Page Updated Whitfield:- Wednesday, 29 September, 2021.


Earliest 1959


Open 2020+

2 Sandwich Road


01304 825890

Archer 1959

Above photo circa 1959. Kindly sent by Michael Mirams.

Archer Whitfield
Archer Whitfield
Archer Sign WhitfieldArcher Sign Whitfield

Above photograph of the Archer by Paul Skelton 4 August 2007

Archer 2011

Above photos taken by Paul Skelton 9 April 2011

Archer sign 1990Archer sign 2011

Above sign left, 1990, sign right, 9 April 2011.

With thanks from Brian Curtis


From the Dover Express and East Kent News. 11 March, 1938. Price 1d.


The County Petty Sessions were held at Wingham on Thursday, before Viscount Hawarden, Messrs. C. J. Burgess, W. G. Chandler, A. J. Lailliott and C. W. Chitty and Mrs. Plumptry.


Mr. B. H. Waddy (instructed by Messrs. Mowll and Mowll) applied on behalf of Bertram Charles Dredge, Manager to Thompson and Sons Ltd. Brewers, of Walmer, for a provisional licence for premises they desired to erect at the top of Whitfield Hill.

Mr. P. Bracher (for Messrs. Fremlins, Ltd. Owners of the “Royal Oak,” Whitfield, and the “Railway Hotel,” Kearsney,) Mr. E. E. Chitty (for a number of residents and property owners), and Supt. Webb (for the Police) appeared to oppose.

The Magistrates' Clerk said that there was also a letter from Mr. Perkins, but he was not present.

Mr. Waddy said that the house was to cater for the road traffic that went along the road from Dover to Sandwich, a main road, and for the local inhabitants. Going from Dover to Sandwich one turned up the hill and did not pass the “Railway Hotel” at all, yet they had come to oppose the application. The “Royal Oak” was just under two-thirds of a mile away and then came a beer house, another beer house at Tilmanstone and then right through to Eastry. As regards the traffic that went along that road the only census he had been able to get was one issued by the Kent County Council in 1935. That gave figures of the traffic on Whitfield Hill between August 12th and 18th, 1935, and it was common knowledge that the motor traffic had very considerably increased since then. In that week the total number of vehicles of all kinds, including cyclists, was 8,851. the large majority of the vehicles were motor vehicles. On each day there were more than one thousand. In fact 1,053 was the lowest on one day; the highest was 1,413 on Saturday, 17th August. So they could see that there was a substantial amount of traffic using the road and the only accommodation for them was the “Royal Oak” in Whitfield itself. It was an old fashioned house. All the houses along that road were almost certainly pre-war, some boasted some sort of draw-in but none of them had anything in the nature of a real car park and although the houses were well kept they were nothing like the modern refreshment houses now being put up all over the country. The only house in that district with any pretence to a car park was the “Railway Hotel” and that was really off the route. There was a bus stop at the applicant's site and they could make provision for people to wait there in inclement weather. The majority of the houses, as shown by the map he produced were nearer the applicant's site than the “Royal Oak.” The site was an ideal one, very open, and the erection of buildings on it could not possibly create a traffic problem. Upon that site, which was a big one, the applicants proposed to build not only a licensed house but to sell land at the site, for shops in front and garages behind, so that the existing houses there were not going to look over into the applicant's premises. Exactly opposite the corner were two shops and a garage, so no one could complain that they were making a shopping centre for the south end of the village. There were 225 houses in that two-thirds mile radius and with the moderate figure of four persons per house they got over one thousand people. The applicants could set the house well back and form an ample car park with a splendid sight line across the corner for traffic. Neither of the houses opposing the application had such a pleasant elevation as the proposed one, and it would really be an asset to the village of Whitfield. They were proposing to have an off licence with a separate entrance, so that there would be no need to go into the bars at all. There was to be a public bar, private bar and saloon bar all connected with the service place and on the right-hand side luncheon and tea rooms and conveniences both sexes. The house would cost something in the neighbourhood of 3,000 to erect, so the Justices would see that they were not running up some little show. That amount was quite apart from the furnishings. He mentioned that figure particularly for the benefit of property owners, as they could not say it would destroy the amenities of the neighbourhood at all. Then they must realise that a substantial portion of that 3,000 must be spent in the locality and that was going to be a great assistance to the rates. The property owners were a different problem. They were constantly hearing at the licensing meetings of residents coming forward frightened that their property was going to be hurt by the coming of licensed premises in their district. That must be the real nature of opposition from the property owners. He understood that some of the objectors were residents but some of the owners of building land were not owners of building land immediately adjacent to the site of the proposed premises, because that belonged to the applicants. Beyond that came a house and it must be 200 yards before coming to any more real building land. In his submission, the proposed premises would appreciate rather than depreciate the neighbourhood. It would become the focus of the village because there would be shops and the proposed house would become a small social centre of the village. It was an extremely difficult thing to find out what people in the district wanted, and although all sorts of criticism could be made about petitions, one tried one's best to test the nature of the wishes of the neighbourhood by means of a petition. His petition contained 119 signatures. He did not know how many Mr. Chitty had but he was instructed that in three cases – and the petition in favour was made after Mr. Chitty's people signed Mr. Chitty's because they thought it was a petition for people in favour – the proposal and not against. It only went to show that petitions had to be dealt with somewhat leniently, but the fact that 119 people had taken the trouble to send a petition in favour, it did go to show, in his submission, that in an area like that, a house such as the applicants desired to erect would really be welcomed by the people there. The monopoly value – the price agreed between his clients and the Customs for submission to the justices for approval – was the sum of 1,000.

