Sort file:- Gravesend, November, 2022.

Page Updated:- Thursday, 17 November, 2022.


Earliest 1462


Latest 1829

(Name to)

20 High Street



A pub called the "Swan" is noted in 1339 and is thought to be the earliest known Gravesend Pub. Whether this is the same pub I am as yet unsure.

The "Swan at 20 High Street can be traced to 1462 till 1829. The following year in 1830 it was referred to as the "Kent" where it operated under this name till 1976. It then changed to the "Penny Farthing" till 2001, apparently being closed for 4 years till 2005 when it reopened as the "Kent Bar and Bistro."

There is also the possibility that it may have been called the "Blew Boar's Head" traced from between 1635 and 1795, which would have been in the same area.


Kentish Gazette, 27 April, 1774.

To be sold by auction, upon the premises. On Wednesday the 25th day of May, 1774, (if not sooner disposed off by private contract, of which notice will be given.)

A leasehold estate for the remainder of a term, of which there were 54 years unexpired at Christmas last, in following lots, (or otherwise as shall be approved of, on the day of sale.)

Lot one:- All that well known and good accustomed Inn, called the "Swan Inn," situate and being in Milton next Gravesend, in the county of Kent, together with the Yard, Brewhouse, Stables, Coach houses, Granaries, and all other Conveniences, there to belonging; now let on lease (except the said Brewhouse) to Mr. Thomas Elliott, for the term of 21 years, under the yearly rent of 40.


Milton next Gravesend Burials from the register of St Peter & St Paul.

18 Sep 1581. Upon Michaelmas daye towards night, a servaunt of Sir Humfrey Gilbert, whoe was founde dead in his bedd at the Swanne.


23 Dec 1604. Richard Grover of the Swanne.


2 Nov 1606. John Whyte, Tapster at the Swanne.


22 Nov 1619. Thomas Wattson, Innekeeper at the Swanne and one of the fower and twenty.


27 Aug 1626. John Hobbs, Ostler et the Swanne.


19 Dec 1627. Simon a waggoners servant of Da* who died at the Swanne.


16 June 1633. William Smith, under Ostler at the Swanne.


26 Jan 1633/4. John Moore, a wagoners servant who died at the Swanne.


28 Oct 1651. A stranger that dyed at the Swan.


Kentish Gazette 01 April 1769.

We hear from Northfleet, that, last Wednesday, as a post-chaise boy was taking out a parcel from the chaise, the horses took fright and run away; Mrs. Manard and another woman, who were in the chaise, jumped out and are since dead by the hurt they received. It is remarkable that the horses run into the "Swan Inn," Gravesend, and did no damage.


From Kentish Gazette 6 March 1773.

To be let, and entered into at Lady Day next. (25 March)

All that well known, good accustom'd and commodious Inn, called the "Swan Inn", in Gravesend, now in the occupation of Mr. William Reed, who is going into a different Business.

The Household Goods, Stock in Trade, Post-Chaise and Horses, to be taken at fair Appraisement.


Kentish Gazette, 5 March, 1774.

On Tuesday last of gentleman and lady, in a post-chaise, was robbed by a single highwyman between Dartford and Gravesend, early in the evening. The gentleman gave him 25 guineas, and the lady, being much frightened by some expressions which he made use of, gave him a gold watch out of her bosom, with which he made off, and lay that night at the "Swan" at Gravesend; the next day he went up to London by the machine, and desired his horse might be sent after him to Westminster. The robbery being much talked of the next day, occasioned some suspicion of this person; the horse was stopped, and advice sent to Sir John Fielding, who immediately sent down and took the horse into his possession; on Saturday the man came for it, and being asked into a room at the "Swan," was immediately secured and sent to London. In his pocket was found an iron candlestick, highly polished, to resemble a pistol.


From the Kentish Gazette, 30 April, 1774.


Upon the premises on Wednesday the 25th Day of May 1774.

(If not sooner disposed by the private contract, of which notice will be given.)

A Leasehold Estate for the Remainder of the Term, of which there were fully four years unexpired at Christmas last (or otherwise as shall be approved of, the day of the sale.)

