Sort file:- Canterbury, August, 2021.

Page Updated:- Wednesday, 25 August, 2021.


Earliest 1836-

Providence Inn


162 Northgate Street (102 Northgate 1901Census) (St Gregory 1851Census)


Pewter Mug 1860s

Above mug identifying licensee Thomas Burren, (1861-66+) Kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Providence mugProvidence mug

Above mugs from the "Providence" dates unknown, kindly supplied by Rory Kehoe.


In 1840 Suzannah March, shopkeeper was resident at the address of 102 Northgate, which later changed number to 162. I am also informed this was on the corner of Union Street.

I have only traced this pub from between 1858 and 1903 and unfortunately that is the only information I have about the place to date.


Kentish Gazette, 29 October 1839.


To Capitalists, Brewers, Maltsters, &c, Valuable Freehold Estates.
To be sold by auction, by Mr. William Sharp, on Tuesday the 12th day of November, 1839, at the "Globe Tavern," St George's Street, at 2 o'clock in the afternoon, subject to such conditions as will be there produced, in four lots.

Lot 2. All that new built Freehold Messuage or Tenement, with the Stables, Lofts, and Appurtenances, known by the name or sign of the "Providence," situate and being in Northgate Street, near the Cavalry and Infantry Barracks, in the principal Road to Margate and Ramsgate, and now in the occupation of Mr. Charles Aiano.


From the Kentish Gazette, 29 November 1842.

Caution to Publicans.

A person of short stature, dressed in in a fustian jacket, with blue trowsers, and a cap, and by trade a basket-maker, left his lodgings at the "Providence," Northgate-street, Canterbury, unpaid, on Saturday last. We understand he left his lodgings at a public-house at Faversham, on the Saturday preceding, in a similar manner, besides borrowing some silver from the ostler.


From the Kentish Gazette, 9 September 1845.


At the annual licensing on Thursday, the city magistrates renewed one hundred and nineteen licences.

Two others were adjourned until the 13th inst., Charles Aiano’s, of the "Good Intent." Artillery-street, who was opposed by Mr. Dunk, of the "Providence," and William Stone, "Royal Standard," New Ruttington-lane, who was unable to attend through illness.


From the Kentish Gazette, 5 May 1846.

Founding of Burial Societies.

At a quarterly meeting of the committee of the No. 2 Burial Society, held at the "Providence," Northgate-street, on the 7th of April, 1846, it was unanimously resolved that the society, in conjunction with other burial societies of the city of Canterbury, do present Mr. Hamraond Hills with some token of respect as the founder of burial societies in this city; and a deputation of the president and four of the committee was also formed to wait on, or to communicate the same to other committees, &c. When this had been done, and the notices laid before the different committees, it was found that a misapprehension prevailed on the subject, and on enquiry it was shown that Mr. S. Kirby was the founder of such societies in Canterbury, as verified by date—the No. 1 Burial Society, St. Dunstan’s, held at the City of Canterbury, having been established by Mr. Kirby on the 5th of December, 1838, while the No. 1 Burial Society, held at the "City Arms," Northgate-street, was not established by Mr. H. Hills until the 7th of January. 1839; consequently the resolution of No. 2 Burial Society has been abandoned, although there is no doubt that Mr. Hills was very early in the field, and has been a most useful labourer in it. In connexion with this subject, we may mention that since the establishment of the No. 1, St. Dunstan's, Mr. Kirby has been the means of establishing six other burial societies in the city, and has paid to the legal claimants no less a sum than 2,885, from which 276 families have been assisted, and enabled to see their lamented relatives decently interred.


From the Kentish Gazette, 29 December 1846.

New Burial Society.

A new 15 Burial Society has been established at the "Providence," Northgate-street, arranged on the equitable principle of making the amount of the subscriptions contingent upon the age of the subscriber upon a scale laid down. It is manifestly fair that the young should not pay in the same proportion as the aged. This society will consist of 420 members, and we should think will soon fill up its complement.


From the Kentish Gazette, 7 March 1848.


With immediate Possession if required,

THE old-established PUBLIC HOUSE known by the sign of the "Providence," Northgate-street, CANTERBURY, in the only leading thoughfare to the Barracks, the Isle of Thanet, and Herne Bay. Rent and Incoming moderate. For full particulars, apply to the Tenant on the Premises.