John Bolsom, a retired Colour-Sergeant in the Royal Marines, living at “Fairhaven,” Sandwich Road, Whitfield, said that he lived about one hundred yards from the proposed site. He thought licensed premises such as it was proposed to erect would be a considerable convenience to the neighbourhood and he thought it was necessary. He had gone round with a petition for more in favour , and was there that morning to support it. The road to the “Royal Oak” was very dangerous as there were no lights and no footpaths. The signatures were people living near the proposed site; the village of Whitfield had not been touched at all as they had a public house.

Mr. Bracher: Presumable, you are not a teetotaller?

Not buy any means.

Do you have any difficulty in getting what refreshments you require now?

No, but I have a lot of work to get one, and when I get home I feel I want another one.

Mr. Chitty: Archer's Court Road is in the immediate neighbourhood, and there are 20 houses there?

I should think more.

You think it would be a convenience to these owners and a necessity for them to have this licence?

I certainly do.

Have they signed your petition?

I have not been to them.

You admit now that you have not asked the people in the immediate neighbourhood?

I knew they were opposed to it, but they are only a small proportion.

Superintendent Webb: have you been to the “Royal Oak” since the premises have been altered?


During the time you have resided in Whitfield have you visited the “Royal Oak” on many occasions?


Have you ever found a greater demand for intoxicating liquor than they could supply?

I have not.

Alexander French, Archer's Court House, Whitfield, a builder, gave evidence supporting the application.

Mr. Bracher: You have not got a contract for the building of this new house if it is erected?

Certainly not.

Mr. Chitty: Are all the houses in Archer's Court Road detached private houses subject to restrictive covenants confining them to private houses?


So far, there have been no business premises on the other side of Archer's Court Road and in the Sandwich Road the only premises are a grocer's shop and a garage, which were erected at a time when a lot of little bungalows were going up there without restrictions?

There have been proposals for business premises there.

But actually there have been no business premises?


Superintendent Webb: Have you visited the “Royal Oak?”


Have you found the demand so great that you could not be supplied?


Mr. Bracher addressing the Bench on behalf of the owners of the “Royal Oak,” Whitfield, and the “Railway Hotel,” Kearsney, said that the application had been put before them on two different grounds, the needs of the itinerant public and the needs of the resident public. The application was for an entirely new licence, and there were no half measures about it. The Justices would have to feel that there was a very considerable need, a need proved to their satisfaction that it was necessary to have an additional licence in their area before they granted it. He was not preaching temperance, but one had to consider the licensed houses in the area and whether there was need for an additional one. As regards the residents, they had a petition there, and he would point out that those 119 names were by no means independent of each other, neither did they represent separate households. The first one was John Bolsom, then somebody else by the same name, and then Mrs. Bolsom. Then came Mr. F. E. Greenstreet and S. H. Greenstreet, and so forth, as they looked down the list. If they put it that 119 names represented 50 different houses they would be generous to the applicants. One could not always have a public house on the doorstep and when there was a bus going by – they had heard from Mr. Waddy's figures that there were a great number each day – so that it was no hardship for people to have to take a penny bus ride-

Mr. Waddy: It makes a penny on a pint of beer.

