DOVER KENT ARCHIVES

Sort file:- Folkestone, September, 2022.

Page Updated:- Tuesday, 13 September, 2022.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Paul Skelton and Jan Pedersen

Earliest 1782-

(Name from)

British Lion

Open 2019+

10 The Bayle

Bail Street Pigot's Directory 1840

Folkestone

https://whatpub.com/british-lion

British Lion 1920

Above photo 1920, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

British Lion drawing 1971

Above postcard, 1971, kindly sent by George Trotter.

Britiah Lion watercolour 2003

Above watercolour 2003 by Stuart Gresswell, once licensee of "Guildhall" and "Raglan" kindly sent by Jan Pedersen.

British Lion drawing 2007

Above watercolour 2007 by Stuart Gresswell, kindly sent by Jan Pedersen.

British Lion

Above showing the British Lion, date unknown.

British Lion 1971

Above photo 1971, sent by and showing Australian bar worker George Trotter.

British Lion inside 1971

Above photo 1971, sent by and showing Australian bar worker George Trotter and un-named bar-maid.

British Lion 1978

Above photograph kindly supplied by Jan Pedersen, 1978.

British Lion, Folkestone 2009 British Lion, Folkestone 2009

Above photos by Paul Skelton, 27 June 2009.

British Lion card 1951

Above aluminium card issued June 1951. Sign series 3 number 6.

British Lion sign 1986British Lion Sign, Folkestone 2009

Above sign left, 1986, sign right June 2009.

With thanks from Brian Curtis www.innsignsociety.com.

British Lion inside 2010

Photo taken 16 October 2010 from http://www.flickr.com by Jelltex.

 

The "British Lion" was a favourite resort of Charles Dickens between 1857-63, and has its own Dickens Room. There may have been an inn here since 1460, known as the "Priory Arms," and in 1995, local historian Eamonn Rooney discovered that a large portion of one of the walls that still stands was once part of a late medieval priory, but proper records start in 1782.

I also believe that another pub identified as being in the same area, called the "Angel" which was also the surname of the licensees between 1606 and 1646 is indeed the same building.

The oldest part of the building is said to be the large beam that runs over the bar area and into the building next-door. It was carbon dated in the early 2000s as being 460 years old, making its installation to be in the mid 1500s.

 

Folkestone Sessions Books 1765 – 1779 & 1792 - 1811.

General Sessions 31 January 1804.

Before John Sladen (Mayor), Edward Andrews, John Minter, John Castle and John Gill.

The licence of the British Lion was transferred to Robert Life.

Note: This does not appear in More Bastions.

 

Folkestone Sessions Books 1765 – 1779 & 1792 - 1811.

General Sessions 14 October 1806.

Before John Gill (Mayor), John Minter, Joseph Sladen, Thomas Baker, John Castle, John Bateman, William Knight and James Major.

The licence of the British Lion was transferred to William Rigden.

Note: This does not appear in More Bastions.

 

Folkestone Sessions Books 1765 – 1779 & 1792 - 1811.

General Sessions 25 April 1808.

Before Thomas Baker (Mayor), Joseph William Knight, John Castle, John Gill, John Bateman and James Major.

The following person was fined for having short measures in their possession, viz.:

Wm. Rigden for 1 pint 2/6.

 

Folkestone Sessions Books 1765 – 1779 & 1792 - 1811.

General Sessions 27 June 1809.

Before Joseph Sladen (Mayor), John Minter, Thomas Baker, and John Castle.

William Rigden, of the British Lion, was fined for having in his possession three ale pints for selling ale or beer in the sum of 10/-, which was paid.

 

Kentish Chronicle 13 December 1814.

On Saturday, Mr. Robert Formage, landlord of the "British Lion" public house, Folkestone, aged 40 years, on his way home from Folkestone Harbour in perfect health, fell on his face and instantly expired. Medical assistance was immediately procured, but the spark of life was totally extinct. He has left a widow and a numerous circle of friends to lament their loss.

 

Kentish Chronicle 25 July 1815.

Assizes: Crown Side.

John Bathurst and John Bayley, two soldiers, removed by Habeas Corpus from the town of Folkestone, 11th July, were indicted, the former being charged on the oath of Ann Steady, widow, with feloniously, voluntarily, and of malice aforethought, killing and murdering William Dorman, at Folkestone; the latter being charged on his own confession of killing and murdering with malice aforethought, the said William Dorman.

Francis Payne was at the "British Lion," at Folkestone, at the last fair, as waiter. The prisoner, Bathurst, came into the house and asked him whether any of the 95th were there. Witness said there were some in the dancing room, and the prisoner went in and said to them “95th turn out”. A scuffle took place and Bayley and Bathurst went out. About a quarter of an hour afterwards Bathurst came in with his back all over dirt and said “I have done for three of them”.

Thomas Kemp lived at Folkestone, and was in the street on the 29th June last at one o'clock in the morning. There were soldiers and sailors in the street quarrelling. While he was speaking to Dorman (the deceased) witness saw sailors running down the street with soldiers after them. Dorman ran with the sailors from the soldiers, and witness ran up a yard. Presently he came from the yard and proceeded down the street, where he saw Dorman lying on the ground, with a rifleman by his side, kicking him with his foot and swearing at him. Witness carried Dorman into the public house. He could distinguish no persons.

Wm. Shaw was a sailor, and was in the street at Folkestone on the night of the 29th of June. As he was coming up the street he saw Bathurst cutting a staff from one of the booths. Witness went afterwards into the British Lion and saw Bathurst come in and say he had killed three men.

Ann Steady was, on the 29th June last, at Folkestone, awoke out of her sleep by a great noise; she looked out of her window and saw some soldiers beating Dorman, but could not distinguish the Black Man (Bathurst).

Mr. Justice Le Blanc addressed the jury. There was no evidence to identify either of the prisoners, and therefore they must be acquitted.

Verdict: Acquitted.

 

From the Kentish Weekly Post or Canterbury Journal 7 September 1819.

Valuable Brewery free public houses and other Estates to be sold by auction by Mrs White without reserve.

Lot 30. A Messuage, called the "British Lion," with the washhouse, granary, garden, land, and appurtenances, situate near the Bail, in the town of Folkestone aforesaid, and now in the occupation of Ann Formage, widow.

 

Kentish Gazette 19 April 1842,

Auction advertisement extract:

To be sold by auction by Messrs. Bayley and Reeve, on Wednesday the 14th of May, 1842, at two o'clock, at the Royal Oak Inn, Ashford (by the direction of the proprietor, who is leaving the county).

Lot 3) All that freehold public house, called the British Lion, situate on The Bayle, in the town of Folkestone, in the occupation of Mr. Richard Fowle.

 

From the Kentish Gazette, 19 April 1842.

ASHFORD, CANTERBURY, and FOLKESTONE, in KENT To brewers, Innkeepers, and Capitalists.

TO BE SOLD BY AUCTION, By Messrs. BAYLEY and REEVE, ON WEDNESDAY, the 4th of May, 1842, at Two o’clock, at the "Royal Oak Inn," Ashford (by the direction of the Proprietor, who is leaving the county).

The Purchaser of this Lot may have immediate possession.

Printed Particulars and Conditions may be had ten days preceding the sale, of Messrs. Robert and George Furley, Solicitors, and of the Auctioneers, Ashford.

 

Folkestone Chronicle 13 September 1856.

Monday September 8th:

Special sessions were holden for the purpose of renewing licences, and granting new ones. Present, the Mayor, and G. Kennicott, S. Godden, W. Major, J. Kelcey, W. Bateman, S. Mackie, and J. Kinsford esqs.

The licences of 45 houses were renewed. The licence of the Mariner's Home was refused, the landlord having been twice summoned, and twice cautioned, during the year, continual complaints having been made respecting it. The licence of the British Lion was deferred granting until the adjourned meeting, to be holden on Wednesday next.

 

Southeastern Gazette 16 September 1856.

Special Sessions, Monday:

Before the Mayor, T Golder, W. Major, W. Bateman, G. Kennicott, J. Kingsnorth, J. Kelcey, and S. Mackie, Esqs.

This being licensing day, 55 licenses were renewed, and one refused.

Mr. Robert Burvill, of the British Lion, Bayle, was complained of by the Superintendent, for keeping his house full of people during divine service every Sunday. The defendant said they were his men lodgers; he would endeavour to keep them out. The Mayor said Mr. Burvill had kept the house for many years, and he was sorry to hear complaints. The magistrates would grant the license on that occasion, but if any further complaint was made, it would be a serious matter to him.

 

Folkestone Chronicle 20 September 1856.

ADJOURNED SPECIAL SESSIONS – Wed. Sept. 17th

The business was the renewal of licences of public houses to those persons who did not attend the previous sessions. We were in error in stating last week that the renewal of the licence of the British Lion had been adjourned till this meeting, the licence having been granted at the previous sessions.

 

Folkestone Chronicle 6 July 1861.

Monday July 1st:-

Before W. Major, J. Tolputt and Gilbert Kennicott esqs.

