Sort file:- Dover, December, 2022.

Page Updated:- Saturday, 10 December, 2022.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Barry Smith and Paul Skelton

Earliest 1752

Wellington Hotel

Latest July 1971

41 Biggin Street


Wellington Hotel 1890

Above photo circa 1900. Kindly sent via Pat Gilbert.

Wellington Hotel 1900

Above postcard, circa 1900.

Wellington Hotel

LEFEVRE'S Temperance Hotel and Coffee Tavern (left) faced public houses across two streets - the Wellington (right) and the Rose Inn on the opposite corner of New Street - when this picture of Biggin Street was taken in 1894, shortly before the road, only 18ft. wide, was widened.

According to Kelly's Directory 1899Kelly's Directory 1899, number 42 Biggin Street housed Rutley and Co. wine and spirit merchants, which was being run by Edward Mowll.

Wellington Hotel

Above by kind permission Maidstone Museum. The "Wellington Hotel" is the building on the extreme left. 1893-1900.

Wellington 1870

Above photo, 1870, kindly sent by Paul Wells.

Wellington Hotel & St Mary's Church 1893

Above photo, 1893.

Wellington Hotel

Above postcard, date unknown, kindly sent by Graham Butterworth.

Wellington Hotel 1960

Wellington Hotel 1960. By king permission of Dover Library ILL/990. Photo taken by Lambert Weston & Sons Ltd.

Site of  Wellingtom Hotel 1991

The site of the Wellington Hotel, photo taken in December 1991.


I have read that this was first built when Biggin Gate was removed in 1762.


I believe John Lyon says 1752. Whatever, other writers opine that other inns stood here previous to this one. I am personally drawn to the account which suggests a large house, occupied by a manufacturer, who had his wool factory in the rear, that being reached by a side alley. Part of those premises were then said to become the "Wellington Hotel".


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 11 January, 1834. Price 7d.


An inquest was held by J W Pilcher, Esq. Mayor and Coroner, at the Wellington Inn, on Thursday evening, on the body of Mr Kennett Spicer, master of the Dove, London hoy, who was discovered in the laundry of his own house that morning, by his daughter, with his throat cut in a most shocking manner. Mr Philpott Elsted, Surgeon, who attended the deceased immediately on receiving notice of his rash act, stated that he found him sitting in a chair, with a very large wound in the throat, extending from ear to ear, dividing the trachea and the right carotid artery. There was not less than three pints of arterial blood on the floor. The wound being more than eight inches long, and two and a half deep, was evidently the cause of death. It appeared by the evidence of Mr H Byng, a neighbour, of the deceased, and also that of a mate of the Dove, that he had laboured for some time under a depression of spirits, frequently complaining of violent pains in his head, and calling himself a lost man. There was no reason to suppose that he was in embarrassed circumstances.


Died by cutting his throat while in a temporary state of derangement. After the verdict was given, enquiry being made as to the fee for surgical attendance, the Mayor directed application to the parish officers, one of whom, being present said, if an account were presented, it should be submitted to the Select Vestry. Mr Elsted then signified that on any future occurrence, nothing less than the Coroner's Warrant could induce his attendance. The subject, we believe, has been agitated at other places, insuring to medical gentlemen, a proper numeration for their attendance on such melancholy occasions.


From the Dover Telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 12 December, 1840. Price 5d.


On Monday last, Mr. Bayford, supervisor, applied for a warrant of distress against the goods of George Douse, flyman. It appeared that Douse had formerly occupied premises for the carrying on his business at the "Wellington Inn;" but that a few days previous to the time when the post-horse duty became due, he absconded, taking with him the whole of his property. Mr. Bayford said that it was necessary that a warrant be issued against the absentee ere he could make his return; after which, Douse would be proceeded against at the place of his present residence.



In 1869-70 the pub was part of a consortium who were advertising their goods of selling tea in response to grocers' selling beer and wine. (Click for further details.)


My own searches went to 1863 when your host was Matthew Sharp. (Barry's original work has now been predated by Paul Skelton to as early as 1858, with John Culmer.) It was an outlet of Evenden and Leney, later passing to Fremlin to as late as 1962+.  Being an honest man I have to inform that I did not see this on maps of 1871 and further to that, Mr. Rubies wine and spirit licence for 41 and 42 Biggin Street was not renewed in 1877. One certainty is the 14 year lease granted to Leney on 6 April 1892. According to the Post Office Directory of 1882  and Kelly's Directory 1899 the Wellington was addressed as 40 Biggin Street and was also known as the Wellington Hotel and Bowling Green.


Leaving all that confusion behind, let us move ahead to June 1949, the year that war damage was made good for 510.