Mr. Bracher, continuing, said that as regards an off-licence, in these days of competition the licensees of the houses in the district were quite willing to deliver any alcoholics in their area. So much for the local inhabitants. With regard to the through traffic, the whole distance from Dover to Sandwich was some twelve miles. Within three-quarters of a mile of Dover there was the “Royal Oak,” Whitfield; how many minutes run in a car was this? Then it was not very far by car before they got to Eastry, and a little further on was Sandwich. Was it coming that the motoring public had got to have a licensed house every mile along the road? As regards the “Railway Hotel,” they might consider that some of the traffic would be coming from the Canterbury direction, and so would pass the “Railway Hotel” before going up Whitfield Hill. The “Royal Oak” had had a considerable amount of money spent on it already and had ample refreshment rooms. He had to say that there was no evidence of the necessity for an additional licence, either from the point of view of local inhabitants or the itinerate public.

Mr. E. E. Chitty said that he appeared for the owners and lessees of the better class houses in the immediate neighbourhood and vicinity of the proposed public houses, and they objected very emphatically. He had a petition signed by 66 people representing 27 houses and people owning land. The owners of nearly all the houses in the vicinity subsequently decided to instruct him to oppose the application. With regard to the traffic the argument was absolutely absurd, as no motorist leaving Dover would want a drink at the top of Whitfield Hill. If he did want a drink it would only mean him going another three-quarters of a mile along the road. His client objected very emphatically to having a number of people dragged from other towns to come and have a drink next door to them. They did not want “gay young things” to go out there to make whoopee-

Mr. Waddy: We are not catering for them.

Mr. Chitty said that he did not see who else they were catering for. It had been said that the public house would be an asset and an improvement, but it was curious that none of the people who ever stated that, whether it be Counsel, brewers' managers, or anyone else, lived next door to a public house, and found it improved the neighbourhood. He had never found that yet.

Mr. Waddy: I must interrupt, as my friend has said that, and referred to me. I have lived for fourteen years next door to a public house and I had my house built there. (Laughter.) If my friend makes a personal reference I must answer it.

Mr. Chitty: My friend must be an exception. Continuing, Mr. Chitty said that the class of people in the neighbourhood of the site were the class of people who did not require a public house. They obtained all the liquor they wanted by giving an order to their brewer or wine merchant; they did not send their wife across the street with a mug. (Laughter.) It was a very good principle that existing licensees should not be subjected to such competition as would make it extremely difficult for them to make a living whilst conducting their houses strictly within the law. The licensee of the “Royal Oak” had conducted his house very well, he was an enterprising man, and had given satisfaction to all his customers. The policy of the licensing laws was that there should be a comparatively small number of well conducted houses able to get a living nicely. As regards the wording of the objection-

The Chairman: Who drew it up?

Mr. Chitty: I did myself, after consultation with my clients.

Mr. Chitty went on to read the objections, which were that there were ample facilities for obtaining alcoholic refreshments already existing, and any additional licences would be contrary to public interest and prejudicial to the amenities of the neighbourhood. Their houses were good class residential properties, and the houses on the side of the road were subject to a restrictive clause. The erection of a public house on the site proposed would seriously impair the amenities of the area.

Patrick Joseph Callanan, a clerk employed by Messrs. Bradley, Chitty and Scorer, gave evidence for collecting the names on the petition for the objectors.

Mr. Waddy: Look at the address “Valley View,” Sandwich Road, there are three people under the name of that house. Did you get those signatures?


Look at my petition, there are the same names?


What did you tell these people?

I put it to them that I was from the office of Bradley, Chitty and Scorer, and we were concerned with the opposition to the public house licence.

Did you get them to read your objections?

Anyone who wished to.

Did you not insist on them reading it?

I simply explained we were opposing the licence. One or two, or three, went to the trouble of reading it.

