Sort file:- Folkestone, August, 2022.

Page Updated:- Thursday, 18 August, 2022.


Earliest 18 Apr 1998

Samuel Peto

Open 2022+

23 Rendezvous Street


01303 251154

Samuel Peto, Folkestone 2009 Samuel Peto, Folkestone 2009

Above photos by Paul Skelton, 27 June 2009.

Samuel Peto inside

Photos taken by Paul Anthony Moore.

Samuel Peto inside 2001

Above photo, February 2001, kindly sent by Philip Dymott.


A Wetherspoon's outlet that was converted from the Baptist church and opened on 18th April 1998.


Baptist Church

Above photo by kind permission of showing the Baptist Church which became the "Samuel Peto."


At first it had no name other than "Wetherspoons," those being the owners for the chain of pubs formed on 9th December 1979. However, with the chain expanding, it was decided to officially give the premises it's own name and eventually it was called the "Samuel Peto" some time in 2004.


Folkestone Herald 21 August 1997.

Local News.

A new pub promising no music and no gimmicks could soon be opening in Folkestone. The Wetherspoons company hope to convert the Baptist Galleries, in Rendezvous Street, into a traditional pub, and bosses say it could be open by Easter next year – creating around 30 new jobs. The firm hope to get a licence next month and then start renovation work, which could take around six months.

David Isaac, from Wetherspoons, said “This will be a traditional-style public house with modern facilities. There will be no music, no pool, no darts and no TV”.

The former Baptist Church, which is a listed building, was constructed in 1854, and has been used as a shopping arcade and theatre – and in 1990 it was claimed it is haunted.

Mr. Isaac added “Many of our premises are converted buildings, and if we able to get a building with a bit of character, that's great”.

Shepway District Council has welcomed plans to revive the Galleries. A spokesman said “We welcome any move which prevents such a fine building as this from falling into further decay”.


Folkestone Herald 16 April 1998.

Toby Jugs.

Jugs hears the new Weatherspoon's pub in Rendezvous Street is opening a week earlier than expected. The former Baptist Galleries will open this Saturday after £1.13 million building works to convert the former theatre and indoor market into a two-level pub.

A spokesman said the plans had proceeded quicker than expected and the rush was now on to complete all the paperwork in time. The pub will specialise in cask-conditioned beers, serving six at all times, including a regular regional beer, Shepherd Neame's Spitfire. It will be thoroughly modern, with no-smoking areas, accessible to people with disabilities and will serve a full menu throughout the week. The walls will be covered with pictures, photos and text relating to the history and characters of the area and the building itself.

Oh, and while Jugs has his religious hat on, it used to be a Baptist Church. This is getting depressing!


Folkestone Herald 23 April 1998.

Toby Jugs.

Workmen were beavering away late into the night to make sure the new Weatherspoon's met its opening day on Saturday. So much so that when Jugs paid an unofficial visit to the premises before the opening, no-one noticed he was there. Must say, even for my pub-sore eyes, it was quite a place, with some magnificent statues and plants, and stairs right out of a West End theatre. After a little scepticism last week, I was quite taken by how sensitive designers had been to preserve the old Baptist Gallery.

Managers Janine Winward and Greg Jones were welcoming their first guests at the weekend.

Keep on reading!


Folkestone Herald 16 July 1998.

Toby Jugs.

Wetherspoon's showed no football during the World Cup – but the fact doesn't cheer Jugs as much as he expected.

Despite my acid comments about the competition, I must shamefully admit to a conversion during the France v Italy game – watched through a bar room door. Perhaps it was the national anthems, the exotic names and sheer skill of some of the players...... Now I'm quite sad it's four years until the next big one. No gloating, please.


Folkestone Herald 26 November 1998.

Local News.

As the clock strikes midnight on December 31, 1999, many party revellers will be delighted to be toasting 2000 in a packed pub. But they won't be doing it in Folkestone's Weatherspoon's pub on Rendezvous Street, as the bosses of the pub chain have decided to close for the night and give all their staff New Year's Eve off. All 280 pubs in the chain will ring for last orders at 8 p.m.

Manager of Folkestone's Weatherspoon's, Sean Pulford, could not conceal his delight at not having to work New Year's Eve for the first time in 13 years. He said “All of our 14 staff are thrilled, and personally I'm very happy”.


Folkestone Herald 14 January 1999.

Local News.

The “last sale of the century” is the name publican Sean Pulford has given his early year cheap beer. Sean is offering customers special prices on a range of drinks at his pub, Wetherspoon's, The Baptist Galleries, Rendezvous Street, Folkestone. The sale runs from Monday, January 4 to Sunday, February 14 inclusive, with the special offers available from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. each day. The offers include a bottle of Theakston Best for 99p, a bottle of Beck's for 99p, a pint of Foster's for £1.99 and a pint of Guinness for £1.49. In addition, customers can enjoy a pint of John Smith's for 99p all day.

