Sort file:- Whitstable, November, 2023.

Page Updated:- Friday, 17 November, 2023.


Earliest 1748

(Name from)

Duke of Cumberland Family & Commercial Hotel

Open 2023+

1 High Street/Sea Street/Harbour Street


01227 280617

Duke of Cumberland 1900

Above postcard, circa 1900, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Royal Navy Reserve

Above photo date unknown. Also showing the "Duke of Cumberland" centre. Also showing the "Royal Naval Reserve" (left).

Duke of Cumberland

Above postcard, date unknown.

Duke of Cumberland

Above photo, date unknown, by Douglas West.

Duke of Cumberland circa 1908

Above showing the Duke of Cumberland circa 1908. Also showing the "Bear and Key" right.

Duke of Cumberland 1910

Above postcard, 1910, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Duke of Cumberland 1920

Above photo, circa 1920, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Duke of Cumberland 1979

Above postcard, circa 1979, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Duke of Cumberland bar 1979

Above postcard, circa 1979, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Duke of Cumberland bar 1979

Above postcard, circa 1979, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Duke of Cumberland 1979

Above postcard, circa 1979, kindly sent by Rory Kehoe.

Duke of Cumberland 2009

Above photo 2009 by Oast House Archive Creative Commons Licence.

Duke of Cumberland

Above pictures taken from 2014.

Duke of Cumberland 2023

Above photo 2023 by Tony Flashman.

Duke of Cumberland 2023

Above photo 2023, by Shepherd Neame.

Duke of Cumberland signDuke of Cumberland sign 2019

Above sign left, 2009. Sign right, 2019.


A Grade II listed building, there has been an inn on this site for more than 300 years. Known as the "Noah's Ark" until 1747, Landlord Robert Chandler renamed it "Duke William" in honour of the Duke of Cumberland who, a year earlier, had crushed the Scottish rebellion at Culloden.

In 1748 it became The Duke of Cumberland and was used as the headquarters for the oyster and dredger men. Fire swept through the building in 1866 and it was rebuilt in 1878 before being bought by Shepherd Neame.

 It was the headquarters of the Oyster Dredgermen whose annual Water Court was held in an upstairs room.

In 1898, licensee Charles Gurr was also described as being a wine and spirit merchant.

Now also contains the Salt Marsh restaurant.


Kent Gazette, 28 November 1778.

Abraham Bailey, from Canterbury, having taken the house, known by the sign of the "Duke of Cumberland," at Whitstable, begs leave to acquaint the public, that he has laid in a stock of good beer and other liquors, and that be exceedingly obliged by the favours of his friends custom.

If good usage and gentle accommodation can anyway merit their attention, he flatters himself that he shall be able to answer their expectation.


Kentish Gazette, 20 July, 1804.

Estates at Whitstable and Seasalter.


At Mr. Kitchinham’s, the "Duke’s Head," (sic) at Whitstable, on Monday, 23rd July, 1804, at four o’clock in the afternoon, under such conditions as will he then produced.

Lot 1. A Freehold Piece of Land, very desirable for budding, being part of the Salt Grounds, measuring in front 338 feet, and in depth from the foot of the wall to the beach.

Lot 2. A further part of the same ground, containing by admeasurement 214 feet in front, and in depth as above.

Lot 3. A further part of the said Salt Grounds contain by admeasurement 365 feet in front, and in depth as above.

Lot 4. A Piece of Leasehold Ground, held by lease from the Dean and Chapter of Christ Church, Canterbury called the Salts, lying south-west of the Salt-pans, and occasionally, at high tides, overflowed by the sea, containing by estimation 6 acres.

Lot 5. A part of the Cliff Land, adjoining the further sea wall of Mr. Foord, also leasehold, at the same as now stumped off, at per acre, and to measure no further than the stock can feed or graze on.

Lot 6. A further part of the same Leasehold Cliff Land, adjoining Lot 3, and extending to Scab's Acre, at the end of Mr. Browning's wheat held, in a line with the hedge down to the dike parting the same from the Salts.

Lot 7. A further part of the same Leasehold Cliff Land, continuing from the south-west side of Scab's acre to the main road down the cliff, next Mr. Beer's land.

Lot 8. The Salts from the dike at the foot of the cliff to high water mark.

