51 Lower Street
Old High Street
Above picture taken from Google Maps shows the site in 2009 where the
Royal George once stood.
Only found in the 1840 Pigot's directory so far and hopefully not being
confused with the "Royal Exchange,"
183 Beach Street, "Royal Hotel," Beach
Street or "Royal Oak," Middle Street.
At one time during its period this pub was the scene of a minor riot
following a tavern brawl started by soldiers in the Buffs. (Date at present
Further research from Deal library archives shows it listed as early as
1804 under the rule of widow Judeson, latest definite mention 1868 but as being a ruin in 1872
(Click for link) after burning
down in 1869.
From Laker 1917. P. 33 9 - 30 November, 1806.
"A small riot took place at Lower Street. Some soldiers of the Buffs
commenced a tavern brawl in the "Royal George" and the Mayor called out
his constables to deal with the disturbance."
From The London Gazette, 4 June, 1867.
James Baldwin Ball, late of the "Royal George" Public house,
Lower-street, Deal, Kent,
Victualler, and late a Prisoner for Debt in Maidstone Gaol, having been
bankrupt by the Registrar of the County Court of Kent,
holden at Maidstone, attending at the said Gaol, on the
20th day of May, 1867, and the adjudication being directed
to be prosecuted at the County Court of Kent, holden at
Deal, is hereby required to surrender himself to Thomas
Cave Hall, Esq., the Registrar of the said last-mentioned
Court, at the first meeting of creditors to be held before
the said Registrar, on the 18th day of June instant, at
eleven o'clock in the forenoon precisely, at the County
Court Office, Beach-Street, Deal. Thomas Cave Hall, Esq.,
of Deal, is the Official Assignee.
From The London Gazette, 25 June, 1867.
James Baldwin Ball, late of the "Royal George" Public house,
Lower-street, Deal, Kent, Victualler, and late a Prisoner for Debt in
Maidstone Gaol, having been adjudged bankrupt by the Registrar of the
County Court of Kent, holden at Maidstone, attending at the said Gaol,
on the 20th day of May, 1867, and the adjudication being directed to be
prosecuted in the County Court of Kent, holden at Deal, a public
sitting, for the said bankrupt to pass his Last Examination, and make
application for his Discharge, will be held at the said last-mentioned
Court, at the Guildhall, Deal, on the 10th day of July next, at twelve
o'clock at noon precisely, the day last aforesaid being the day limited
fur the said bankrupt to surrender. Thomas Cave Hall, Esq., of Deal, is
the Official Assignee, of July, 1867.
From The London Gazette, 26 July, 1867.
James Baldwin Ball, late of the Royal George Public house,
Lower-street, Deal, Kent, Victualler, and late a prisoner for Debt in
the Gaol at Maidstone, in the said county, adjudicated bankrupt on the
20th day of May, 1867.
An Order of Discharge was granted by the County Court of Kent, holden
at Deal, on the 10th day of July, 1867.
From the Deal, Walmer, and Sandwich Mercury,
19 June, 1869. 1d.
Shortly before one o'clock on Monday morning a fire broke out on the
premises of the "Royal George Inn," in Lower Street, at the corner of
Water Street. At the time named several of the inhabitants at the North
end of Lower Street were aroused from their slumbers by a cry of "Fire!"
which was raised by a son of Mr. Wardrop, the landlord of the "Royal
George." The alarm was quickly taken up by others in the neighbourhood,
and in a very short time there was a very large number of persons in
attendance ready to render any services that might be required of them.
