Page Updated:- Tuesday, 16 April, 2024.


Earliest 1645

Bull Inn

Closed Mar 2023

Bull Hill


01233 820 534

Bull Inn 1900

Above photo, circa 1900, from Bertram Kingsnorth. Possibly showing Henry Bell by the horses.

Bull people 1903

Above showing a close up of the top photo. Alice Kingsnorth, nee Caulton, is sitting by the door and it looks like she has a baby on her knee. This would be Annie Marguerite who was born at the Bull in 1903.

Bull Inn 19100

Above photo coloured version of above, circa 1900, from Adrian Stanton.

Henry and Alice Kingsnorth

Above photo showing Henry and Alice Kingnorth, licensees 1902-04. Kindly sent by Lesley Berry.

Bull Inn 1909

Above photo, 1909, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Bull 1922

Above postcard, postmarked 1922.

Bull 1945

Above photo, 1945, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Bull Inn 1969

Above photo, circa 1969, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Bull 1969

Above photo, circa 1969, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Bull Inn 2010

Above photo 2010 by Oast House Archive Creative Commons Licence.

Bull 2015

Above photo kindly supplied by Tricia Francis, 18 January 2015.

Bull sign 1985Bull sign 1992

Above sign left, April 1985. Sign right, June 1992.

With thanks from Brian Curtis

Bull Inn sign 2010Bull Inn sign 2020

Sign left, 2010, sign right, 2020, kindly taken and sent by Roger Pester.


Bethersden, home of the famous marble, has its "Bull Inn," built on the old Bull Green in 1645 and a frequent stopping-place for coaches after the turnpike road from Ashford to Tenterden was constructed in the eighteenth century.

Licensee Henry Kingsnorth paid 30 a year for rent and 13 for the meadow, he later moved to the "Walnut Tree" at Aldington.

During the second world war the stable block was used as a prison and the local Home Guard trained here as well.


Kentish Gazette, 18 June 1844.

Bethersden Benefit Society.

The members of this society met at the "Bull Inn," Bethersden, on Thursday, 6th June, and walked from thence in procession to church with their village band, flags, and banners, when a very appropriate discourse was delivered by the Rev. Richard Burnett, vicar of the parish, from the 133rd Psalm, 1st verse; after which they returned to a spacious booth, in a meadow opposite the "Bull Inn," where the members and friends, their venerable vicar in the chair, partook of a splendid dinner, got up in excellent style by the worthy host of the "Bull Inn" (Mr. Vane). After the cloth was removed the chairman proposed the health of the Queen, which was hailed with three times three; after which there were several good songs sung, and the evening was passed with much hilarity and good feeling, the band playing at intervals, and the village bells merrily pealing, heightened the festivity of the occasion.


Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, 16 July 1870.


A singularly brutal case of assault upon a woman came under the notice of the magistrates at the Petty Sessions on Tuesday, and the perpetrator of it narrowly escaped a far higher charge than that brought against him, as a very little more violence on his part might, according to the medical testimony, have terminated his victim's life. The prisoner was Philip Town, waggoner to Mr. Dean, of Biddenden. On Thursday he was sent to Bethersden with a load of stone, and remained drinking at the "Bull Inn" all day, and his mate at length went home with the waggon. The woman, who is a hawker, named Ann Gadd, came into the "Bull" while he was there, and he plied her with drink until she became somewhat intoxicated. She then went out of the house, with the intention of proceeding to Ashford. She was followed by the prisoner, who pursued her with certain solicitations, and when she refused him he struck her a terrible blow in the face with his fist, knocked her down, and then kicked her violently as she lay on her head and body. There were several cuts from the steel tips of the prisoner’s heavy boots in different parts of her head, especially behind her ears, when she was examined by Mr. Underhill, surgeon; but, singular to say, her skull was not fractured. She was, however, quite unconscious when the prisoner was made to desist from beating her by some men who were called upon by the wives of some villagers to interfere. These women he pursued with much fury when they came near him as he was knocking the woman about. As her state was critical, she was taken to the Union by the Bethersden policeman, and she was now able to attend and give evidence, although she presented a shocking appearance.

The prisoner had no defence whatever to make, but a general good character was given of him. He was committed for three months' hard labour.

A letter was read from the Guardians of the West Ashford Union, complaining of the Bethersden policeman for bringing the woman there, as they considered she ought to have been left at the public-house where the drink was supplied. The Magistrates exonerated the policeman from all blame.


From the By Sam Williams, 22 February 2016.

Chimney fire at Bull Inn, Bethersden.

Staff and punters at a village pub had to evacuate the building following a chimney fire.

Firefighters from Ashford were called to the Bull Inn, in Bethersden, at around 7pm last night.

They say that everyone was out of the building when they arrived and they spent 45 minutes at the scene.

The fire was contained to the chimney.


From the By Liane Castle, 15 April 2023.

Shepherd Neame bosses confident The Bull Inn in Bethersden will reopen soon.

Brewery bosses are confident a village pub will reopen soon after the previous licensee pulled out.

The Bull Inn in Bethersden, between Ashford and Tenterden, has been closed since the start of March, leaving villagers concerned for its future.

Bull 2023

The pub in Bull Lane overlooks the A28. Picture: Shepherd Neame.

But Shepherd Neame says it is planning to reopen the site, which sits in a prime position in Bull Lane overlooking the A28.

Director of tenanted pub operations, Greg Wallis, said: “We can confirm we are currently recruiting a new licensee to take over The Bull at Bethersden, which has been closed since the start of March.

“It is a characterful rural village pub with great potential and we are confident that the business will reopen shortly.”

Elsewhere in the village, the "George" in The Street could reopen by the summer after residents raised more than 300,000 to buy it.

Fearing the historic building could be demolished, villagers came together to form the "George" Community, with the aim of raising enough money to reopen the pub as a community asset.

Bull 2023

Bosses hope to reopen The Bull Inn as soon as possible. Picture: Shepherd Neame.

Efforts were aided by a government boon, which pledged to match any money raised up to 250,000 – meaning the 300,000 raised would result in 550,000 in total.



VANE Stephen 1841-63 dec'd (also farmer age 53 in 1841Census)

LEE Herbert 1871+ (age 33 in 1871Census)

DYKE John 1874-82+ (age 62 in 1881Census)

DYKE Caroline 1891+ (widow age 72 in 1891Census)

KINGSNORTH Henry 1902-04 Next pub licensee had

BELL Henry 1903+ Next pub licensee had Kelly's 1903

PHILPOTT William 1911+ (age 49 in 1911Census)

NORRIS Alfred 1913-22+

NORRIS Zilah Mrs 1938+


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:-