The above Lands are in the parishes of Whitstable and Seasalter, or one of them, in the county of Kent.

N. B. The purchases of Lot 5 is, at his own expense, to make and maintain a post and real fence, of not less than four rails, from the top of the cliff to the bottom, to divide Lots 5 and 6; and the purchaser of Lot 6 is, at his own expense, to make and maintain a like fence, to divide Lots 6. and 7.

For particulars enquire of Mr. Hodges, Solicitor, Canterbury.


From an email received, 30 December 2022.

The landlord between Abraham Bailey and Walter Foreman was William Kitchingham (sometimes Kitchenham). He was born in 1768 and died in Whitstable in 1846. His second wife was Sarah Lawson b. Seasalter in 1779. Her sister Hannah married Walter Foreman, the landlord from 1828. I found an auction notice in the KM pub 28 Jul 1807 (below) which says 'Mr Kitchener's Duke of Cumberland'. It didn't take me long to work out who he was. The Lawsons and Foremans were already all on my husband's tree. William White Foreman, landlord from 1861 was first cousin once removed with Walter Foreman (his dad's first cousin).

Alfred Mann, b. 1819 in London married Emily Ann Foreman, sister of William White Foreman. He was actually a merchant seaman/master. In fact the common theme seems to be that 99% of them were either mariners, dredgers or farmers who conveniently ran a pub for a few years - very suspicious! So anyway, you can see that it was a bit of a dynasty.


Ali Dilnutt.


From the Kent Messenger, July 1807.

Leasehold Farms. County of Kent.

To be sold by auction, by Mr. Langdon.

At Mr. Kitchenener's, the "Duke of Cumberland," Whitstable, on Friday, July 31st, 1807, at 11 o'clock, by direction of the Executrix of Mr. Stephen Salisbury, deceased, in three lots.

Lot 1. Comprises of a substantial well-built farmhouse known by the name of St. Annes barn, with outhouses stabling, &c. perfectly adapted to an estate of this eligible description;........


Kentish Weekly Post or Canterbury Journal, Tuesday 1 September 1812.

For the benefit of creditors. To be sold by auction.

By W. Whorlow, at the "Duke of Cumberland Inn," Whitstable, Kent, on Monday the 7th day of September, 1812, at 2 o'clock in the forenoon.

The life interest of Mr. John Lothes, a bankrupt, 42 years of age, of and in one undivided Moiety, or half part of an estate, situated in the parish of Whitstable, in the county of Kent, called Tankerton Farm, containing 26a. 3r. 39p.mMore or less, and is in the occupation of Mr. Robert Anderson, whose lease will expire at Michaelmas 1815.


Kentish Gazette, 4 April 1854.

Hawking without a License.

Mr. James was brought up by Superintendent Walker, and charges with hawking goods without a licence.

It appeared that the defendant and taken a large room at the "Duke of Cumberland Inn," Whitstable, which he had fitted up as a bizarre for the sale of fancy articles, with the usual accompaniment of the lucky bag, &c.

There was also a vocal and instrumental concert. It was called the "Royal Albert Bizarre."

The Superintendent deposed on these facts, and the accused pleaded guilty to the charge.

Order to pay a fine of 10. and 14s. 6d. costs.


The bench cautioned him against the repetition of a similar offence, and especially against the practice of gambling with a "lucky bag," as it is termed.


From the Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald. 8 June 1867. Price 1d.

The Magistrates granted an authority to William Lester to sell spirituous liquors in the “Duke of Cumberland,” Whitstable.


From the Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald. 31 August 1867. Price 1d.


A boy about 10 years of age, named Charles Dide, met with a shocking accident here on Wednesday last by falling from a ladder. He was at work for his uncle, Mr. Bennett, at the "Duke of Cumberland," Whitstable, as plasterer's boy, and unknown to the workmen carried a pail of water up a ladder, the water being intended for use at the top of the house. He had ascended between 20 and 30 feet, when from some cause his foot slipped, and he fell to the ground, sustaining very severe injury to the shoulder joint. Mr. Williams and Mr. Mann attended him, and he was afterwards removed to the Kent and Canterbury Hospital.


Canterbury Journal, Kentish Times and Farmers' Gazette, Saturday 11 June 1887.

Notice. Charles Gurr.

Proprietor of the "Duke of Cumberland Hotel," Whitstable.

