Sort file:- Margate, February, 2023.

Page Updated:- Thursday, 16 February, 2023.


Earliest 1760

(Name from)

(Old) Cottage

Closed Dec 2007

19 High Street


Cottage 1989

Above photo, 1989, kindly sent by Michael Mirams.


Above photo, date unknown.


Above image from Google maps, March 2009.

Old Cottage 2022

Above Google image November 2022.


Dating as early as 1760 and is one of the oldest in Margate. In the 1700s port wine was smuggled into Portugal House, the front of the building still remains. Legend indicates that there is or was a tunnel which led from the cellar to St John's Church.

E G Wastall, Ramsgate wine importer and Brewer, ran the premises in the 19th century and had operated an off license at the front and a wine lodge at the rear extension of the building.

It is said that the premises is haunted and a lady in white is said to haunted the upstairs restaurant.


Thanet Times, Tuesday 24 June 1969.


19 High Street, Margate. TELEPHONE: THANET 24466 OR 20174.

This is the view of the shop-front in Margate High Street. The bow in the window is intentional and is not due to an error by the craftsman who made it or to distortion by the camera lens.

Cottage 1969

Tea Coffee Lounge And Grill Room.

The Tea Coffee Lounge and Grill Room is a multi-purpose room opening on to the High Street. Margate. It is compact, yet is geared to quick service.

The menu is smaller and the dishes cheaper than in the restaurant, but the meals and grills are served all day.

In this room, we specialise in the service of fresh coffee, our home-baked cakes and scones.

Butter is worn only by the bread and the tea and coffee will mix only with fresh milk and cream.


The Cottage, to the disgust and at the same time joy, of its patrons, has now moved to the High Street, Margate.

Disgust because now they will have to share their secret with others and joy because, not only will we be nearer the town centre, but we shall also be offering a wider service than before.

We are a family business, independent, happy and human in our life, a little frayed perhaps at times but by and large cheerful and reasonably efficient.

We do not like loud and brash music, cold food (unless it is a salad) or slovenly service.

We do like your company, hard work, and constructive comment and criticism. We are not altruistic nor, on the other hand, profiteering.

We speak and understand the local dialect and have been known on occasions to translate our English menus into the tongues of other parts of Great Britain.

While not racialist, in our ignorance we believe in Thanet and therefore stay open all the year round — except, of course, for our own holidays.

We shall, of course, be carrying on our outside catering service, supplying buffets, party savouries, pastries, wedding cakes and birthday cakes, whether your party is at home or in a hall.

We are able to take a party of not more than 35 and there is a private room for meetings.

In the bar, in addition to drinks we shall also be serving snacks, hot and cold, and a few original dishes of our own for the more adventurous appetites.

Needless to say we have tried all the dishes ourselves, but indigestion tablets will be available to those patrons who have less cast-iron "tums " than ourselves, or for those who are just plain greedy.

The first-floor restaurant is not large, which adds to its charm, but elbow-knocking is only experienced by those people choosing to share the same chair.

We pride ourselves on our food and can recommend not only the specialities, but all the dishes on the menu.

For table reservations, ring Thanet 24466.

It was not quite 50,000.

We would have liked to tell you that we had spent 50,000 on the renovations at 19 High Street, but as we did not win the pools last season it would be nearer the truth to say that we have not spent one tenth of that amount.

Cottage bar 1969

It is true, however, that a great deal of time and work has gone into the conversion.

We would like to thank all those people who have made it possible, in particular the plumbers. G. B. Brook, and Seeboard. Their men have been very patient and understanding and willingly altered their work when we changed our minds.

We are also grateful to Courts, who "well floored us" with their carpeting.

To all the other people who helped us get the Cottage ready in time we say "Thank you."


At our regular patrons realise, we are open for Christmas Day lunch and Boxing Day lunch, although it is a trifle (not on the menu) early in the year, we are already three-parts booked.

So If you are thinking of booking for Christmas, let us know soon.

Cottage restaurant 1969

With an entrance at the side, we have on the first floor the restaurant, which is open for lunch and dinner each day. An a la carte menu it the main stay of the service, with a 12s 6d table d'hote lunch, including coffee, available to anyone and not just businessmen.


