Sort file:- Sheerness, November, 2022.

Page Updated:- Thursday, 24 November, 2022.


Earliest 1859-

Royal Hotel

Open 2020+



01795 662626

Royal Hotel

Above postcard date unknown, care of Trevor Edward site

Royal Hotel 1970s

Royal Hotel and off license, 1970s. Taken from

Royal Hotel 2009

Photo by David Anstiss 2009 from

Royal Hotel drawing

Above drawing by John Gavaux Ross, drawn 2011, from Trevor Edward site

Royal Hotel 2014

Above photo, 2014. By kind permission of Trevor Edwards.

Royal Hotel sign 2012

Above sign 2012.


Kentish Gazette, 2 March 1847.

SHEERNESS. Coroner’s Inquest.

An inquest was held on Friday before Robert Hinde, Esq., at the "Royal Hotel," Sheerness, on the body of James Illiff, aged 24 years.
Deceased belonged to the barge, Fanny, of Rochester, and was knocked overboard by the mainsail, near the Nore, on the morning of the 25th December last, whilst on the homeward passage from London:— these facts were deposed to by the master of the barge. Five men, labourers, deposed to finding the body on the morning of the 18th ult., on the "flat," near the "Royal Hotel." The jury returned a verdict of "Accidental death."


From the Kentish Chronicle 10, December 1859.


Maria O'Niel was charged before J. D. Dyke, Esq., on Tuesday, with obtaining four glasses of brandy and a half pint of rum from Mr. J. Newton, of the "Royal Hotel," Sheerness, by false pretences. It appeared from the evidence that the prisoner waited upon Mr. Craven, solicitor, and stated the Catholic priest had recommended her to him, as her father was recently dead. She instructed him to sell out £1,400, in the three per cent. Consols, and obtain a more remunerative investment, and also procured a recommendation from him to Mr. Newton to fetch her luggage from the pier, which she stated would arrive the next day, Mr. Craven gave her his card, which she took to Mr. Newton, and stated that Mr. Craven wished him to supply her with whatever she wanted. Mr Newton, having seen her with Mr. Craven, supplied the liquors; his suspicion being afterwards aroused, the matter was put into the hands of Sergeant Ovenden, who at once recognised her as being a common impostor, who had been about Sheerness for two months. She was committed for trial.


From Kentish Gazette 27 January 1863.


On Tuesday a young lady was taking a walk on the sea wall opposite the "Royal Hotel," when the high wind which prevailed acted with such force on the extended skirts of her dress as to blow her into the sea. Fortunately she was sustained in the water by her crinoline until she was rescued from her perilous position.


Kentish Gazette, 1 August 1854.


Smithson:- On the 21st ult., at the "Royal Hotel," Banks Town, Sheerness, the wife of Mr. John Thomas Smithson, of a son still born.


Kentish Gazette, 1 August 1854.


Smithson:- July 24th, Mrs. Smithson, wife of Mr. J. T. Smithson, landlord of the "Royal Hotel," Mile Town, Sheerness.


From the By Megan Carr, 30 January 2020.

Brexit Day celebrations in Kent.

After three long years of Brexit, the UK will finally be leaving the European Union tomorrow.

While it's not the outcome everyone wanted, for some it is an occasion worth celebrating. So, whether you rooted leave from the start or are just happy it's all over, here's where you can mark the historic day.

In Sheerness, The Royal Hotel, in Broadway, is hosting a karaoke and disco to celebrate Brexit, starting at 9pm.


From the By Secret Drinker, 27 January 2020.

Secret Drinker at the Royal Hotel, The Broadway, Sheerness.

“The beer is not on, it hasn’t been on all week, if you want beer then you’re better off going to Wetherspoons round the corner”.

It wasn’t quite the welcome I was expecting, but I decided not to write off the grand sounding Royal Hotel in Sheerness at the first hurdle.

After all, I’m not adverse to a decent lager so I chose instead a pint of Birra Moretti – that, at least, is what it said on the tap. I’ve no idea what Gill actually served me before she went back to counting the knives and forks, all I can say is that it was wet and mildly fizzy. I also had a packet of crisps which, despite being only just out of date, somehow matched the quality of the lager as they were rubbery and tasteless.

I began to wonder if an early exit and an escape route to Spoons might not be the best bet.

There was a hobbyhorse lying against the side of the fridge next to the fruit machine so at least I’d have had transport and company.

But I’m made of sterner stuff so sought conversation elsewhere. There were two fellas sat at the bar - one was busy conducting business and the other, latterly, was parenting.

