Sort file:- Gravesend, April, 2023.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 26 April, 2023.


Earliest 2001

(Name from)

Ascot Arms

Closed 2019

Central Avenue


01474 564359

Ascot Arms

Above photo, date unknown. Kindly supplied by John Hopperton.

Ascot Arms

Above photo, date unknown. Kindly supplied by John Hopperton.

Ascot Arms

Above photo, date unknown. Kindly supplied by John Hopperton.


Originally known as the "Central Hotel" which opened in 1932, but changed name to the "Ascot Arms" in 2001.


From the 1 June 2015

Thousands of pounds spent on new look for Ascot Arms, Gravesend.

There was a time when all pubs were at the centre of community life, and the race is on to restore one town bar to such former glory.

Major refurbishment is under way at the Ascot Arms in Central Avenue, Gravesend, at a cost of 250,000, and it is hoped punters will be pleasantly surprised by the more unusual fixtures and fittings included in the revamp.

For among the traditional pumps, pints and packets of peanuts, customers will find a garden centre, organic health food shop and a petting zoo with guinea pigs, chickens and its very own pony.

Ascot Arms licensees 2015

Taking up the reins when the pub reopens next month will be Simone Vincenzi and Mihaly Herczeg, (shown above.)

Simone, 51, said: “We wanted a pub that could be at the centre of its community and the Ascot Arms was perfect.

“As the only local in the area, it has masses of potential. All it needed was investment and a lot of TLC.”

Such investment has come from Star Pubs & Bars, part of the Heineken chain, and will see the pub transformed both inside and out.

Ascot Arms inside 2015

Unusual additions aside, there will also be a dining area, sofas, coffee bar, landscaped garden and children’s play equipment.

Simone and Mihaly, 26, already run a Hungarian restaurant and two health food and plant shops in south east London, and hope to bring a taste of these to the pub to complement British menu favourites and cask ale.

The pair also plan a host of activities including karaoke, quiz nights and live music festivals.

“We want the Ascot Arms to be an asset for Gravesend,” added Simone. “A pub which the community can be proud of and where all feel welcome.”

The refurbishment is expected to create at least six new jobs, including full and part-time bar staff, a chef and manager.


I am informed that the pub closed late in 2017 but opened again by 2019. That didn't seem to last long, probably a casualty of covid.


Ascot Arms 2018

Above photo, April 2018, kindly sent by Ian Goodrick.

Ascot Arms 2019

Above photo 2019 by David Beattie.

AScot Arms 2021

Above photo, July 2021, kindly sent by Ian Goodrick.

Ascot Arms 2023

Above photo 2023, kindly sent by Ian Goodrick.

Ascot Arms sign 2023

Above sign 2023, kindly sent by Ian Goodrick.

Ascot Arms demolition 2023

Above photo April 2023, kindly taken and sent by Christoph Bull.

Ascot Arms demolition 2023

Above photo April 2023, kindly taken and sent by Jason Kemsley.

From the By Alex Langridge, 23 April 2023.

Ascot Arms, in Central Avenue, Gravesend, demolished to make way for Avery Healthcare care home.

Customers recalls 'good old days' when Ascot Arms was second home.

A former pub has been completely demolished to make way for a care home.

The Ascot Arms, in Gravesend, closed four years ago but before that it was a once thriving boozer, according to its regulars.

Ascot Arms demolition 2023

The pub was demolished last weekend. Picture: David Beattie.

One punter David Beattie said: “Everyone was friendly. It was like the British version of Cheers. Everyone knew your name in there.

“It was just a friendly local pub. I have a great many friends from drinking in there. You did not need to go with someone, you always knew someone.

“I started going in there when I was in my 20s. I went particularly because it was so close I could roll down the hill to home.

“I cannot think about the amount of money I must have spent in that place in the last 20 or so years.

“I even worked there for six months to a year. I would finish at 3pm on a Sunday and then sit on the other side of the bar.”

Ascot Arms regulars

Fun times at the pub.

He said the pub, in Central Avenue, would regularly host family events, live music, festivals, discos and firework nights.

“In the later years there were animals and a horse in there as well,” David added. “It was a very family-style pub and it did really good food.”

The pub dates back to 1932 when it was called the "Central Avenue Hotel" and was run by landlord Dan Pryor.

It changed its name to the Ascot Arms in 2001 – although David said the name did not really take with regulars.

David Beattie

David Beattie in the Ascot.

The 45-year-old added: “It will be the Central forever for me.

“I even have the original price list. An old manager found it and gave it to me knowing how much I loved the pub.”

The list includes cocktails such as Manhattans, Martini, and an Egg Flip for 8 pence which would be equal to around 2.70 in today’s money.

Beers were also much cheaper with a pint of Truman’s Draught Bitter and Burton costing 4 pence – around 1.35.

A shot of whiskey, gin or rum were also only 8 pence with brandy costing one shilling, around 4.04 now.

Central Avenue price list 1932

The original price list from 1932. Picture: David Beattie.

The pub also underwent a 250,000 refurbishment in 2015 funded by Star Pubs & Bars, part of the Heineken chain, which saw a new garden centre and a petting zoo.

The landlords at the time, Simone Vincenzi and Mihaly Herczeg, said they hoped it would transform the public house into one the community could be proud of.

The pub has since been boarded up and closed since July 2019.

Plans to demolish the premises and build a three-storey, 62-bed care home were then approved by Gravesham council in July 2022.

Ascot Arms Hungarian festival 2016

Krisztina Koch at the Hungarian festival of Majalis in 2016. Picture: Andy Payton.

The proposals included space for a residents’ lounge and dining areas, a laundry room, staff facilities, space for entertainment and wellbeing and 20 parking spaces.

In their decision report, council officers said: “Whilst the loss of the public house and a community facility is acknowledged, the applicants suggest that whilst it is located to serve the surrounding residential area, it is evident that when previously operational, efforts to continue trading as a viable business failed, notwithstanding a significant refurbishment and favourable rental terms.

“The building as it stands could not be easily re-used or extended for the use as proposed as it would not be adaptable or economic to do so but there may be opportunities in the future to use the new building for local Gravesham Borough Council community uses.

“The development of this site for the use as proposed along with the demolition of the public house building is considered to be appropriate and a sustainable use within the local area.”

Ascot Arms new build

What the care home could look like. Picture: TDC Arch Design.

Ascot Arms new build

The facility will provide 24-hour care for the elderly. Picture: TDC Arch Design.

The home will provide 24-hour support and care for the elderly with nursing, dementia, end-of-life and palliative services and create 50 full-time jobs.

Care home providers Avery Healthcare – which also has centres in Sittingbourne, Sevenoaks and Herne Bay – said in a design and access statement: “We believe that a low impact use such as a care home is the perfect way to foster the redevelopment of the site in a manner which will enhance its character.”

The demolition of the former Ascot Arms building was completed last weekend.




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