Sort file:- Margate, September, 2021.

Page Updated:- Thursday, 23 September, 2021.


Earliest 1837-

Brewers Arms

Latest 1968+

94-96 (130 in 1849) High Street


Brewer's Arms

Above photo showing the "Brewer's Arms." Date unknown. The pub was bombed during WW2.

Above showing a map of 1873.

Brewer's Arms bombing

Above photo by Suzann Foad circa 1941.


The Brewers Arms stood on the site of where W.H Smith is today. As you can see in the photograph the pub is a Cobb & Co house, however the origins of M J Harlow mineral water manufacturers started from the Brewers Arms. Early bottles produced by the company had the address of the Brewers Arms embossed or acid etched on the bottle. Like the photograph the bottles are exceptionally rare.

The photograph is from the Margate Historical Society collection and belongs to Mick Twyman. Mick has no objections to anyone copying this photograph so please feel free to copy and add your collection. There is a file in the Margate Museum in the archive of all the Old Margate pubs both past and present which is no longer accessible to the public.


The Brewers Arms, which dates to c. 1837, was sited in Margate High Street. Interestingly, an advert for an auction in the Kentish gazette mentions "For sale, Brewery Plant with malt and hop stores, stables, dray lodges, cellarage, also Free Ale and Spirit House adjoining known as the Brewers Arms". In 1867 the High Street was renumbered. The Brewers Arms up to 1867 was 130 High Street, then it became 94 High Street.

One Landlord, Michael James Harlow, was a Margate policeman and mineral water manufacturer. Michael had started his business at the Brewers Arms in 1878 after 21 years in the Force and Harlow's Ginger Beer bottles are highly collectable today.

I am led to believe that there may have been two Mr. Harlow's at the pub, probably father and son, as the ages given in the census don't tally with the above information.

In 1941 much of Margate High Street was destroyed by enemy action, three people were killed opposite the Brewers Arms. The pub escaped damage to carry on business until the early 1970's when it became W H Smith.


One time Cobbs tied house. Cobbs were founded in 1673, but Whitbread took them over early 1968 and closed the brewery later that year. However, I believe this was also in the 1830 to 50s an independent brewery called "Bishop's Brewery" owned and run by licensee and brewer Henry Bishop.


Kentish Gazette, 15 June 1852.

Margate. To Brewers and Innkeepers for Sale by Auction.

(By direction of the trustees and executors of the late proprietor, Mr. Henry Bishop, deceased.)

At the "King's Head Hotel," Margate, by Mr. R. Jenkins. On Thursday, 24th day of June, 1852, at three o'clock in the afternoon precisely, all that newly erected and capacious brewery and plants, on the improved principal; with convenient malt and hop stores, large store sellers, dray and cart lodges, and outbuilding; commanding a large and and increasing public and private trade, and well known as "Bishops Brewery."

The plant, which is modern, and fitted by the best manufacturers, comprises a 7 barrel dome copper, a smaller open dome copper for short brewings, commodious and well-appointed liquor beck, mash tuns, underbeck, working runs, and cooling becks; wort pumps, engine spring water and other liquor pumps; malt-mill and all other needed conducting apparatus. Together with the free public house adjoining, and known as the "Brewers Arms" replete with every requisite for the retail trade, which from its celebrity and central situation, (being in the best part of High Street,) command an almost unrivaled run in beer and spirits. Containing the capital bar and spirit shop, bar parlour, back parlour, club room, taproom, three bed rooms, wash house, kitchen, yard and offices.

Any enterprising young man of practical experience, with a small capital, would find this an opportunity of rare occurrence to invest it, and enable him and a few years to realise a handsome independency.

N.B. There is also, immediately in rear, an enclosed piece of freehold ground, with stabling, cart shed, and 8 buildings thereon, having a frontage in Grosvenor Place, which the purchaser may have the option of taking at a sum to be named at the time of sale, if he declares his desires to do so immediately after the sale.

The rolling stock of household fixtures to be taken at valuation in the usual way.