In conclusion, this is an advertisement and we are trying to get you to come and see us next time you are in Margate.

There will be so much going on at the Cottage that it would be a pity to miss it all. So why not drop in and spend a few minutes at the Cottage the next time you are passing?

Please remember that for every 6d you spend with us. at least 3d goes to the government and its industries. So please help us to keep the country viable until the next election — by spending at the Cottage.

Slaves’ Dungeon.

The kitchen, where at least one member of the family "slaves over a hot stove all day long" is in the basement and is in fact larger than the restaurant.

Completely re-floored and re-walled in the renovations, the kitchen has been fitted out to our own specifications to produce what we consider a good working area.

We do have modem machinery, which we have tested over recent months at our old premises. In particular, we can praise the Dysona microwave ovens, the electric friers and the gas ranges.

It should, however, be pointed out that our menu relies on the skill of the chef and the equipment in the kitchen is only a help to him.

We do not like pre-packed, pre-digested — or even pre-eaten — food, nor do we believe in their use just to save effort.

We fervently hope that the pre-packed consumer will not be a widespread reality in our time.


Lady Luck has smiled on us yet again, in that we have been able to transfer the public house and off-licence to our new premises.

This not only enables us to offer you the facilities of a bar, but we can also offer you the beers of the following brewers:


Yet we still maintain our independence to have on our list those wines we consider the best in their class.

Cottage rear 1969

This is the rear view of the Cottage, taken from the car park. The car park is situated on site of Charles Square and the entrance is from Market Street, which runs from the Harbour to the Market Place.


From the By John Bett, 17 May 2022.

Pub owner finds 364-year-old coin with staggering value under his floorboards.

David Gorton runs the Old Cottage, a Grade II listed pub in Margate, Kent, and stumbled upon what he thought was just an old penny during renovation work - but he was in for a shock.

Oliver Cromwell silver shilling

The coin turned out to be an Oliver Cromwell silver shilling (Image: Triangle News)

A pub owner is raising a glass to toast his good luck after finding a 364-year-old coin under his floorboards - as it was worth a staggering 12,500.

David Gorton was renovating the Grade II listed pub when he prised up the wooden beams and found what he thought was an old penny in the dirt below.

He’d sucked it up in a vacuum cleaner but got it out and then stuck it in his back pocket to look at later in the day, and when he did he realised it was an Oliver Cromwell silver shilling dating back to 1658.

Further research showed that coins of a similar age have been put up for action for 12,500, and now David believes it could have been dropped by a drinker three and a half centuries ago.

David Gorton 2022

David Gorton found a rare and valuable coin under his floorboards ( Image: Triangle News)

David, who runs the Old Cottage in Margate, Kent, said: "There was a clunk noise and I thought I’d hoovered an old nut or bolt.

"But I emptied it later and saw it was a coin. I didn’t think anymore and put it in my pocket.

"Five hours later I washed it off and thought ‘Oh my God’, it could be something quite rare."

During the renovation work, David also uncovered a 17th century fireplace and some stone cannonballs which date from the 1600s.

David added: "We’ve not done much research yet.

"But it’s easily the oldest relic we’ve come across, excluding cannon balls perhaps."

Similar coins have been put up for action for 12,500.

David bought the derelict boozer - itself dating back to the 1650s - in 2009 and has been restoring it since then.


The premises became a free house in 1969, and later became an Italian Restaurant, also it operated as the "Island Taverna" for a short time but reverted back to the Cottage in the 1980's. I believe this establishment closed in December 2007.

The building has a Grade 2 listing. In 2010 it appeared on Homes under the Hammer. where it sold for 90,000.


From the By Millie Bowles, 14 February 2023.

The Old Cottage Pub in Margate dubbed 'longest Homes Under the Hammer project ever' could reopen by summer.

A 370-year-old inn which was once decaying into ruins could be open by summer, after a painstaking 14-year restoration project.

The Old Cottage Pub on Margate's High Street was serving pints up until 2007 when the doors closed and the building was left in a sorry state.

Two years later, David Gorton snapped it up for a "bargain" 90,000 on an episode of Homes Under the Hammer.

He had initially planned to open the pub on the same date as the Turner Contempory back in April 2011.