Kentish Gazette, 9 October 1849.

Mr. Nightingale, of the "Providence," Northgate, Canterbury, underwent the operation of amputation of the leg above the knee on Thursday last. The operation was performed by Mr. C. Holttum, in the presence of Dr. Scudamore and other medical friends. We are glad to hear Mr. Nightingale is doing well.


South Eastern Gazette 16 April 1850.


April 5, Mr. T. Nightingale, landlord of the "Providence Inn," Northgate-street, Canterbury, aged 34 years.


Kentish Gazette, 28 October 1851.


Mr. Delasaux held an inquest on Tuesday evening, at the "Providence" public-house, St. Gregory, on the body of a child, named Sarah Soloman, aged seven weeks, which had been put to bed over night quite well, and was found dead in the morning by its mother's side.

Verdict:— "Natural death."


Kentish Gazette 23 November 1858.


Nov.12, Eliza, wife of Mr. T. Newman, of the "Providence Tavern," Northgate-street, Canterbury.


From the Kentish Chronicle, 29 March, 1862.

A special meeting of the magistrates was held at two o’clock in the afternoon, for the purpose of investigating a charge against two members of the East Kent Militia, John White and Henry White, of assaulting Charles Dyer.

From the evidence it appears that all the parties were in the “Providence” public-house on Saturday night, when the defendant Henry White wanted to fight the complainant, who refused, and being afraid of them, he got the landlord to go part of the way home with him; but when in Ruttington-lane the defendants set upon the complainant, and beat him in a most disgraceful manner. The defendant’s face was very much cut and bruised.

The Bench considered it a most brutal assault, and committed the prisoners (without the option of a fine) for one months hard labour in the city gaol.


From the Kentish Chronicle, 11 June, 1864.


Edward Cousins, a youth, was charged with tendering a base coin, purporting to he a half-sovereign. His prisoner entered the “Providence” public house, Northgate, kept by Mr. Burren, and asked for some liquor, in payment for which he tendered what purported to be a half-sovereign, but which subsequently turned out to be a counterfeit. The charge was not clearly brought home to the accused, and he was discharged.


From the Kentish Chronicle, 30 January, 1864.


On Monday afternoon a trotting match, for 10 a side, took place on the Canterbury and Dover Turnpike road, between a cob belonging to Mr. Burren, of the “Providence Inn,” Northgate, Canterbury, and it chestnut mare belonging to Mr. Charles Hornsby, of the “Duke of Cumberland Inn,” Barham. The distance was two miles—from Lydden Hill to the “Halfway House.” Belting was even at starting, and the match, which was a very close and exciting one, terminated in favour of Mr. Burren’s cob by two yards, The two miles was accomplished in two seconds under seven minutes.


From the Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, Saturday 10 May, 1884.


Before the Mayor (H. B. Wilson. Esq.), G. R. Frend, and R. Y. Fill, Esqrs.


Thomas White, landlord of the "Providence Inn," Northgate, was charged with allowing his house to be the resort of prostitutes.

The Town Clerk (Mr. R. W Flint) prosecuted, and Mr. Gibson (Sittingbourne) defended.

The Town Clerk, in opening the case, said the circumstances under which this house was carried on were of a somewhat peculiar character. The Superintendent had frequently visited the house, and had been told by a man named Buckle that the landlord (White) was not there. When this summons was served White said, "I know nothing about it." If a man was the owner of a licence he was supposed to have the knowledge of everything going on, and was practically responsible for what his agents did. It seemed to him (the Town Clerk) that an attempt was being made to evade the magistrates' orders. This man Buckle applied for the transfer of the licence; but his application was refused in consequence of the objections raised by the Superintendent as to character. In spite of that, Buckle still carried on the business.

Superintendent McBean deposed:- On April 21 at 9.15 p.m. I visited the "Providence Inn." I looked into the tap, and saw a man named Buckle there. Buckle is the man to whom the magistrates refused to grant the licence in January last. I went upstairs to the dancing or singing room, and found four unfortunates there. Three of them were dancing, and one was sitting down. They were not taking refreshment. On April 16th at about 9.30 I visited the same house, and found eight unfortunates there. They were dancing and singing and sitting about I again visited the house on April 19th, and found several unfortunates there. On each occasion a number of soldiers were present. There were other girls at the bar, but I only took notice of those who were upstairs.

