: I reside at Endymion House, Salisbury Road, Dover and I am a manufacturer in France. The body the Jury have viewed is that of my son, Henry Beaumont, and his age was 9 years. When I came home on Saturday 3rd. inst. The deceased was in bed, and seriously injured, but was conscious. He made no statement with reference to the accident but only said he would never go tobogganing again. The deceased gradually got worse and died, yesterday (Thursday) afternoon, at 2 p.m. The deceased made no complaint against any person.

Percy Allen Gardner, said: I am a pupil at Mr. Wise's school Godwenehurst, Dover. I knew the deceased, Henry Beaumont. On Thursday morning March 1st. about 9 a.m. the deceased brother and myself, went up the hill, on Godwyne Road with a sleigh, belonging to the deceased. After that sleigh had been down the hill once, the deceased, his brother and myself got on, the deceased being in front. We came down the hill, and tried to get through two posts, but ran into one of the posts. The deceased's brother, Ernest Beaumont, was steering. When the sleigh struck the post, the deceased was knocked off and struck the post. I was also knocked off and lay in the middle of the road. Whilst lying on the ground, I saw Ernest put the deceased on his sleigh, and afterwards took him home. The deceased did not speak, but muttered, and I did not think he was seriously hurt. We did not strike against any other sleigh, when coming down the hill.

Ernest Beaumont said:- On Thursday morning the deceased, my brother, the last witness and myself, went tobogganing on Godwyne Road. I went down the hill on the sleigh the first time and the deceased, the last witness and myself started the second time. The deceased was in the front, and I was behind, steering, Percy Garnder being in the middle. We went down the hill about 3 yards from the gutter and when we got about 2 yards from the posts we ran against a piece of wood, which got into the runners of our sleigh and turned it off, and ran into one of the posts. Percy Gardner was thrown off and also the deceased who struck the post and fell on his side. We were going at a great speed when we struck the post. I was thrown off, and when I got up I picked my brother up and put him on my sleigh, and took him home. The deceased did not speak but groaned.

Dr. Ormsby who was called to see the deceased gave evidence, and stated that after putting the deceased under chloroform as he was in great pain, he examined him, and found his left leg was broken and an extensive contusion over the right loin. The deceased gradually grew worse, and died on Thursday morning from the injuries he had received.

The Coroner in summing up, said it was a very sad affair for a young lad to be taken away in the midst of pleasure. He had no doubt the tobogganing was a good amusement if carried out in proper places; but he was surprised to see so many persons indulging in this amusement in public places, where they might easily come in contact with the iron gutters and railings. He hoped that the present case would be a warning to those persons not to carry it on in the streets and roads. He thought it was a mistaken kindness to allow it to be carried on. He hoped those persons would find a safer place in future for their amusement.

The Jury returned a verdict of “Accidental Death.”


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 26 October, 1888. Price 1d.


Mr. E. W. Knocker applied for the renewal of the theatrical license for public performances and stage plays at the Town Hall.

The Surveyor, in his report upon the building, stated that the condition of the premises to which the license was granted last year remained the same.

The application was granted, the sureties being Mr. E. W. Fry and Mr. Edward Lukey.

Mr. Knocker said it would be the last occasion on which the bench would grant the licenses. He would have to go to the County Council in the future.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 21 February, 1890.


On Wednesday evening Mr. T. Lewis, held an inquiry at the Town Hall, on the body of an aged woman named Harriet Stickles. She had for years been in the habit of taking opium, but for the last six months, had given it up. On Sunday night, she, not feeling very well, took a small piece of opium. About three o'clock she fell into a deep sleep from which she never woke. It is supposed, that not having taken any for so long a time, the opium had more effect than she had imagined.

Mr. Ruglys was chosen foreman of the Jury, and after the body had been viewed, the following evidence was taken.

James Stickles, the husband of the deceased said: I live at 17, Bridge Street. My wife was 71, years of age, and she died on Monday evening a little after seven. She has been out of health for years, and was not very well last week being in bed three of four days, but was up on Sunday. She suffered from asthma, but has not been under medical advice, as she said nothing would do her any good. On Sunday she went to bed about ten, and about three she went to sleep, never to wake again. She had taken some opium, which she had been in the habit of taking for years, but had left off for the last six months. On Sunday morning I obtained two-pennyworth of opium for her, from Mr. Ralph the chemist. The box produced is what it was in, and the opium which is in it, is part of what I bought. She took a small pill of opium between nine and ten on Sunday night, and about twelve o'clock she got out of bed to take another piece as she felt restless, but she could not get round the bed. I declined to fetch it for her as I did not think it did her any good. About three in the morning she went to sleep but I have never known her to go to sleep from the effects of opium before. When I got up in the morning I tried to wake her but could not, the landlady then came up and washed her face, but that did not rouse her. At mid-day she was still asleep. My daughter went about that time for a doctor, but he was not at home, she then went to two or three others, but they were all out. My wife continued sleep all afternoon, breathing gently, but about seven she ceased to breathe. Mr. Long came about half-past six, but he said she was too far gone. She has not eaten anything for the last fortnight having no appetite. I tried her with all the things I could afford to buy.

