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12 January 2016

Hove Pubs Index G - N

Listed below:- The Garden Bar, The Gather Inn, George Payne, The Ginger Pig, Hove Park Tavern, Hove Place Hotel, The Iron Duke (Southern Belle), The Neptune.
The Garden Bar, 324 Portland Road
formerly Jamaica Inn, Golden Cross, Noble House Bar, originally Mansfield Hotel.
Judy Middleton (2002 revised 2017)

copyright © G. Osborne
With thanks to Mr G. Osborne for granting permission for the reproduction of the above photograph. 
The Golden Cross in the 1960s

According to E.W. Holden, the pub was built in around 1931. Holden worked for the firm that constructed it. He left in January 1932 and the building was finished by then. He said the mock half-timbering was done in tinted cement rendering. A more genuine feature was the etched glass with the words ‘United Ales’. As the building is situated on the corner of Mansfield Road, it was called Mansfield Hotel when it first opened and for many years after that.

In 1940 Thomas John Davies was landlord but by 1947 Mrs H. Barrett had taken over. By 1951 Captain J. Richardson was in charge, followed by F. Egan in 1954.

In the late 1980s owners Solent Inns undertook a refurbishment costing £170,000. In June 1989 Councillor Margaret Adams, Mayor of Hove, pulled the first pint and managers Dixie and Penny Dean presented her with £100 for the Mayor’s Charity Appeal.

In January 1993 cancer patient Margaret Bye had a sponsored head shave at the pub to raise money for charity. She was going to lose her hair anyway because of chemotherapy and the event raised £1,200 for the Breast Unit at the Royal Sussex County Hospital.

In December 1999 Sue Lindfield, joint licensee, said the pub was still continuing with its charity work. For example, they had raised £1,100 for the Leo House Appeal, which provides respite care for children. The pub staged a Christmas party every year for children of the customers and every child receives a present. But the previous Christmas two carrier bags full of presents were stolen from the boot of her car in George Street. She was obliged to buy replacements with her own money.

On 26 August 2000 the pub staged an all-day concert for Leo House Hospice and the amount raised came to £2,639. By that time Sean and Elaine Kelly were running the pub.

The pub was still called the Golden Cross into the new century. Then in around 2003 it was re-named Jamaica Inn and the black and green colours of the Jamaican flag became a familiar sight to passers-by in Portland Road. The new identity had nothing to do with the famous book of the same name written by Daphne du Maurier; the novel becoming the subject of the silver screen as well as a recent television production. Hove’s Jamaica Inn was to do with Jamaican food and Reggae music and was run by Angie and Stacey E. But it did not stay long and the couple removed their business to Rose Hill Terrace, Brighton in 2005. 

copyright © J.Middleton
Noble House Bar

A major refurbishment costing in excess of £200,000 took place and Gary Mulgrew, originally from Glasgow, became the new co-owner of the premises.  
In 2012 the pub was renamed Noble House in honour of Sergeant Dennis Noble who was killed when his place crashed in Woodhouse Road on 30 August 1940.
copyright © D.Sharp
The Garden Pub in December 2017

By 2017 the pub had changed its name to the Garden Bar after an extensive makeover. But it is a shame that Dennis Noble has been sidelined and a piece of local history lost to view.

In December 2017 the Argus’s Pub Spy wrote a fulsome review of the newly named pub although he did label the exterior a ‘mock Tudor lump of a place’. But inside the atmosphere was welcoming with no less than three open fireplaces situated in different parts of the pub to create cosy, separate areas. The barmaid received high praise both from the Pub Spy and the regulars. An innovation is the occasional Dog-lovers Single and Mingle event where dogs and their owners are welcome.

No doubt the huge pub garden with its large barbecue and separate booths will be an attraction in the summer months. But in December 2017 it was full of Christmas trees for sale.

Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade
Internet searches

Copyright © J.Middleton 2014


The Gather Inn, 330 Kingsway
formerly The Blue Lagoon, originally The Adur Hotel
Judy Middleton (2001 revised 2015)

copyright © J.Middleton
This photograph was taken on 20 April 2015 looking north from Hove Lagoon when the building had acquired the extraordinary name of The Gather Inn.

copyright © J.Middleton
This view of the Blue Lagoon ( now The Gather Inn) was photographed on 30 April 2014 and shows the south facing façade. 

The intriguing question about the Adur Hotel is whether or not it was built on the site of Mother Rook’s cottage. Mrs Rook’s son James and his accomplice Edward Howell were hanged for committing highway robbery at Goldstone Bottom in 1793. Their bodies were gibbeted and left to rot on a site west of present day Holmes Avenue, Hove. The famous story goes that Rook’s mother gathered up his bones as they fell off the gibbet and carried them away in her apron at dead of night. When her task was completed she carefully buried the remains in the hallowed ground of Old Shoreham Churchyard. Some authorities state the Rooks lived in a cottage at Shoreham near the Red Lion pub where James’s indiscreet conversation over his drink led to his arrest. Apparently Adur Lodge was later built on the site of this cottage. On the other hand during a terrible snowstorm in 1806 a baker was killed in a drift ‘near Mother Rook’s cottage in the gap at Aldrington’. Henry Porter, writing in 1897, had no hesitation in declaring the Adur Hotel was built on the site of Rook’s Cottage. Perhaps the answer is that the Rooks lived in both cottages but at different times.

The original Adur Hotel was opened on 3rd October 1859 and Thomas Cordwell was the landlord. On 25 January 1860 an agreement was signed between Hugh Ingram of Steyning and James Vallance, Charles Vallance, Charles Catt and Henry Catt, Brighton brewers, to lease for a monthly rent of 5/- a piece of ground on the east side of the hotel and adjacent to it, which extended for around 100 feet and was bounded on the north side by the Brighton to Shoreham turnpike road and on the south side by Wharf Road leading to the basin of the canal. The land was to be used as a garden in connection with the hotel. They were also permitted to use a portion of the sea beach but they were not allowed to remove shingle, boulders, gravel or sand without written permission and neither must they dump any rubbish on the beach.