Mr. Chitty said that in regard to the persons in “Valley View,” he had a letter from Mrs. R. Harris on March 15th, addressed to his firm, stating, “Please include my name amongst those opposing Mr. Dredge's application.”

Superintendent Webb said that the Police were opposing the application on the grounds that the existing premises in that district were sufficient to meet the requirements.

The Chairman after the Magistrates had retired to consider their decision, said that there were not sufficient grounds for the erection of a new house, so that the application would be refused.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News. 1 March 1939.


At the Adjourning Licensing Sessions at Wingham, on Thursday, Mr. Christmas Humphries instructed by Messrs. Mowll and Mowll, applied on behalf of Messrs. Thompson and Co., Brewers, Walmer, for a provisional license in respect of a public house they propose to erect on a site at the top of Whitfield Hill.

Mr P. Bracher opposed on the application on behalf of the "Royal Oak," Whitfield and the "Railway" Hotel, Kearsney, and Mr. E. E. Chitty on behalf of 33 owners and occupiers of houses in the immediate neighbourhood of the site.

Supt. Webb said that he had been instructed by the Chief Constable of Kent to oppose, on the grounds of erection of fresh premises in the district being unnecessary.

Mr. Christmas Humphries said that the applicants had purchased the freehold of a piece of land  at the top of Whitfield Hill. Since the previous application, the Parish Council had passed a resolution in favour of the application, and those persons presented the desires and views of those who should be considered. Then there were the new barracks which were in course of being built exactly opposite the site, and twelve hundred men and 300 woman and children would be accommodated there. The plans provided for a small social hall at the back of the premises, about 30ft square, which could be used as a social centre for whist drives, club room etc. for persons who at present had no such facilities at all. The site included not only the -acre on which they proposed to build but also land which they proposed to develop. The application was made first, for the population of one thousand persons living within one-third of a mile from the house: then on behalf of those who were going to live in the barracks - and people living in barracks liked to get out of them at times. Where thee was development there would be shops and buildings and the neighbourhood would be entirely changed. Then there was a traffic of  8000 vehicles of one sort or another per week  and hikers who wanted refreshments. Also there was need for a certain amount of hotel accommodation. On those grounds he asked for the application to be granted. The site would be at the cross-roads, which were so important that the County Council were now busy widening the road, and were providing for a roundabout. The house would have an adequate draw-in for vehicles, and if the application was granted they would immediately develop the remainder of the site on the other side. They proposed to build five or six shops and seven or eight garages. They would also build a bus shelter, which at present did not exist. As regards the barracks, it might be said that they had their own canteen, but the new public house would provide not only refreshments of that kind but also food and snacks, and there would be a social hall where the men could take their women. They were no allowed to take their women folk into the canteen. Those people would need a hall and shops. The nearest place now was two-thirds of a mile along the road, and at night it was pitch black. That was the "Royal Oak," and that did not pretend to be an hotel or a refreshment house. The "Railway" Hotel was a long way from the people in the neighbourhood and would be useless for the barracks. Mr. Humphries continuing, said that the public house would cost 3000. There would be a large car park at the back and front, and an entirely separate off-licence. Then there would be a public bar, private bar, and saloon bar, and lunch and tea room. Upstairs would be about five bedrooms. Mr. Humphreys added that a petition in favour of the application had been signed by 163 persons who were closer to the proposed house than to the "Royal Oak." They were prepared to pay a monopoly value of 1000.

Mr. W. B. Traynor, V.C., Sandwich Road, Whitfield, said that he was a member of the Parish Council, and he was present on Tuesday, 7th March, when a resolution was passed unanimously that "this Council are of the opinion that the proposed application should be granted as they consider it would be of beneficial to the parish." Four of the five members of the Council were present, the vicar being the absentee.

In reply to Mr. Bracher, witness said that he lived opposite the site, and had been thereabout six years.

Frederick James Bourne, a S.R. station inspector, living at Singledge Lane, Whitfield, also spoke in favour of the application, and said that the "Royal Oak" was a mile away from his house, and there was no lighting and no footpath on the road.