Alice Terry, wife of John Terry, a mariner living at the Pier, and daughter of the last witness, said she went to see her mother on Monday morning, and finding her in a deep sleep, from which she could not be aroused, she went to Mr. Long, who was out, so she went to Mr. Woods, who was also out. Mr. Osborne was engaged, Mr. Waters was out, and Mr. Best was also from home. She went to Mr. Patmore and got a medical relief order fro Mr. Long. He was still out when she went to his house, but he came up as soon as he got home.

Mr. T. M. Ralph, junior, said that Mr. Stickles came in on Sunday morning for two-pennyworth of opium at their shop, and he served him with 28 grains. He used to purchase about six-pennyworth a week. The opium remaining in the box, had been weighed at the shop that morning and was 28 grains.

Mr. Long said: I went to 17, Bridge Street, on Monday evening about twenty to seven, and there saw Mrs. Stickles in bed, breathing very gently, but unconscious. I had been told that she had taken opium, and from the appearance of her skin and breath, I am of opinion that a dose of opium was the cause of her death. Her husband told me that she had taken two pills, but he said that he disapproved of her taking the second dose. He was very positive about this. I had been told that she had been asleep from three o'clock that morning. So long a time had elapsed since it was taken that it would be impossible to take any means to get it out of the stomach, as it would be in the system. She was too far gone to answer to any restoratives, or any stimulants. I tried her with strong ammonia, but she did not even notice it. I have heard the evidence that 28 grains were sold, and I have weighed it on my scales, and found 28 grains. I was not present when Mr. Ralph weighed it. In her state, a small dose would have a greater effect than usual. I am of firm opinion that opium hastened her death, if it did not cause it. By the time opium on an empty stomach had produced deep sleep, it would be diffused throughout the system.

By the Jury: I could not say what dose would be fatal to an adult person in sound health, but in her state, on an empty stomach, three grains would most likely be fatal. From what I have heard, she has been suffering from the prevailing epidemic, and was left in an extremely weak state.

The Coroner in summing up, said that she had probably mistaken the dose she meant to take, and in her weak state it proved fatal.

The Jury brought in the following verdict:- “That deceased met her death through misadventure, from the effect of a dose of opium, which in her weak state had a greater effect than she anticipated.”


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 20 March, 1925. Price 1d.



The Borough Coroner (Mr. E. T. Lambert) held an inquest at the Town Hall of Friday on Thomas Duncan Riddiford, of 18, Union Row, who was found dead in bed on Thursday at one o'clock with a gas tube by his side, the tube leading up through a hole in the floor from the gas jet in the room below.

Mrs. Daisy Grace Riddiford, widow of the deceased, living at 46, Thanet Gardens, Folkestone, said that her husband was 35 years of age. He had recently been a miner, and was an R.I.C. (Royal Irish Constable) pensioner. He lived at 18, Union Row. It was two years last September since she last lived with him. On the previous Friday he came over to see her and asked her to take a temporary charge of their children, who were in his custody, while his housekeeper was away. She did so, and she had them now. The next she heard of him was when she received the following letter from him on Thursday:- “Dear Daisy, - By the time you receive this I shall be in another world. I see no prospect of carrying on by myself. I am very sorry things have turned out so rough for you, and although I am leaving a great burden on your hands I am afraid I have gone too far to help myself. Please say nothing to the children, and kiss them for me. Of course, everything in the house is yours legally, so when you receive this the best thing you can do is to go to the Police and tell them.” There was no signature to the letter. On receipt of that letter she came to the Dover Police, and went to the house with the Police. She had identified the body. The deceased was a bad tempered man, but had never threatened to her to do anything of this sort before.