Against my better judgement, but determined still not to write it off, I ordered a tuna and sweetcorn ciabatta for £3.50, or at least that’s what it said on the menu, at the bar the price was £3.70. Ever heard the saying ‘you get what you pay for’? I’ll explain later.

Whilst waiting for the food I was entertained by scruffy guy number one at the bar. He was negotiating the sale of parts to plumb in a dishwasher and it wasn’t going down well, certainly not as well as the pints of lager. To be fair every time he swore at the top of his voice he apologised to the world in general. At one point he was saying sorry even before he’d effed and jeffed. Finally, pushing the paperwork aside, he started boasting how long he could make a tub of white emulsion last.

At this point, putting his pint down, scruffy guy number two got up and, just as I thought he was about to play the fruitie, reached into a pushchair and pulled out a baby. I thought it had been rammed under the jukebox and pushed up against the fruit machine for storage, and had no idea it contained a child.

But, with food imminent and feeling the need to wash my hands I headed away from the new crèche in search of the gents. I found them in a dark corner of the pub down an old wooden step and, due to the lack of a working bulb, felt for the door. Inside the toilets were lit, though it might have been preferable if they weren’t. I’ll spare you the worst grisly details, but above the urinals it looked as if customers have taken out their frustrations on the plastic walls.

Toilet holes in wall

The plastic walls in the gents have received a good deal of unwanted attention which has left them with a multitude of marks and holes.

Back in the bar the ‘food’ was arriving - the bread was tepid and the tuna cold. Sadly the bread cooled completely within two minutes and it was blatantly obvious it had been microwaved to hide just how stale it was. As soon as it was cold it went rock hard to the point teeth couldn’t penetrate it. It is, without doubt, the most inedible thing I have ever been served on any continent of the world.

So, are there any redeeming features?

The dartboard looks as if it hasn’t been touched for ages, there are two fruit machines, a quiz machine, a pool table a jukebox and picture of a train that is, inexplicably, screwed onto the wall upside down.

Scruff #1 was apologising for screaming “£35 for a ****ing drill bit”, tabs are not available in the bar or restaurant and, most paradoxically, there’s a sign declaring: ‘Enter as strangers, leave as friends’.

A third customer now entered the fray and half a lager was pulled and ready before the old lady in a grey bobble hat had even got to the bar. Barmaid Gill then discussed a whole variety of ailments and they competed to see who was the sickest before the bobble hat parked her shopping trolley and took a side seat.

I think the only positive I saw was the fact that the kid taken from the pushchair seemed a remarkably happy young chap.



PRICE ★ ★ ★




From the By Secret Drinker, 6 April 2020.

Secret Drinker looks back at his 10 worst pubs across Kent.

It’s almost a year since I landed the best job in the world and I’ve been travelling around Kent ever since discovering the very best, and worst, pubs right around the county.

Fortunately the majority of boozers I’ve been lucky enough to visit have been great, but some, sadly, have been found wanting.

I can only ever report exactly what I find at a given moment in time and I realise a fly-on-the-wall review can’t possibly take into account everything going on in a pub. - and many of these pubs may well have improved since my visit.

But, I was tasked with discovering the good, the bad and the ugly – and, in my humble opinion on the day, these are the 10 worst boozers I’ve visited...

3. If the first thing the barmaid tells you is ‘you’d be better off getting a drink round the corner’ it’s obviously not a great start. Add in a totally inedible, rock hard ciabatta and you’ll realise why the Royal Hotel, Sheerness is at No.3. The effing and blinding at the bar was relentless, despite the constant apologies. A sign over the bar which reads ‘Enter as strangers, leave as friends’ is the most misplaced statement ever. And, the locals have clearly taken their frustrations out on the plastic walls in the gents. Please tell me the Royal Hotel was grander in years gone by.

Grand sounding, sadly I think the best days for the Royal Hotel in Sheerness are behind it.



SMITHSON John Thomas 1840-58+ (also Wine & Spirit Merchant)

NEWTON J Mr 1859+

Uninhabited 1861

ROWLSTONE William Henry 1862+

SWADEN G 1867+

COOKE Emma Miss 1874+

HANCOCK John 1881+ (messman in R.N. age 45 in 1881Census)

BOWER Francis & Son 1891+ (Wine & Spirit Merchant Census)

EAGLE/INGLETON Ernest George to May/1902 Maidstone and Kentish Journal

Last pub licensee had MILES James John Joshua May/1902+ Maidstone and Kentish Journal

MILES & Son 1918+

PARKER A P & Sons 1933-38+

COPE Harry to Mar/1952 East Kent Gazette

ROOFF Norman percy Mar/1952+ East Kent Gazette



Maidstone and Kentish JournalMaidstone and Kentish Journal

East Kent GazetteEast Kent Gazette


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