LOT 1. All the well known and good accustomed inn, called the "Swan Inn," situate and being in Milton, next Gravesend, in the County of Kent, together withy the Yard, Brewhouse, Stables, Coach-house, Granaries, and all other Conveniences, therefore belonging; now let on lease (except the said Brew-house) to Mr. Thomas Elliott, for the term of twenty-one years under the yearly rent of 40.


Kentish Gazette, 20 October, 1779.

To be Let, and entered upon immediately.

The large and well accustomed inn known by the sign of the "Swan," commodiously situated in the High Street, Gravesend, with a capacious stabling and other outhouse thereto belonging, 15 years of a lease of the premises are unexpired. The coming in about 100.

None but Principles need apply.

The present occupant having engaged in the Dover Coaches and Farming Business is the reason of his quitting it.


Kentish Gazette, 23 February, 1780.

To be Let, and entered upon immediately.

That's good and old-accustomed inn, in Gravesend, known by the name of the "Swan."

Enquire of Mr. Reed, Brewer, Gravesend, Kent.


From the Kentish Gazette 7th August, 1795.


To be sold by auction, by Mr. Johnson, on Wednesday, 12th August, 1795, between the hours of three and five in the afternoon, at the "Swan Inn," in Milton next Gravesend, in the county of Kent (unless disposed of by Private Contract, of which timely notice will be given in this paper;) the under-mentioned valuable freehold and leasehold Estates in one lot:

A very large and substantial well built freehold brew house, with the wharf, storehouses, granaries, stables and buildings belonging thereto, situate, lying and being at Gravesend in the county of Kent, in the occupation of Messrs. Becket and Ward brewers.

A valuable leasehold estate, consisting of a well-accustomed Inn, known by the name of the "Swan Inn," in the occupation of Joseph Phipps, and to large stables, coach house, blacksmiths shop and warehouses, situate in the parish of Milton next Gravesend aforesaid, for the remainder of the term of ninety-nine years, but which thirty-two years will be expired Christmas next; subject to a ground rent of 9.

The above freehold and leasehold estates together are let at the yearly rent of 100 (subject to the aforesaid ground-rent on the leasehold, and to the payment of 1 1s., yearly to the city of London for the Freehold;) and Messrs. Becket and Ward have an unexpired term of twelve years and Christmas next in both estates, on the expiration of which the rents will be capable of being considerably advanced.

A freehold messuage or tenament, washhouse and premises, situate in the West Street in Gravesend aforesaid, in the occupation of Mr Charles Becket, at the yearly rent of 16.

A good and well accustomed public house, known by the name of the sign of the "Bear and Ragged Staff," situated in the West Street, in Gravesend of aforesaid, with the wash house, two small dwellings or apartments, large yard and passage, with steps leading down to the river.

These premises are in the occupation of William Denyer, and let on lease to Messrs. Becket and Ward, the unexpired term of which will be eleven years from Christmas next, at a yearly rent of 30.

Two small freehold messages for tournaments, in the occupation of William Reed and John Turner, at the yearly rent together of 11.

N.B. The brewhouse and premises belonging thereto, the house in the occupation of Mr Becket, and the two small messages last mentioned, are kept in repair for the landlord's; the "Swan Inn" and the "Bear" public house by the respective lessees.

The respective tenants will on application show the premises; and for further particulars and enquire of the auctioneer, Post Office, Gravesend.


Kentish Gazette, Tuesday, 13 November 1792.


TO be Sold, 6,000 very fine GLOBE CABBAGES, in Gravesend.

For particulars enquire of Mr. Phipps, at the "Swan," in Gravesend, aforesaid.


Kentish Chronicle, 10 March, 1829.


Feb 27, after a long illness, Mr. Thomas Lunt, of the "Swan Inn," Gravesend.




WATTSON Thomas to 22/Nov/1619 dec'd

REED William to Mar/1773

ELLIOTT Thomas 1774

PHIPPS Mr 1792+

THOMPSON Ann 1828+ Pigot's Directory 1828-29

LUNT Thomas to 27/Feb/1829 dec'd


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


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