Mrs. Marion Kate Spicer said she lived at Flat 11, 217, Blackstock Road, Highbury. She knew the deceased well and acted as his housekeeper until the previous Friday. She went there in November, 1922. On the previous Friday she left him because she was afraid. He was of a violent temper, and used to go mad sometimes. “He has nearly killed me twice,” continued witness. He had always threatened he would kill her and then take his own life. He said this every time they had a few words. She had complained to the Police, and was advised to leave him. After she left him on the previous Friday she did not hear any more of or from him until the Police informed her that he was dead. She did not believe he would carry out these threats, although he once got the oven ready. She thought it was simply to frighten her. He had warned her that if she left him he would do this thing.

The Coroner: Is this letter “My dearest Tom” signed “Kit,” from you to him?

Witness: Yes, sir. I left that for him on the previous Friday morning.

Inspector Baker said at 12.45 p.m. on Thursday the first witness, accompanied by Inspector Preston, of the N.S.P.C.C., came to the Police Station and produced the letter which had been read, and stated that they had been to No. 18, Union Row and had obtained no reply from repeated knocking. He accompanied them to that address and knocked at the door, without result. He passed through a neighbour's house to the back, where he climbed the wall and entered the premises through the back door, which was unfastened. There was a smell of coal gas, and on going to the front bedroom, the door of which was closed, and a blanket placed in the crevices and under the bottom, he saw the deceased lying dead in bed. Another blanket was hung loosely over the curtains, but the window was four or five inches open. Witness then went downstairs, and found the gas fittings had been removed from the gas-jet in the front room and about 10ft. of metallic flexible gas tubing (new) had been attached to the jet, which was turned on. A hole had been knocked in the ceiling downstairs and a hole made in the floor of the bedroom above, and the tubing passed through the hole, the end of the tubing being ten or twelve inches from the face of the deceased, resting on the dressing table. Dr. Richardson, the Police Surgeon, was informed, and came and examined the body. On the floor of the bedroom witness found, loose, 9s. 4d., on the table in the kitchen a wallet with 8 10s. in Treasury notes, and a Post Office Savings Bank book showing a credit of 83 10s., and a letter which was practically illegible.

Dr. Richardson, the Police Surgeon, said that shortly after 1 o'clock on Thursday he went to 18, Union Row. He found the deceased in bed. He had been dead some hours. There was a strong smell of gas. He noticed a tube reaching from the dressing table alongside the bed, close to the deceased, as described by the Inspector. Deceased was undressed with the exception of a shirt, and he was lying on his back. His death was due to coal gas poisoning, self administered, he should think.

The Coroner said he had no option but to return a verdict in accordance with the medical evidence. It was a most deliberate case; in fact, one of the most determined he (the Coroner) had ever come across. It was most deliberate in every way, and there was no doubt what the man did. But, considering what the witness, Mrs. Spicer, had said, he thought that there was no doubt the state of the deceased's mind was not as it should have been, and he, therefore, found a verdict that death was due to coal gas poisoning, and that at the time the deceased was not of sound mind.

In reply to the Coroner, Dr. Richardson said he thought he man put the tube into his mouth.

The funeral took place on Monday at St. Mary's cemetery, the rev. O. F. R. Strickland officiating. The mourners present were Mrs. Riddiford (widow), Mrs. Currell and Mrs. Cobb (sisters-in-law), and Mrs. Smith. There were no floral tributes. Mr. B. J. Andrews, of 22, New Street, and 34, Longfield Road, carried out the funeral arrangements.



From the Dover Mercury, Thursday, 9 December, 2010.


LOCAL historian Kath Hollingsbee has been researching some local Christmas customs and traditions.

Her search through 19th century newspapers has revealed that the arrival of Father Christmas was always looked forward to by the inmates of Eastry Workhouse on Christmas Day, with each of them receiving a letter and Christmas card.

And in 1836, the Mayor of Dover, John Shipdem, gave hot dinner and beer to the prisoners at what was then the new gaol of Maison Dieu on Christmas Day.




The new town hall adjoining the old hall of the Maison Dieu was opened in 1883.


From the Dover Mercury, 12 February, 2009.

MP pulls the beers - and the crowds.

beer festival 2009

MP Gwyn Prosser joins festival organiser David Green pulling pints at the beer festival at Dover Town Hall.


MP GWYN Prosser, who is a member of the Campaign for Real Ale and belongs to the Parliamentary All Party Beer Group, dropped into the 2009 Dover Beer Festival on Saturday to pull a pint for CAMRA and sample some of the wonderful real ales on offer.

"Dover's annual beer festival at the town hall is going from success to success and drawing more and more visitors," said Mr Prosser.

"On opening day on Friday people were queuing all the way past the town council office and when I dropped by on Saturday morning the hall was already almost full.

