Sort file:- Canterbury, November, 2023.

Page Updated:- Thursday, 30 November, 2023.

PUB LIST PUBLIC HOUSES Paul Skelton & Rory Kehoe

Earliest 1823-

Guildhall Family and Commercial Hotel

Latest 1938+

10 High Street


Guildhall 1905

Above photo, Wednesday 2nd August 1905. Crowds gathering to witness the visit of General William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Former Guildhall Family and Commercial Hotel

Above image from Google, July 2009, shows the building that is now number 10 High Street.

Guildhall Hotel location 2017

Above photo taken and sent by Rory Kehoe, October 2017.


I have traced this establishment from between 1828 to 1903. By 1917 it was operating as J. Hepworth and Son Ltd. Clothiers, outfitters and bespoke tailors. The building is now part of Debenhams store chain the majority being opened in towns and cities in the 1970s.

I believe there was also the "Guildhall Tap" associated with this, under a different license.


Kentish Gazette 1819.

Civil Side. Wiltshire v. Evans.

Before Mr. Justice Park.

The Plaintiff in this case is proprietor of the "Guildhall Tavern" at Canterbury; the defendant is a linen-draper residing in the same city.

Mr. Gurney stated the case, and said that this action was brought to recover the sum of of 12 the amount of a tavern bill incurred by the defendant and others, for which he had undertaken to pay, but when the bill was delivered to him he refused to do so.
It appeared that the defendant had invited several friends to dine with him, that he ordered the dinner at the "Guildhall Tavern," which was had, and after dinner they took wine, fruit, &c amounting to the sum now sought to be recovered.

Upon the evidence of one of the plaintiffs witnesses, however, it appeared that a credit for the account was also given to one Dennis Griffiths, as well as to defendant, who have become insolvent, and the account was sent into Evans.

Mr Justice Park said:- "In my opinion the plaintiff cannot sustain this action, on account of the credit being given to Mr. Griffith and Mr Proctor.

Call the plaintiff."


Kentish Weekly Post or Canterbury Journal - Tuesday 21 January 1823.

Guildhall Tavern. High Street, Canterbury.

Henry Jones, having recently taking the above Tavern, lately conducted by W. Wiltshire, respectfully informs the public that it will be his endeavour by unremitting attention, and superiority of accommodation at moderate charges, to merit a share of their support.

Wines and spirits of the best quality direct from a docks.

Very fine flavoured London Porter, and Ale of superior quality.

Dinners, Suppers, &c. provided on the shortest notice.

Families in the City and Suburbs supplied with Porter and Beer at any hour.

Orders taken at the bar will be punctually attended to.

A horse and chaise to let. An ordinary every Saturday at 2 o'clock.

N. B. Good Beds and Stabling.

Superior travelling by the Telegraph Light Four Inside Post Coach, at reduced fares. Every morning at a quarter before 9, from the above house, in 7 hours, to the Saracens Head, Skinner Street, Snow Hill; Shepherd's Globe Office, Gracechurch Street; Gloucestershire Coffee House, Piccadilly; and Green Man and Still, Oxford Street.

Coaches regularly to Dover, Deal, Margate, and Ramsgate every afternoon.


From the Kentish Gazette, 12 July 1836.

TO BE LET, With Immediate Possession.

THE "GUILDHALL TAVERN and ASSEMBLY ROOMS," situate in the centre of the City of Canterbury.

The above Tavern, at which the Union London and Herne Bay Coaches, and Margate, Sittingbourn, and Hythe Vans start from, possesses every convenience for carrying on a good Tavern business, which, combined with the commanding situation, presents a favorable opportunity for an active person. The Catch Club is held in the above Rooms every Wednesday during the season.

For particulars, &c. apply, if by letter, post paid, to Mr. H. Jones, Guildhall Tavern, Canterbury.


From the Kentish Gazette, 15 May 1838.

Meeting of the Commissioners of Pavement.

On Wednesday a meeting of the Commissioners of the Canterbury Pavement was held at the "Guildhall," Mr. Christian in the chair.

Mr. Matthews moved that 500 be paid in liquidation of the debt. This was seconded by Mr. Chenoweth. Mr. Ridout moved, as an amendment, that threepence in the pound be laid aside for this purpose. Seconded by Mr. Williamson. Mr. J. S. Browne thought that no money ought to be set apart until they knew the exact state of their funds. Alderman Cooper was of opinion that it would be better to contribute the surplus, if any, to assist in paying the police of the city. After some discussion, both the motion and the amendment were withdrawn. Mr. J. S. Browne then moved that the accounts of Northgate-street and North-Lane be audited by the Committee, to see if any, and what, allowances could be granted, and report the same to the next meeting. Seconded by Alderman Masters.

Alderman Cooper moved that the Repair Committee examine the pavement of Castle-street, from Rosemary-lane to the "Castle Inn," the same being in a very dangerous state, and that it be McAdamized. Seconded by Mr. J. S. Browne. Also that a barrel-drain be made in Castle-row.