Begs to inform his numerous friends and patrons, that the report which has been circulated in the County, that he is about to leave the "Duke of Cumberland," is FALSE, and that it has evidently been made up by some malicious person with the intention of damaging him in his business.


From the Farmer's Gazette, Saturday 24 June 1893.

Narrow escape.

A narrow escape from drowning, in which two persons, one belonging to Whitstable and the other to Faversham, were concerned, took place in Whitstable Bay, on Saturday last. It appears that Mr. C. Gurr, jun., son of Mr. Gurr, of the "Duke of Cumberland Hotel," Whitstable, rowed out for a day's fishing, taking with him Miss Nora Eltham, 12 years of age, daughter of Mr. C. Eltham, of the "Dolphin Hotel," Faversham, who was on a visit at his father's house. The boat was in due course anchored in the bay, when the barge Alabama, of Faversham, belonging to Mr. J. M. Goldfinch, collided with and pressed it beneath the water. Mr. Gurr immediately seized hold of the young lady and held her in such a position that she could cling to the barge, and the crew promptly dragged her on board. Meanwhile, the boat going from under him. Mr. Gurr himself was precipitated into the water, but being a swimmer, he was able to keep himself afloat until the mate rowed to his assistance in the barge's boat.


From the Whitstable Times, 15 February, 1902.


Henry George, was summoned for being drunk at Whitstable on February 5th, and also with being of disorderly behaviour at the same time and place.

The defendant was represented by Mr. R. M. Mercer and pleaded not guilty.

Sergt Joy of Whitstable stated that at 10.45 on the night of February 5th, he was at the "Cross" at Whitstable with P.C. Brookes, when the police constable called his attention to defendant who was trying to turn the handle of the door of the “Duke of Cumberland.” Witness saw that defendant was very drunk. He came towards witness and then commenced to pitch first on his toes and then on his heels. He said in a very thick voice “Sir, can I get a rest.” Witness told him to go to his lodgings, defendant then said “I shall when I ------- well like.” Some gentleman who was passing said to defendant “Go home Harry there's a good fellow.” Defendant repeated his bad language. Defendant then went to “Bear and Key Hotel.” Two minutes later witness saw defendant staggering about in High Street. He went up Bonner's Passage which led to the “Tradesman’s Club.” He staggered from one side of the road to the other. When he was in Bonner's Passage defendant behaved disorderly. Witness subsequently arrested him and took him to the police station. Defendant raved for the best part of the night and was delirious. Witness bailed him out in the morning.

In reply to Mr. Mercer, witness stated that defendant asked for a medical man. Witness did not know defendant was a man of property. He did not let him have a medical man because he had only four-pence in his pockets. Defendant asked that his wife might he acquainted with the fact that he was locked up. Witness thought if defendant had a few hours from drink it would do him good. (Laughter.) Witness took defendants boots off, but he had his socks left on in the stone cell. That was the usual practice. It was the usual practice of intoxicated people to ask for their friends. Witness had read what the Recorder of London had said about examining people for scars and measuring them if only charged with drunkenness. Defendant did ask if he was in on a murder charge. Witness said he had received no order that he was to discontinue measuring and examining defendants.

P. C. Brooks corroborated the evidence of Sergt. Joy.

Corporal Lambkin also gave evidence.

Mr. Mercer said he wished to ventilate the fact of men who were only charged with drunkenness being subject to measurement and examination. Sergt. Joy had acted under directions which were very wrong. He contended that when the defendant asked to see a medical man he should have been allowed to see one and that his client had been subjected to improper treatment. The police ought not to have examined defendant for scars as they did.

The defendant gave evidence on oath. He stated that he lived at Essex Street, Whitstable. He stated that he lived at Essex Street, Whitstable. He went to a Druids lodge on the evening in question and only had two pints of beer. He assisted in closing the lodge. He went across to the “Bear and Key” and had a pint of beer. He then went up the street and soon after he was arrested. He was put into a cold cell and in the morning he was given a slate on which was put down his height, 5 feet 8 1/2 inches.

George Kirkby, schoolmaster of Whitstable Board School, stated that he was at the “Bear and Key” on the evening when the defendant came in and had a glass of ale. He walked away from the bar and when he went he said “Good Night gentlemen.” He seemed all right then. Witness was astounded to hear a minute or two later the defendant had been arrested.

