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Notes of 1912


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 5 January, 1912. Price 1d.


The management of the “Royal Albion Hotel, Broadstairs, applied for an extension from 10 p.m. till 12.30 a.m. on 18th January, on the occasion of a dinner in connection with the Advancement Association.

The application was granted, Mr. Chitty only objecting, he considered that an hours extension was sufficient.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 9 February , 1912.


The annual licensing sessions were held at the Town Hall on Monday at noon, before the following Magistrates:- The Mayor (Councillor W. Bromley), Sir William Crundall, Messrs. E. Chitty, T. A. Terson, and J. L. Bradley.


The Chief Constable, in his report for the year ending January 1st, 1912, stated that the population of the Borough was 43,617, the number of fully licensed houses being 163, on and off beer-houses 9, confectioners 3, off-beer-houses 11, and shops 11, making a total of 197. The population to each licensed house was 227.57, against 213.8 for 1910. The amount of drunkenness per 1,000 of the population was 1.48. The reports drunkenness and convictions for the last three years were; 1909, males 50, females 24, total 74; 1910, males 46, females 18, total 64; and 1911, males 48, females 17, total 65. The number of houses closed, under the Compensation Act of 1901, was 23 in seven years. There were no prosecutions against licensed holders during 1911.


The whole of the existing licenses were renewed, except in the cases of four houses which had been scheduled for compensation.

The "Albion," the "Duke of Cambridge," the "Pier Inn," and the "Railway Bell."


Certificates in abatement of the Compensation Fund charge to the extent of two-thirds were granted in respect of the Admiralty Pier, the Prince of Wales Pier refreshment rooms, Mr. Tritton, the S.E. and C.R. Dover Stations, and the Granville Restaurant.


The following days were appointed for the transfer of licenses; April 12th, June 7th, August 2nd, October 4th, December 6th and January 17th, 1913.


Mr. J. R. Mann applied on behalf of the Granville Restaurant to use the doorway leading from the Granville Hall into the Granville Gardens. He produced a plan for the premises for inspection.

The application was granted.


Mr. B. T. Buss, wine and spirit merchant, of 1, Cherry Tree Avenue, was granted his usual wine and spirit licence, but the application, through Dr. Hardman, for an off beer licence was opposed by Mr. Rutley Mowll for the Licensed Victuallers and by Mr. Ernest Chitty on behalf of the Rev. A. L. Coates, Mr. W. T. Vallintine, and the members of the Dover Temperance Council.

Dr. Hardman in making the application said that this was the sixth occasion on which the application had come before the Dover Bench, and he hoped it would be the last on which he need trouble them. He trusted the Bench would consider this year that Mr. Buss's efforts in the past and his perseverance had established such a case in their minds that they would think this was an application that ought to be granted. Mr. Buss had lived in Dover for over 30 years, and his wife was a native of the town. He was a man of high character, and he (Dr. Hardman) had a letter from the rector of Buckland, in which he said, “I have known Mr. Buss for several years, and have much pleasure in stating that in my opinion he is a fit and proper person to have the licence for which he is asking.” This letter was produced at the last application, and he had given permission for it to be used this year. This was an application for a licence in respect of the premises that were already licensed for the sale of wine and spirits, and not for a grocer's licence, so that any objection about women ordering beer and having it put down as groceries was out of place. Mr. Buss was not allowed to deal in any other commodities other than wine, spirits and mineral waters. He was entirely free and untied to any person, and would be able to supply any kind of beer that his customers might ask for. Last year he (Dr. Hardman) was applying for a similar licence at Margate, and it was granted because it was thought there was, he submitted, it might well be thought in Dover that a wine and spirit licence was completed by a beer licence. The public naturally expected at a shop of that kind that they would be able to get bottled beer as well as bottles of wine and spirits. The district had very largely built up, and it was not supplied with convenient facilities of this character, the nearest off licence to Mr. Buss's premises being at Mr. Lukey's shop opposite the Town Hall. There were one or two public houses in the district, such as the “Diamond Hotel,”150 yards away, and other fully licensed houses in the main road lower down the town. There was opposition that day from parties of opposite opinions, and he suggested that the opposition of the Temperance party on the one hand and of the Licensed Victuallers on the other hand, might well be held to neutralise each other (laughter). The trade sought by Mr. Buss through his application was not a trade the Licensed Victuallers laid themselves out to do, and as to the Temperance party's opposition he was perfectly wiling to give Mr. Chitty an undertaking that Mr. Buss would not supply any of the teetotallers (laughter). The Licensed Victuallers really could not be allowed to stand in the way of public convenience. The bottle trade was not, he contended, efficiently performed by the Licensed Victuallers. They would send out bottled beer when asked for it, but this involved people having to go themselves or send messengers, and it was not everybody who liked to send maids or young people into a public-house. It was not at all a profitable trade to the Licensed Victualler unless he looked after it very carefully and he got his bottles back, which he very often did not. He suggested to the Bench that this so-called bottle beer trade was merely a pretence. When the licence of the “Diamond” was granted several years ago the district was not nearly so built up as it was at present, and it was not intended that the “Diamond” should have the monopoly of the trade either then or in after years of the whole of this district. The tenant had no right to say that, having got a monopoly of the district, nobody else need think of establishing licensed premises because he could do all the business. Possibly, he could if he laid himself out to do it. The real question, however, was of public convenience, and he (Dr. Hardman) submitted that he was so entitled to succeed in view of the changed condition of affairs and having regard to the reasonableness of the applicant's request.