Mr. Smith applied for a barrel-drain from Gravel-lane to Watling-street. Alderman Cooper proposed it be submitted to the Repair Committee.

Mr. J. S. Browne stated that he would give the Court notice at the next meeting of their arrangements which had been commenced for improving Saint George’s-street, and the probable amount of the whole cost; and that at the next meeting he would move for a grant of money to carry into effect the contemplated improvements in St. George’s-street, in the purchase and removal of the premises now occupied as the "Globe Tavern," &c.


From the Kentish Gazette, 18 August 1840.

Mr. M. Jacobs, the celebrated illusionist and ventriloquist exhibited his surprising powers to a very numerous audience last evening at the "Guildball Tavern." We believe we may safely affirm Mr. Jacobs to be the most talented man of his profession now in England. The Mayor patronizes the performances on Thursday evening.


From the Kentish Gazette, 19 September 1843.


The "GUILDHALL TAVERN" and CONCERT ROOM, KENT HERALD PRINTING OFFICE, modern DUELLING HOUSES, WINE VAULTS, and other Premises, in the City of CANTERBURY, producing a Rental of 300 per Annum.

Messrs. WHITES and GOULDEN Have received instructions to submit to PUBLIC AUCTION, ON THURSDAY, the 5th of October, 1843, at Two o'clock in the afternoon, at the "Royal Fountain Hotel," Canterbury, in One Lot (by the direction of the Mortgagees under their power of sale.)

A very desirable FREEHOLD PROPERTY, the whole of which is of modern and substantial erection; comprising the "GUILDHALL TAVERN" and spacious CONCERT ROOM, with the Wholesale and Retail WINE and SPIRIT ESTABLISHMENT and extensive WINE VAULTS, the KENT HERALD PRINTING OFFICES, with excellent and modern DWELLING HOUSE, BANKING OFFICES, with superior accommodation, and other extensive Premises, eligibly situated for business in the leading thoroughfare (being the corner of Guildhall Street and High Street) of the City of CANTERBURY.

The Premises occupying a frontage in Guildhall Street of 131 feet, and in High Street of 52 feet; are in good repair, upwards of two thousand pounds having been expended on them in recent improvements; and are in the respective occupations of the Trustees of the London and County Bank, the Proprietors of the Kent Herald Newspaper, and of Mr. Henry Jones and his undertenants.

The whole Estate will be sold subject to the payment of at Annuity of 150 per Annum during the life of Mrs. Elizabeth Wiltshier, who is now in her 78th year.

May be viewed on application to the several Tenants; and printed particulars and conditions of sale had of Messrs. Robert and George Furlky, Solicitors, or the Auctioneers, Sun street, Canterbury.



South Eastern Gazette,10 January, 1860.


IN the centre of the HIGH STREET, CANTERBURY, is NOW OPEN.

GEORGE STONE, Proprietor.


From the Kentish Chronicle and General Advertiser, 15 February, 1862. Price 1 1/2d.


A man named Thomas Wraight, a maltman was charged with creating a disturbance on Saturday night, P.C. Fowler deposed that, on Saturday night, he was called to the bar of the “Guildhall Tavern,” where he found the defendant creating a great disturbance. He was the worse for liquor. It appeared that the defendant is known to be quiet and generally a peaceably deposed man. Several of the police offices spoke to his good character, and the Bench accordingly ordered him to be discharged.


From the Kentish Chronicle, 2 January, 1864.


Begs leave to return her sincere thanks to the Inhabitants of Canterbury and its neighbourhood, for the kind support bestowed for so many years upon her late husband. Mrs. Stone intends continuing on the business herself, and trusts that by giving every attention to the comfort of her Friends, and by supplying Articles of n First-rate Quality, to continue to receive their kind support.

December 30th 1863.


From the Kentish Chronicle, 26 March, 1864.


A robbery was committed at the house of Mrs. Stone, the “Guildhall Tavern,” Canterbury, on Friday night. Property to a considerable value was stolen, and we regret to add that the thieves have, as yet, escaped detection. It appears that, on the third floor there is a room used generally as a dressing room by Miss Cooper, niece of the landlady, and on Saturday morning, when the servant went to dust the things in this room she found the door locked. The circumstance excited attention as it was very unusual, and on enquiry being made it was found that Miss Cooper had not locked the door. The key could not be found, but with the assistance of a workman from Messrs. Saxby’s, ironmongers, an entrance was obtained. It was then discovered that a robbery had been committed. Miss Cooper’s writing desk was found broken open. All the drawers had been ransacked—three or them, which had been left locked, having been broken open. Property to the value of 15 or 16, including a purse containing 1 6s. 6d. was taken. The articles stolen comprise a massive black chain, three brooches, seven bracelets, two pairs of ear-rings, a scent bottle with a silver top, a silver pencil-case, a number of old coins, &c., and several articles of apparel. Various conjectures have been thrown out respecting the way in which the robbery was effected.