In 1871 it was noted that Henry Field, victualler of Aldrington, was joint owner with John Sharp of Southwick of the 264-ton vessel Ada. By November 1875 Field was the outright owner and in 1877 the Ada was totally lost in the Bristol Channel. Field was also part owner of the Mystery in 1876, which was sold to Gosport in 1884. In 1882 Field was the master of the 151-ton brigantine Alice V. Goodhue.

In 1881 Robert Lee, aged 38, was in charge of the Adur Hotel and lived there with his wife Laura, 37, daughter Annie aged 12 and son John James aged ten.

By 1890 P. Scutt was the landlord and the following year he was doing all he could to help some shipwrecked survivors. On 11 November 1891 a fierce gale was blowing and two vessels were wrecked within a short space of time and at a distance of around 100 yards of each other. It was thought they were trying to find shelter at Shoreham but mistook the entrance to the harbour. The Ville de Napoleon was the first vessel to be wrecked but the five-man crew were rescued, taken to the Adur Hotel and placed before a roaring fire to warm them. John Roberts was driven ashore east of the Gasworks. Unhappily there was only one survivor and Mr Scutt placed him in a warm bedroom to recuperate. The basement was used as a mortuary where the three drowned men were placed. They were William Williams, 45, from Carnarvon (now spelt Caernarfon), his son William aged 14 and John Griffith Thomas of Llanwnda aged seventeen. They were buried in St Leonard’s Churchyard.

In April 1899 Hove Council gave permission to J.S. Radford to place a hut and windlass on the beach opposite the Adur. Old photographs show that when the hotel was viewed from what later became Kingsway, it looked like a small one-storey building whereas in fact it was far more extensive on the south side. There were no less than four large chimneystacks with three chimney pots on each.

In around 1930 the hotel was rebuilt and Frank Dickerson was the licensee in 1931. On 17 February 1936 his daughter Ruby Dickerson aged 25 went for a flight in a Moth two-seater with long-standing friend Edward Myers from the Clarence Hotel, Portslade. They took off from Shoreham Airport but later ran into a bank of fog and crashed in a field at Yapton Lane, Walberton. Ruby died shortly afterwards and Edward died in hospital.

On 27 July 1942 four high-explosive bombs were dropped in the sea near the pub but fortunately there was only light damage to property. All the same the war years must have been interesting for the occupants of the pub, particularly when Hove Lagoon was utilised for military training purposes. Residents were not supposed to watch and the taking of photographs was prohibited.

copyright © J.Middleton
Photo Left:- The split-level on which the Blue Lagoon was built is unique in Hove pubs.
Photo Right:- Blue Lagoon was re-named The Gather Inn 2015
 This view looks west along Kingsway with steps at the side leading down to the Lagoon area.

In July 1993 a group of regulars polished up their motorbikes and put them on display to raise money for the Royal Alexandra Hospital Children’s Hospital’s Rocking Horse Appeal. They raised £520.

Unhappily, in around 1997 the name Adur Hotel was dropped and the new name Kingsway 330 substituted. It was part of a trend to change names of traditional pubs when they were refurbished to project a fresh image but it did mean a break in the chain of local history. The function room was revitalised and the fourteen bedrooms catering for bed and breakfast customers were refurbished. Glen and Dorinda Lamley were the owners and in 2001 it was stated they had been there for four or five years and also owned the Whistlestop Tavern, Portslade and St Aubyns, Hove. 

Some things do not change and old influences remain such as ghostly happenings several people have reported. But there is nothing nasty or frightening – just the odd bottle falling off a shelf unexpectedly, glasses being moved around and even clothes inside a wardrobe being re-arranged.

Today the place has been re-named the Blue Lagoon and true to its old traditions still offers bed and breakfast. In 2015 the Blue Lagoon was re-named The Gather Inn.

Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade     
Porter, Henry A History of Hove (1897)

Copyright © J.Middleton 2015
George Payne, 18 Payne Avenue
formerly Kendal Arms
Judy Middleton (2002 revised 2016)

copyright © J.Middleton
This attractive pub building dates from around 1901. It was photographed on 19 May 2014.

The architect T.H. Scutt drew up plans for the pub in March 1901 on behalf of brewers Smithers & Sons of Western Road, Hove. The design included gables, tall chimneys and rounded arches over door and windows. Although the pub is now numbered in Payne Avenue, in 1916 it was identified as being in Kendal Road, hence the pub’s original name.

 copyright © Adrian Gault
Frank Washington, the fourth gentleman from the left in the front row, was at the  Goldstone Ground 
for the Brighton & Hove Albion v Clapton Orient game in 1912

Frank Washington (1865-1912) was the first landlord. Besides his landlord duties Frank enjoyed going to the Goldstone Football Ground to watch Brighton & Hove Albion in action.

Frank died in 1912 and his widow did not wish to remain in England; she emigrated to the USA together with her daughters. However, their son Charles Henry Washington, decided he did not want to leave and so he went to live with his older brother Frank Washington who was landlord of the Eagle Inn, Arundel. Charles was still living there when the Great War broke out and he volunteered for service at once, adding a year or two to his age in order to do so.

 copyright © Adrian Gault
Charles Washington, aged 14 in 1912, and much later in life with his daughter, Sylvia.

In 1915 Frank Washington received news that his nephew Charles had been injured at Gallipoli. He was reported to have lost his left foot while his right leg was badly injured. Although his Gallipoli injuries did not kill him, they were certainly severe and he had to have both legs amputated below the knee. But this did not stop him working in London for many years before he retired to Hove.

Hove still held family memories for Charles besides life at the Kendal Arms because two other uncles had also been landlords there. They were George Washington of the Sackville Hotel (now Hove Park Tavern) who died in 1907 and Harry Washington of The Rutland in Rutland Road who died in 1910. Charles died in 1970.

In January 1926 an applications was made for a supply of electricity to be laid on to the Kendal Arms. The occupier was willing to guarantee an annual minimum rental of £25 for a five-year period. The engineer stated that a main could be laid for a distance of 200 yards at a cost of £230.