Andrew Mason and Henry Foreman were charged by police constable Ovenden with vagrancy, and being found asleep about half past two on Sunday morning, under a tent or booth belonging to Robert Burvill, of the British Lion, in the fair held in Mr. Meikle's grounds, Broadmead Back Lane. They were searched, but nothing found upon them. Discharged with a caution.

 

Folkestone Chronicle 4 January 1862.

Friday January 3rd:- Before the Mayor.

William Thomas Hart, Mill Bay, Folkestone was brought up charged with stealing one Delft chimney ornament, value 1s., the property of Robert Burvill, British Lion Inn, The Bayle, Folkestone. The prisoner had been employed removing some forms when he took the opportunity of stealing the paltry image, which was found at his house. Prisoner was remanded until this morning.

 

Folkestone Chronicle 11 January 1862.

Saturday January 4th.

Before the Mayor and James Kelcey esq.

William T. Hart was brought up on remand, charged with stealing on the 2nd instant, at the house of Mr. Robert Burvill, on The Bayle, a china ornament of the value of one shilling.

Elizabeth Burvill, the wife of Robert Burvill, said prisoner was employed at the house removing some forms into a room, on the mantel shelf of which the ornament stood. The article now produced is the one which was missed after the prisoner left.

The daughter of the last witness proved she had washed the ornaments on Thursday morning; identified the one produced as the one which was missed after the prisoner had been in the house.

Police constable Smith proved on Thursday night he went to prisoner's house; prisoner was in bed; saw the ornament now produced on the mantel, and took the prisoner into custody.

The prisoner consented to be tried by the bench, and pleaded guilty.

The Mayor, addressing the prisoner, said “You have been convicted twice before, but those convictions have not been brought against you on this occasion; it is in the power of the magistrates to commit you for three months, but they do not intend inflicting the full penalty. You are now sentenced to two months' hard labour. This makes the third conviction, and after this, it is very probable that if brought up again, you will be so dealt with as not to trouble the borough for some time”.

 

Folkestone Chronicle 7 June 1862.

Death.

June 5th, on The Bayle, Folkestone, Mr. Robert Burvill, of the British Lion.

Note: Date is at variance with More Bastions.

 

Folkestone Observer 2 January 1864.

Saturday December 26th:

Before Captain Kennicott R.N. and J. Tolputt Esq.

Thomas Graham, private in the 83rd Regiment, stationed at Shorncliffe Camp, was charged with assaulting P.C. Swain.

P.C. Swain said: Yesterday morning at a quarter to six I saw the prisoner lying flat on his back near Gosling's shop. I roused him and tried to wake him. He was very drunk. As soon as I shook him a little and woke him up I told him to go away. He said “You ----“, and kicked me with his left foot on the neck as I was leaning over him. He partly knocked me down. He then sprang up and hit with his fists and knocked my hat off and ran away. P.C. Sharp came up at the time and we both pursued, and took him into custody on the Bayle, at the back of the British Lion, and brought him to the station.

Prisoner was dismissed with a caution.

 

Southeastern Gazette 8 June 1874.

Inquest.

An inquest was held at the Town Hall, on Saturday evening, before J. Minter, Esq., coroner, on the body of Rosetta Diana Stebbings, aged about 80.

George Stebbings, husband of the deceased, deposed: At about half-past nine last night I went to the British Lion and stayed there until about twenty minutes to twelve, and was just going home with a pint of beer for our suppers, when Mrs. Hart, who lives next door, came to me and said, “Your wife is burnt; you had better come home as soon as you can.” I went home and found deceased had been taken to the Dispensary, and on going there I found her in bed very much burnt about the face, breast, back, and one foot. I stayed there all night, deceased was sensible at times, and said a spark flew out of the fire and ignited her dress. There was a coal fire in the grate when I left deceased, who was sitting in a chair.

Mrs. Sarah Hart, who lives next door to deceased in Providence Place, Mill Bay, deposed to hearing deceased scream, and on going to her found her sitting on the floor enveloped in flames. She threw some water over her, and finding she could not extinguish the fire, she called some men, who threw more water upon her and extinguished the flames. Deceased was then taken to the Dispensary.

Mrs. Catherine Clans corroborated the last witness.

Mr. E. Mercer, M.R.C.S., deposed to attending deceased and finding her very much burnt on the face, neck, chest, back, both arms and hands, and the left foot, attended her up to three o’clock on Saturday afternoon, when she died.

The jury returned a verdict of “Accidental death.”

 

Folkestone Express 24 July 1875.

Notice.

Ancient Order Of Druids.

British Lion Inn, Bayle, Folkestone.

July 20th, 1875/

The above Order beg to intimate to the Public that they HAVE NOT authorised TOM BURTENSHAW to solicit Subscriptions for the purpose of a rural fete.

By Order of The Lodge,

T.J. Mullett N.A.

Note: It is interesting to note that the Folkestone Chronicle of this date carries this advertisement, but gives the address as the Red Lion.

 

Folkestone Express 29 April 1876.

Wednesday, April 26th:

Before The Mayor and R.W. Boarer Esq.

A temporary license was granted to W.W. Cooper to sell beer at the Lion, Bayle, pending the transfer of the license.

 

Folkestone Express 17 June 1876.

Wednesday, June 14th:

Before J. Tolputt and J. Clars Esqs., and Alterman Caister.

The license of the British Lion was transferred from John Taylor to William Willis Cooper.

 

Folkestone Chronicle 12 January 1878.

Inquest.

On Saturday evening an inquest was held at the Harvey Hotel by the Coroner (J. Minter), respecting the death of Robert Burley, a member of the Borough Police Force.

James Burley, K.C.C., deposed: I identify the body as that of my brother, Robert Burley. He was a member of the Folkestone Borough Police and was 21 years of age. I saw him on Thursday last at two o'clock. He was in bed, and told me that when he came off duty on Tuesday he went out with a friend, and remained with him until three or four o'clock in the morning, leaving him at the bottom of Dover Street. On going up Dover Street a little way he ran against two artillerymen, who turned round on him and gave him a thrashing, knocked his hat all to pieces and cut his head. He found blood was running down, and went to a friend's house and knocked, but could not make anyone hear. He then hurried home to his lodgings, and on going up to the front door fell into the area. He remembered nothing more until he found himself in bed.

William Willis Cooper, landlord of the British Lion, deposed: On Thursday afternoon I went to see the deceased. From information I received I went and asked him if he had called at my house on Wednesday morning at 3-45, and he said “Yes”. I also asked him if he went to my mother's house at 103, Dover Street, near Radnor Bridge, the same morning, and he replied “Yes”, but did not say what for. He pointed to he left eye, and said he had been knocked about by two soldiers.

Elizabeth Cooper deposed: I am a widow, living at 103, Dover Street. I knew the deceased, Robert Burley. On Wednesday morning, about 20 minutes past four, I was in bed and heard someone come to the door. He knocked with his fist and tried the latch. I got out of bed and opened the window. I said “Who's there?”. He said “Oh, Mrs. Cooper, will you come down? I am nearly murdered”. I replied “I don't know who you are. You had better go home. I know nothing of you”. He said “Thank you” and left a few seconds afterwards.

Frank Martin deposed: On Wednesday last, about twenty minutes to five, I was in bed and was aroused by some groaning, and in consequence of that I looked out of the window, and afterwards went down and saw deceased lying in the area. I then called Mr. Woodlands and we took him up to bed. He was insensible. We sent for Dr. Mercer, and he came. There was a large scar on the left eyebrow. It was not bleeding. There was no blood on his face.

Mary Ann Hayward, living at No. 6, Queen Street, deposed: I saw two artillerymen on New Year's Day in the Bellevue Tavern. They told me they had been out all night, and had strayed away from Dover. As they had no money, my friend and I treated them to a quart of beer. The short one said he did not mean soldiering. I saw them again on Wednesday morning in the Bellevue Tavern. Jarvis told me afterwards that outside the Raglan Tavern they knocked up against a policeman between three and four o'clock in the morning.

Dr. Richard Mercer deposed: I found deceased lying perfectly insensible. He had a small graze over the left eyebrow, which appeared to have been done some time, as the blood was quite dry. I saw him again at eleven o'clock, when he was quite conscious, but paralysed below the left breast. I examined him, and found a fracture of the spine between the shoulders. There were no other marks of violence about him. I asked him if he was perfectly sober at the time, and he said “No”. He had had a little more than was good for him. Deceased died yesterday morning, the 4th instant, the cause of death being fracture of the spine, which in my opinion was caused by the fall. Supposing he had received the injury in a fight with soldiers it would have been utterly impossible for him to have got home.

The Coroner summed up, and the Jury, after putting a few questions to the Superintendent of Police, returned a verdict of Accidental Death.

 

Folkestone Express 12 January 1878.

Last week we reported that Robert Burley, a member of the Borough police force, was seriously injured through having fallen down into the area of the house where he lodged. The poor fellow died about eleven o'clock on Friday morning. From statements made by the deceased to his brother, it seemed that before he got home on Wednesday morning he had been ill-treated by two soldiers, and in consequence of this report a considerable amount of interest was felt in the affair.