But Mr Gorton has been beset by delays - caused by planning issues and, he admits, his own ambitious vision for the site.

Speaking to KentOnline inside the 17th century building this week, he said: "It must be the longest-running Homes Under the Hammer project ever."

Dave Gorton 2023

David Gorton is the owner of The Old Cottage Pub in Margate.

When it finally reopens - hopefully by the summer - it will include features such as its own brewery in the basement, an upstairs restaurant and Airbnb rooms.

The Grade II-listed property was built as a home in 1650 and shortly after was turned into an off-licence, serving the bathhouses that stood opposite. It became a fully-fledged pub in 1760.

Among its punters over the years was someone who dropped an Oliver Cromwell silver shilling dating back to 1658.

It was discovered in May last year after it was sucked up into a hoover and is valued at more than 12,000.

Old Cottage

The Old Cottage Pub on Margate's High Street could be open by summer.

But by the time The Old Cottage featured on Homes Under the Hammer in 2009, the building was "collapsing all on its own".

"If we had left it a few more months, I think the ceilings would have been on the floor and it would have started imploding on itself," Mr Gorton said.

The 67-year-old told how the project has been plagued by delays.

"We had a few problems initially getting space in the car park to empty all the rubbish out of the pub which had accumulated over the years," he said.

"Consequentially we didn’t actually get going until 2014.

Old Cottage

The brewery in the basement.

"We’ve had a few issues and delays, because I’m paying particular attention to the quality of the work and conserving everything I possibly can."

Another hidden gem discovered during the restoration was an impressive 1650 fireplace, previously concealed behind a wall in the pub's kitchen.

"We have re-pointed it and cleaned the timber work." said Mr Gorton.

"We have left it exactly how it was other than that." he added.

Once open, the pub will have various interesting and original features including "pour your own pint" stations, which customers can access with a digital members card.

Within the basement of the building, is its own brewery.

Old Cottage fireplace 2023

A 1650 fireplace was discovered in the Margate pub.

Named The Margate Brewery, it will supply beer to the pub and other local businesses.

The retired firefighter has designed an innovative system, in which beer will come up from the basement through pipes, to copper tanks above the bar.

Pints will be poured straight from these, meaning the alcohol doesn't mix with air until it hits the glass.

A fifth floor has also been added to the property, giving Mr Gorton and his wife a second home with a sea view.

Ambitious extra features like this and failed planning applications have led to the lengthy time frame, he explained.

Old Cottage

A coin valued at 12,500 was found during restoration.

"It has turned into a labour of love, so I’m partly to blame for the time it’s taken," the dad-of-four admits.

"But, it hasn’t always been plain sailing - it’s been hard to get everything done.

"Now I just want to get the job finished and get it open."

The kitchen will be on the first floor along with an upstairs restaurant and bar for private functions, and the main pub will be at street level.

There will also be an Airbnb and chefs' living quarters on the second floor.

Mr Gorton said: "Providing there’s no more obstacles along the way and it is purely a case of knuckling down, finishing the practical work and opening the doors - I could probably finish it within two to three months."

The restoration has not been cheap.

Repairs to the collapsing basement alone cost about 155,000, over the initial budget for the whole project.

"It was a bargain to buy," said Mr Gordon.

"But, if I looked at the final figures I could expect on day one - I probably never would have done it.

"It’s worked out to be very very expensive but honestly, if you’re going to do it, you’ve got to do it properly."

Presenter Lucy Alexander was the one to interview the owner at the time of filming, and then returned almost five years later, hoping to show off the finished product.

"I made them promise if they let me do the second film when we weren’t finished, they would come back and do the finale," he said.

Old Cottage copper tanks 2023

Pints will be pulled from copper tanks above the bar.

"They said 'yes, so long as were still in production'.

"It must be the longest-running Homes Under the Hammer project ever."

Mr Gorton, who's main home is in Sidcup in Bexley, added: "I have to finish it.

"The truth is I have no idea how much I’ve spent on it.

"It’s a work in progress, and if I kept score it would frighten the life out of me.

"I have to keep going - I have to finish it.

"The idea is not to do it within a budget or a sum of money - it’s got to be done because its historic and very special."




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