A Tenancy agreement recently advertised on Ebay showed that the yearly rent through Fremlins for 1962 was 120.


Negotiations for the sale of this began in May 1970 but it was 21 July 1971 before the pub closed. It was demolished in September the same year so that the Tesco store could expand but later, in 1989, that property was subdivided to provide two other retail premises.


It is now a clothes shop called "Dorothy Perkins". (April 2007).


Dover Chronicles, 23 April, 1842.


Yesterday morning Mr. Culmer, of the "Wellington Inn," Dover, missed from a draw in the bar his cash box containing two 5 notes of the Dover Provincial Bank, one 5 Bank of England note, a check on the Bank of Messrs Latham and Co. for 2 15s., and gold and silver, amounting in all to about 30.

The depredator has hitherto eluded detection, nor does there seem any tangible clue to his identity.


Kentish Gazette, 23 April 1844.

DOVER. Burial Society.

The seventh annual meeting of the Dover Burial Society, was held at the "Wellington Inn," on Thursday last, to receive the report and to elect officers and the committee management for the ensuing year. During the period of the establishment of this society, there have been 47 resignations, and only 23 deaths. The committee congratulated the members on the success that had throughout attended the society, and reported that the average expense to each member, was under one half-penny per week. The treasurer’s account having been submitted to the meeting and approved, the following resolution was unanimously passed— "That the thanks of the society be given to the Editor of the Kentish Gazette, for the great interest he has taken in the welfare of all burial societies, since their first establishment in the county of Kent and the indefatigable secretary, Mr. R. Robertson, was directed to transmit a copy of the resolution, and the annual report, to the editor.

[We feel much flattered by this spontaneous testimony to our desire to promote the interests and comforts of our fellow men, and in returning our hearty acknowledgments, can assure the members of the Dover Burial Society of our anxiety, that our conduct, as public journalists, should merit the approbation of the philanthropical and well-disposed of the community.— Ed. K. G.]


South Eastern Gazette, Tuesday 15 November 1859.


On the 4th inst., at the "Wellington Inn," Dover, Emma Ann, relect of the late Mr. H. C. Mornewicks, age 44.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 20 April, 1861.

John O Hara, a labourer, was charged by Mr. Thomas Culmer, of the "Wellington Inn," Biggin Street, with disorderly conduct and assaulting him in his house the preceding night; but Mr. Culmer not being desirous of pressing the charge the defendant was dismissed with a caution and advised to leave the town.


From the Dover telegraph and Cinque Ports General Advertiser, Saturday 17 August 1861.

The Wellington. The Belt Again.

Juka Murphy, one of the Staffordshire Volunteers better known to us as the 64th Regiment, was charged with assaulting Mr. Thomas Culmer, landlord of the "Wellington Inn," Biggin Street, on Sunday evening, between the hours of 8 and 9 o'clock; and further charged with willfully breaking a plate glass window, valued at 1 15s.

Mr. Culmer said:- On Sunday evening, about the time mentioned, the prisoner and a female came to my bar, and the woman ordered half-a-quartern of rum, which she drunk and the soldier paid threepence for. After some little time he demanded some change. I asked him what change he wanted, and told him that I had none to give him. As he continued his demands, I said that he had better go and not interrupt me in my business. Almost immediately afterwards he took off his belt, doubled it, and made a blow at my head; I wardered it off with my arm, upon which it has left a mark, and felt it strike me also on the hip. I then went round the other side of the bar, and took the belt away from him, bundled him outside, and shut the door. After this, by some means or other, prisoner broke a window of plate glass, doing damage to the value of 35s or 40s.

Prisoner said in defence that he knew nothing at all about it.

An officer of the regiment, they were attended to watch the proceedings, stated that the prisoner bore but an indifferent character in the regiment - his principal offences being drunkenness. He enlisted on the 24th October 1855. He was quite ready to pay the amount of damage done, and place the prisoner under escort for punishment at the barracks.

Prisoner of first objected to the money being paid; but on second thoughts consented, and Mr. Culmer not wanted to press the charge for assault, prisoner was discharged on payment of 35s. damages and 6s. costs.


Dover Express 28 June 1862.


THOMAS CULMER Begs to inform his Friends that the Bowling Green at the "WELLINGTON INN," Biggin Street, is now ready for play.

Lency and Evenden's Old Stock and Pale Ales.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 29 March, 1867.


Annie Phillips, a respectably dressed married woman, was charged with stealing a beer glass value 7d., the property of Mr. Charles Pain, landlord of the "Wellington Inn."

The prisoner, on hearing the charge, fainted in the dock, and some time elapsed before the case could proceed.