Mrs. Buss went into the witness box, and explained that her husband was unable to attend owing to chronic rheumatism. She was the owner of the premises, of which the rateable value was 21 gross and 17 10s. nett. They had received a great many applications for beer, in spite of the fact that many were aware that she was unable to supply it. She was willing to submit to any conditions in the licence.

Mr. Mowll: What are the changed circumstances that you are this year asking the Magistrates to reverse their previous decisions?

We have had so many applications for beer.

Do you keep a record of the number of people who ask?

We have done so.

Have you got it there?


I suppose it was not sufficiently “rosy” from your point of view?

Oh yes, it was; I could have brought it.

It did not occur to you?

We have brought it so many times.

How many have come to your asking for this facility?

This last month we have had over 60.

Previous to that there was a slump?

No; we are always being asked for it.

Have you found out how many people manage without this “great convenience?” I know they are greatly inconvenienced.

But they don't go without their beer?

They have to send to the other end if the town.

Is there not a licence in Peter Street?

It is not much known.

Was it on your instructions that Dr. Hardman suggested to the Bench that the Licensed Victuallers' bottle trade was merely a pretence?

Dr. Hardman: You must not ask that.

Mr. Mowll: Do you really agree with what Dr. Hardman has said that when the Licensed Victuallers say they cater for the supply of beer that it is no more than a mere pretence?

I know they send small quantities out, and if we had this licence we should be able to send out too.

Cross-examined by Mr. Chitty: She still agreed with her last year's evidence that the brewers supplied beer in small quantities. People could have it by sending a postcard to Messrs. Leney, but they did not like taking that trouble.

George T. Pascall, of 114, Buckland Avenue, gave evidence in support of the application, and said that the licence would be a great public convenience. It would meet the requirements of a large and increasing class of persons who did not care to be seen going into a public-house.

Cross-examined by Mr. Mowll: He had many times been in Mr. Buss's shop and had seen people frequently come in to ask for beer, more especially visitors in the summer time. He could not give names without permission.

Mr. Mowll: One would have thought if they were so keen about this they would have come here to ask for it themselves.

Cross-examined by Mr. Chitty: he got his bottle beer from Messrs. Leney's, but he would rather support Mr. Buss because he was a neighbour.

Mr. Mowll, addressing the Magistrates, said Dr. Hardman had got a very attractive way of presenting an old case, but he could not be at all serious when he asked the Bench to stultify their previous decision on no less than five occasions, on the somewhat flimsy evidence that had been called that day. Mr. Mowll pointed out that the fact of Mr. Buss obtaining his new licence might possibly deprive somebody else of his licence, inasmuch as it was the practice to quote the names and distance of the nearest licensed premises when a licence was being opposed. He objected to the suggestion that the Licensed Victuallers of the district did not take the trouble to supply the off licence trade. At the “Diamond Hotel” there was a private receiving office, where orders could be received, and the people need not come into contact with the those in the bar at all. Mr. Caspell, of the “Fountain,” delivered crates of beer, and people need not send to the house at all. Instead of sitting in their bars getting swollen, dropsical bodies, and gouty feet (laughter), the Licensed Victuallers were now an energetic and businesslike class of men, running round after orders, and they ought to be encouraged.

Mr. Chitty submitted that the present conditions were exactly the same as those of last year's. As to the suggestion that residents did not like sending their maids to a public house, he thought it could safely be assumed that they would not like to send them out for beer at all, especially when a postcard could easily be sent to Messrs. Leney, who would deliver it at the house. He thought also that those people who did not keep maids would have no objection to going into a public-house. He added that the legal profession were very grateful for the annual contribution to their exchequer, but, laudable as that was, it was not sufficient to justify the granting of this licence.

The Magistrates considered their decision without retiring, the mayor then announcing: “I am sorry, but the majority of the Magistrates are against the application.”


Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald 10 February 1912.


Messrs. C. Wilson, C. Phillips, and Gaywood were granted licenses in respect of their restaurants, and were allowed the customary rebate in the compensation contribution.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday, 16 February , 1912.


The annual reports of Supt. Stone and Holland were read.

The Chairman said the Bench were satisfied with the reports.


From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday 1 March, 1912. Price 1d.


Mr. Wood, of Messrs. Leney and Co, applied for permission to supply refreshments at the Town Hall on Thursday, on the occasion of a Leap Year dance.

The application was granted.