Smithers continued to own the pub until 1929 when Tamplin’s took over. In 1930 Jack Williams ran the pub, followed by James Britton in around 1935. Archibald French became landlord of the Kendal Arms before the Second World War and remained until the 1950s. Gordon Franklin was landlord in 1954.
copyright © J.Middleton
A close-up of the beautiful gable.

In recent times the pub has been renamed The George Payne. Internationally, the name is not uncommon and indeed there is a George Payne Irish Bar in Barcelona. But our George Payne was one of those men associated in developing that part of Hove once known as the Stoneham Estate. The history of the development is as follows. On 8 August 1882 the Sackville Estate sold land south of the railway, bounded on the east side by the Aldrington / Hove boundary, measuring 24 acres, 3 roods and 30 perches to a consortium consisting of George Gallard, William John Williams, Joseph Harris Stretton and Evan Vaughan. The following day the men divided up the land amongst themselves. On 11 August 1882 Vaughan purchased Gallard’s portion for £3,600 but in July 1885 Vaughan suddenly absconded, leaving behind his mortgaged property. Representatives of the mortgagees then conveyed one of the plots of land to the Revd  George William Kendall of Bradford, Yorkshire.

Meanwhile on 7 December 1899 Hove Council approved plans submitted by T.H. Scutt on behalf of George Payne for the creation of new streets Kendal Road, Lennox Road, Payne Avenue and Ruskin Road. It was the same T.H. Scutt who designed The George Payne.

On 30 July 1900 Kendall joined William Stoneham of Fenchurch Street, London, one of the mortgagees, and a neighbouring owner, in conveying the land on which Lennox Road, Kendal Road, Ruskin Road, Stoneham Road and Payne Avenue were already laid out to George Payne, Brighton gentleman, and Edgar George Payne of Bayswater, gentleman, with other land for £11,345. A map of the Stoneham Estate in 1900 shows Tamworth Road and part of Mortimer Road in addition to those roads mentioned.

In 2014 the business was described as a neighbourhood pub and since landlady Zoe Rodgers took over, a transformation has taker place. Her hard work was recognised when The George Payne was named Best Turnaround Pub in Britain at the BT Sport Great British Pub Awards. The judges particularly liked the way ‘a run-down unloved premises’ had turned into ‘a welcoming neighbourhood pub’. The place was known for its port and cheese collection and homemade puddings were on offer.

copyright © J.Middleton
This photograph shows the east façade of the pub with the banner ‘Best Turnaround Pub in Britain’ clearly visible.

Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade
The Food Guide 2014
Thanks are due to Adrian Gault for information about the Washington family

Copyright © J.Middleton 2014
The Ginger Pig, 3 Hove Street
formerly Le Bourdeaux, originally The Ship Inn
Judy Middleton  (2003 revised 2014)

copyright © J.Middleton
The structure housing The Ginger Pig is now approaching its centenary and it was photographed on 3 May 2014.

Probably the earliest reference to a pub at Hove was in 1578 when it was recorded in the Preston Court Rolls that Richard Poole ‘holds a common inn called an alehouse’ without a licence.’ There is of course no concrete proof that this was the Ship but it is probable seeing as the village of Hove was clustered around what later became Hove Street. Richard Poole was ordered to halt his activities or else he would have to pay a fine of ten shillings. Perhaps he was a curmudgeonly landlord because he did not take any notice and later in the same year was obliged to pay the fine. It is interesting to note that in 1582 Elizabeth Poole, described as a ‘common barretor’ in other words a rowdy, aggressive person, was sentenced to six hours in Hove stocks for assaulting George Silvester and drawing blood.

It is claimed the Ship Inn was built in 1702 but this may mean it was rebuilt in that year.

James Gregory in his Brighton Guide (1793) noted that at ‘Hoove’ there was ‘a house for public entertainment fitted up in a neat and pleasing manner and it is generally esteemed to be a place where company desirous of good accommodation will not be disappointed.’

The following year part of the inn was accidentally demolished. What happened was that two soldiers were billeted in the house, probably in connection with the military camp at Goldstone Bottom. The landlord’s young son discovered some gunpowder and laid a trail to which he set fire. The result was that on 30 September 1794 there was a tremendous explosion and the poor boy lost an eye and his body was ‘frightfully mutilated’. The two soldiers also suffered injuries while the back of the inn was blown out.

J. Edwards in his Companion from London to Brighthelmstone (1801) wrote about Hove ‘Here is one good public house, at the entrance to the village from the south.’

 copyright ©  Royal Pavilion & Museums, Brighton & Hove
This photograph from the Brighton Graphic shows how the original Ship Inn looked previous to 1914. The name of the West Street Brewery can be seen on the gable.

The Ship also promoted sporting events to attract extra custom although today people would not be inclined to describe such activities as ‘sport’. It is probable that bare-knuckle fighting bouts took place while cock fighting and bull baiting most definitely happened. Indeed, bull baiting must have been a regular occurrence because there was a permanent iron ring south of the coast road to which the unfortunate bull was tethered before fighting dogs were set upon him. An example of such a promotion was an advertisement for Monday 11 June 1819 when after the bull bait, dinner was to be set on the table at 2 p.m. On one occasion the bull managed to break free and charged through the assembled throng. But the bull was recaptured and taken back to face the snarling dogs. Perhaps some people found the spectacle distressing. At any rate this was said to be the last occasion there was a bull bait at Hove. Cock fighting continued illicitly in Hove Street into the 20th century, long after it was made illegal.

Henry Porter, writing in 1897, recorded another dark side to the inn’s history when ‘it became the haunt of the bold and unscrupulous sons of the sea that ran cargoes of contraband goods from Ostend and the small towns on the French coast with impunity, landing under cover of night their boats on the shingle at the bottom of Hove Street.’ Hove was at the time sufficiently remote from the authorities for this to be possible. Indeed Hove was so well-known for its smuggling activities that it led to a Coastguard Station being established south east of Hove Street, precisely so that an eye could be kept on the ‘sons of the sea’.