An inquest was held on Saturday evening at the Harvey Hotel, by J. Minter Esq., the borough coroner, when the following evidence was taken:

James Burley, a police constable stationed at Lyminge, identified the body as that of his brother. He deposed: His age was 21 last birthday. I saw him on Thursday last, having come to Folkestone in consequence of hearing of his accident. I found him in bed, and I asked him to tell me how it happened. He told me that when he went off duty he changed his clothes and went out with a friend. He was with him until between three and four o'clock in the morning, and left him at the bottom of Dover Street. He went up the street a little way and “ran against” two artillerymen, and they turned round and “dropped into him” and gave him a good thrashing, knocked his hat all to pieces and cut his head or eye. He found blood was running down his face and he went to a friend's house and knocked. Thinking he could not make anyone hear, he hurried home to his lodgings. Going up to the front door he kicked his left toe against the steps. He put his right foot out to try to save himself, and that slipped on the flag stones, in consequence of his boots having steel brads in them. That threw him round on his left side, and his back came on a low wall and pitched him over into the area. He remembered no more until he found himself in bed. He did not say if the soldiers followed him.

By a juror: I believe the soldiers recognised him as a policeman.

By the Coroner: I do not know if he meant to take them into custody.

The Coroner: From what I can learn, it appears that he thought they were two men absent without leave, and he might as well have the money for apprehending them.

William Wills Cooper, landlord of the British Lion, Bayle, said: On Thursday the 3rd, in the afternoon, I went and saw the deceased. Two men having come to my house on at 3.40 on the Wednesday morning, I asked the deceased if he was one of them and he said “Yes”. I also asked him if he went to my mother's house in Dover Street, and he said he did. He did not say what he went for. He lifted his right arm and pointed to his left eye and said he had been knocked about by two soldiers.

Mrs. Elizabeth Cooper, a widow, living at 103, Dover Street, said: I knew the deceased, Robert Burley. On Wednesday morning, about twenty minutes past four o'clock, I was in bed. I heard someone come to the door and knock with their fist, and then try the latch. I opened the window and saw a man and asked “Who's there?” A voice replied “Oh, Mrs. Cooper, will you come down? I am nearly murdered”. I said “I don't know who you are; you had better go home”. I could not see who it was. He said “Thank you”, and left a few minutes after. I did not know who it was, nor do I now, except from what my son has told me. The man appeared to be sober, as far as I could judge.

Frank Martin, a waiter, living at 28, Harvey Street, said: About twenty minutes or a quarter to five on Wednesday morning last I was in bed and was aroused by hearing someone groaning. I got up, went down to the front door, and looked over into the area, and there saw the deceased. He was lying on his left side, with his arm underneath him, and his hat was about a foot and a half from his head. He was insensible. I called the assistance of my father-in-law and we got deceased into the passage. We sent for Dr. Mercer, and afterwards put deceased to bed. There was a slight scar on his left eyebrow but there was no blood on his face or any part of him that I could see.

Mary Ann Hayward, a single woman, living at 6, Queen Street, said: On New Year's Day I saw two artillerymen in the Belle Vue Inn. They told me they had been out all night, and strayed away from Dover. I told them if they did not go back they would be taken into custody. I and a friend treated them to beer, and bread and cheese, as they had no money. The short one, Jarvis, said he did not mean soldiering. They left me at half past eight on Tuesday night, when I gave them twopence to go home with. I saw them again on Wednesday morning in the Belle Vue Inn. They bid me good morning. I asked them why they did not go home, and they said they met the picquet out marching, and if they had gone further they would have been taken in. Jarvis said they were at the Raglan about half past eleven, and that they had knocked up against a policeman about three or four o'clock in the morning. The tall soldier pushed Jarvis, and motioned him to say nothing, and Jarvis laughed. They told me they were hungry and we got them some bread and cheese. About an hour afterwards I hear that a policeman had been ill-used. I asked Jarvis what he had been up to, and he got up and laughed and they both went out. One of them had told me previously that he meant murdering someone. He had had six months imprisonment and did not mean soldiering. He also said he had just had a fortnight's confinement.

Mr. Richard Mercer, surgeon, said: On Wednesday morning between six and seven o'clock I was called to deceased in Harvey Road. I found him lying in the passage of the house, perfectly insensible. He had a small graze over the left eyebrow, which appeared to have been done some little time, as the blood was quite dry. I assisted to carry him to bed and saw him again at eleven o'clock, when he was quite conscious, but paralysed below the breast. I examined him and found a fracture of the spine between the shoulders. There were no other marks of violence whatever – no bruises or cuts. I asked the deceased how it occurred, and he said he had been spending the evening with some friends and came home about four in the morning. When he got on the doorstep his foot slipped and he fell over the wall into the area. I asked him if he was perfectly sober at the time, and he said “No, I had a little more than was good for me”. In consequence of the reports about deceased having been knocked about by soldiers I have today and yesterday again examined the body, and there are no marks of violence other than those I have described. He died yesterday morning, the cause of death being the fracture of the spine, which in my opinion was caused by the fall. Deceased knew the critical state he was in, as I told him he was mortally injured, and he made the statement to me after I had so informed him. It would have been utterly impossible for him to have got home if he had received the injury at the hands of the soldiers.

Superintendent Wilshere, who was called by request of a juryman, said no report was made to him of the constable having been attacked by soldiers, and he only heard of it accidentally. It was quite probable that he attempted to take the two men into custody as deserters. He would be doing his duty if he did so.

The Coroner said that although at first it seemed that deceased had been ill-treated, the evidence of Dr. Mercer showed that such ill-usage was not serious and did not in any way contribute to his death. Had the soldiers followed him, and had he fallen in endeavouring to escape from them, it would then have been a question whether they would not be liable to a charge of manslaughter.

The jury at once returned a verdict of “Accidental Death”.

It having been stated that the deceased, out of his very moderate pay, contributed towards the support of his parents, the jurymen gave their fees to be transmitted to the old couple.

 

Folkestone Express 17 May 1879.

Wednesday, May 14th:

Before W.J. Jeffreason Esq., and Aldermen Caister and Sherwood.

James Lewis was charged with being drunk and disorderly on the Bayle on Saturday evening last.

P.C. Hogben said he was sent for by the landlord of the British Lion, and found defendant kicking the door and making a disturbance.

He was fined 5s., and 3s. 6d. costs, or in default seven days' imprisonment.

 

Folkestone Express 28 May 1881.

Monday, May 23rd:

Before The Mayor, General Armstrong, Captain Crowe, Captain Fletcher, and M.J. Bell Esq.

Patrick Marns was charged with being drunk on The Bayle on Sunday, and also with begging and assaulting William Wills Cooper, landlord of the British Lion Inn.

William Wills Cooper stated that on Sunday evening at a quarter to ten the prisoner went into the house and asked the customers in the bar to give him a copper. He was drunk and witness ordered him to leave the house. He refused to go, and witness proceeded to eject him. When they reached the door prisoner clutched him and tore his shirt, and they fell together. When witness was getting up, prisoner kicked him in the eye.

Thomas Taylor, who was a witness of the occurrence, gave corroborative evidence. He followed the prisoner and gave him into custody.

Prisoner was fined 5s. and costs, or seven days' hard labour for being drunk, and for the other offences he was sentenced to 21 days' hard labour.

 

Folkestone Express 4 September 1886.

Thursday, September 2nd:

Before The Mayor, H.W. Poole Esq., and General Armstrong.

Francis Doyle, a bathchairman, was charged with being drunk and refusing to quit the British Lion on Wednesday. He pleaded Guilty and was fined 10s. and 3s. 6d. costs.

 

Folkestone Express 26 November 1887.

Wednesday, November 23rd:

Before General Armstrong, F. Boykett, J. Brooke and H.W. Poole Esqs., and Surgeon General Gilbourne.

The licence of the British Lion on the Bayle was transferred to Mr. J. Pankhurst.

 

Folkestone Express 17 December 1887.

Wednesday, December 14th:

Before Capt. Carter, J. Hoad, J. Fitness and E.R. Ward Esqs.

The licence of the British Lion Inn was transferred to Mr. J. Pankhurst.

 

Folkestone Express 25 April 1891.

Wednesday, April 22nd:

Before J. Clark, J. Fitness, J. Pledge, J. Holden and E.T. Ward Esqs.

Richard Henry Strood was charged with being drunk in Dover Street on the 15th April.

P.C. Gosby said he saw the defendant lying drunk in the street near Mr. Martin's bootshop. With assistance he was taken to the police station, where it was found that his head was injured, and Dr. Bateman was sent for.

Defendant said he was told he fell down the Bayle Steps. He had two pints of beer at the Lion, and a glass of port wine. He was perfectly well able to walk, but remembered nothing after he fell.

Defendant was fined 2s. 6d. and 9s. costs, and ordered to pay the doctor's fees, 7s. 6d.

 

Sandgate Weekly News 12 September 1896/

Local News.