Percy Rigden, Inspector at the Railway station and who was secretary of the Druids Lodge, at which defendant attended, stated that he saw the defendant leave between 10.30 and 10.45, and he was then sober. He was surprised when he heard of defendant’s arrest.

Albert King, landlord of the “Duke of Cumberland,” at which house the Druids meeting was held, also stated that defendant walked out of his house all right.

Richard Gurr, a butcher, living at Canterbury Road, Whitstable, stated that he was presiding officer and he noticed nothing wrong with defendant at the Druids meeting.

The Magistrates considered the case proved and fined defendant 5s. and 15s. 4d costs.


From the Whitstable Times, 19 July, 1902.


Saturday, July 12th.—Before Lieutenant Colonel Dickenson (in the chair). Captain T. Lambert, Mr. W. A. Lochee, Mr. J. Bowes, Mr. Marshall, Mr. French, C.B., and Colonel Lourie, C.B.


An application was made for a temporary transfer of the licence of the “Duke of Cumberland,” Whitstable, from Sarah Anne King to Charles Greensted of Canterbury.

The application was granted.


From the Whitstable Times, 6 December, 1902.


On Wednesday afternoon the East Kent Coroner Mr. R. M. Mercer held an inquest at the “Duke of Cumberland Hotel,” on the body of Reginald Taylor, aged 4 years.

Mr. Manooch acted as foreman of the jury.

Laura Huttin, a single woman, aged 28, of 2, Red Lion Square, Whitstable, gave evidence that the child had been given into her custody by a woman named Taylor. She fetched it from Wandsworth and received 6 with it. Witness obtained a living by cleaning doorsteps, and occasionally went to Herne Bay to perform work. She had lived with a man, but he had now left her. Her room cost her 1s. 6d. per week. The person from whom she received the child was, about 35 years of age. She had applied to Mr. Dilnot for relief, but he told her to see the Guardians of Blean Union. This she did and was told she must enter the House. She refused to do this. The child’s age she believed was about 4. Death took place at about a quarter to nine on Monday evening. She had not resided with the man previously referred to for the last five months. Witness had another adopted child and also one of her own. When the child was taken ill she saw Mr. Dilnot and Dr. Hayward came and attended the child and ordered it to be given milk.

Dr. Hayward then gave evidence as to being called in to see the child. It was in a very bad state. The child was suffering from severe chill and slight congestion of the lungs. He gave an order for milk to be given to it and also sent some samples of farinaceous foods from his surgery. He found that the woman had used a good part of it. The child was not able to take much, but it had taken as much as it could. The child was in a very emaciated condition, and the actual cause of death was tuberculosis of the glands of the abdomen brought on by the congestion of the lungs and other causes. He did not know whether or not the child had been registered under the Infants’ Lives Protection Act.

Lillie Woolmer, of 2, Red Lion Square, was then called. The woman Huttin lodged with her. She stated that the woman lived very poorly and that she (witness) had helped her as well as she could. Her husband was in the hospital. She had applied to the Guardians for temporary relief, and they had offered to lend her 5s.

The Coroner remarked that he had never heard of a similar case.

Florence Moor, of 2, Lower Island, stated that three months ago she lodged with the last witness and knew the woman Huttin, who was also staying in the house at the time.

Asked by the Coroner if she had ever noticed the deceased child treated differently to the others, she, after some hesitation, stated that she had. The other two children were given jam and bread and this one had been given bread and butter.

Laura Huttin was re-called and adhered to all her former statements. In explanation of the above difference of treatment she said that when she received the child she was told not to give it fruit or anything of that nature as its bowels were weak.

On being questioned Dr. Hayward said this was no doubt true.

Mr. Dilnot, the relieving officer, spoke of the case as it came under his notice. The Guardians did not give the woman out-door relief because she was receiving 7s. per week.

On being questioned by the Coroner as to the conduct of the Board in reference to the case, he said they were simply following out the rules under which they worked. At the time of application he gave the woman a trifle out of his own pocket. Relief, in the shape of 3s. worth of groceries, 1 gallon bread, and 1 cwt. coals was sent on Monday last at 4 o’clock in the afternoon.

The Coroner remarked that this was too late as the child died five hours later.