In 1841 James Wing was the landlord. He was aged 35 and lived with his wife Rhoda of the same age, daughter Ann and sons James and John. It seems that James Wing died at a comparatively young age because by 1848 Rhoda was in charge of the inn. Lewes-born Rhoda Wing then married again, to a husband twelve years her junior. He was Henry Walters and he was landlord in 1851. Also in the household were his step-sons John Wing aged 9 and seven-year old Thomas. Walters was still landlord in 1861 but on 4 July 1864 he transferred the management of the inn to George Strange. Besides being an inn-keeper, George Strange’s other claim to fame was that he was identified as ‘the pioneer of the sociable that used to ply between Brighton and Cliftonville.’ The sociable was a horse-drawn four-wheeled vehicle and it was an apt name because the seats faced each other.

The Ship was also the venue for inquests, which was not an uncommon occurrence for a pub in those days. In 1850 there was an inquest into the death of 32-year old Charles Stuart Kirton who lived with his aunt Mrs Minshaw at Hove Lodge. The nephew had suffered from depression for many years and on 27 April 1850 he drowned himself in a well in a field belonging to Hove Lodge. He left the house just before midnight and the maids heard his footsteps but he was not missed until 5 a.m. Then a full search was launched and carpenter John Bartlett found the body. The well was 31 feet deep and the water level was 5 feet 9 inches. Mr Kirton was clad in drawers and night-clothes. Mr F.H. Gell, coroner, presided over the proceedings and the jury returned a verdict of insanity.

Mr Gell was back in action presiding over another inquest at the Ship three years later. It was a distressing case because the victim was a little girl. In March 1853 four men were walking up Hove Drove (later Sackville Road) to attend a pigeon shoot at Goldstone Bottom, when one of them spotted the body in a field the other side of a briar hedge. News soon got around and by the time the body was conveyed to the Ship there was a great crowd. The child’s mother 22-year old Miss Caroline Sherwood was accused of murdering her illegitimate child also called Caroline. The youngster was boarded out with Hannah Delves for 2/6d a week while the mother worked as a cook to Judge Furner at 54 Old Steine, Brighton. The mother wanted to start a new life in Australia and regarded her child as an impediment. The child was strangled with a small, plaid, silk handkerchief. The coroner returned a verdict of wilful murder and Sherwood was committed to Lewes Assizes where her trial took place in July 1853. She was found guilty and sentenced to be publicly executed at Lewes on 9 August. However, only six days before the sentence was to take place, she was reprieved on the personal intervention of Queen Victoria and instead transported to Australia for life.

In August 1854 Mr Vallance of nearby Hove Manor made a complaint about the accumulation of dung in the field at the back of the inn. The complaint was passed on to James Stevens who removed the nuisance.        

Brighton brewers Vallance & Catt owned the Ship and their lease to George Strange was dated 30 May 1865. James Vallance of Hurstpierpoint, Charles Vallance, Charles Catt and Henry Willett were also party to the lease. The rent was £35 a year and the property included an adjoining cottage. But the lessee had to invest £120 immediately in building stables for which Vallance & Catt would pay £60 at the end of the lease. This was in fact done on 1st August 1872. The lessee also had to ensure that the interior wood and ironwork were painted twice in ‘oil color’ (sic) every second year and the exterior wood and ironwork every fifth year.

By 1874 Mary Strange was running the inn but Frederick Taylor was the landlord by 1881. Taylor lived on the premises with his housekeeper and her two sons and he remained until 1887. According to the 1888 Directory the next landlord was A. Pointer and the Directory also carried an advertisement for the Ship, which offered private apartments and well-aired beds. By 1890 Frank Mattioli had taken over and he remained until at least 1905. By 1910 James Duck managed the inn.

copyright © J.Middleton
This old postcard shows Hove Street before the original Ship Inn was demolished in 1914 for road widening.

In 1897 there was some correspondence between Vallane & Catt of the West Street Brewery, Brighton; Brighton Council and Hove Council. The trouble was an inn sign, which the brewery had erected on the coast road opposite the south end of Hove Street. There was a comment in the Minutes that Vallance & Catt had listened to their concerns and they would not insist on their rights to continue having the sign there.

In 1911 Vallance & Catt authorised a new entrance to the Ship to be constructed to the design of C.H. Harris. The brewery must have been annoyed when not long afterwards they became aware of Hove Council’s decision to straighten up Hove Street and widen the road to make a modern thoroughfare. In February 1913 the new scheme was authorised and as regards the Ship, the old pub was to be demolished and a new pub erected but set further back. Hove Council paid the West Street Brewery £4,500 to cover the cost of demolition and rebuilding.
copyright © J.Middleton
The Ship Inn and its colourful plaque was photographed on 15 July 2002.
copyright © J.Middleton
This is how the plaque looked in May 2014.
The colours are gone but at least the plaque remains in place.  

Thomas Garrett designed the new Ship Inn and Hove Council approved the plans in August 1914. In 1915 it was stated that the inn would also be connected to the electricity mains. The new pub building is a pleasant edifice with its gables and mock Tudor half-timbering. The plaster sign above the door is worthy of note too. It depicts a ship in full sail, which is only right because Henry Porter was lamenting in 1897 that the old inn sign used to be of a ship in full sail. The sign is still there today but unfortunately the bright colours are no longer to be seen since it was covered with cream paint when the pub’s name was changed.

There was a revolving door at the entrance, no doubt to save customers from too great a blast of fresh air when a south-westerly gale was blowing. It was said that T. Colman & Co, the well-known local specialist, installed it.

By 1915 W.E. Lynn was running the Ship and in May 1916 he was granted a licence to store 200 gallons of petroleum in a store at the back of the inn. In 1929 Vallance & Catt ceased their association with the Ship because Tamplin’s had taken them over and Tamplin’s continued their ownership until 1963.

Benjamin Cowley was landlord by 1925 and he saw out the Second World War too. Then followed some rapid changes with Mrs Doris M. Wait being behind the bar in 1947, followed by G.H. Atkinson in around 1951 while J.S. Hill was there by 1958. In 1967 Edward Lawless was in charge.

In 1985 John Porteous was the licensee when Bill Beaumont, England rugby captain and TV star, called in as part of his tour of Phoenix Brewery Pubs to judge the Pub of the Month competition.