On Thursday afternoon the body of a well-dressed female was found floating in the sea opposite the Seabrook Hotel, Hythe. As it was apparent that the body had been in the water artificial respiration was tried, but without success. The body was afterwards identified as that of a lady named Emily Farrow, aged 63, a relation of Mr. and Mrs. Pankhurst, of the British Lion Hotel, The Bayle, Folkestone, with whom she had been staying. There was nothing to show how deceased got into the water, and the inquest held on Friday was adjourned.

 

Sandgate Weekly News 19 September 1896.

Local News.

The adjourned inquest on the body of Mrs. Farrow, a visitor to Folkestone, which was found floating in the sea opposite the Seabrook Hotel, was held at Hythe on Saturday, and an open verdict was returned.

 

Folkestone Programme 28 May 1900.

Notes.

There is a well-known hostelry in Folkestone widely and justly renowned for its home-like cosiness and general good cheer. Though the building is small and old-fashioned, though elaborate decorations are conspicuous by their absence, or rather, perhaps, because of all this, the British Lion more than holds its own with any modern house that boats electric light, plate glass, and “all the latest improvements”. It is perhaps, chiefly, the general air of homeliness, together with the invariable geniality of the host and hostess and their son and daughter, that endears the Lion to numerous patrons. In the smoking room of an evening a congenial circle meet and enjoy all the comforts and privileges of a private club.

 

Folkestone Express 9 August 1902.

Friday, August 1st:

Before W.G. Herbert, and G.I. Swoffer Esqs.

Morgan Elliott, a negro, was charged with being drunk and disorderly.

P.C. Allen stated he saw prisoner in Church Street the previous evening about 9 o'clock. He was then very drunk. Witness saw him go into the British Lion, but the barman turned him out, when he commenced to use obscene language. As prisoner refused to go away, witness took him into custody.

Prisoner, who said that he could not remember anything, was fined 5s. and 4s. 6d. costs; in default seven days' hard labour.

 

Folkestone Daily News 5 December 1912.

Local News.

It is with regret that we have to record the passing away of Mr. James Pankhurst, of the British Lion, on the Bayle. He died of the malignant scourge which takes of so many at about the age of 60, viz., cancer on the liver. Whether that complaint is more prevalent in Folkestone than other places we cannot say, but it is evidently being painfully brought to our notice by the loss of so many of our old friends.

Mr. James Pankhurst was an old friend and an old inhabitant, respected and loved by all who came in contact with him. He was one of the oldest jobmasters in the town, and his father before him. Modern science and the process of evolution has brought the taxi cab and motor carriage, but the old-fashioned, well-appointed carriage and pair, or carriage and four still has charm and attraction for those who love old custom. Mr. James Pankhurst was one of the smartest drivers in the town, and could handle the ribbons with the best. Whether single, landau, or four-in-hand, our old friend was equally expert and at home.

At the British Lion he has been the most genial host and landlord, and has always taken his part as a loyal and patriotic citizen. We join with the whole town in tendering our sympathy towards those he has left behind.

Note: Date is at variance with More Bastions.

 

Folkestone Herald 7 December 1912.

Local News.

The funeral of the late Mr. J. Pankhurst, of the British Lion, The Bayle, took place at the Folkestone Cemetery on Monday afternoon, amidst many signs of mourning.

 

Folkestone Express 18 January 1913.

Local News.

At the Police Court on Wednesday the following licence was transferred: The British Lion, from the late Mr. Pankhurst to Mr. J. Pankhurst.

 

Folkestone Herald 18 January 1913.

Local News.

At a special transfer sessions of the Folkestone Borough Bench, before Mr. E.T. Ward, Mr. W.G. Herbert, Lieut. Colonel Fynmore, Mr. G.I. Swoffer, Major G.E. Leggett, Mr. R.J. Linton, and Mr. G. Boyd, the licence of the British Lion, The Bayle, was transferred to Mr. H. Pankhurst. It was explained that Mr. Pankhurst had in reality been carrying on the business for some time for his father, who recently died.

 

Folkestone Herald 27 January 1917.

Felix.

Duty took me to the last meeting of the Gardeners' Society, which holds its meetings fortnightly on the large club room of the famous old-time hostelry, the British Lion, on The Bayle. For many years has this self-same room served a useful purpose. It was here that the Victoria Lodge of Druids first saw the light of day; here, too, that many an old-time free-and-easy was held long before the people were so “good” as they are nowadays. It was here, too, that many Folkestone tradesmen were wont to gather to do their best with either a jovial song or recitation. They loved a chorus then, and I hear some of the old boys now singing in strident tones “Join in the chorus, Join in the chorus, Join in the chorus, It is a chorus song”.

And the company did join in until those old rafters rang again. The British Lion has a character about it not to be associated with any other licensed house in the town. Old fashioned, curiously constructed, it has an air of old-time comfort about it that is pleasant to note. The late Mr. James Pankhurst – and a better and juster man never lived – studied the comfort of his customers. The excellent smoking room is evidence of this. The fine old prints, the grandfather's clock, the cosy fire, and excellent seating accommodation remind one of some of those famous old inns to be met with in Yorkshire.

I hold no brief for the present proprietor, Mr. H. Pankhurst, but this I do say; If all the licensed houses in Folkestone were made as comfortable as this, and conducted on the same excellent lines, there would not be such an outcry in some quarters as there is against such places. A delightful relic of the past, a real inn in the proper acceptance of the term – that is the British Lion.

 

Folkestone Express 19 March 1927.

Local News.

On Friday at 7 p.m. the Fire Brigade received a call to the British Lion, The Bayle, where a fire had occurred in the sitting room on the ground floor.

A large wooden beam and some gas piping were burnt, and some brickwork and room decoration were damaged. The outbreak was extinguished with, chemicals and by cutting away the burning material. The fire was caused by an old beam catching fire. The heat melted a composition gas pipe on the chimney breast and the gas caught fire. The flame in the 100m was extinguished by Hr. Pankhurst, the occupier, turning off the gas. The Fire Station was notified that the fire was out, but the firemen were already en route. On arrival, they found that the more serious outbreak of the beam, previously unknown to the occupier owing to smoke and flame going up the chimney, was spreading behind the wall. The damage was estimated at 20.

 

Folkestone Herald 23 April 1927.

Local News.

At the Folkestone Petty Sessions on Tuesday William Ford was summoned for consuming intoxicating liquor on licensed premises after permitted hours, and Harry Pankhurst, landlord of the British Lion, The Bayle, was summoned for aiding and abetting. Mr. Rutley Mowll defended, and pleaded Not Guilty.

Inspector Craddock said at 9.38 p.m. on Sunday, April 3rd, in company with P.C. Simpson, he took up a position near the British Lion public house on The Bayle. They kept observation up to 10.13 p.m., and during that time 11 men and one woman left the passage that led to the side entrance of the public house. The last one to leave was at 10.11 p.m. The front door of the public house was closed. At 10.13 p.m. they took up a position beside the door at the side entrance. After having been there a minute, the side door was opened by Mr. Pankhurst, which gave them a clear view of the interior of the bar. He saw Mr. Ford near the counter in the act of putting a glass of beer to his lips. Witness said to Mr. Pankhurst “This is a late hour to allow intoxicating liquors to be consumed on your premises”, at the same time pointing to Ford, who was then putting the glass on the counter. Mr. Pankhurst replied “I admit it is a bit late. He is a friend of mine, and has been having a chat”. Witness told Mr. Pankhurst that it was 10.15, and the clock in the bar was 10.17 p.m. He picked up the glass Ford had placed on the counter, and said to him “Do you dispute that it was beer you were consuming from this glass?” Ford replied “No, I do not dispute it, but I bought it before 10 o'clock”. He then told Ford he would be reported, and he made no reply. He also told Mr. Pankhurst that he would be reported, and he replied “Make it as light as you can”.

By Mr. Mowll: Mr. Pankhurst and Mr. Ford both seemed very candid with him. When he took up the position in the passage he could see nothing until Mr. Pankhurst opened the door.

Mr. Pankhurst, on oath, said he had been at the British Lion for 40 years, and had held the licence for 14 years. On the day in question Ford stayed behind after the others had left. He was a steward on the boats, and had come to look at a room in the house where there had been a fire. There was no intoxicating liquor supplied after 10 o'clock. He was chatting with Ford. He went to get the shutter and opened the door with the shutter in his hand. When he was putting the shutter up he saw Ford putting the glass down. The police were present then.

By the Magistrates' Clerk: Ford was a regular customer when in Folkestone, and came in about 9 o'clock.

Mr. Mowll said he did not intend to call Mr. Ford.

The Magistrates retired, and on their return the Chairman said the Bench found the case proved against Pankhurst, and also Ford, but on account of Pankhurst having for so long properly conducted the house there would be no penalty. Ford would have to pay a fine of 10/-.

Mr. Mowll: Then against Pankhurst there is no conviction?

The Chairman: That is so, on account of the way in which Mr. Pankhurst has conducted the house in the past.

 

Folkestone Express 12 October 1929.

Local News.