"I'm pleased to support the festival because as well as promoting good local beers it attracts hundreds of extra visitors to Dover from across the country and even from across the Channel which is good news for our hospitality industry and good business for Dover."



From the Dover Express, 12 February, 2009

Real beer connoisseurs sup 625 gallons of 'nectar'.

Beer festival 2009Beer festival 2009

REAL ale lovers packed out Dover town hall at the weekend as hundreds of drinkers supped almost 5,000 pints of top British beers.

The 16th annual White Cliffs Winter Ales Festival, which is organised by the local branch of the 'Campaign for Real Ale, kicked off on Friday lunchtime and the kegs had run dry by Saturday evening.

Volunteers from as far afield as he United States poured pints of evocatively-named brews such as Old Stoatwobbler and Skullspliter to drinkers from Britain and beyond.

The beer of the festival title, awarded to the first ale to be polished off, was presented to Jaipur, an India Pale Ale which was gone within little more than three hours on Friday afternoon.

Beer festival 2009Beer festival 2009

Festival organiser and local CAMRA member Dave Green, of Wyndham Road, Dover, said the event had been a huge success.

Beer festival 2009

The 75-year-old said: "It was excellent and we just about sold out of everything by 6pm on the Saturday. The atmosphere was brilliant and there was no trouble and no problems.

"It was a great success and we all very much look forward to next year."

CAMRA member and Dover MP Gwyn Prosser popped by at Saturday lunchtime and tried his hand at pulling a pint.

He said: "I'm pleased to support the festival because as well as promoting good local beers it attracts hundreds of extra visitors to Dover, from across the country and even from across the Channel. This is good news for our hospitality industry and good business for Dover."



From the Dover Express, 12 February, 2009


John Pitcher and Roger Everett

New Blood: John Pitcher, left, welcomes new member Roger Everett.


BEER lovers in the Dover district are flocking to join the Campaign for Real Ale, the local branch has revealed.

Deal, Dover, Sandwich and District branch of Camra how has a membership of 320, up from 300 at the start of the year.

This represents a real leap given there were only 200 people signed up back in 2004.

Roger Everett, from Dover, became the 300th member as a Christmas present from his daughter Kirsty.

At the White Cliffs Festival of Winter Ales in February he was presented with a copy of the latest Good Beer Guide by branch membership secretary John Pitcher.

Mr Pitcher said: "From our beginnings in the 1970s we reached 200 members in 2004 and it is great news that we have already expanded by 50 per cent since then.

"This shows a great commitment from people who join us in enjoying real ale and supporting local pubs in these difficult times.

"A big thank you to Camra newcomers, not forgetting our longstanding supporters who are also much appreciated."

For information on Camra and real ale go to the local branch website, which is at



From the Dover Mercury, Thursday 4 February, 2010.


THE White Cliffs Festival of Winter Ales takes place at Dover Town Hall tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday, with more than 75 ales available.

Many of them have been produced by small independent or micro breweries. All beers will be 2.50 a pint and food will also be available. The festival is from 1pm to 11pm on Friday and 10.30am to 5pm on Saturday.

It is organised by the Deal, Dover, Sandwich and District branch of the Campaign for Real Ale.

There will be entertainment on Friday evening and Saturday afternoon. Admission is 5 on Friday, 2 on Saturday with free entry for card-carrying Camra members.


From the Dover Express, Thursday, 7 February, 2013. 65p. Report by Mike Sims


Image of CAMRA stalwart Roger Marples on glasses for the 20th White Cliffs Beer event.

Beer glass Roger Marples

FROM Little Willy to Jingle Knockers, Dave Green took his role of ale festival organiser seriously as he tried all 75 tipples before gates opened on Friday. About 1,200 people visited this year's White Cliffs Festival of Winter Ales, held at Dover Town Hall on Friday and Saturday.

By 5pm on Saturday all barrels had run dry at the CAMRA festival, which was celebrating its 20th anniversary.

Organiser Mr Green said he tried all 75 ales, including 16 from Kent, on Friday morning “to make sure they were all ok”.

He said: “Someone had to do it. The festival went brilliantly, it was packed. There was not a single drop left, but we can't order more because we are restricted with the number of people.

“Ales are doing well at the moment, the popularity of micro pubs is excellent news.”

Drinkers 2013 Black AdderJohn KempLeigh Pellegrini & Mark Burkin Jules Skipp, Adam Luscombe and Tony Smith 
DrinkersTerry Fawsett and Kathy Barrett
Ray NewsamLady drinkersTom



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