In summing up he said he considered that the way in which the Board had treated the case was perfectly monstrous. In saying that he was not imputing any blame to Mr. Dilnot.

The jury, after a consultation, returned a verdict of Death from Natural Causes, and added as a rider that the Guardians were to blame in all cases of this description in not giving out-door relief. They also expressed an opinion that there should be a resident relieving officer at Whitstable.


From Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald 10 September 1910.



The magistrates granted an hour's extension for Thursday, September 8th, on the occasion of a banquet to Mrs. Weston of the "Duke of Cumberland," Whitstable.


Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald, Saturday 7 December 1935.

Changing Hotels.

The Magistrates at St Augustine's Petty sessions, Canterbury, on Wednesday morning, granted the temporary transfer of the licence of the "Duke of Cumberland Hotel," Whitstable, from Mr. Frank James Millea to Mr. Leslie Kempsell Smith. Mr. Millea is taking over the "Royal Hotel," Herne Bay.


Faversham Times and Mercury and North-East Kent Journal, Saturday 8 April 1939.


Formerly licensee of the "Duke of Cumberland Hotel," Whitstable, Leslie Kempsell Smith, now residing at Stradella Road, Herne Hill, S.E.24, appeared at Canterbury Bankruptcy Court last week for his public examinations.

His statement of affairs disclosed liabilities of 801 1s. 4d. and assets of 15, leaving a deficiency of 786 1s. 4d.

Debtor told the Official Receiver (Mr. F. C. Wells) that practically all his liabilities were in respect of a bank guarantee given by a certain person.

Some years ago he worked in a clerical capacity, and for three years was a hotel manager at Herne Bay. In December, 1935, he took the "Duke of Cumberland Hotel," his own capital being about 10.

The ingoing was 1,400, of which 800 was found by means of a bank overdraft guarantee by a friend, who was now the petitioning creditor. The remaining 600 was by way of loan by the landlords.

Debtor said he did not add substantially to or detract from the furniture and effects while at the hotel, but in the deficiency account depreciation in value of furniture, fitting, and fixtures as on "the change," was given as 230.

At first the trade of the hotel was fair, and he was satisfied for the first year. Then trade fell off. The first year he drew 210 and the next year his drawings were 257.

The Official Receiver asked if debtor considered it wise to increase his drawings if trade was not continuing fairly evenly.

Debtor said he supposed not.

Last autumn, said debtor, the bank advised him that they were going to claim the money from his guarantor, and then bankruptcy followed. Early in December a "change over" was arranged and the brewers found a new tenant. The amount received as ingoing was about 900.

The Official Receiver: So you paid 1,400 to go in and received 900 to come out?

Debtor: Yes.

Does not that look to be one of the chief items of your failure?

It is one of the items.

To other questions, debtor said that when he went into the hotel he borrowed 200 as working capital. His failure was really due to his precarious financial position at the start.

The Official Receiver: You were entirely at the will of the guarantor?

Debtor: Yes.

As soon as that guarantee was withdrawn the whole thing collapsed?


Debtor agreed that the balance sheet showed an insolvency at the end of the first year's trading. He was now living with his mother in London and was in employment at 3 a week.

In reply to Mr. Shortland Jones (instructed by Messrs Wild and Son), who appeared for petitioning creditor, debtor said that his bank made repeated demands on him to reduce his account, but he did not know why the guarantee was being withdrawn. He did not know at the time that the bank issued a writ on November 18th against the guarantor claiming 785 13s. 4d. When the money was guaranteed for him to be able to go into the hotel and spent money on interior and house furniture.

Mr. Shortland Jones: Can you explain why you have stated that the furniture was the property of the brewers?

Debtor: As soon as the brewers heard about the proceedings they told me to give my notice. They took over the house on December 19th from me and left me in there to manage it.

To other questions, debtor said that the new tenant would become the owner of the furniture.

Mr. Reginald Frank M. Furley: As soon as he paid for it?

Debtor: Yes.

Until he paid for it, it was yours?

Partly the brewers because they advanced me 600.

Answering Mr. Shortland Jones, debtor said that his guarantor advanced money for the furniture just as much as the brewers. After the guarantor had received the writ he pressed him (debtor) to pay and he offered to pay by instalments of 52 a year. The following day he gave his notice to the brewers, but did not let his guarantor know what he was doing. He supposed it would have been better and he done so. He had not taken any steps to sell before the brewers came along.