For further particulars and cards to view, apply to Messrs. Brook and Martens, Solicitors, Cecil Square; Mr. John Woodward, Fort Paragon; or to the Auctioneer, Hawley Square, Margate.


From the Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, 2 January 1875.


Mr. Charles Allen, of the "Brewers Arms," applied for a temporary endorsement of his license until the next transfer day, in favour of Michael James Harlow, and the application was granted.


From Reynolds's Newspaper (London, England), Sunday, June 7, 1896; Issue 2391.


Michael J. Harlow, landlord of the "Brewers' Arms," High-Street, Margate, committed suicide on Friday afternoon by shooting himself through the head. The deceased was formerly a well-known bookmaker and a member of several sporting clubs in London, but owing to heavy losses in connection with the turf he gave up his business some months ago, and since then he had been in a very depressed condition. It is conjectured that the unfortunate man had lost heavily through betting on the Derby.


Thanet Times, Tuesday 5 March 1968.

Publican goes on trial for receiving whisky' charge.

A Margate publican was sent for trial to Kent Quarter Sessions by Margate Court on Friday, accused of receiving 106 bottles of Whisky, 48 1/2 bottles of whisky and 11 cardboard cartons, belong to British Railways.

He was Henry Gulliver, of the "Brewers Arms" public house, High Street, Margate, who was given 50 bail to appear at Quarter Sessions on 1st April.

In the dock with him was Colin Richard Mandeville of St. Mildreds Road, Westgate who was charged with receiving 106 bottles and 48 1/2 bottles of whisky belonging to British Railways, between 29th December and 6th February.

For Gulliver Mr. A. J. Radford said his client wished to be tried by Margate Court but the magistrate (Mr. T. Eden) ruled that the case should go for trial.

Mandeville and Allen Joseph Paul Burns, of Grosvenor Place, Margate, were charged with breaking into the store of Birchington Engineering Co. Ltd. and stealing 9cwt of brass rods worth 200, between 27 and 31 January.

There were also accused of breaking into the store of Jean Joseph Vigon at Broadstairs between 17 and 20 January, and stealing 52 bottles of whisky, 25 bottles of gin, 10 bottles of rum, 11 bottles of brandy and 21 bottles of mixed spirits, plus a number of half-bottles of spirits, cigarettes and money to the total value of 450.

Both men were sent for trial to Kent Quarter Sessions commencing 1 April, and each was bailed in 50 with one surety of 100.


I believe the pub was forced to close permanently some time during WW2 due to bomb damage although the closed pubs project says it closed in the 1970 and has since been demolished. Local knowledge required here please.



BISHOP Henry 1838-51+ (also brewer age 50 in 1851Census)Bagshaw's Directory 1847Williams Directory 1849

CULMER John 1858-70+ also brewer Melville's 1858CensusPost Office Directory 1862Post Office 1867

ALLEN James 1871-Jan/75 (age 44 in 1871Census) Post Office Directory 1874

HARLOW Michael James Jan/1875-Apr/96 dec'd CensusPost Office Directory 1882Kelly's 1890 (also manufacture of mineral water age 38 in 1891)

EASTON Joseph Henry 1901-03+ (age 46 in 1901Census) Post Office Directory 1903Kelly's 1903

AMES Thomas 1911-13+ Next pub licensee had (age 46 in 1911Census) Post Office Directory 1913

OWEN Edgar French 1929+

GRINSTEAD Charles 1930-38+ Kelly's 1830Kelly's 1838

GULLIVER Henry 1968+


Bagshaw's Directory 1847From Bagshaw Directory 1847


Williams Directory 1849From Isle of Thanet Williams Directory 1849

Melville's 1858From Melville's Directory 1858

Post Office Directory 1862From the Post Office Directory 1862

Post Office 1867From the Post Office Directory 1867

Post Office Directory 1874From the Post Office Directory 1874

Post Office Directory 1882From the Post Office Directory 1882

Kelly's 1890From the Kelly's Directory 1890

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

Kelly's 1830From the Kelly's Directory 1930

Kelly's 1838From the Kelly's Directory 1938


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