Sort file:- Gravesend, March, 2023.

Page Updated:- Sunday, 19 March, 2023.


Earliest 1778

1997 (Name from)

King's Head

1990 (Name to)

Closed 19 Mar 2023

8-9 King Street


01474 568886

King's Head

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

King's Head

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

King's Head sign 1974King's Head sign 1986

Above sign left, August 1974. Sign right, March 1986.

With thanks from Brian Curtis

King's Head 2014 King's Head sign 2014

Above photos 17 July 2014, kindly supplied by Roy Moore.


King Street has also been known as St. Thomas Street and Pelican Row. The pub has also been referred to as the "Old King's Head."

Originally starting its life as the "King's Head" as early as 1778 the pub closed in 1990. 1995 saw it open again for no more than two years as a pub called "Equinox." Around the same time of 1996-7 it changed name once again reverting back to the "King's Head."

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.)


Kentish Chronicle, 11 August, 1829.

On Friday se'nnight a respectable looking man and woman, to lodgings at a house of adjoining the "Kings Head," Gravesend, belonging to Mr. Greenstead, the landlord of the "Kings Head."

The next morning they went out for a walk and requested dinner to be got ready at a certain hour; not returning at the time appointed, Mr Green Street suspected all was not right, and proceeded to the apartments, found the door locked and the key taken away; the door was then forced open, and it was discovered that they had taken the sheets from the bed, two towels, two silver spoons, four tea spoons, a pair of salt spoons, and several other articles. A carpet bag and a green shade which the man wore over his eyes, was left in the room. When they engaged the lodgings it was supposed the bag contain clothes, but appears to have been filled with straw, a quantity being found between the bed and the bedstead. Search was immediately made on board the steamboat's, but it is conjectured that they proceeded to Greenhithe, as they got clear off.


From the Maidstone Gazette and West Kent Courier, 13, July, 1830.

Sale this day.

The Brewers, Wine Merchants and Others. Freehold Estates, Gravesend, Kent.

To be sold by auction, By Charles Johnson.

At the "Prince of Orange Inn," Gravesend, on Tuesday, 13th day of July, 1830, at 2 o'clock, in Two Lots.


Also that old established and well frequented Free Public House, the "King's Head," situate in King Street, Milton next Gravesend, in the occupation of Mr. William Greenstreet, yearly tenant, producing together a rental of 165. 0s. 0d. per annum. This important property affords a rare opportunity for monied men to invest their capital to great advantage.

May be viewed at any time prior to the sale by leave of the tenants.
Particulars and Conditions of Sale may be had ten days prior to the Sale, of Mr. R. Townson, Solicitor, 40, Ratcliffe Highway; Messrs. Parkins, 69, Mark Lane, Messrs Parson, 158, Borough; and at the Auction Mart, London, “George,” Rochester; “Bull,” Dartford; at the Place of Sale; and of the Auctioneer, High Street, Gravesend.


Maidstone Journal and Kentish Advertiser, Monday 8 January 1872.

Mr. Wood applied for a certificate for the "Kings Head," King Street, licensed to Mr. Zonwin. It appeared that applicant had been virtually the landlord for a month past, and the magistrates, after commenting on this irregularity, granted the application.


From the By Chris Hunter, 19 February 2019.

Gravesend doorman Phil Campbell calls for more police patrol after gun incident.

A doorman who tackled a man who pulled a gun on him has called for a stronger police presence to combat an increase in weapons offences.

Security guard Phil Campbell served with the Royal Logistic Corps in the 2003 invasion of Iraq - but says even his combat experience couldn’t totally prepare him for some of the things he’s seen in Gravesend.

The 35-year-old dad-of-five was working on the door of the "Kings Head" pub in King Street, when he found himself forced to make a split-second decision that could have potentially meant the difference between life or death.

“I was on the door, doing my usual duties,” he said.

“At about 1am I was approached by a man who tried to get in and produced a firearm.

"He didn’t really say anything.

“I think he was upset because he’d had a few drinks and was refused entry.

"He produced the firearm and I then grabbed it. I didn’t really think, I just reacted - I went for it.

“I grabbed hold of the gun and held his arms so he couldn’t fire it.”

Mr Campbell’s colleagues then told him to let go of the man, which he did.

He radioed community officers in the town centre and called the police.

Armed officers were sent to Parrock Street shortly before 1.10am on Saturday, and witnesses reported seeing them around the clock tower area, before police recovered a BB gun from the scene.

The police reportedly told Mr Campbell they couldn’t be sure if he was stupid or brave to taken the action that he did, but he says in the moment, he just wanted to protect the public.

“It wasn’t one of my smartest moves,” he added.

“I actually tried to take it out of his hands. I stopped him from firing it. At the time I didn’t know it was a BB gun.