A special transfer sessions was held at the Folkestone Police Court on Wednesday, when transfers in connection with several well-known licensed houses were made.

Protection order was granted as follows: The British Lion, to Mr. D. Stannard from Mr. H. Pankhurst.

 

Folkestone Herald 12 October 1929.

Local News.

The transfer of several licences was approved by the Folkestone Magistrates at the Folkestone transfer sessions on Wednesday. A protection order was granted to Mr. Edward David Stannard pending the full transfer of the licence of the British Lion to him from Mr. Harry Pankhurst.

 

Folkestone Herald 11 January 1936.

Local News.

The Folkestone Magistrates on Wednesday granted permission for slight alterations to be made to the British Lion Hotel.

 

Folkestone Express 15 April 1939.

Local News.

The Folkestone Licensing Justices on Wednesday granted the temporary transfer of the British Lion public house on The Bayle, formerly held by the late Mr. E.D. Stannard, to his widow, Mrs. Josephine Stannard.

Note: This does not appear in More Bastions.

 

Folkestone Herald 15 April 1939.

Local News.

Folkestone Magistrates on Wednesday granted a protection order in respect of the British Lion to Mrs. Stannard, widow of Mr. E.D. Stannard, former licensee of the premises.

Note: No mention of Mrs. Stannard in More Bastions.

 

Folkestone Express 25 November 1939.

Local News.

The Folkestone licensing transfer sessions were held at the Police Court on Wednesday. The Mayor (Alderman G.A. Gurr) was in the chair and also sitting were Councillor R.G. Wood, Dr. F. Wolverson and Alderman Mrs. E. Gore.

Charles John Uden applied for the full transfer to him of the licence of the British Lion, The Bayle, Folkestone, from Mrs. Josephine Maria Stannard.

The Magistrates' Clerk said a protection order had already been granted.

The application was granted.

Note: No mention of Mrs. Stannard in More Bastions.

 

Folkestone Herald 26 January 1946.

Local News.

For stealing articles, including linen, from a public house, Emily Maude Minton, a Folkestone woman, was sent to prison for six months by Folkestone Magistrates last Friday. She pleaded Guilty.

Mrs. Dorothy Uden, wife of the licensee of the British Lion, The Bayle, said on Monday, January 14th, defendant came into the bar just after 6 p.m. After having some drink Munton went upstairs, and later when she came down she was carrying a large newspaper parcel under her arm. Defendant bade her “Goodnight” and walked out. On the two following nights Munton came to the premises, on the second occasion with a soldier just before 9 p.m. Defendant again went upstairs. Consequent upon what she was told witness also went upstairs and found a number of articles were missing from a tallboy on the landing. The property produced she identified as hers.

Miss Margaret M. Savage, Netley Lodge, Claremont Road, said about 9.25 p.m. on Wednesday on going upstairs at the British Lion she saw defendant in the act of closing a drawer of a tallboy. She said to Munton “What are you doing here? I'll tell Mrs. Uden”. Witness went downstairs and saw Mrs. Uden.

D. Const. Pearce gave evidence of arrest.

Chief Inspector R. J. Butcher said on January 20th, 1942, Munton was bound over for larceny. At Hythe on May 22nd, 1945, for stealing jewellery was bound over for two years. At Folkestone on August 24th last for larceny of a handbag at a public house Munton was sentenced to four months’ imprisonment, and for obtaining 3 from the Postmaster-General by means of fraud she was sentenced to a further four months, the sentences to run concurrently.

Miss Mayling (Woman Probation Officer) said Munton was an epileptic. She had endeavoured to get her into a hospital. Drink was the cause of most of defendant's trouble.

The Magistrates, as stated, sentenced Munton to six months' imprisonment.

Mr. L.G.A. Collins presided, with Alderman J.W. Stainer, Miss G. Broome-Giles, Mr. P.V. Gurr, and Mr. C.A. Wilde.

 

Folkestone Herald 28 July 1956.

Obituary.

For many years the licensee of the British Lion, The Bayle, Mr. Harry Pankhurst, of 9, Segrave Road, Folkestone, died recently at the age of 87. The last surviving member of an old Folkestone family, he took over the licence of the British Lion from his father, on the latter's retirement. His wife died in February. Since his retirement about 25 years ago illness prevented him from leading an active life, but he was very popular.

Interment was at Hawkinge Cemetery.

 

Folkestone Gazette 27 March 1957.

Local News.

Folkestone will soon be losing one of its best known personalities, for Mr. Charles John Uden, licensee for the past 18 years of the British Lion, The Bayle, is retiring. Aged 65, Mr. Uden and his wife are to live with relations at Dartmouth in Devon, where, as Mr. Uden explains, “I am going to potter about and take it easy”.

Because he is by now undoubtedly an integral part of Folkestone it is difficult to believe that Charles Uden was not born in the town; however, he can qualify as a Man of Kent, being a native of Petham. He left the village school at the ade of 12 and obtained his first real job as a bus driver of the early motor public transport with Walcher and Company, Herne Bay, who were one of five companies, operating services throughout East Kent. When the companies were merged into the East Kent Road Car Company. Ltd., in September, 1916, the Herne Bay branch was closed and Mr. Uden was transferred to the busy Canterbury depot. Three years later he was back in charge of the Herne Bay Depot of the Company, where he remained for a further 10 years before retiring from driving public transport due to health reasons. During his period at Herne Bay he achieved the distinction of holding the No. 1 Driver's Badge of the Herne Bay Urban District Council; he also drove the fire engines of the local Voluntary Fire Brigade for 10 years. “I had to pay 10/- to join”, he recalls. In 1924 Mr. Uden was a member of the Herne Bay Fire Brigade team which competed at the Wembley Exhibition.

In 1929, he became licensee of his first public house, The Bull’s Head, Adishamam, which was owned firstly by Jude Hanbury, then by Mackesons Ltd., who were, in turn, absorbed by the Whitbread group. He stayed at Adisham for eight happy years, afterwards moving to the Mill Inn, Deal, for a further 18 months, before coming to Folkestone in 1939. Helped in a very great and loyal measure by his wife who capably continued the business when her husband suffered bouts of bad health, Mr. Uden kept his house open throughout the whole of the last war. Soon after he moved to Folkestone, he joined the Royal Observer Corps and was on duty at the Martello Tower post at the top of the Leas during some of the most eventful days of the war. On retiring from the Corps last November, he received a presentation from his colleagues.

r. Uden well remembers many humorous instances and experiences throughout the war years, including a series of competitions between a male team, drawn from the customers of The British Lion and a team from the women’s Home Guard, who used a room at the public house for their headquarters. Contests were arranged in sports such as table tennis, darts and shove ha’penny, and also included was a hilarious slow bicycle race round The Bayle, “pints down-in-one”, culminating in a cricket match on the Harvey Grammar School Ground in Cherry Garden Avenue. After all the contests, the teams gathered at the British Lion and the one who had gained the least points was called upon to supply the refreshment.

Mr. and Mrs. Uden were married at Herne Bay in 1925. They have one son, Anthony, who is an engineer in Canada. Cricket is the favourite sport of Mr. Uden, for he was Secretary and Treasurer of the local cricket club at Adisham for several years, and was a member of Kent Cricket Club and Folkestone Cricket Club. He has also been associated with the Association of Men of Kent and Kentish Men, and the Folkestone, Hythe and District Licensed Victuallers' Association.

The new tenant of the British Lion will be Mr. P.G. Hourahane, who is at present licensee of the Clarendon Inn, Brewer's Hill, Sandgate.

Mr. Uden is deeply sorry to leave the town, where he has made many good friends, who in turn will greatly regret his departure. He says he will take with him in his retirement pleasant memories of many happy years in the town.

 

Folkestone Gazette 4 November 1959.

Townsman's Diary.

Three local inn signs will be displayed in Brussels shortly. Perhaps you may have noticed that the colourful sign of your favourite hostelry has disappeared recently and been replaced with a notice such as is pictured on this page. What's behind their disappearance? Well, the enterprising House of Whitbread are taking part in an exhibition one of the big stores in the Belgian capital is staging from November 19th to January 1st. The accent will be on the British way of life and many British goods will be on sale. Included in the exhibition are signs from Kent inns. Whitbreads are displaying the signs at their prefabricated public house. From Folkestone the brewers have taken the signs of the British Lion on Folkestone's old Bayle, the Lifeboat Inn, North Street, and The Star, Newington. The signs were on their way to Brussels yesterday.

 

Folkestone Herald 13 February 1971.

Annual Licensing Sessions.

Police are keeping an extra careful eye on some pubs in Folkestone - particularly those popular among young people. This was revealed by Chief Superintendent W. Pullinger in his report to the annual meeting of the town’s Licensing Justices, on Wednesday.

He said that during 1970 licensed premises had been generally well-conducted, But he went on “As in most towns, certain premises require additional police supervision to ensure that the liquor licensing laws are not abused. This is sometimes due to slackness on the part of the licensee, or to popular premises attracting large numbers of young people”.