Upon the prisoner's recovery, George Edward Blackman, a boy seventeen years of age, was sworn. He said he was pot-boy to Mr. Pain, and was in view of the bar on the previous evening, when the prisoner came in and asked for a glass of beer. He saw her served, and saw her afterwards take up from the counter an empty glass, which she secreted under her shawl. He informed his master before she left the house, and on his master asking prisoner for the glass she said she had not got it. Mr. Pain then went to the prisoner and searched her pocket, when the prisoner produced the glass and put it in a chair without making any observation.

Mr. Pain said his suspicion had been excited by the prisoner previous to this occurrence, and on her coming in on the previous day he counted the glasses before turning his back upon the bar. In consequence of what the previous witness told him he searched the prisoner and found the glass produced in her pocket. She would not let him take it out, but took it out herself.

Police-constable Raymond said she was sent for, to take the prisoner into custody, at the "Wellington Inn" on the previous evening. She denied that she had stolen the glass, and made the same statement on the charge being read over to her at the station-house. The prisoner was the worse for liquor, but knew what she was about. She was enabled to walk from the "Wellington" steadily. Two other glasses were found upon her. She said she had bought them in Fiver Post Lane; but on enquiring this was found to be untrue.

There were some other charges of stealing glasses against the prisoner - one from the "Regent," and another from the "George;" and the solicitors' table was completely strewn with glasses and pewter measures found at the house of the prisoner, the spoil, no doubt, of other similar adventures, which the prisoner must have been carrying for some time.

The Superintendent of Police said that measures and glasses had been stolen from public houses at all parts of the town, and the police had been engaged for a long time in endeavouring to detect the offender.

The prisoner desired that the case might be summarily dealt with and pleaded guilty, saying, however, that she did not know what she had done.

The Magistrates sentenced her to one month's imprisonment, with hard labour.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 26 February, 1869.


See "Mechanics' Arms."


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 2 September, 1870.


Michael Neale, a stalwart member of the vagrant tribe, was charged with drunkenness in Cannon Street on the previous evening.

Police-constable Nash said he saw the prisoner in Cannon Street on the preceding evening about half-past nine o'clock. he entered the “Wellington Inn” and begged; but the landlord refused to give him anything, and, as he became abusive, put him out of the house. When he found himself outside of the house, the prisoner pulled off his gabardine and wanted to fight. He (Nash) advised him to go home, and he proceeded a little way in the direction of his lodgings, but shortly afterwards returned and resumed his disorderly behaviour in front of the “Wellington,” and he then took him into custody.

The prisoner denied insulting any one, or begging. He went into the “Wellington” to get a glass of beer, and was unceremoniously turned out by the landlord. This irritated him, he admitted.

The Magistrates said that, whatever irritation a man might be labouring under, he could not be permitted to strip himself in a public thoroughfare and challenge a breach of the peace. He would be fined 2s. 6d., and 6d. costs. In default, seven days' imprisonment with hard labour.


From the Dover Express and East Kent Intelligencer, 31 August, 1877. Price 1d.


Mr. Rubie's wine and spirit licence for 41, and 42, Biggin Street, was not renewed.

(I believe the address above is either incorrect or was part of the "Wellington Hotel." Paul Skelton.)


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 12 August, 1881. 1d.


An inquest was held on Saturday morning last at the “Wellington Inn,” Biggin Street, before the Borough Coroner, (W. H. Payn, Esq.), and a jury, on the body of an infant child named Spratt, living in New Street, when the Jury returned a verdict of died through natural causes.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 22 May, 1885. Price 1d.

The Bowling Green, at the rear of the “Wellington Inn,” Biggin Street, which was broken up for the erection of the Circus, has been made good, and play began on Wednesday.


Dover Express 3rd August 1917.

Kent Appeal Tribunal 30th July 1917.

Henry D. Groves, 24, (c i) single, of Chapel Hill, Dover, a potman at the "Wellington Hotel," Dover, appealed against the refusal of further exemption by the local Tribunal on medical grounds, stating that he suffered from St. Vitus’ Dance and was blind in the right eye and had defective sight in the left eye and put in medical certificates to that effect.

Appeal dismissed, not to be called up before August 13th.

(This one struck me as particularly cruel although I suppose it was indicative of the shortage of manpower at the front. I think (c i) was his medical category.)

Dover Express 21 November 1919.


Pursuant to the Statute 22 & 23 Vic., cap. 35.

Notice is hereby given that all Persons having any CLAIMS against the Estate of John Frank Caspell, late of "Wellington Hotel," Biggin Street, Dover, Licensed Victualler (who died on the 4th day of October, 1919), are to send particulars thereof to the undersigned Solicitors for the Executor on or before the 23rd day of December next, after which date the Executor will distribute the assets of the deceased among the parties entitled thereto having regard only to the Claims of which he shall then have had notice.