Mr. Bracher addressing the bench, said that as regards to new barracks, the last place a soldier would go to drink was a public house on his door-step, and as regards their social side, in these days every conceivable social side of the Army was catered for. It was more likely that the local people would be going to functions in the barracks than that the soldiers would be going outside. No one had shown the need for a new license there; he had a petition from thirty-six people asking that the application be not granted. Mr. Bracher added that the "Royal Oak" had a new car park 150ft. long and 30ft. wide, and the lavatory accommodation had recently been improved.

Mr. Chitty said he was speaking on behalf of sixty persons living in the immediate neighbourhood. The houses were not little bungalows but good class residential houses. If the proposed house was to be a "Guest" house or a road house they would get large numbers of people rolling up in the evening, including young people to make "whoopee" as they called it and to have a beano. Young people of to-day did not want to go to the nearest public Place. As regards requiring a public house there because of the barracks, Dover Castle had been in existence since 1066 and all that, but it had never been suggested that a public house was required apposite the castle!

Supt. Webb said that from the Police point of view they considered that circumstances had not altered materially since last year, when the application was refused.

After a short retirement the Chairman (Viscount Hawarden) said that the Magistrates had discussed the matter, and had come to exactly the same conclusion as last year, that a public house there was not necessary.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, 9 February 1940.

Whitfield Roadhouse Application

Mr. Rutley Mowll, on behalf of Messrs. Thompson and Son. Ltd., brewers, Walmer, applied for a license for a hotel it was proposed to build on a site acquired at the top of Whitfield Hill.

Mr. Lancelot Monketon (Maidstone) appeared for Messrs. Fremlin's, owners of the "Royal Oak," Whitfield, and the "Railway" Hotel, Kearsney, to oppose the application.

Supt. Wheatley also appeared on behalf of the Police.

Mr. Mowll said that it appeared that he had succeeded in getting rid of the opposition of the people who lived near the site. The Bench had had that matter before them on two previous occasions so he would cut down his remarks. He claimed that the remarkable growth of the district proved a need for increased facilities. The premises they proposed to build would not be what might be called a drinking house, but an up-to-date place where people could get luncheons and teas without going through that part of the premises which was devoted to the sale of intoxicating liquor. Messrs. Thompson had brought a freehold of the land for 650, and the house was to cost about 4000, and the agreed monopoly value was 1000, which made 5650, which the brewers thought worth investing. Mr. Mowll went on to say there was always one difficulty that arose in such a case. At Herseden, the magistrates refused a license for a proposed public house and a club grew up almost opposite the site. Messrs. Thompsons' since their last application for a license at Whitfield, had been approached to provide the money to put up a club and had been promised the trade if they did it, but they had declined the proposition, partly because they did not own any clubs and because they realised it was better to have drinking facilities under the license of the Justices. A club was not so easily open to police supervision. Was it not obvious that at some time a license would have to be granted for those premises? As regards the opposition, the Railway Hotel would not be effected in the slightest degree, and the village of Whitfield had outgrown the "Royal Oak," which was two-thirds of a mile from the proposed house.

Fawcett Martindale, F.R.I.B.A., produced plans for the proposed premises. Taking a line half-way between the "Royal Oak" and the new hotel, there were 159 houses on the new hotel side and 121 on the "Royal Oak" side.

William Bernard Traynor, V.C. gave evidence in support of the application, and said that he was a member of the Parish Council who last year passed a resolution in favour of the new premises.

Further supporting evidence was given by John Balsom, "Fairhaven," Sandwich Road: Frederick Charles Bourne, "Westbourne," Singledge Lane: and George Aubrey Leech (on behalf of those working at Old Park).

The Justices then retired for about fifteen minutes, and on their return the Chairman said that they would not have to trouble the opposition as they had decided not to grant the license.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 6 June 1958.


Much Depends on Road Scheme.

WHITFIELD may have a new public house. Charington and Co. Ltd. have applied for permission to erect one at the corner of Archers Court Road and the Sandwich Road and they also envisage a block of shops, dwellings and garages.

The plan came before Dover Rural Council's public health committee on Tuesday when the matter was adjourned so that the committee could find out the latest development about the proposed road improvement at the top of Whitfield Hill.

The chairman of the plans sub-committee, Councillor J. Collard, who represents Whitfield, recommended they should adjourn consideration until the road scheme was known.

