The Maypole Inn

The Maypole

This Inn known by the name and sign the Maypole was built in the first year of George II, in 1727.
When first built the property was two farm dwellings, belonging then, to the estate of one Francis Grosvenor esq. of Sittingbourne, who possessed the land upon which they were built, and commissioned the erection of them as part of a terrace, to house farm workers, of his estate.
In 1733, six years after their founding, one Nathaniel Tidye, grazier, and his family resided in one cottage, while Thomas Reason, farmer and wheelwright, occupied the other with his family.
By 1750 on Thomas Parsons, grazier occupied the cottage that had housed Nathaniel Tidye, whilst residing in the other was Sarah Reason, widow, and five children. At this date the property was owned by the estate of Thomas Grosvenor. He in 1754, disposed of much of his late fathers estate, these cottages with others and a small track of land adjoining were purchased by William Hensham of Sittingbourne parish. He in 1763 leased one cottage to Jesse Roper a tobaccopipe maker and brewer of Sittingbourne.

In August 1763, Roper applied for and was granted a licence to sell ales from one of the cottages, which at this date remained untitled other than it, was a registered beer house, kept by Jesse Roper, who now became a tobaccopipe maker, brewer and beer seller of The Street Borden. Residing in the other cottage at this date was one Mary Fricher a harness maker of Borden, and Susannah Huggens, a tanner of Borden, who both appear to have operated a business from the premises.

Jesse Roper kept the house until his death in 1789, whereafter his widow Jane took up the licence. Described as the widow Roper she ran the beer house now a thriving concern, until her own death in 1801.
The cottages at this date were owned by William Marsh who in that year sold them to Isaac Jackson, a beer seller of Bapchild. He owned and kept the house, which is now commonly come to be called the ‘Maypole’ beer house, until his death in 1815, whereupon his son Samuel, cattle salesman, inherited it. At this date the adjoining cottage was occupied by Mary Parsons, a straw hat maker.

Samuel Jackson, sold the ‘Maypole’ and adjoining cottages in 1817, to one Batchelor Roper, a tavener of Sittingbourne, who had previously kept a house called the ‘Cherry Tree’ in that town. Batchelor Roper was the Grandson of the aforementioned Jesse Roper and in 1820 applied for and was granted a full spirit licence for the house. At this date work was carried out on the two dwellings to form them as one and upon completion the house was registered as the ‘Maypole Tavern’.

Batchelor Roper kept the ‘Maypole’ until 1827, selling in that year to Joseph Blakesty, victualler of Sittingbourne, who in 1831 sold to Thomas Hammond, brewer of Sittingbourne. By 1834, one Valentine Payne, saddler, had been granted the licence and held a form of tenancy on the house, paying and annual rent of 16 pounds to Hammond. By 1840, one Thomas Coulter was keeping the ‘Maypole’. Coulter had come from a farming family and was himself once a farmer of Sittingbourne. His brother James was a fire and life agent and had an office at Sittingbourne for the Royal Farmer and Hailstorm Insurance Company.

In 1845, one Henry Greenstead was keeping the ‘Maypole’, he is described as a publican, horse dealer and carriage proprietor, and like many keepers of the house before him that were recorded under other trades, continued to ply his trade as well as run the house. During his stay here he bought and sold horses and hired out and repaired carriages, a sign advertising his services hung outside the ‘Maypole’ for many years. When he died in 1858, his son Charles took over the house and continued with his father’s carriage business, no mention is made of him trading in horses. When he left in 1875 on George Zalopa came and held the licence until 1897. In that year he was succeed by Archibald E Fuggle, who held the licence here until his death in 1943. He was succeeded by his wife Louisa who held the licence for the duration of World War II and long after. 


This history is displayed at the Maypole Inn and submitted by the present licensee.

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