Information was speedily conveyed to the police and also to the
authorities at the Royal Marine Barracks at Walmer, who with their
accustomed courtesy and alacrity despatched a detachment of their men in
charge of their engine to the scene of the conflagaration. The engine
attached to the brewery of Messrs. Hills and Son was also in attendance; but unfortunately some 20 minutes elapsed after the arrival of these
engines before a sufficient supply of water could be obtained to work
them, and consequently the fire had obtained a thorough hold of the
premises before any body of water was thrown upon it. Although the
engines were got into play as soon as possible, and the hose recently
purchased by the Commissioners was also brought into requisition - the
latter, however, providing of very little use in consequence of its not
being long enough - the devouring element had so far obtained the
advantage that all attempts to extinguish the flames were futile, and
the fire burned and raged with increasing fury, despite the most
strenuous exertions of the marines, police, and others. From the bar,
where the fire originated, it rapidly spread to the rooms above, and in
a very little time reached the uppermost ones, which proved as easy a
prey as the former ones, and from thence leapt off the roof. Here the
rafters were consumed with amazing rapidity and the roof presently went
in with a terrific crash. After this the flames, which had hitherto been
jetting forth from the windows and reaching across the street, which at
this spot is rather narrow, thereby greatly jeopardising the horses on
the opposite side, assumed a more upright direction and continued
burning until there was nothing but the outer walls of the building left
standing. As we have already stated, very little hope was from the first
entertained of saving the premises, and within two hours the "Royal
George" "went down" as completely did the "Royal George" of old renown
in the opposite element. Indeed at one time considerable apprehension
was felt for the safety of the houses on the opposite side of the way,
and had it not been for the copious supply of water which was brought to
bear upon them, they all in probability would have adhered a like end to
the ill-fated public-house. The scorched and blistered state of the door
and window frames proves how narrow was the escape of these adjacent
premises, and that the fear entertained were not altogether without
warrant. Several contradictory rumours were afloat as to the origin of
the fire, bur Mr. Wardrop, the landlord, states that a little before one
o'clock on Monday morning he went into the bar to obtain some brandy for
his wife, and that, in pouring the brandy from a bottle some of it
spilled on the counter, and that a spirit lamp he was using by some
means tumbled over and ignited the brandy, which ran on to the floor and
set the matting on fire. He attempted to extinguish the flames by
pouring some beer upon them; but finding they were getting the upper
hand, he called up to his wife and son, and went on to Mr. Millen's his
insurant agent. Mrs. Wardrop was quickly out of the house, and at once
sought refuge at a friend's. An opinion had been unanimously expressed
by those who were the first to arrive on the spot that had there only
been even a small supply of water available at the time of the outbreak,
the fire could easily have been extinguished, and not a little adverse
opinion has been pronounced that the authorities are greatly to blame in
not having the mains at all times fully charged. We believe we are
correct, however, in stating that the mains are always charged as far as
Deal Castle, and the absence of water on Monday morning is accounted for
by the fact that a very large quantity had been used for the flushing
and cleansing of the gutters on the previous day (Sunday) without the
usual quantity being pumped into the reservoir. This, of course, does
not alter the fact that but a very small supply of water was obtained,
or in any degree make the consequence less deplorable or disastrous, and
we sincerely hope that means will be speedily devised of preventing a
recurrence of a like catastrophe - for there appears to be but little
doubt that the total destruction of these premises adds another to the
increasing number of fatalities that have occurred in this town through
the apathy and stolid supineness of the authorities in not providing
every available means of lessening and averting the dire effects of so
ungovernable and fearful an element as fire. The premises, which belongs
to Messrs. Poulter and Son, brewers, of Dover, were insured for £450,
and the furniture for £200.
From the Deal Walmer & Sandwich Telegram, 19 June, 1869.
THE ROYAL GEORGE PUBLIC HOUSE BURNT DOWN.
About midnight on Sunday last, a fire broke out at the above old
established public house; it appears that the landlord Mr. Wardrop, his
wife and son, had retired to rest and about 12.30 the landlord had
occasion to go downstairs to his bar to procure some brandy, and whilst
engaged in replenishing a spirit lamp had the misfortune to upset it,
and on striking a lucifer a spark fell from it and quickly enveloped the
room in flames. The readiest means at hand it appears was the beer
engine, and the landlord availed himself of this as long as the heat and
smoke would permit - on finding his efforts useless he ran off to the
police station for assistance.
Supt. Parker, together with the whole of the police, were on the spot
with their apparatus, recently purchased, within a quarter of an
hour.... Parker then dispatched some of his men to procure the fire
engine attached to the brewer Messrs. Hills & Son, but by this time the
flames had rescinded to the roof of the building.
..... By the aid of the two fire engines (one belonging to the Royal
Marines J. F.) the fire was quickly subdued, but not until the premises
and contents were entirely destroyed.
The premises belonging to Messrs. Powlter, brewers, Dover, who are
insured in the "Guardian." The contents, we understand, were partially
insured in the North British Office but a short time since.
Letter to the Deal Walmer & Sandwich Telegram, 19 June, 1869.
Two thoughts have been presented to me in reference to the recent
destruction of the "Royal George" public house:-
1. The great importance of the town possessing a complete fire
apparatus of its own, and
2. The wisdom of purchasing a portion of the ruins so as to make the
pavement equal in width to that in front of the "Ship and Castle."
Signed... An Inhabitant.
Bradshaws directory shows the "Ship
and Castle" ("Sir John Falstaff")
addressed at 52 Lower Street and Kelly's 1878 at 57 Lower Street.
JUDESON Widow 1804
CLARK George 1805+
MILLGATE George 1823-32-39+
NOAKES Isabel 1840+
MOCKETT Joshua 1847-55+
USHER Mrs Mary 1858-65
BALL Baldwin 1865+ (Married Mary Usher in 1864, went bankrupt in 1867)
BARNE George to Mar/1868
WARDROP William Mar/1869
From the Pigot's Directory 1823
From the Pigot's Directory 1824
From the Pigot's Directory 1828-29
From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34
From the Pigot's Directory 1839
From the Pigot's Directory 1840
From Bagshaw Directory 1847
From the Post Office Directory 1855
From Melville's Directory 1858