"If such business premises are needed or desired is not a matter for this committee," said Councillor Collard.



The license for this pub was transferred from the recently closed "Five Bells" in Deal in 1959.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 20 May, 1960.

Archer 1960

Considerable building, including shops and houses, is taking place at Whitfield on the main road near Archers Court Road. This is the licensed house to be opened by Charringtons.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 14 May, 1965.

Pub snacks.

To encourage licensees in the Dover area to provide snacks in public houses, the Guinness Demonstration Unit visited The Archer, at Whitfield, on Tuesday, to give advise to members of Wingham Licensed Victuallers Association.


From the Dover Express, 3 September, 1971.


Bass Charington are seeking planning consent to put up advertising signs at the "Archer" at Whitfield.


From the Dover Mercury, 17 May, 2001.

Archer and Aspen unit

FROM ARCHER TO ASPEN: Kim Heath presents a cheque to Nick Andrews


THE Archer pub, Whitfield raised 356 for the Aspen Unit over the May Day Bank Holiday and presented the money last Thursday. The pub hosted live entertainment all day and ran a boot fair and bouncy castle. A prize raffle was also drawn.

Manageress Kim Heath said: "It's our adopted charity because it's so local and they're trying to raise money for a therapy pool at the moment."


From the Dover Express, 30 April, 2009

Fun day recalls pUb stalwart

A PUB in Whitfield is holding a fun day to raise money for charity in memory of a former regular.

Wayne Green was a regular drinker at The Archer in Sandwich Road and played for the pub's football team before his death from epilepsy seven years ago.

Since then the venue has staged annual events to raise money for the National Society for Epilepsy.

This year's event this Sunday will feature a football match and a whole host of local bands.

Archer advert 2009


2010 saw the pub supplied by the Brakspear brewery.


From the By Lauren MacDougall, 3 September 2020.

Dover pub closes for deep clean after drinker tests positive for coronavirus.

The family run, community pub says it is following guidance from the Government regarding test and trace.

The Archer, on Sandwich Road in Whitfield, revealed the news earlier this week, saying "nothing means more than the safety of customers and staff."

A member of staff confirmed the infected person was on the premises during the early afternoon of Sunday (August 30).

The family run, community pub will now undertake a deep clean and says it is following guidance from the Government regarding test and trace.
Type your email address into the 'sign up to free daily alerts' box, press 'subscribe' and you're all set.

A spokesman for the Dover pub said: "Themselves, with their bubble, were in a segregated area of our pub away from other customers. All members of this persons bubble and those with close contact have been contacted through NHS track and trace.

"We have been advised that anyone who has not been contacted does not need to be tested, nor self isolate as distance was maintained. We have taken all necessary and precautionary measures as instructed by the NHS."

It is not yet known when the venue plans to reopen.

The spokesman added: "Under guidance from NHS test and trace we are taking the preventative measure of having the pub professionally deep cleaned, therefore the pub will be closed until further notice.

"Nothing means more than the safety of our customers and staff.

"We would like to thank everyone that has continued to support us since our re-opening and will see you all as soon as it is safe to do so. Stay safe all."


From the Dover Mercury, 9 September, 2020. By Eleanor Perkins.

Pub reopens after Covid case leads to deep clean.

Archer 2020

A Dover pub which had to close for a deep-clean after learning one of its Bank Holiday customers has tested positive for Covid-19 has now reopened.

The "Archer" pub in Sandwich Road announced the infected person was there last Sunday.

But it reassured other customers that the individual remained in their bubble in a segregated area of the establishment, so others do not need to get tested or self isolate.

Its steps to close and undertake a thorough clean follows government guidance.

In a statement on its Face-book page, a spokesman said:- "Under guidance from NHS test and trace we are taking the preventative measure of having the pub professionally deep cleaned, therefore the pub will be closed until further notice.

"Nothing means more than the safety of our customers and staff.

"The said person was on the premises in the early afternoon hours.

"Themselves, with their bubble, were in a segregated area of our pub away from other customers."

The Archer reopened its doors on Friday.




POND Walter 1974 Library archives 1974 Charrington & Co

HEATH Kim 2001+

JACKSON Stuart 2016+

BLUEBELLS Paula Aug/2018+


Library archives 1974Library archives 1974


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