Dated this 18th day of November, 1919.

Mowll & Mowll, Dover, Solicitors to the Executor.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, 29 September 1939.

William Charles Roberts, "Wellington" Inn, Biggin Street was fined 10s. on 3rd September for letting a light show. P.C. Page said that the light showed when the doors were open and defendant said that he had not had time to screen the lights properly.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 28 August, 1953.

The "Wellington" Changes Hands

After 31 years

Licensee of the Wellington public house in Biggin Street for 31 years Mr. William J Roberts has left Dover for Gillingham, following his retirement. The new licensee is Mr. John MacPhee.

Granting a temporary transfer of licence at Dover Magistrates' Court on Monday, the Chairman of the Magistrates (Mr. G. Golding) wished Mr. Roberts every happiness in his retirement.


Licensees 1964

Above photo, circa 1964 showing licensees James and Beryl Clarke.

Barmaid Pat 1964

Photo showing barmaid Pat circa 1964.

From the Dover Express, 16 July, 1971.


Doris Rich

Mrs. Doris Rich mine hostess of the "Wellington Inn," shares a last drink with customers before the public house closed down on Wednesday night.

Another of Dover's public houses, the "Wellington Hotel," closed on Wednesday. The "Wellington" - next to St. Mary's cemetery, in Biggin Street - is to come down to make way for an extension of Tesco's supermarket.

There's been an inn on or near the site of the "Wellington" for hundreds of years. It was in a good position just outside the town wall at Biggin Gate.

In ancient days, when the gate was closed, travellers had to wait outside until daylight. The Inn was very convenient for those locked out.


Once upon a time there was a wool factory at the back of the premises, and the owner had a sizable house, part of which became the enlarged "Wellington Inn."

Licensee at the "Wellington" for the last 2 years has been Mr. Kenneth Rick, who plans to move into another public house after a ten weeks' rest.




CULMER John Holtum 1842-58 Melville's 1858

CULMER Thomas 1862 Post Office Directory 1862

SHARP Matthew Sept/1863+ Dover Express

PAIN Charles 1867-70+

BINGHAM Henry C 1871+ (age 38 in 1871Census)

MACKEY Owen Griggs July/1871-74+ Dover ExpressPost Office Directory 1874

RELF 1879

LEWIS W G 1882

RALPH John 1882-99 (age 40 in 1891Census) Post Office Directory 1882Post Office Directory 1891Pikes 1895Kelly's Directory 1899

SOUTH Alfred 1898 ?

RALPH Mrs 1901 Next pub licensee had Post Office Directory 1903

DANE Alfred T 1903 Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903

SAUNDERS J S 1903-Dec/1904 Dover Express

RYDER Frederick R Dec/1904-08 Dover Express


HAWKINS W H 1910-13+ Post Office Directory 1913

ROUSE F 1917

Last pub licensee had CASPELL John Frank dec'd to 4/Oct/1919

DUNN William or Wilfred 1919-21

DUFFELL Albert Edward 1921-Dec/21  Dover ExpressPost Office Directory 1922

ROBERTS W C Dec/1921-32+ Dover ExpressPikes 1923Pikes 1924Post Office Directory 1930Pikes 1932-33

MILLINGTON William Charles 1921-34? and 1935?

WHITE John Harrison 1934-35 end?

ROBERTS William Charles 1938-Aug/53 Post Office Directory 1938Pikes 1938-39Pikes 48-49Kelly's Directory 1950Kelly's Directory 1953Dover Express

MACPHEE Johnathan Aug/1953-54 end Dover Express

GRIFFITHS Henry 1954-56+ Kelly's Directory 1956

CLARK James 1964

RICH Kenneth J 1969-21/July/71 Next pub licensee had


Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1862From the Post Office Directory 1862

Post Office Directory 1874From the Post Office Directory 1874

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Post Office Directory 1891From the Post Office Directory 1891

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

Post Office Directory 1903From the Post Office Directory 1903

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903

Post Office Directory 1913From the Post Office Directory 1913

Post Office Directory 1922From the Post Office Directory 1922

Pikes 1923From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1923

Pikes 1924From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1924

Post Office Directory 1930From the Post Office Directory 1930

Pikes 1932-33From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1932-33

Post Office Directory 1938From the Post Office Directory 1938

Pikes 1938-39From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1938-39

Pikes 48-49From Pikes Dover Blue Book 1948-49

Kelly's Directory 1950From the Kelly's Directory 1950

Kelly's Directory 1953From the Kelly's Directory 1953

Kelly's Directory 1956From the Kelly's Directory 1956

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:-