Sort file:- Sheerness, November, 2023.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 29 November, 2023.


Earliest 1828-

Hit or Miss

Latest ????

13 Chapel Street

Blue Town



Kentish Gazette, 2 April 1850.

Edward Norris, 17, burglary, and stealing a canvass bag, containing four sovereigns and other monies of George Norris, at Minster, in Sheppey.

The prosecutor in this case is brother of the prisoner, and lives with his father at Rushenden, in the parish of Minster, in Sheppey. In the month of August last he had in his possession a bag, containing all his clothes and the monies named in the indictment, the latter of which was kept in the bag; the box was kept in his bedroom, locked. It was safe at about five o'clock on the morning of Sunday, the 14th of August, and on prosecutor’s getting up at about five o'clock on the 16th he found it was gone. He immediately communicated intelligence of the loss to his father, who searched the premises, and found the box concealed behind some mangel wurzel at the bottom of the garden. It had been broken open, and the bag and money stolen. The prosecutor’s father, Edward Norris, had on the previous evening retired to bed at about ten o'clock, having previously examined the fastenings and found them secure. On getting up the next morning about four o'clock he found the front door had been opened, the latch having apparently been forced up from the outside. On the following Wednesday, information of the robbery having been given to Pratten, the constable of Minster, that officer went to the "Hit or Miss" public house, where he apprehended the prisoner, whom he searched, and in his pocket he found two sovereigns, four half sovereigns, eight half crowns, and a sixpence, and a canvass bag. He showed the bag to prosecutor, who was present, and who identified it as his properly. The bag was subsequently given to Mr. Bone, the governor of the gaol, by whom it was now produced.The learned Judge, in summing up, reminded the jury that to convict the prisoner on the charge of burglary it was necessary that it should be proved the offence was committed between the hours of nine at night and six in the morning, and that unless they were satisfied the robbery took place between those hours, the prisoner could not be convicted of more than a larceny.

The jury consulted, and retuned a verdict of guilty of larceny. The prosecutor recommended the prisoner to mercy, and the learned Judge taking the recommendation into consideration, as also the long time prisoner had been in custody, sentenced him to one month's hard labour.


Southeastern Gazette, 15 March 1853.

George Segrue, 15, for stealing three shoe-brushes, value 2s., the property of William Alfred Tong, ("Anchor and Hope") at Minster, in Sheppey. Mr. Addison prosecuted.

The prisoner, it appeared, went into the house of Mr. Tong:, a publican, on the 17th January, at Minster, and asked for a night's lodging, which was given him. He left the house on the following morning, and shortly after the brushes were missed. They were subsequently found in a bundle in prisoner’s possession, at the "Hit or Miss" public-house, Minster.

One month’s hard labour.


Sheerness Guardian 3 August 1859.


The following cases are those of local interest.

"The Knife" at Sheerness.

Michael Paraw, 35, seamen, was charged with stabbing and wounding John Golding, on the 5th of May last, at Minster, in Sheppey. Mr. Russell for the prosecution. The particulars of the case were given in this paper at the time of the occurrence.

Francis Thomas a man of colour, said that he was at the "New Inn," Sheerness, on the day in question. The prosecutor who is a petty officer on board the Creasy, and the prisoner, were also there. Prisoner treated prosecutor to some gin, and then began to pull his whiskers about, in consequence of which a fight took place, the prosecutor getting the worst of it. The prisoner then left the room for about half-an-hour, when he returned, deliberately opened his knife, which was suspended from his side by a "lanyard," and stabbed prosecutor in one of his shoulders. Prosecutor fell, and prisoner again tried to stab him, but witness interfered and prevented him. Prisoner then left the house, and threw the knife away.

Mrs. Ovenden deposed to having found the knife, which had prisoner’s name on it, in a yard close by.

David Ovenden, husband of last witness, and police sergeant at Sheerness, saw Golding bleeding from a wound in his left shoulder. Witness afterwards took the prisoner at a public-house called the "Hit or Miss."

Prisoner who urged that he was drunk, was found guilty of unlawfully wounding, and was sentenced to six months hard labour.


Sheerness Guardian, 19 May, 1860.

The "Invisible Blues." — An Extraordinary Public-House Row.

A most determined riot was created by some seven or eight sailors belonging to H. M. Ship "Wasp," at the house of Mr. French the "Hit or Miss,"” public-house, Chapel-street, Blue Town, on the night of Wednesday last.