Mr. P.J. Baden-Fuller, the Chairman of the Justices, appreciated the difficulties licensees faced with young people. He said the Justices hoped that those licensees concerned would try to enforce the liquor laws, but added “It is so difficult to tell the ages of young people sometimes”.

Later, The Herald spoke to landlords of Folkestone pubs that are popular with youngsters – only to find they did not think they had a problem. Several of them agreed with Mr. Baden-Fuller that it was difficult to tell the ages of some young customers. The answer to a difficult situation was, they agreed, firmness and rigidly following the maxim “If in doubt, don’t serve”.

At the Shakespeare, in Guildhall Street, Mr. Ron Balsom, the landlord, said “I have spent many years in London as a licensee, and the young people here are a lot different. I find them very reasonable and very well behaved. They certainly do not cause me any headaches”.

Mr. Alan White, landlord of the Prince Albert in Rendezvous Street, said “There is an occasional problem caused by young soldiers from Shorncliffe wanting a drink. You know who they are and you just have to handle the situation firmly. Trouble is caused when youngsters unused to alcohol have a few drinks and get a bit het up. A landlord has a duty to regular customers, and must make sure that kind of situation does not arise”.

At the West Cliff Shades, Christ Church Road, a spokesman said there were no problems worth mentioning, though there had been occasional instances of vandalism.

At the British Lion, in The Bayle, Mr. Gerry Hourahane said “It is difficult to judge ages, particularly those of foreigners. But if you ask them what year they were born they usually answer correctly without thinking”.

Another aspect of Chief Superintendent Pullinger's report to the Justices was that hotels and restaurants are catering more for Continental visitors. The number of restricted licences granted to hotels, restaurants and other premises had increased, he reported. “This is no doubt due to more people requiring intoxicants for consumption with their meals, particularly in Folkestone, where the number of Continental visitors, especially day visitors from France and Belgium, continues to increase.

The report showed that 19 cases of drunkenness were dealt with by the police in 1970, compared with 16 in 1969, an increase “which does not reflect on licensed premises”. Fourteen cases of motorists unfit to drive through drink were also dealt with by the police – two fewer than in 1969. There are now 177 licensed premises in Folkestone. The police had no objections to any licences being renewed.

 

Folkestone Gazette 9 January 1974.

Local News.

More than 200 customers at a Folkestone pub have signed a petition against proposed alterations to the premises. The regulars at the British Lion on The Bayle are asking Whitbread Fremlins Limited to shelve extension plans for the town's oldest pub.

Licensed since 1460, the British Lion was once the local of writer Charles Dickens and the customers want to keep its old world atmosphere.

The petition reads “We, the regular customers of the British Lion, feel that the proposed alterations to this, the oldest public house in Folkestone, will destroy the character and atmosphere of the house. We would like to suggest that before the brewers finalise their plans they reconsider their proposals. While we realise that they may take no notice of this petition, we feel that they might like to be aware of their customers’ views”.

Mrs. Joan Hourahane, wife of licensee Mr. Gerry Hourahane, said this week that the petition was started by customers when they heard that Whitbread Fremlins had plans to extend the premises.

A spokesman for Whitbread Fremlins described the petition as premature. He said “We have no definite plans for the British Lion. So far we have drawn up only a rough sketch of possible extensions. If we do go ahead - and that is by no means certain - we would not destroy the character of the house in any way”.

 

Folkestone Gazette 20 March 1974.

Local News.

The 200 customers at the British Lion, The Bayle, Folkestone, who signed a petition against proposed alterations to the premises, have won their point. Whitbread Fremlins Limited have shelved its extension plans for the town's oldest pub.

A spokesman for the brewery said on Monday “We have been able to consider other factors involved in planning this project and, as a result, we have deleted it from our current programme”. Saying that the main reasons were cost and profitability, he added “Obviously the petition had some bearing on our decision”.

 

Folkestone Herald 28 June 1975.

Local News.

Licensee Mr. Richard Hourahane took a breath test after his car was involved in a road crash which killed a boy cyclist at Folkestone. It proved positive, said a policeman at a Canterbury inquest on Tuesday on Peter Kenneth John Bonham, aged 18, of Broad View, Cheriton, who was also known as Softly, the name of his foster parents.

The jury returned a verdict of Accidental Death and the foreman added it was “not happy with the conflict of evidence”. The accident happened at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, May 13, on the A20 near its junction with Danton Lane. Mr. Bonham died three hours later in Kent and Canterbury hospital. He had a skull fracture.

Police Constable Graham Steele said Mr. Hourahane, of The British Lion on The Bayle, Folkestone, told him at the scene “All I can say is I was driving up the A20 here and when I got almost opposite Danton Lane the pedal cyclist turned right straight into me. I didn’t have a chance.” The officer said he asked Mr. Hourahane to take a breath test and he replied “I have had a few so I expect I shall be over the top”.

In a statement Mr. Hourahane told how he left the pub at 7.40 p.m. to take Mrs. Margery Spiers to her home at Woodlands Road, Lyminge. He said he saw two cyclists about 20 yards ahead, so he moved over lo the centre of the road as he approached Danton Lane. The cyclist swung right across the front of his car He braked hard and pulled the car to the offside but was unable to avoid the cyclist who struck the front near side. Mr. Hourahane said he immediately jumped out to see what could be done.

Police Constable Steele was asked by a solicitor for Mr Hourahane whether Mr. Hourahane had said he had had nothing until 7 p.m. when he had a whisky and one more before he left.

The officer replied he had said this in conversation later, not in the statement.

Coroner Mr. Wilfred Mowll refused to allow an answer when Mr. Christopher Goddard, counsel for Mr. and Mrs. Softly, asked P.C. Steele the result of a blood test on Mr. Hourahane. The coroner said “We are investigating this boy's death”.

Peter Baker, aged 15, a Harvey grammar school boy from Risborough Lane, Folkestone, said he and his friend Peter Bonham decided to shelter from rain under trees on the other side of the road. He himself went out of the gate of Cranbourne children’s home first, stopped at the road and turned to talk to his friend. He said he crossed the road. There was no traffic coming from Folkestone. He did not see Mr. Bonham cross but just alter he got to the trees he heard a crash.

Mrs. Spiers told the coroner “I could have sworn I saw two cyclists riding abreast. The outside one was wobbling a bit and Mr. Hourahane said “He is wobbling a bit” and moved over in the road to pass them. He suddenly turned sharp right and just hit us. I shut my eyes. There was a terrific bang. I was absolutely petrified. Mr. Hourahane pulled up very quickly”.

Mr. Mowll, the coroner, told the jury: You have two different stories. The driver and passenger say there were two boys in the road. On the other hand neither can explain what happened to the boy on the inside, if that story is correct. There is a yawning gap. No one can explain what happened to the boy. The boy's friend, who seemed an intelligent and clear headed boy, gave evidence that he came out first, crossed the road diagonally to get to the trees. When he got to the trees he heard a crash.

 

Folkestone Herald 8 November 1975.

Local News.

Richard Gerald Hourahane, of the British Lion, The Bayle, Folkestone, was fined 75 at Folkestone Court on Thursday for driving with excess alcohol in his blood.

The court was told of an accident on the A 20 road at the junction with Danton Lane on May 13 involving Hourahane's car and a pedal cycle.

Inspector John Ansell said a subsequent blood-alcohol count was 101, compared with the permitted limit of 80.

Mr. Thomas Hulme, defending, said the Bench would gather that his client co-operated fully- and had agreed immediately that he was the driver of the car. He had had two small drinks and had not anticipated going out early in the evening, but he gave somebody a lift because that person felt unwell, and in these circumstances an accident occurred It would not have escaped the Bench's notice that the figure was 101, said Mr. Hulme, and it was certainly not a bad case.

Hourahane was disqualified from driving for 12 months and ordered to pay 8.01.

The cyclist, Harvey grammar school boy Peter Kenneth Bonham, of Broad View, Cheriton, died as a result of the accident. An inquest jury returned a verdict of accidental death.

 

Folkestone Herald 11 June 1977.

Local News.

One of Folkestone's best-known licensees, Mr. Richard Gerald “Gerry” Hourahane, died in King's College Hospital, London, on Wednesday, after a short illness.

Aged 59, he took over the British Lion, on The Bayle, nearly 20 years ago after nine years as licensee of The Clarendon Inn, Sandgate. In world war two, Mr. Hourahane was an R.S.M. in Royal Tank Regiment and served in Italy and Greece. Later he became a physical training instructor at Aldershot. After the war he was appointed secretary of Smith's Industries Social Club, at Cricklewood, before moving to Sandgate in 1949. A keen golfer he was, for many years a member of Sene Valley Golf Club, and was President of the Odds and Soaks Golf Society. Mr. Hourahane was also very interested in football. He was founder president of British Lion F.C., the successful Hythe Sunday morning league club, and a vice president of Folkestone and Shepway F.C. He was also a keen follower of county cricket. An active member of the Folkestone and Hythe Lions, he was also a Freemason, being a member of Temple Lodge.