On 24 August 1988 a man was released from Albany Prison after serving two years for arson. Two hotels in Portsmouth turned him away but he was given a room at the Ship and within two hours he had poured white spirit all over his bed and set it on fire. In August 1989 he was given a life sentence and the court heard he had already served three prison sentences for arson.
copyright © J.Middleton
The sign of The Ginger Pig in 2014. 

By 1999 the Ship was part of the Golden Lion Group that also owned two hotels at Hove besides the Lion d’Or in Hove Street. There was an article about the Ship in the Argus (20 June 2001) in which it was stated that the chef had worked there for twenty years and there was good fresh food available, handmade pastry and a pleasant outside patio for summer months. It is also interesting to note that the place continued to cater for overnight guests and there were twelve bedrooms.

By December 2004 the Ship was under new management and the name was changed to Le Bourdeaux. There had been an extensive refurbishment. The menu was reported to consist mainly of meat and fish and vegetarians might find their options limited.    

Today, the Gingerman Restaurant Group owns the premises. It is unfortunate that the long history of the Ship was ignored so that the group could maintain its corporate identity. It is now known as The Ginger Pig. The group has two other ventures in Brighton, namely The Gingerman in Norfolk Square and The Ginger Dog in Kemp Town while The Ginger Fox is north of the Downs in Muddleswood Road. The owners were delighted when Matthew Norman of the Daily Telegraph included The Gingerman in his list of 22 favourite restaurants (1 May 2013).

Now a Hotel too

It took a year to convert old accommodation on the upper floors into state-of-the-art boutique rooms. Ben McKellar and his wife, who founded the Gingerman restaurant group, said they had long wanted to provide hotel hospitality at the Ginger Pig. Mr McKellar described the previous décor as horrible little rooms in Fifties style with a toilet at the end of a corridor.

The transformation provides eleven double bedrooms with luxury mattresses plus either a stand-alone bath tub or an oversized shower. A novel touch is the group’s own handcrafted miniature cocktails in the mini bar. The cost of the rooms ranges from £80 to £160 a night.

Census Returns
Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade
Porter, Henry A History of Hove (1897)

Copyright © J.Middleton 2014
Hove Park Tavern, 156 Old Shoreham Road
formerly Seagull Tavern, originally Sackville Hotel
Judy Middleton (2003 revised 2014)

copyright © J.Middleton
It is interesting to note the charming little cupola at the corner. It is reminiscent of its namesake Sackville Hotel, Kingsway, which had two large cupolas that were green and made the building a landmark on the seafront.

It is confusing that there were once two Sackville Hotels at Hove but the one in the Old Shoreham Road was first. The second hotel was built on Kingsway. The owners tried to avoid confusion by calling this enterprise Sackville Gardens Hotel or Sackville Court Hotel. It was a fine looking structure but unfortunately it has been demolished.

The Sackville Hotel on a corner site in the Old Shoreham Road dates from the 1890s and was originally numbered 186 Sackville Road. The well-known local builders J. Parsons & Sons prepared the plans, which Hove Commissioners approved on 19 March 1896.  Tamplin’s owned the hotel.

George W, Washington was landlord from around 1902 to 1907. It is interesting to note Washington was a common surname for Hove landlords. For example, Harry Washington ran the Rutland in Rutland Road (now Ancient Mariner) until at least 1910 while Frank Washington was the first landlord of Kendal Arms in Payne Avenue (now The George Payne). In 1915 Frank Washington’s son Charles was injured at Gallipoli.

Walter Martin followed on from Washington and he stayed until 1923. The next landlord was Samuel J. Legg who only stayed for around five years.

In the 1930/1931 Directory there was a half-page advertisement for Sackville Hotel. ‘Tamplin’s Prize Ale and Stout, also popular brands of wine and spirits at special off-licence prices’.

At Tamplin’s Annual General Meeting in August 1938 it was stated they were going to reconstruct the whole of the pub’s bars to bring them up to modern requirements.

During the Second World War Marjory Batchelor’s father worked at the Sackville and he used to run the Marquess of Exeter, Brighton. One evening Marjory went with him to help out behind the bar because it was difficult to find staff. It was the evening the local Home Guard did their training and afterwards around ‘forty hot and sweaty men would pour in’ gasping for their pints. After closing time she and her father had to walk the 1 ¼ miles back home.

During this time Anthony Baseley was landlord, having taken over in 1930. It was a great shock when he died in August 1945 at the age of 58. His widow struggled on for a few years but by 1951 Mrs Worsfold was in charge and the following year Tamplin’s sold the pub.

In the 1960s ‘Brad’ Bradshaw was landlord and those were the glory days when Brighton & Hove Albion still played at the Goldstone Ground. On home match days the pub would be packed to the rafters with standing room only. It was to reflect this association that the pub was renamed Seagull Tavern by 1981.

On 11 January 1992 shortly before kick-off in the Barnsley match, a fire started in the bar area, which resulted in most of the ground floor being destroyed. Firemen had to cut away part of the ceiling in order to tackle the blaze. Ninety minutes later when football fans left the ground, firemen were still in attendance at the pub.

In October 1997 manager Ron Attenborough said because the Goldstone Ground had closed, he expected to be between £35,000 and £40,000 down on his takings during the football season. 

But the pub has not lost its interest in football and today there are large television screens where fans can watch important matches. In May 2014 barman Dale Glover said they were usually busy when there was a match on and they expected a good crowd for the Brighton / Derby play-off.

Meanwhile other tastes were catered for because in 1968 a traditional jazz club used to meet there. It is interesting to note that a young Chris Evans started off his career by being a disc jockey at the pub.

The pub name was changed again and became Parkes. But by 1992 the owners had settled on Hove Park Tavern.

In March 1992 it was announced that Grand Metropolitan would renovate the pub. Later Scottish & Newcastle became owners but in March 2001 they were said to be selling it.

People who enter Hove Park Tavern for the first time are surprised at how spacious it is. The fact that there are three pool tables besides a large area for drinkers gives some idea of the size. In 2010 there were some moans that the exterior could do with a lick of paint.

copyright © J.Middleton
In this photograph you can see that when the pub was enlarged, the building line was moved outwards to create more space.