Sean said “Department stores and shops have New Year sales, so we decided to have one too”.


Folkestone Herald 27 May 1999.

Local News.

Wetherspoon's in Folkestone stands in a converted church a short hop from the Channel. A slightly longer hop brings you to mainland Europe, now in the process of adapting to the Euro. Given this close proximity to a potential European beer market, why is it that Tim Martin, chairman of Wetherspoon's, insists that the pub will never accept the Euro?

“This is not a publicity stunt”, Eddie Gershon, the chain's spokesman, claimed.

Yet it is undeniable that this announcement will add to the pub's reputation for “being different”, already apparent in the silent backdrop to daily drinking. Wetherspoon's doesn't play music – and it won't play the European game either.

According to chairman, Tim Martin, the Euro is a “nonsense”. Furthermore, he said their pubs had not had a single request from a customer wishing to pay in Euros. Wetherspoon's doesn't view this as a problem. As of this week, pubs in the south will be accepting French Francs, US Dollars and travellers' cheques. But Wetherspoon's insists it will only accept the Euro if it becomes law.


Folkestone Herald 16 September 1999.

Local News.

In response to government concerns about the price of soft drinks in pubs, Wetherspoon's has cut the price of a pint of Coca Cola to 90p. This compares with prices of up to £2 in many pubs, where soft drinks can be as expensive as beer. The move by Wetherspoon's coincides with the launch of its new price list, which covers a whole range of drinks, from bottles and pints of beer to wine.

Pub manager, Sean Pulford, said “I'm certain that customers at Wetherspoon's will be more than happy with the new prices. They compare extremely well with the national average prices, and I'm confident the pub offers the best value and choice of drinks in the area”


From the Folkestone Herald online, 10 October 2013.


A pub is to serve beers from the United States as part of a special festival.

The "Samuel Peto" in Rendezvous Street will sell tipples from California, Georgia and Oregon among others.

The festival will run from October 16 until October 31, with all beers priced at £2.29 a pint.


From the By Lauren MacDougall, 21 December 2019.

The 33 pubs in Kent you have to drink at in 2020 according to CAMRA.

In total Kent has heaps of pubs listed in the guide and, while 33 of these are new entries, others have appeared in previous editions of the guide.

A total of 33 pubs from around Kent make up the new entries that feature in the 2020 edition of the Good Beer Guide.

The guide is produced annually by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), the independent guide to the best boozers in the UK that is researched by unpaid and independent volunteers nationwide.

Tom Stainer, CAMRA’s chief executive, said: “For nearly five decades, the Good Beer Guide has been a comprehensive guide to the UK’s breweries, their ales, and the best outlets to find them in across the country.

“What makes the Guide unique is that all the entries are compiled and vetted by a huge volunteer team, based around the country. We work hard to ensure that all areas of the country are covered and, unlike with some competitor titles, inclusion in this book is dependent only on merit, not on payment.

“The Good Beer Guide has always had an important role in acting as a barometer of the beer and pub industry. We believe information gleaned from the Guide is absolutely vital in the drive to save our pubs from closure and campaign for policies that better support pubs, local brewers and their customers.”

This pub is included in the 2020 list.

Samuel Peto, Folkestone.

Samuel Peto 2019

The Samuel Peto Wetherspoons in Folkestone (Image: Kent Live).

What the guide says: "Unique Wetherspoon pub named after Samuel Morton Peto, great railway engineer and builder of Nelson’s column, who funded this building as a Baptist church in 1874.

"The pub also features original stained-glass windows, a façade of the organ pipes, two pulpits upstairs, original memorial plaques of local dignitaries and a hand-painted ceiling of fluffy clouds across a blue sky. Cosily inviting booths wrap around both floors."




WILSON Andrew, WINWARD Janine, JONES Gregory & LYSANDROU Justin 1998-99

WILSON Andrew, PULFORD Shaun & Bernedene 1999

POWELL Mark, PULFORD Shaun & Bernedene 1999

POWELL Mark & Clive, PULFORD Shaun & Bernedene 1999-2000

POWELL Mark, PHILLIPS Clive, De ALMEIDA Anthony & Michelle 2000

POWELL Mark, PITCHER Simon & WILLIAMS Caroline 2000-01

POWELL Mark & WILKEY Paul 2001

WILKEY Paul & PINSON Marie 2001

WILKEY Paul, PINSON Marie & WYNNE Shawn 2001-03

POLLARD Emma & DANIELS Bethany 2003

POLLARD Emma & HARMAN Daniel 2003-04

HARMAN Daniel, MAXLOW Stephen & Melanie 2004+

Renamed "Samuel Peto"


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



LINK to Even More Tales From The Tap Room