He leaves a widow, Joan, and two sons, Major David Hourahane, R.A.O.C., and Mr. Peter Hourahane, senior advertisement representative with the Folkestone and Hythe Herald and South Kent Gazette.

 

Folkestone Gazette 15 June 1977.

Local News.

Beer supplies in 70 Shepway pubs slowed to a trickle this week as many licensees in strike-hit Whitbread houses could only offer wines and spirits to quench heat-wave thirsts And there is no end in sight to the two-week unofficial action by draymen at Faversham which has brought local beer deliveries to a standstill, says the company. Landlords in Shepway have battled to keep open by buying beer from rival brewers, or in cans from supermarkets.

Mr. David Hourahane, acting licensee at the British Lion pub in Folkestone, said “It is appalling. Everything is on a day-to-day basis. Draught beer ran out on Friday. We are thinking of opening at lunchtime only – and we will be really pushed if this hot weather continues”.

Most pubs keep enough supplies for two weeks. Many will now be in a crisis, especially following the jubilee celebrations Supplies of bottled beer at the Globe Hotel in Folkestone can last for another two days, said landlord Mr. Ron Letts. The pub’s draught beer has completely run dry.

Draymen at Faversham, who belong to the Transport and General Workers’ Union, want assurances that hired vehicles will carry two Whitbread employees. Management at the company says the demand is unacceptable.

 

Folkestone Herald 11 April 1986.

Local News.

A unique chapter in Folkestone’s history ended yesterday (Thursday) when pub landlady Joan Hourahane said goodbye to one of the town’s oldest pubs, the famous British Lion.

Joan, who has spent the last 38 years tending to the drinking habits of the garrison, port and town, has been a frontline witness to Folkestone’s changing fortunes. When she took over the 15th Century inn at The Bayle with her late husband, ex-RSM Gerry, beer was eight old pennies a pint (about 4p). Today, lunchtime drinkers spend 5 on food and tipple, the equivalent of a week’s wage in 1957, when Joan and Gerry moved from Sandgate's Clarendon pub to the centre of the town. In those days it was a dull and dismal pub with blackout curtains from World War II still hanging from the window frames. Now drinkers enjoy a steak pie and potatoes, washed down with real beer, in a traditional setting. And this seems to be the way the customers like it. A decade ago they got up a successful petition to thwart brewery plans to modernise the pub. And as such it has enjoyed a special place among the pubs of Folkestone.

The British Lion certainly has a special place in history, for author Charles Dickens and painter William Turner were customers in the days before licensing laws and drinking up time inhibited the day-to-day imbiber. And it would not be misleading to say that both great artists would find the old inn much the same as in their day. It certainly remains one of Folkestone's pubs of character.

One feature that will disappear with Joan's departure are two major items of seasonal fare – the famous pie and potatoes. For over twenty years these two items have warmed and stabilised the tummies of beer drinkers during winter months, and are devoured eagerly by those who eschew today's trends of a light lunch.

But Joan is modest when praise is offered for the pub's fame and fortune. “It's the customers who make a pub”, she says. “The pub has terrific character, but that's due mainly to the customers. There is not really another pub like it in Folkestone. In the old days women seldom came in on their own. That's all changed now. And youngsters are more plentiful. I think the younger generation appreciate it as much as anybody else, without the need for juke boxes and fruit machines”. Joan has seen the character of the town change too. “Unfortunately we have become a bit cut off from the town since the precinct was put down. And until a few years ago many more businesses operated from the town centre. That's all changed”, says Joan.

At a surprise party last week the popular landlady was presented with a silver tray inscribed with a lion. She was also given a tumble druer, an automatic camera, a Teasmade and a bouquet. Joan, who has moved into a flat nearby in The Bayle, said as she left “Of course I'll be back – it's now my local”.

 

Folkestone Herald 7 November 1986.

Advertising Feature.

When publicans Ken and Lorraine Hollett first visited Folkestone's famous British Lion, it was love at first sight. And they vowed; if the ancient inn on The Bayle, steeped in history and atmosphere, became theirs, it should stay just the way it was. They have kept that promise. And this week, six months after taking over, they celebrated the occasion with a reception at the pub, one of the town's oldest licensed premises, to prove it.

The British Lion, a symbol of all that's great in Britain, dates back to the 15th century. And from the chapters of history it can boast a place of its own. Charles Dickens, perhaps this country's most famous author, used the pub as his local while living in Folkestone as he wrote Little Dorritt. As a mark of respect to the great man of letters, the pub's quaint snug bar, ever popular with those seeking a place for a quiet or discreet conversation, is now adorned with mementoes of his work.

But enough of the past. What of present? Today the pub offers traditional ale, and traditional food. And the new decorations and furnishings act as a seal of intent that the 400-year-old hostelry will remain in the traditional mould. Lorraine has spent many hours researching the history of the inn.

Apart from the range of beer and lager, draught or bottled - there are plenty of soft drinks too - the home now offers an extensive menu aimed at the lunchtime trade, plus wines and spirits - chilled nine if desired. Kitchen facilities have been improved in a bid to offer a wider choice to office workers and lunchtime drinkers. All the traditional dishes, homemade and with fresh vegetables will make an appearance on the menu card.

 

Folkestone Herald 20 November 1987.

Local News.

Beer drinkers in Folkestone have passed a bitter milestone in pint prices. This week the Good Pub Guide book was frothed up over Kent regulars digging deeper into their pockets than most of Britain's pub-goers. The guide criticises a one third increase in Surrey, Sussex and Kent during the year “pressing towards the 1-a-pint barrier which London has passed”. But some pubs in Folkestone broke the barrier up to two years ago and finding a brew in the area for less is a problem.

Folkestone landlords this week criticised the guide for being out of touch and blamed high rates plus brewery increases for the pricey cost of their pints.

Geoff Gosford, landlord of the Lifeboat in The Durlocks, said “Prices are quite high, but so are the overheads. Folkestone rates are the same as some London boroughs. Our beers can be expensive, but it is all real ale. We recently had the legendary Conqueror here as a guest ale. It was 1.28 a pint but three pints of that beer was worth nine of any other. I haven't had one complaint about my prices”.

Eileen Lewis, landlady of the Guildhall on The Bayle (1 a pint) said “Some pubs may take advantage and raise prices higher. But the majority are very conscious of the cost of beer to their customers. It is not publicans clamouring for expensive beer, it is breweries”.

Ken Holletts, landlord of the British Lion (1 a pint) said “I have not raised the price of beer since becoming the landlord. All increases have been imposed by the brewery. Our prices are reasonable, and as cheap as you'll find in the town centre”.

Black Bull landlady Maureen Coles in Canterbury Road (prices again in the 1 range) said “Rates and electricity and so on are all expensive and brewery increases take their toll”.

A spokesman for Whitbread, a major brewery supplying Folkestone, said “Beer prices are cheaper in other parts of the country, but Folkestone is no different, really, to most other parts of the South East”.

 

Folkestone Herald 5 February 1988.

Inquest.

Detectives and a Home Office pathologist were called in to investigate a suspected murder after a man died in hospital of multiple head injuries. Father-of-three Kenneth Huntley was so badly injured he could not speak or communicate with his son or doctors. At his inquest, a coroner recorded a verdict of accidental death after he heard it was more likely Mr. Huntley was injured from falling downstairs drunk. Some 34 witnesses, including several pub landlords in Folkestone, were questioned by police and were called to give evidence. The hearing was told that Mr. Huntley was a regular in at least three pubs in the town and often drunk to excess.

Landlord of the British Lion, The Bayle, Folkestone, Kenneth Hollett, said “Mr. Huntley would come into the bar in the early morning and mid-evenings about three or four times a week”.

Another landlord, Geoffrey Gosford, of The Lifeboat Inn, said “Mr. Huntley was not the most popular of customers. He drank very heavily and occasionally I saw him the worse for drink, but he never caused any trouble”.

Neighbours of Mr. Huntley’s at Bradstone Road, Folkestone, said they often heard him screaming to himself, and several had seen him drunk or slumped outside his house. They claimed he had become worse since his wife left him.

One of the last people to see Mr. Huntley before he was injured last September was a customer at the British Lion, Carol Edge, of Connaught Road, Folkestone. She told the inquest “I was driving along and I saw Mr. Huntley coming down Grace Hill. He appeared very drunk and was staggering. That was about 10.30 p.m.”

The same night a neighbour of Mr. Huntley, Mrs. Beryl Davies, said she heard a scuffling noise coming from the basement of his house, but she was frightened and did not want to get involved.

When Huntley’s son, Alan, went to check on his father the next morning, he found him lying in bed in pain with a black eye and marks on his face. Hours later his speech was “unintelligible” and the doctor was called. Tests in hospital showed Mr. Huntley had suffered a fractured skull and collarbone, fractured all his ribs except one, and had severe bruising. “He never explained how he got his injuries”, said Alan Huntley.

Kenneth Huntley, a former chief warden at Hythe Rangers, died of a heart attack the next morning. Despite the circumstances surrounding his death police were not called in until the following Tuesday.