Batchelor, Marjory A Life Behind Bars. QueenSpark Book 37
Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade

Copyright © J.Middleton 2014
Hove Place Hotel, 37 First Avenue
by Judy Middleton (2002 revised 2014)

copyright © J.Middleton
This photograph of Hove Place, at 37 First Avenue 
was taken on 30 October 2012.

The hotel looks as though it was built as an insertion between its neighbouring block to the south and the wall of Queen’s Mews to the north. There are some attractive features on the façade such as the bay window and the Dutch-style gable complete with decorative finials.

The entrance to the pub is down some steps. Interior features include wood panelling and a large open fireplace. But the chief glory of the place is the Italianate garden, which is reached by a flight of eleven steps. It incorporates two large gardens and in fact extends to the end of the neighbouring block. The north part features an attractive plaque of the Madonna with a blue background on the wall, a classical-style statue in a large niche and a free-standing statue of a child. In both gardens there is a tree in the central part surrounded by paving stones edged with a white line. There are plenty of chairs and tables for customers to enjoy their drinks in pleasant surroundings.

Perhaps because the pub is an unusual place, it has generated its own urban myths and legends. One story goes that it is a very ancient house with a priest hole hidden in it somewhere. Another legend maintains there was once a nunnery here, a claim that appeared in print (Argus 8th December 1999) and subsequently merited a piece in a book on local ghosts. It was claimed that someone had seen the ghost of a nun but there did not seem to be any records of a nunnery here. In fact there were nuns at Hove but they lived in the Convent of the Sacred Heart in the Upper Drive.

The history of the land now forming First, Second, Third, Fourth and Grand Avenue is that it formed part of the Stanford Estate, a large land holding stretching from Preston Manor to the sea. The land was agricultural land and was not built upon until late Victorian times. From 1848 to 1871 First Avenue formed the eastern boundary of the Brunswick Cricket Ground and although there used to be a hotel run in the conjunction with the cricket ground it was at the south end and likely to have been demolished when the land was sold off for building purposes. There is certainly no mention of a hotel in First Avenue in the Directories of the 1870s and 1880s.

In the 1930s Mrs M. Troubman ran the place as a boarding house and in 1938 Leon Troubman also ran a dental practice from the premises. In 1939 it became J.H. Silberstein’s private Jewish hotel and in 1940 telegrams could be despatched there with the address ‘Bracing, Hove’.

By 1947 it had become Lakser’s private hotel and in 1951 M. Lemberger was the proprietor. In the 1950s a sprung dance floor was installed.

By 2002 Brighton–based Golden Lion Group owned Hove Place.

Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade   

Copyright © J.Middleton 2014
The Iron Duke, renamed 'The Southern Belle'
 3 Waterloo Street
formerly The Iron Duke, Hove Lawns HotelThe Kerrison Arms 
Judy Middleton (2003 revised 2018)

copyright © J.Middleton
This view of The Iron Duke was taken on 26 May 2012. It is a building with a long and interesting history.

This establishment started its life in 1828 as the Kerrison Arms Hotel. It was named in honour of Sir Edward Kerrison who served at the Battle of Waterloo and was one of Wellington’s officers. Kerrison lived at 27 Brunswick Terrace from 1825 until his death in 1853. The building is the oldest hotel/pub in Hove. There are other contenders for the title of most ancient pub site such as The Wick, the Ship and The Brunswick but they have all been rebuilt. The Wick was rebuilt in 1875, the Ship was rebuilt at the time of the First World War while The Brunswick was rebuilt in 1938.

There was a restrictive covenant on the property dated 3 November 1825 and it was between William Wigney and George Wigney on one part, and Thomas Scutt on the other part. Brighton Brewers Wigney owned the hotel and continued to do so until 1850.

The Kerrison Arms was a classier establishment than the small pubs established in the back streets of Brunswick Town. It served as a meeting place for the proprietors of Brunswick Town, all men of substance and importance. For example, they held a meeting there on 31 October 1829 to discuss how the developing area should be governed. Later known as the Brunswick Square Commissioners, they continued to meet at the Kerrison Arms until they had a committee room of their own in 1831.

James Ireland managed the Kerrison Arms in the 1830s. He had once been a draper and undertaker with business premises in North Street, Brighton. But in 1824 he opened some pleasure gardens north of The Level. He ran other pubs too before he arrived at the Kerrison Arms. Ireland took more than a passing interest in the affairs of Brunswick Town because he became the first Collector of Rates. He remained at the hotel until his death in 1842, most probably from an attack of asthma. But as his death was sudden it necessitated an inquest being held at the Kerrison Arms.

George Jones then took over the management of the hotel but his tenure was short because he died on 7 February 1845 at the age of thirty-five. It was an unfortunate occurrence to say the least, happening just three years after Ireland’s death. But it seems it did not scare off his young widow who then married the next landlord. In the 1851 census he was recorded as Kettering-born David Knowles aged 36 who lived with his wife Rebecca aged 40, their children two-year old Louisa and Arthur aged eight months, and his seven-year old step-daughter Sarah Jones; a cousin, a nursemaid, a waiter and a cook completed the household.

By 1861 David Dawson from Hichen was the bachelor landlord. On census night there was one visitor, one male servant and four female servants in the premises.

Meanwhile, Wigney & Sons sold the Kerrison Arms in 1850 to another firm of Brighton brewers Vallance & Catt. In 1888 it was recorded that the hotel’s proprietor had to pay Vallance & Catt rent of £150 a year. In 1892 Mr Catt took over sole ownership of the hotel until 1892 when the business was sold to Tamplin’s.

In 1894 an advertisement stated ‘there is something homely about the Kerrison Hotel, which is not normally met with. Mrs Thwaites, the genial proprietress, is herself a hostess of no ordinary character.’ In 1904 the hotel was noted as having ‘commodious apartments cosily and handsomely furnished’.