It appears that the seamen had been drinking at the house for some times and whilst partly intoxicated, they got up a quarrel with Mr. C. French and began to abuse him. They then assailed the furniture and smashed a table and several other articles to shivers. They also pulled down the bar door, broke a quantity of glasses, two chairs, and a great number of ornaments. On being turned out of the premises they assailed the house with stones and other missiles and broke no less than forty eight panes of glass. They likewise pulled down the shutters of the two lower windows and broke them. They then destroyed the framework of the windows and committed other atrocities. During the riot, a coat, a hat, and a scarf were stolen and made off with, and strange to say though the disturbance lasted a considerable time and caused great uproar in the locality, there was not a policeman to be found in the town who could be called upon to interfere, — the whole of the force having been summoned to Sittingbourne and detained there for the purpose of drill, although jeopardising the interests and security of the town. It is the general opinion of the inhabitants that though our small police force is both efficient and willing and in this matter themselves blameless, great blame is due to the superintendant or some others of the "powers that be" at head quarters, for acting so reprehensibly as to take the entire force from the town, not only on Wednesday, but on Thursday, instead of withdrawing only a portion. Not only were these rioters left unmolested, but on Thursday, when the body of a young female was found in the moat, in the absence of the police there was no one to take charge of the case. We trust that these two occurrences will prevent a repetition of such gross neglect and inattention, more especially when it is considered, that there is a considerable naval and military population in the town, and that cases requiring the notice and attention of the police are of frequent if not of continuous occurrence. We understand that after the fracas had been committed at the house of Mr. French, the same parties created considerable riot and disorder in other parts of the town.


From the Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald. 31 August 1867. Price 1d.


Before E. Twopeny, Esq., (Chairman), and the Rev. G. B. Moore.


Edward Braithwaite, mariner, of H.M.S. "Cumberland," was charged with maliciously damaging three glasses and assaulting Samuel Macdowell, licensed victualler, at the “Hit or Miss" public-house, Sheerness, on the 19th of August.

Prosecutor, a cripple, said that about eleven o'clock last Monday the prisoner, who had been drinking at his house, came up to him in the bar and said, “You have insulted me, and I will break your nose.” Prisoner then struck him and dragged him out into the passage, where they both fell. He had previously pushed his wife down. Prosecutor said that Braithwaite had been drinking in the house before he came in, while he also supplied him with liquor. While in his house he had drank three or four quarterns of sherry out of the measures, and had some ginger-beer and beer. He was mad-drunk.
Police-constable Wood said Braithwaite was very drunk when he apprehended him for the assault, and had his jacket, belt, and cap off, and his sleeves tucked up. He went quietly to the station.

The man's Sergeant attended, and gave prisoner a good character, as he had been in the service fourteen years, faultless. He had been on board the "Cumberland” for the last eighteen months, as ship's corporal, and was a quiet, well-conducted man. Had never seen him the worse for liquor before. In confirmation of what he had said, witness drew his attention to the three good conduct stripes which prisoner wore; the last of which had been accorded about three months ago.

The Chairman admonished prosecutor for supplying drink to the prisoner when he saw the state he was in, and disallowed his expenses, observing that it was particularly enjoined in the license that publicans should not allow tippling.

Prisoner was fined altogether 1.


From the London Gazette, October 1868.

Samuel Seymour McDowell, late of "Hit or Miss Inn," Chapel-street, Blue Town, Sheerness, Innkeeper, and Dealer in Marine and General Stores, and now in furnished lodgings-at the "Horse and Groom Inn," Kent-street, Blue Town, Sheerness aforesaid, out of business adjudicated bankrupt on 8 July 1868. An order of discharge was granted by the County Court of Kent holden at Sheerness on 23 October, 1868.



I will be adding the historical information when I find or are sent it, but this project is a very big one, and I do not know when or where the information will come from.

All emails are answered.



KNIGHT John 1824-28+ Pigot's Directory 1828-29

RUFFORD Sarah 1832-39+ Pigot's Directory 1832-34

TURNER John 1840+

WOODHARDS Nathaniel 1847-58+ (also marine store dealer)

FRENCH John  1861-62+ (age 48 in 1861Census)

MACDOWELL/McDOWELL Samuel 1867-Aug/68 Whitstable Times

SOSBY Sophie (widow) Aug/1868+


Whitstable TimesWhitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald

Pigot's Directory 1828-29From the Pigot's Directory 1828-29

Pigot's Directory 1832-34From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34


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