Lost Pubs: The Railway Tavern by Nigel Rumsey

1a Railway Place, Gravesend

The Railway Tavern opened in 1881 and was tied to the Meux’s Brewery, it still features the original Meux glazed tiles. After 129 years of trading it closed in 2010 and then reopened in 2011 as D-Ream. D-Ream lasted just over a year, closing in October 2012.

It now trades as Treatz Dessert Parlour, one of two pubs in the town that have reopened as ice cream parlours.

This is just one of many pubs to have recently closed in Gravesend. Since the turn of the century 24 pubs in the town have closed their doors for the final time.

Part of an ongoing project. For more pubs go here.

Lost Pubs: The Terrace Tavern by Nigel Rumsey

46 The Terrace, Gravesend.

The Terrace Tavern and Hotel was present in records from 1837. It was tied to the Russell’s Brewery of Gravesend and the exterior of the still features the beautiful green tiles advertising Russell’s ‘Shrimp Brand’ beers, dating from around 1913. At one time the pub had its own football team, indoor cricket team, darts and pool teams; a real community hub.

The pub closed in 2009 and was empty until 2013 when it was converted to the current food store.

This is just one of many pubs to have recently closed in Gravesend. Since the turn of the century 24 pubs in the town have closed their doors for the final time.

Part of an ongoing project.

Lost pubs: The City of London by Nigel Rumsey

27 The Terrace, Gravesend.

The building that was once the City of London is in a great location high above the river Thames. The original pub was founded here in 1839. Unfortunately, that building was destroyed by fire in 1893. The rebuilt City of London traded until 2002, in 2009 it was converted to a b&b.

This is just one of many pubs to have recently closed in Gravesend. Since the turn of the century 24 pubs in the town have closed their doors for the final time.

Part of an ongoing project.

Lost pubs: The Pilot Tavern by Nigel Rumsey

42-43 East Terrace, Gravesend

In 2012 when The Pilot Tavern closed the Gravesend Messenger reported: Its former landlady Susan Newman remained there and rather than tear it down is now hoping to bring the building, which is in dire need of some repair, back to its former glory. Having lived in the area for 27 years, and keen not to move, she said: “It’s a lovely building, but it needs work and I’d like to be able to bring back the beauty it once was. Turning it into flats is the only way I can fund that, while still living here myself.”

Records dating from 1839 talk of a pub on this site, it’s a shame to see it closed after at least 173 years of trading.

This is just one of many pubs to have recently closed in Gravesend. Since the turn of the century 24 pubs in the town have closed their doors for the final time.

Lost pubs: The Bricklayers Arms by Nigel Rumsey

Stone Street, Gravesend

Another of Gravesend’s recently closed pubs. Since the turn of the century, 24 pubs in the town have closed.

The Bricklayers Arms opened in 1851 and closed in 1910.  It reopened as The Station Hotel in 1914 which closed in 2002. Reopening later as Bar24 and then The Bridge Bar, which finally closed in 2017.

This is part of an ongoing project.

Lost pubs: Ascot Arms by Nigel Rumsey

Central Aveue, Gravesend

The Public House, the pub, with maybe the church, was once at the centre of every English community. In my parent’s generation most men, and sometimes women, would have ‘a local’ a place to go and chat with friends about their lives, their troubles, or at least how poorly their football team were playing that week.

Yes, they sold beer, but mostly they were about community. Where I grew in south-east London, they served a very small clientele, that might only be the residents of half a dozen streets. Most of their regulars knew each other, they knew their partners, their parents and their children. It was a very territorial thing, half a mile if that sometimes, further up the road would be another local with its own regulars, another separate, distinct community.

Over the last 25 years, maybe more, that’s changed. In my own town of Gravesend since the turn of the century, 24 pubs have closed. Granted we started with a lot, being an old port on the Thames, Gravesend had more than its fair share of pubs. Nevertheless, the attrition rate is shocking.

The Ascot Arms is the latest to close, finally shutting its doors earlier this year. The brewery has advertised for new tenants, but it seems more likely it'll be turned into yet another convenience store, or demolished and the land used for housing. The Ascot Arms started life as the Central Hotel; opening in 1932. It’s a huge rambling place, so it’s hardly surprising the latest landlord struggled to keep it open.

Part of an ongoing project.