In 1907 the establishment was renamed Hove Lawns Hotel. It was entirely refurbished and Mr Mayhead was in charge. Bed and breakfast cost 4/6d while a bedroom for two with breakfast cost 5/-. Garage or stabling was on hand while large rooms were available to accommodate parties of up to fifty people.

On Christmas Eve 1907 a fire broke out at the hotel. Mr Mayhead, his wife and their three children, plus the cook and barman managed to escape onto the balcony at the front of the building. From there they climbed down into the street be means of the large hanging lamp and with the assistance of Police Constable Aldridge. It appears Hove Fire Brigade was late in attending the scene, which led to questions being asked at a Hove Council meeting. For example on 9 January 1908 Councillor W.J. Fraser tabled the question ‘What is the explanation, if any, of the admittedly great, and apparently unnecessary, delay, which took place in the arrival of the Steam Fire Engine at the recent fire … in Waterloo Street, Hove, after receiving notice of such fire, and whether any effective means can be devised for enabling the engine in question to be present at any future fire immediately after receiving notice thereof.‘ As a result of these anxieties, better arrangements were put in place whereby firemen were able to have access to the necessary horses more quickly.

By 1910 Mrs A.E. Grant was running the hotel followed in around 1915 by D.A. Legg. The Leggs stayed for many years as Mrs D.A. Legg was in charge in 1925 and by 1930 Samuel Legg was the landlord and he was still there in 1947.

In 1987 Mike Ashby and Averil Older purchased the premises and within three years they had turned the business around into a thriving enterprise. When they took over, taxi drivers were known to be reluctant to call at the establishment. Naturally, a great deal of hard work was involved but it awakened Averil Older’s interest in local history. She remembered when the last wedding was held at St Andrew’s Church opposite and some of the guests came across for a drink.

Later on Averil Older wrote a column for the Argus on matters concerning central Hove. On 1 May 2003 she secured a surprise victory by being elected a Conservative councillor for Central Hove, ousting such well-known names as Jenny Langston and Mark Barnard. The only fly in the ointment was having to give up her part-time post as a guide at the Royal Pavilion, which she loved. Although today no longer a councillor, she keeps up her interest in local history by sitting on the committee advising the council about commemorative blue plaques.      

The hotel/pub has seen more name changes than most. In around 1974 it became The Iron Duke (after the Duke of Wellington); in 1991 it became simply The Duke; in 1994 it became The Iron Duke again and in 1997 it became The Duke Inn.

Mike Baker and Chris Dolphin took over the premises in 1991 and were still there in 1997. The premises contained a restaurant large enough to seat forty people and there were twelve bedrooms for commercial travellers or tourists. Michael Baker came from the successful Rolling Clock Restaurant in Wilbury Road, Hove. He left The Duke Inn in around 2001.

Today the premises are once more called The Iron Duke. There is a fascinating new addition to the establishment in the form of a bijou theatre called the Dukebox Theatre. But it is a versatile space and can be used for meetings and parties too. Perhaps in keeping with its more up-market image, since October 2012 there has no longer been a dart board or a pool table at the pub.

By 2017 the pub had acquired a new name – The Southern Belle. It had also been refurbished. The pub served four Sussex beers and in April 2018 received the accolade of being voted the best place for a roast dinner in all of Brighton and Hove. On the evening of 1 April 2018 the pub was very crowded with practically every seat taken while new group Biscuit Barrel were performing to a full house in the Dukebox under the ‘Hove Grown’ banner – the Biscuit Barrel are en route for The Fringe at Edinburgh Festival in August 2018.

Census Returns
Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade

Copyright © J.Middleton 2014
The Neptune, 10 Victoria Terrace
Judy Middleton (2002 revised 2019)

copyright © J.Middleton
During the Second World War over-exuberant soldiers damaged Neptune’s trident but it looked in fine fettle when
photographed on 31 May 2002.

Amon Wilds designed Victoria Terrace in around 1830. But it was not known as Victoria Terrace until 1910; before that the two terraces were called Alma Terrace and Albert Terrace. The Battle of Alma was fought in 1854 during the Crimean War and Queen Victoria married Prince Albert in 1840. The Neptune Inn was originally numbered at 8 Albert Terrace but when it was incorporated into Victoria Terrace, it became number 13. But this was not the end of the matter because by 1925 it had changed to number 10.

In the early days the Neptune Inn faced competition from other pubs in Albert Terrace. They were Artillery Tavern, which lasted until 1907, and Victoria Tavern, which lasted until 1924. The Travellers’ Joy Inn further along to the west was later demolished and replaced by St Aubyns Hotel. In addition the handsome Sussex Hotel was just across the road. 

In 1861 Horley-born John Turner aged 63 was the landlord of the Neptune Inn. He lived with his wife Sarah, one son, two daughters and one servant. By 1866 William Welfare was in charge. The 1871 census described him as a 40-year old widower who was born in Fletching. He lived at the pub with his eight-year old son Edward, twin daughters Harriet and Eliza aged seven plus three servants. 

 copyright © C. McMullen
Zella and Gladys with their parents 
Vera and James Tooley
By 1891 William Welfare had married again and his wife was his junior by fourteen years. The couple had an eight-year old daughter Mary while his daughter Eliza from his first marriage acted as a barmaid; there was one servant. Welfare could hardly have imagined that his young wife would predecease him but she died in September 1898 and was buried in Hove Cemetery. Hove Swimming Club sent a wreath.

After such a long association with William Welfare, there was a series of quick changes in landlords. By 1899 Isaac Leach was in charge, followed in around 1905 by Sam Green with William Foster following on in 1910. According to relatives George Stone was in charge of the Neptune Inn from 1912 to 1917 but the local Directory lists W.H. Pasifull as the landlord in 1915. S.H. Hallon ran the pub for a brief spell followed by James Tooley in 1920.