The public examination was adjourned.


Duke of Cumberland 2017 snooker room

Above photo taken inside what was the pubs snooker room, and sent by Steve Glover, August 2017.

From the By Angela Cole, 18 June 2020.

Supporting pubs across Kent with Love Your Local, Duke of Cumberland at Whitstable.

We could be just a matter of weeks away from some pubs across Kent and Medway opening again as the government’s lockdown restrictions slowly begin to ease.

Despite being unable to open up, many of our much-loved locals have been doing their bit to keep going, and continue to be the hub of their community.

Pubs of all shapes and size have begun to diversify, and started to open their doors for takeaways and deliveries. We want to help out pubs and bars from all across the county and have launched our campaign, Love Your Local.

Each week in your local KM Group newspaper, we are printing free adverts for many of the pubs we’re promoting, to help businesses while the doors must stay shut. We are also writing about as much of the latest pubs news from across the county as possible. Here are some:

Whitstable's Pamela Holmes heard our cry for people to love their local loud and clear and sent us pictures of her and her sister enjoying a drink in pastimes at their local, The Duke of Cumberland in Whitstable High Street.

"We miss our local pub," she said, recalling how things were: "With its live music, the friendly staff and lovely cold beer, it's like going to a party every week."

Pamela Holmes

Pamela Holmes of Whitstable in the Duke of Cumberland pub before lockdown.

From the By Brad Harper, 12 April 2023.

Bosses of Duke of Cumberland in Whitstable High Street to flog lifetime of pub items ahead of departure.

The bosses of an historic pub are going to flog a lifetime of antique treasures as they prepare to change hands.

Tony Tarrats and Sarah Smith will be hosting the massive yard sale at the Duke of Cumberland in Whitstable High Street so customers can grab themselves a piece of memorabilia.

The pair announced they will be leaving The Duke, which dates back more than 300 years.

And they will be selling a range of items, including records, furniture, radios, record players and vintage projectors.

Anyone wanting something to recall fond memories should head to the yard sale which will be held between 11am and 4pm every day this week.

It comes after plans by Shepherd Neame to refurbish the Grade II-listed building sparked a huge backlash from hundreds of residents at the start of this year over fears they could lose it as a music venue.

Jenny Buncombe started a written petition before Christmas, but has since launched an online campaign which has amassed a total of more than 2,300 signatures.

Duke of Cumberland punters 2023

Punters gathered outside The Duke of Cumberland in Whitstable High Street this year to show their support for the campaign. Picture: Jenny Buncombe.

And when approached by KentOnline earlier this year, the brewery did not confirm whether the pub would retain its music venue when asked specifically about the matter.

But Tony and Sarah appeared to defend Shepherd Neame on the pub's social media page earlier this year.

"The wave of support shown here for the continuation of live music at The Duke is amazing," they said.

"The decision to leave the pub was ours not Sheps.

"In the present economic climate, they were left with little choice but to put their financial weight behind the building.

Duke of Cumberland stage 2023

The Duke of Cumberland is a much-loved music venue in Whitstable. Picture: Jenny Buncombe.

"No one taking over this bar would want to lose the atmosphere on a Sunday afternoon and it’s that positive energy that will make a difference.

"I think there may be more support and flexibility in Sheps than you think."

The brewery submitted plans to the city council to make changes inside and outside the building.

Other work includes new staff accommodation and refurbishing the ground floor – which includes fitting new seats and relocating the toilets.

Shepherd Neame’s managing director of pubs Jonathon Swaine previously said: "We can confirm that as part of ongoing investment in our estate, Shepherd Neame is planning to refurbish The Duke of Cumberland.

"Our plans are formative at this stage, but we are hoping to refurbish the rooms and the interior of the pub, and have submitted a planning application to the local authority relating to some minor alterations.

"Our aim, as with all our refurbishments, is to respect the tradition of the pub and to enhance its individuality and unique character."

Despite the company's assurances that the future of the pub is safe, campaigners have succeeded in having the property listed as an "asset of community value", by the city council.

Green Party members Clare Turnbull, Keith Bothwell and Andrew Harvey have also secured the same designation for the "Plough" in Swalecliffe.