At the inquest Home Office pathologist, Doctor Peter Venezis, who carried out tests on the body, said “The injuries on Mr. Huntley are consistent with a heavy fell. If he was drunk, he would have fallen heavier, and this might explain why his injuries were such”.

 

Folkestone Herald 2 September 1988.

Local News.

Great Ormond Street Hospital’s much-publicised Wishing Well Appeal became 1,000 better off this week as regulars at the British Lion pub hauled in their collection. Anne Macmillan and Karen Jones were part of a fund-raising team in a 24-hour games marathon at the pub in The Bayle, Folkestone. On Tuesday, they handed over their 1,000 sponsorship money to Barclay’s Bank manager Mr Ian Keay to be passed on to the Wishing Well Appeal.

 

Folkestone Herald 18 January 1991.

Local News.

Lunchtime bar takings vanished from the till of the British Lion pub, in The Bayle, Folkestone, on Sunday, after landlord Brian Clayson had seen his last customers off the premises.

He believes the thief came back to take 250 when he left the bar for a few minutes.

 

Folkestone Herald 29 January 1993.

Local News.

Furious pub landlord Brian Clayson has hit out at Folkestone Magistrates' refusal to allow him an extension to celebrate the life of Scottish poet Robert Burns.

“We had a great time, but all the same I'm really unhappy with the Court's decision”, said Mr. Clayson, landlord at the British Lion, at The Bayle, Folkestone, after the party on Monday night. “At 11 p.m., when the pub was absolutely full and there was a great atmosphere, I had to tell the customers it was time to pack up”. Most of the customers were Scots. Mr. Clayson, 54, who runs the pub with his wife Rena, said he wanted a one and a half hour extension for the Burns Night celebration. But, he said, three Magistrates deliberated for a few minutes over his application and then turned it down. He wasn't given a reason for the refusal. He has held a Burns Night at the pub for two successive years, without an extension. The parties ended at normal hours, “They were both very successful and there was no trouble at them. It went so well last year my customers asked me to apply for an extension this time. I was shocked when the Court turned it down. After this, I don't think I'll apply for one next year”. He added “I can only think this is such a quiet little nook the Magistrates don't want rowdies to get a chance of spoiling the area. But we've never had trouble here, and I'm sure an extension wouldn't have led to any problems”.

William Taylor, Chairman of the Folkestone Licensed Victuallers' Association, said the Magistrates may have turned down the application because they didn't view it as a special occasion. “I must say, in my calendar a Burns Night would be a special occasion, though I do see the Court's point of view. There are all sorts of anniversaries every week, so where do you draw the line? Magistrates do have guidelines, but it seems to depend very much on the opinion of the Bench on that particular day. Some might see an application as special and others might differ”.

 

Folkestone Herald 2 February 1995.

Local News.

Plans to extend the British Lion pub in The Bayle, Folkestone, have been thrown out by Shepway planners. Pub owners, Pubmaster Ltd., wanted to build an extension at the back of the pub and use the ground floor of the next door listed building, number eight, The Bayle, for storage. Councillors approved the application for the extension, but voted unanimously to refuse listed building consent for the changes because alterations to No. 8 would be detrimental to the listed building.

 

Folkestone Herald 9 February 1995.

Local News.

The landlord of a 15th century inn has warned the pub could close because plans to update it have been thrown out. Pubmaster Ltd., owners of the Grade II listed British Lion pub in The Bayle, Folkestone, wanted to build a rear extension and use the ground floor of next door, 8, The Bayle, for storage. Although planning permission was granted, Councillors voted unanimously against giving listed building consent for the changes.

Now landlord Brian Matthews, 59, and his partner Sandra White, 33, who lashed out 25,000 for the tenancy of the pub last September, say they may leave because they are not making money. “It is quite possible we will move on”, said Mr. Andrews. “We are finding out the grounds for refusal and whether they were enough. We may appeal against the decision, but if not I shall leave and Pubmaster may shut the pub if they can't get another tenant”. Mr. Matthews, who has been a publican for 22 years, said he only took on the British Lion because of plans to extend it. “The Magistrates and environmental health officers approved the plans and planning officers recommended the plans be approved, but now it has been thrown out by a bunch of amateurs”, he said. “The pub has been in this state for ages and we can't work in it; we're not making any money. It has a poor drainage system, outside toilets and an upstairs kitchen – it's all wrong and needs to be brought up to date”.

Shepway planning manager, Phil Kirby, said Councillors had visited the pub for a site meeting and had been concerned that work had already started inside number eight. “They had no reasons to refuse planning permission, but Councillors felt the proposed work would affect the character of the listed buildings and they are not happy about that”, he said. “The concern with number eight was that some work had been done without getting listed building consent. When people take on a listed building they must be aware of the responsibility that goes with it and any work must be considered by the local authority before it is done”.

Mr. Matthews said the work had only been done to tidy up the site. “It was a real mess and derelict; all I did was clear out all the rotten wood inside number eight, which has not altered the place at all”, he said. “It has been empty for 32 years and is derelict. No-one complained about that, but they complain when we do something about it. We planned to spend about 15,000 on improvements. We can't make a living here as it is; it's a ridiculous situation”.

Pubmaster regional manager, Jeffrey Hill, said alternative plans were being drawn up and would be submitted to the Council soon. “We are submitting a further plan to accommodate the planning committee's wishes and we hope we will eventually get planning permission without going to appeal”, he said. “We have written to the District Council to say we will reinstate number eight as it was and we regret what has happened. Mr. Matthews is quite right that he cannot operate as it is, but local objections need to be considered and met as much as possible”.

 

Folkestone Herald 12 November 1998.

Local News.

A landlord's life was saved by a smoke alarm when fire broke out in the bar area of his Folkestone pub. Two fire crews, led by Sub-Officer Richard McMunn, were called out to the British Lion on The Bayle just before midnight on Monday evening. It took them an hour and a half to extinguish the blaze.

Landlord Brian Matthews said the pub would be closed for a while, but could not estimate how long. It seemed to have started in a bin, but he was not sure how. “What I can say for certain is that the firemen were tremendous”, he said.

A spokesman for Folkestone firemen said “The early detection of the blaze by a smoke alarm saved a life and prevented it spreading to the first floor. Once again, the importance of fire detection in the home is emphasised”.

Half the bar was badly damaged.

 

 

LICENSEE LIST

LADD John 1782-1802 Bastions

LIFE ROBERT 1804-06

LIFE William 1806+ Bastions

RIGDEN 1806-09

FORMAGE Robert 1809-15 Bastions

FORMAGE Elizabeth 1815-17+

FORMAGE Ann 1819+

WEEKS Mary c1823-25 BastionsPigot's Directory 1823

WEEKS Edward 1825-28+ BastionsPigot's Directory 1828-29

CROWTHER John 1839-40+ BastionsPigot's Directory 1840

LIFE Martha 1841+ (age 65 in 1841Census)

BOYLE/FOWLE Richard Next pub licensee had 1841-Aug/46 (age 35 in 1841Census) BastionsSouth Eastern Gazette

BURVILLE Robert Aug/1846-64 South Eastern GazetteBastionsBagshaw's Directory 1847Melville's 1858 (also carrier age 57 in 1861Census) (Dover Street Bagshaw's Directory 1847)

Last pub licensee had TAYLOR John 1864-76 (age 58 in 1871Census) Post Office Directory 1874Bastions

COOPER William Wills 1876-83 Post Office Directory 1882Bastions

BROOKWELL Jesse 1883-87 Bastions

PANKHURST James 1887-1912+ BastionsPost Office Directory 1891Kelly's 1899Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903 (also fly proprietor age 45 in 1901Census)

PANKHURST Harry 1913-29 Post Office Directory 1913Post Office Directory 1922Bastions

STANNARD Edward David 1929-39 Kelly's 1934Post Office Directory 1938Bastions

STANNARD Josephine Marie 1939

UDEN Charles 1939-57 Bastions

Last pub licensee had HOURAHANE "Gerry" Richard 1957-77 Bastions

HOURAHANE Joan 1977-86 Bastions

HOLLETT Kenneth 1986-90 Bastions

CLAYSON Brian 1990-94 Bastions

MATTHEWS Brian & WHITE Sandra 1994-99 Bastions

CLARK Bruce & CLARK Margaret 1999-2000 Bastions

CLARK Bruce & GRANT Denise 2000-04+ Bastions

GRANT Nickolas & Dee to 2017+

 

Pigot's Directory 1823From the Pigot's Directory 1823

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

Pigot's Directory 1840From the Pigot's Directory 1840

Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1874From the Post Office Directory 1874

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Post Office Directory 1891From the Post Office Directory 1891

Kelly's 1899From the Kelly's Directory 1899

Post Office Directory 1903From the Post Office Directory 1903

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903

Post Office Directory 1913From the Post Office Directory 1913

Post Office Directory 1922From the Post Office Directory 1922

Kelly's 1934From the Kelly's Directory 1934

Post Office Directory 1938From the Post Office Directory 1938

BastionsFrom More Bastions of the Bar by Easdown and Rooney

CensusCensus

 

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