Meopham pub history index
Railway Tavern, Meopham, Kent - in April 2011
Kindly provided by Stephen Harris
Directory of Pubs in the UK, historical public houses, Taverns, Inns, Beer Houses and Hotels in Gravesend, Kent .
Residents at this address
1847/George French / Beer House /../../Bagshaw’s Directory **
1861/Thomas French/Victualler/25/Meopham, Kent/Census
1861/Harriet French/Wife/21/Meopham, Kent/Census
1861/Matilda Wield/House Servant/20/Laindon Hill, Essex/Census
1862/Thomas French/../../../Post Office Directory
Aug 23rd 1872/Thomas French/../../../Registrar of Licences *
1871/Thomas French/Licensed Victualler/35/Meopham, Kent/Census
1871/Elizabeth French/Wife/28/Gravesend, Kent/Census
1871/Elizabeth A French/Daughter/8/Meopham, Kent/Census
1871/Alice French/Daughter/6/Meopham, Kent/Census
1871/Florence French/Daughter/2/Meopham, Kent/Census
1871/Thomas Nevile/Brother in Law/16/Gravesend, Kent/Census
1871/Mary A Nevile/Sister in Law/14/Gravesend, Kent/Census
1874/Thomas French/& Jobmaster/../../Post Office Directory
Gravesend Reporter, North Kent and South Essex Advertiser 25 June 1881
Death - French:
On June 20th, at the Shrubbery, Elizabeth Ann Butterworth, widow of the late Thomas French, formerly of the Railway Tavern, Meopham, and eldest daughter of Thomas Miles Nevils, late of the Good Intent, Windmill Hill, aged 37, of deep decline. Interred at Mepoham Church.
1881/Henry Prior/Publican/33/Humber, Hereford/Census
1881/Harriett Prior/Wife/33/Yoxford, Suffolk/Census
1881/Mary A Prior/Sister/18/Meopham, Kent/Census
1891/Henry Prior/Licensed Victualler, Coal Merchant/42/Humber, Hereford/Census
1891/Harriet Prior/Wife/43/Yoxford, Suffolk/Census
1891/William White/Father in Law, Gardener, Widow/71/Yoxford, Suffolk/Census
1891/Emma Hisled/Barmaid/21/Stenying, Sussex/Census
1891/George Paris/Coachman, Groom/43/Offham, Kent/Census
1899/James Henry Watson/../../../Kelly’s Directory **
1901/James Henry Watson/Publican/39/Stone, Kent/Census
1901/Elizabeth Watson/Wife/39/Greenhithe, Kent/Census
1901/Ernest James Watson/Son, Barman/17/Stone, Kent/Census
1901/Olive Amelia Watson/Daughter/16/Northfleet, Kent/Census
1901/James Henry Watson/Son, Barman/15/Stone, Kent/Census
1901/Albert John Watson/Son/12/Stone, Kent/Census
1901/Sidney William Watson/Son/9/Stone, Kent/Census
1901/Alfred Thomas Watson/Son/6/Stone, Kent/Census
1901/Elizabeth Mary Watson/Daughter/5/Stone, Kent/Census
1901/Daisy Gladys Watson/Daughter/2//Census
Gravesend Reporter, North Kent and South Essex Advertiser 06 July 1901
Transfer - On Monday, at Northfleet Petty Sessions, the licence of the Railway tavern, Meopham, was temporarily transferred to Mr George Golden from Mr Watson
1905/Albert Edward Alderton/../../../Post Office Directory
1913/George Meakin/../../../Post Office Directory
Kent Messenger & Gravesend Telegraph 23 September 1916
George Meakin, Railway Tavern, Meopham who asked for postponement of military service until Christmas, was excused until December 31st.
1918/George Meakin/../../../Post Office Directory
1922/George Meakin/../../../Post Office Directory
1930/George Meakin/../../../Post Office Directory
1934/George Meakin/../../../Kelly’s Directory **
1938/George Meakin/../../../Post Office Directory
At the Station Tavern, Main road, Meopham in 1939 are
George Meakin, Licensed Victualler, born 05 Aug 1882
May Meakin, Domestic Duties, born 09 Jul 1894
Frank G Meakin, College Student, born 16 Jun 1921 and
Phyllis M Hamill (Meakin), At School, born 11 Jan 1925.
I remember many happy hours in the Railway Tavern, Meopham.
When we had the power cuts in the '70s, I would go up to the pub because it was full of people and lit up with hundreds of candles! Bill Friend was like a second father to me, and when my daughter was born we would take her in there on a Saturday lunchtime. When she was about 18 months old, we went into the pub. She was wearing a white broderie Anglaise dress and Bill decided to give her a chocolate bar, after kindly taking off the wrapper. Within minutes she was smothered in chocolate.
There were some interesting customers who used the pub. One was an ex-submariner, and he told me one day that he had gone to Plymouth to board a submarine, but got toothache on the way down. He told the officer, who said he should go and get it fixed, and he found somebody else to take his place. The following day the sub sailed out of Portsmouth, and this was the last time it was seen. It sank in the Channel.
Another was a protection officer, who had to work occasionally on a Saturday. He would come into the Railway Tavern as soon as he got off the train, but he always went straight behind the bar, and upstairs. One day I asked him why, and he told me that he went up there to take off his holster and gun!!
Another was a gas fitter, who was called out late one night to fix a leak. He did the job and replaced the floorboards at the house, and got home at around 4am. As he got into bed, he remembered that the cat had gone down under the floor while he was working, so at 4.30am he was back at the house, knocking on the door, and sure enough, a moggy blinking in the light appeared when he pulled the floorboards back up!!
I went to see Bill in Gravesend hospital when he was very ill, but he still hadn't lost his sense of humour, and was giving the nurses a terrible time! ***
* Provided By Ben Levick & others -
Kent History Forum
** Provided By Stephen Harris
*** Provided By Judy