“My partner is extremely annoyed."

She says 'your actions could have left our children without a father', but I say I was doing my job and trying to protect the public.”

The incident follows news last week that the number of people caught in possession of guns and knives has risen by 50% - the latest figures showing there were 159 weapons offences in Dartford and Gravesham in the 12 months to September 2018 - up 47% on the previous 12 month period, when 108 incidents were recorded.

And Mr Campbell said he had also noticed a rise in the number of people carrying weapons.

“People are going round with them more often but you don’t expect it every day,” he said.

“I said to the police I’ve had needles pulled on me, and I’ve had knives pulled on me. You just get used to it.

“People seem to be wanting to arm themselves a bit more because they know they’ll be refused entry or they’re taking weapons with them for self defence.”

And while he praised police for their rapid response, he said the police themselves needed more support.

“We do need more of a police presence in the town centre,” he said.

“I know they’re understaffed and they can’t be everywhere.”

And he said being in the army couldn’t fully prepare anyone for the situations he’s faced.

“It does and it doesn’t,” he said.

“You don’t expect stuff like that in civilian life.

"I know my job’s quite dangerous so I’m more prepared for it.

"During my day job I wear a stab vest because of the amount of shoplifters who carry knives so they can get away.

“If they pull out an HIV-infected needle I’m not arguing with them.”

Kerim Ferudun, 34, of Gravesend was charged with possession of an imitation firearm and has been released on bail.

He is due to appear at Medway Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, March 12.


From the By Megan Carr, 13 March 2023.

The Kings Head Sports Bar, Gravesend, to permanently close.

A popular bar is closing for good due to an increase of "criminals and alcoholics" in a town centre.

The Kings Head Sports Bar in Gravesend announced its closure stating that it has come as a result of the town's "deterioration".

King's Head 2023

The Kings Head Sports Bar in Gravesend is closing. Picture: Jackie Gordon.

In a statement posted online a spokesman said: "We have been running the Kings Head for 13 years, however, it has been a pub for more than 100 years.

"In the last few years Gravesend has deteriorated and in our view the local authority has allowed this.

"Crime has increased and so many criminals and alcoholics have been re-located to Gravesend town centre from other boroughs.

"This has contributed to the town's deterioration. Working with the public seven days a week we hear their views and so many say the same thing.

"They don't come to Gravesend for clubbing anymore, they would rather go to Rochester or Maidstone.

"We remember 10-years ago when Gravesend town centre was really busy with lots of clubs and pubs.

"People came from surrounding towns and the night-time economy was booming.

"Everyone benefited, including taxis, takeaways and restaurants.

"Now you can forget people from other towns coming here, even locals don't go clubbing in Gravesend.

"This is why we have decided to close the Kings Head permanently.

"It was a very difficult decision but we felt we had no choice. Thank you to all our loyal customers who have supported us during the last 13 years."

The sports bar has been subjected to a spate of crimes, assaults and licensing issues over the years.

In June 2021 hooded thieves broke into the bar and carried away a safe containing 15,000.

The business was targeted by three men who were captured on CCTV entering the back of the property.

Later that year there was a vicious gang attack outside the premises which left the victim requiring facial surgery.

Police called for a licensing review after a man in his 20s was repeatedly punched in the head and left with serious injuries.

Two years earlier, in 2019, a bouncer tackled a man who pulled a gun on him while he was working on the door of the Kings Head.

And in 2016 a former investment banker pleaded guilty after he became violent and hurled racist abuse at the bar while his brother threw coins.

Ismail Sucu 2016

In 2016 Ismail Sucu, who was landlord at the Kings Head, was subject to racist abuse.

The watering hole's last day trading will be on Sunday, March 19.

However it is inviting its customers to a 'One Last Dance' event on Saturday, March 18, to "remember the good old days."

The Kings Head have been contacted for comment and further information.

Gravesham Borough Council declined to comment.


As the information is found or sent to me, including photographs, it will be shown here.

Thanks for your co-operation. Every email is answered and all information referenced to the supplier.

This page will be updated as soon as further information is found.



GREENSTEAD William 1824-32+ Pigot's Directory 1828-29Pigot's Directory 1832-34

CROSBY Peter James 1840+

WRIGHT George 1855-58+

WHISKIN John 1861-65+ (age 48 in 1861Census)

SMITH T 1869-70+

ZONWIN Mr 1871-72+

TONG John 1878-82+ (age 43 in 1881Census)

TONG Hannah Mrs 1891+

BRIDGER William 1903+ Kelly's 1903

JOHNSTONE Andrew P 1913+

COX William Charles 1922+

GRETTON Arthur 1930+

ROBERTS Ethel Beatrice Mrs 1938+

SUCU Ismail 2016+


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

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

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903


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