By 1928 Smithers Brewery owned the Neptune Inn. James Tooley remained landlord until his retirement in 1941. His wife died in the same year and so their daughter Mrs Gladys Heseltine took over the licence. But she had to leave the Army where she had been serving in Movement Control.

 copyright © C. McMullen
Sisters Gladys and Zella Tooley as young 
children – Zella is the one with long hair 
and she was the eldest.
The war years were a busy time for the pub with the influx of Naval personnel at HMS King Alfred while Canadian soldiers were billeted at Osborne Villas, Medina Villas and Albany Villas and there was a particularly lively group of Welsh soldiers. Sometimes the plaster effigy of Neptune outside would be draped with rude notices and perhaps it was on one of these occasions that Neptune lost the top of his trident. But today his trident is complete. Besides running the pub, Gladys Heseltine also volunteered for war duties and did her stint of fire-watching from the top of the Sussex Hotel opposite.

The Neptune had three small bars and a small bottle-and-jug department and there were attractive stained glass windows;  a slate shove ha’penny board was to be found in one corner. In Tooley’s time, Clarke’s Funeral Parlour was located nearby separated by a narrow passage. Customers enjoying a quiet drink would often be put in a reflective mood by the sound of a carpenter constructing a coffin.

Fishermen used to bring fish straight off the beach to sell to customers in the pub. You could buy 24 fresh herring for one shilling and they were gleaming and silvery. Gladys soon learnt how to tell if they were fresh or not. Apparently, a red-eyed herring meant it had been kept on ice.

Gladys also learnt the art of pulling a good pint. First of all the barrel was mounted on a rack behind the bar, which she called the stolidge. Then you had to spile the barrel to let the gas escape. 

copyright © C. McMullen
James Tooley
Landlord from 1920-1941
Once when Gladys had a day off, this procedure was not followed and when the barrel was broached, the pressure of the gas inside blew the tap off. The next thing was to put finings (fish entrails) inside the barrel and then you rolled the barrel up and down the counter. After that the barrel was put up behind the bar and kept at an angle by being mounted on chocks. The finings would pull down the sediment to the bottom of the barrel and you would be left with a beautiful, clear beer. People often commented on the clarity. You knew how much finings to put in from experience. You kept an eye on the quantity left in the barrel by using a dipstick. The waste beer or ullage, as it was called, could be thrown on the garden as fertiliser. 

The Neptune has a good cellar cut out of solid chalk, which has a slight humidity that is good for beer. But one spring after the war a combination of a high tide and strong winds brought sea water surging up the twitten and the cellar was flooded to a depth of three feet. All the labels became detached from the bottles. In those days bottles were uniformly dark and caps were the same colour and Gladys was left with crates of unidentifiable drinks. She phoned the brewery for advice and they told her to get rid of them. Gladys sold them off for one shilling each and the punter had to take pot luck as to whether they were getting a Guinness or a Bass.

copyright © J.Middleton
The Neptune is one of Hove’s oldest pubs
and was photographed on 16 April 2014.
In the 1950s The Neptune became a favourite haunt of theatrical folk. Alan Melville would pop in virtually every day and sometimes he would help out behind the bar. Melville’s nickname for Gladys was ‘Nasty’ because she was nice and he presented her with a copy of his book Merely Melville with a long inscription on the fly-leaf.  Gilbert Harding was another regular. Although he was famous for being rude to unfortunate contestants in TV’s What’s My Line, Gladys said she never saw that side of his character in the pub where he was genial and entertaining. 

Dickie Henderson was another frequent visitor and he would often perform his party piece, which was ‘dropping dead’ on the floor. He was a well-known performer on TV. Jerry Desmonde and Elizabeth Allen were also to be found in the pub. Elizabeth Allan was a famous film star who lived at nearby 3 Courtenay Terrace and a blue plaque now records the fact. It is interesting to note that both Elizabeth Allan and Alan Melville appeared as panellists on What’s My Line while Jerry Desmonde was sometimes a guest host on the same show. Desmonde starred in many comedy films with Norman Wisdom. Gladys remembered those star-studded days with great nostalgia ‘Ah, those were happy days, wonderful times.’ 

Gladys also had the assistance of her sister Zella Stannard who helped out at the pub from 1943 to around 1956. Their father James Tooley, although retired, liked to keep an eye on how things were going, and used to visit every weekend. Zella’s daughter, Christine, was to be found at the pub as well when she was on holiday from her boarding school Christine liked to take advantage of the times when Mrs Ebdon, who lived in Victoria Cottages, came in early  to do the cleaning because then Christine could have a quiet game of darts. The family cat – a large black Persian – enjoyed the early morning peace and quiet too and would lie full length along the top of the radiator. Christine remembered the many theatrical folk who came to the pub,  and in particular Tom Gill (1916-1971). Gill had a very long and successful career in films and television and appeared in everything from comedies, dramas to science fiction Gill once asked young Christine if she were interested in the idea of going into films but she gave him a firm ‘No, thank you.’ 

  copyright © C. McMullen
From left to right – Archie Quick (a newspaper reporter from the Evening Argus who married Zella) Zella, another newspaperman (name unknown)  Gladys, Christine, and James Tooley

Over the years Gladys Heseltine had dealings with four different breweries – Smithers, Tamplin’s, Watney’s and Courage. It was Courage that took the decision to convert the premises into a single unit in 1975.

In the Argus (26 February 1998) it was stated that The Neptune had closed for three days recently for refurbishment and according to Averil Older the pub had the best looking landlord in Hove by the same of James.

In November 1999 Daphne Fitzgerald aged 80 had been in The Neptune to wish a friend a happy birthday but as she crossed Kingsway, she was knocked down by a car and killed. Landlord James Puttnam said cars went much too fast along this stretch of road.

By July 2000 it was stated the pub was gaining a reputation for staging live music from jazz and rock to boogie-woogie piano.

In April 2014 Robert Griffiths of the Martlets Hospice was delighted to receive a cheque for £2,000 from staff and regulars at The Neptune. The pub has continued to maintain its reputation as a venue for live music, which can be heard for free on Fridays and Sundays with an open mic event on the second Monday of each month. There is a selection of real ale, cider and lager on sale.  

Census Records
Encyclopaedia of Hove and Portslade
Interview with Mrs Gladys Heseltine in April 1985
Additional information and permission to include family photographs kindly given by Chris McMullan

Copyright © J.Middleton 2014
page layout by D.Sharp