The applications were made in response to public concern about the number of local pubs being lost to luxury housing development.

It gives both businesses added planning protection against being closed and redeveloped.

Originally called the "Noah's Ark," the pub was renamed "Duke William" in 1747, before being called the "Duke of Cumberland" the following year.

A blaze swept through the building in 1866 and it was rebuilt in 1878.


From the By Liane Castle, 26 August 2023.

Shepherd Neame pub, The Duke of Cumberland in Whitstable, reopens after 1.8 million renovations.

A historic pub which closed for renovations has reopened after a 1.8 million revamp.

Original features, including a Grade II-listed bar, have been restored at The Duke of Cumberland in Whitstable, which is owned by Shepherd Neame.

Duke of Cumberland inside 2023

The new-look bar area. Picture: Shepherd Neame.

Work took 14 weeks to complete and the high street venue reopened on Thursday.

As well as refurbishments to the bar and dining room, the pub’s courtyard garden has also been transformed into a new decking area with an outside kitchen.

A new external function room, named The Boatyard, has also been built in the courtyard, which has its own bar and is available to book for private events.

The venue's eight boutique hotel rooms were also updated as part of the renovations bringing them back into use for the first time in years.

Each room is named after a historic oyster fishing vessel known as a ‘yawl’ or ‘smack’, built in the town.

Duke of Cumberland 2023

The high street venue reopened on Thursday. Picture: Shepherd Neame.

They come with a pocket-sprung mattress, drench showers and Nespresso coffee machines in every room, along with a flat-screen Smart TV and high-speed wifi.

The building, which dates back to 1867, also has a seafood restaurant which uses produce caught locally.

New general manager, Tina Kennedy, has joined the venue having previously run the the "Royal" at Tankerton for the past six years.

She said: “It is a real honour to be asked to take on the Duke of Cumberland following this major transformation.

“It is fantastic to see Shepherd Neame making such a major investment in the town, and I’m excited about welcoming locals and visitors to see just what we have to offer here.”

Duke of Cumberland bedroom 2023

The eight hotel rooms have reopened for the first time in years. Picture: Shepherd Neame.

Duke of Cumberland refirbishment 2023

The refurbishments cost 1.8 million. Picture: Shepherd Neame.

The pub was previously renowned for its live music events, and Ms Kennedy, who visited the pub as a teenager, plans to retain that tradition with regular jazz, swing and acoustic evenings.

Managing director, pubs, Jonathon Swaine, said: “We are incredibly proud to reopen The Duke of Cumberland after this extensive refurbishment project.

“The renovation has been completed to a very high standard, and we hope that both locals and visitors to the town will enjoy seeing the amazing work which has been carried out to ensure such a much-loved pub continues to be a lively local for many years to come.

“It has also been a number of years since the pub’s rooms have been available for guests to stay in, and it has been a labour of love for Shepherd Neame to bring them back into use.

“We look forward to welcoming guests to enjoy a relaxing stay with us.”



BAILEY Abraham 1778+


FOREMAN Walter 1828+ Pigot's Directory 1828-29Pigot's Directory 1832-34

FOREMAN Hannah 1840+ Pigot's Directory 1840

MANN Alfred 1851+ (age 32 in 1851Census)

FOREMAN William White 1861+ (age 36 in 1861Census)

Last pub licensee had LESTER William 1871+ (age 53 in 1871Census)

GURR Charles 1881-94+ (age 47 in 1891Census)

KING Albert 1901-02+ (age 28 in 1901Census)

KING Sarah Ann to Sept/1902 Whitstable Times

GREENSTED Charles Sept/1902+ Whitstable Times

WESTON Tryphina Maud Mrs 1910-11+ (age 43 in 1911Census) Whitstable Times

JOB Mrs Agnes Mary to Oct/1923 Next pub licensee had

MARDEN Lionel 1930+

MILLEA Frank James to Dec/1935 Next pub licensee had

SMITH Leslie Kempsell Dec/1935-Dec/38

TAYLOR Walter Thomas 1939 (age 94 in 1939)

GUILFOYLE ???? late 1990s Next pub licensee had

TARRATS Tony & SMITH Sarah to 2023

Last pub licensee had KENNEDY Tina Aug/2023+


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

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

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

Whitstable TimesWhitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald



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