Police-constable Sinclair gave corroborative evidence.

Robert Barrett, a Metropolitan police constable stationed at Canterbury, deposed that he had visited the "Providence Inn" several times, and had found several unfortunates there.

Mr. Gibson, in addressing the Bench for the defence, said that the women were in the house for the purpose of necessary refreshment. The fact that the Superintendent opposed the grant the licence to Buckle was an ingredient in the case because it showed that Mr. McBean was not an unprejudiced witness; and it was also unfair that whereas the 24th April was the only day mentioned in the summons, evidence to other days had been sprung upon defendant.

John Buckle, manager of the "Providence Inn," deposed:- On the evening of April 24th, Superintendent McBean came to my house. He went up to the club room, and made no complaint to me. I went up to the room and finding three women there, I ordered them out. They had not been upstairs eight minutes.

Defendant was sworn, and said the Superintendent had seen him several times since he had held the licence of the "Providence Inn." Buckle was managing the house for witness and was in receipt of a salary.

Cross-examined:- He had never had any differences with Buckle, and he had never been kicked out of the house by him. (Laughter).

Frederick Steed, waiter at the "Providence Inn," said he had carried out his orders which were to prevent unfortunates from stopping in the house too long.

Witness gave his evidence in a manner which was evidently unsatisfactory to the Bench.

Esther Keen, a married woman, who had been employed as a charwoman by Mr. Buckle, said that on April 24th, the women who came to the club room did not stay more than ten minutes.

Sergeant Bannister (garrison police) said be had never been called to the "Providence Inn" to quell a disturbance.

Corporal Emmerson (military police) said he considered the "Providence Inn" a well conducted house.

Jackson Swallow (landlord of the "Garrison Arms") said the "Providence Inn" was now more respectably conducted than it had ever been during the twelve years he had lived next door to it.

The Bench, after consulting in private inflicted a fine of 3 and 1 3s. costs; in default, one month’s imprisonment. The licence would not be endorsed.


From the Canterbury Journal, Kentish Times and Farmers' Gazette, 12 July 1884.


John Buckle, a man who has charge of the "Providence Inn," was charged with having, on Jane 25th, assaulted two boys named Alfred Belsey and Richard Williams.

Belsey said that on the evening of the day in question defendant ran out of his house and struck Williams with a horsewhip. He also took Williams indoors and punched him in the face. Subsequently he threw witness down and beat him with a stick, causing seven bruises.

The defence was that Buckle had been greatly provoked by the boys throwing stones; and, in consideration of this, the Bench imposed a fine of only 1s. and costs in each case, and remitted half the costs, which amounted in all to 25s.



AIANO Charles 1836-39+ Kentish GazetteStapletons Guide

DUNK Thomas 1845-47+ Bagshaw's Directory 1847

NIGHTINGALE T Mr 1849-5/Apr/1850 dec'd age 34

NIGHTINGALE Margaret 1851+ (widow age 35 in 1851Census)

NEWMAN Thomas 1858+ Melville's 1858

BURREN Thomas 1861-66+ Next pub licensee had CensusPost Office Directory 1862Greens Canterbury Directory 1868

KELLY William 1874+ Post Office Directory 1874

BLANDEN Henry to Nov/1879 South Eastern Gazette

WALLIS Thomas Nov/1879-82+ South Eastern GazetteCensusPost Office Directory 1882

WHITE Thomas 1884+

BUCKLE John 1884+ (manager for White) Canterbury Journal

BAKER Henry 1891 Post Office Directory 1891

DARNFORD George H 1891+ (age 20 in 1891Census)

OLIVE Henry 1901-03+ (age 55 in 1901Census) Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903


Kentish GazetteKentish Gazette

Stapletons GuideStapleton's Guide 1838

Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

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

Canterbury JournalCanterbury Journal, Kentish Times and Farmers' Gazette

South Eastern GazetteSouth Eastern Gazette


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