From the Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, 20 April, 1867. Price 1d.


Thomas Dalby Reeve, a lemonade and soda water manufacturer, of Margate, was charged with an offence, viz., refusing to pay a toll of 1s. for a cart which was driven to and from Canterbury and Margate, for the purpose of hawking lemonade and soda water in the city.

Mr. Flint appeared for Mr. Solomon, and said this case was somewhat differed from the others, and it would therefore require more consideration.

Mr. Reeve pleaded not guilty, and defended himself. He said that under the 49th section of the Markets Act, and under the 109th section of the Public Health Act, the Bye-Laws were compelled to hung up for inspection. He said, before going into the case, it was necessary to prove that the Bye-Laws had been printed and hung up.

Mr. Flint was then sworn and deposed that the printed Bye-Laws had been hung up in a conspicuous place ever since the Local Board passed them.

He then called George Stone, who said he assisted at the “Guildhall Tavern.” His mother dealt with Mr. Reeve for lemonade and soda water. Mr. Reeve generally called on them once or twice a week and asked if they required any of the articles he dealt in. He thought the cart was in Canterbury on the 8th of April, the day named in the indictment. He was sure the cart was in last week. They always paid for what they had at the time of its delivery.

Cross-examined by Mr. Reeve:- I do not know the defendant is a wholesale dealer. We have always paid for the articles at the time they were ordered.

The witness not being able to swear to what day defendant was in last, the Magistrates dismissed the case.

(Read a further case against Thomas Dalby Reeve)


From the Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, 4 May, 1867. Price 1d.


George Stone was charged with assaulting his mother on the 24th inst, in the “Guildhall Tavern.”

Mrs. Stone, who appeared in a fainting state, said that on the night in question defendant and his wife were in her house. She heard a disturbance in one of the rooms, and on her going to see what it was defendant struck her. She then gave him in charge to P.C. Marsh, who was passing at the time.

Prisoner said he was in the hones with his wife, and P.C. Marsh came and interfered with them. He was very sorry for having struck his mother.

The Mayor said it was a very painful thing to see a man in such a position charged with striking his mother. He intended to dismiss the case if defendant would promise to leave the house.

Defendant haring consented to this.

The Mayor asked Mr. Davey, who attended on behalf of Mrs. Stone, if he thought she would be content with this.

Mr. Davey said that prosecutor only wished for authority from the Magistrates to deny defendant admission to her house.

Prisoner again promised that he would not enter the house again.


Canterbury Journal, Kentish Times and Farmers' Gazette, Saturday 23 September 1882.

Sudden Death.

Henry Port, aged 72 years, one of the employees of Messr's Shaxby, of the "Guildhall Hotel," died very suddenly on Saturday. Deceased who was highly esteemed by his fellow workmen, started to drive to Faversham, but was seized with a fit before he arrived at his destination. This entirely bereft him of speech and motion, but the horse knowing the road the journey was safely accomplish. Ascertaining the condition of Port, Mr. Henry Shaxby at once drove him to Canterbury, but the poor man died soon after his arrival at home. Deceased was a married man.





JONES Henry 1823-40+ Pigot's Directory 1824Historic Canterbury web sitePigot's Directory 1828-29Pigot's Directory 1832-34Stapletons GuidePigot's Directory 1840

GILES Thomas 1841+ (also oyster merchant age 45 in 1841Census)

CLEMENTS Henry 1851-58+ (age 39 in 1851Census) Historic Canterbury web site

VINCER Edward to Mar/1860 Kentish Gazette

Last pub licensee had STONE George Mar/1860-Jan/64 (age 56 in 1861Census) Kentish GazettePost Office Directory 1862

STONE Mary Ann Jan/1864-67+ Kentish Chronicle

SHAXBY BROTHERS 1868+ Greens Canterbury Directory 1868

SHAXBY Harry 1871+ (age 30 in 1871Census)

SHAXBY BROTHERS 1874-82+ Post Office Directory 1874Post Office Directory 1882Post Office Directory 1882Historic Canterbury web site (Soda water and lemonade manufacturers) SHAXBY Robert (age 35 in 1881Census)

STRATFORD C Russell 1889-91+ Post Office Directory 1891Historic Canterbury web site (Wine and Spirit merchants)

O'GRADY Edmund 1901+ (age 31 in 1901Census)

FALCON Graham 1903+ Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903


Pigot's Directory 1824From the Pigot's Directory 1824

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

Pigot's Directory 1832-34From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34

Stapletons GuideStapleton's Guide 1838

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

Post Office Directory 1862From the Post Office Directory 1862

Greens Canterbury Directory 1868Greens Canterbury Directory 1868

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

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

Post Office Directory 1930From the Post Office Directory 1930

Post Office Directory 1938From the Post Office Directory 1938

Historic Canterbury web siteHistoric Canterbury web site


Kentish GazetteKentish Gazette

Kentish ChronicleKentish Chronicle


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