The Brown Jug and attached boundary wall


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
204 Ramsgate Road, Broadstairs, CT10 2EW


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Statutory Address:
204 Ramsgate Road, Broadstairs, CT10 2EW

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Thanet (District Authority)
Broadstairs and St. Peters
National Grid Reference:


A former farm cottage and attached boundary wall, probably constructed in the C18 and in continuous use as a public house between 1795 and 2019. The building was extended to the rear around 1950.

Reasons for Designation

The Brown Jug and attached boundary wall, probably constructed in the C18, are listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:

* for the high rate of survival of the historic plan form and fabric dating to the C18;

* as a distinctive example of C18 vernacular building traditions in Kent.

Historic interest: * for the survival and legibility of the multi-room arrangement of the ground-floor interior, which provides a tangible sense of how many rural public houses would have functioned in the C18 and C19;

* for the survival of key elements of each phase of the building’s expansion, which demonstrate how the public house evolved over time to adapt to changing commercial demands;

* as an early and particularly clear example of a domestic building converted to a licensed premises prior to the 1830 Beer Act.


The Brown Jug Public House was originally constructed as a farm cottage, probably in the C18, in the hamlet of Dumpton. The building was situated on the south-east edge of Dumpton Park, a large area of parkland turned over to residential development after the Second World War. The extant building has reputedly been a pub since at least 1795, when it was known as The Queen’s Arms Tap.

The pub’s current name of The Brown Jug first appears in an auction sale listing in the 14 September 1813 edition of the Kentish Chronicle, where the building is listed as a messuage or public house with a very large garden. The building was reportedly used as an officer’s billet at some point in the early C19.

The pub is referred to as the Old Brown Jug in a description of Broadstairs published in 1832, where the pub is mentioned as a popular stopping place for pedestrians to drink Cobb’s XX. The pub was previously a tied house of Cobb & Co (Brewers) Ltd, which was founded in Margate in 1673. The Cobb family were associated with a range of businesses in Thanet from the mid C18 to the mid C20, including brewing, banking, shipping agency and insurance. In 1968 Whitbread & Co Ltd took over Cobb & Co (Brewers) Ltd along with 40 of their public houses, including The Brown Jug, and closed the Margate brewery the same year.

The presence of a brick quoin halfway along the west flank wall of the principal building (the long side of the L shape) suggests that the original farm cottage possibly consisted of just the southern wing with a shallow, single-cell plan, and the rear wing housing the tap room at ground-floor level was added as an extension at a later date. Both wings of the L shaped plan are depicted on historic plans dating from the 1830s and 1840s.

A historic plan annexed to an 1842 transfer document shows the ground floor of the pub with no opening between the front-left room (labelled as the bar) and the rear tap room. The bar has a closet where the bar counter now stands and the tap room has a staircase in place of its bar counter. On later plans this staircase is not shown and is replaced by a staircase leading from the front door straight up to the first floor, which survives. An undated historic plan, apparently produced in the 1830s but with later alterations, shows the staircase in its present position, with the staircase in the tap room removed and two openings between the tap room and bar added. These plans suggest that the present layout of the ground floor, with a bar serving both the front-left bar room and the rear tap room, originated in the mid to late C19.

The 1842 plan depicts a well and a row of semi-private shelters facing east over the garden to the rear of the pub. These shelters, seemingly constructed of timber and identified as tea boxes on the plan, were apparently where tea was served to customers. A building matching the footprint of the tea boxes is visible on the 1877 Ordnance Survey map. Two linear buildings along the west and north boundaries of the beer garden appear on some historic maps but appear to have been demolished by the time the 1935 Ordnance Survey map was published, along with the tea boxes. The single-storey toilet block to the rear of the pub appears for the first time on plans dated 1950.

In the early C20 one of the pub’s licensees owned a three-legged pig which attracted many visitors to The Brown Jug. The pig is pictured at the pub in photographs dated 1923 to 1925. The undated historic plan shows a cow house and an attached piggery directly east of the pub on the opposite side of the Ramsgate Road. This cow house is present on Ordnance Survey maps published 1877 through to 1949, but it no longer appears on the 1962 Ordnance Survey map. The site of this building is now occupied by a small car park.

The ground floor lean-to extension attached to the east elevation of the principal building was partially rebuilt at some point in the second half of the C20. Historic photographs up to 1903 show a steeper pitched roof over the extension, and the top courses of bricks below the existing shallow pitched roof appear less weathered than those found elsewhere on the building. The steeper pitched roof is also illustrated on a 1950 plan of the pub. The windows on the front elevation have also been altered at some point in the C20. Historic photographs indicate that the façade previously had four identical windows with sixteen small panes of glass each, and the ground-floor windows had timber shutters. The tap room or rear bar was extended in around 1950 with a two-storey flat-roofed extension to the north elevation. Plans dating from 1950 show the existing rear bar fireplace repositioned against the north wall of the extension. The large ornamental brown jug over the porch was installed by Mr William Hollingsworth, the proprietor of the pub between 1932 and 1949.

A flint boundary wall with brick coping extends from the east lean-to extension along Ramsgate Road to the north-east. Another section of flint wall with brick piers partially survives along the north and west boundaries of the beer garden. To the rear of the pub on the west side of the garden is a single-storey toilet block dating from the mid C20.

In 1997 planning permission was granted for the demolition and partial reconstruction of the front elevation and works to the cellar. This phase of works may have included the partial reconstruction of the lean-to extension.


A former farm cottage and attached boundary wall, probably constructed in the C18 and in continuous use as a public house between 1795 and 2019. The building was extended to the rear around 1950.

MATERIALS External walls of knapped flint with stock brick window dressings and quoins, and roofs with clay tiles.

PLAN The principal building is L-shaped on plan, with a small lean-to extension to the east elevation and a flat-roofed two-storey extension to the rear. There is a large beer garden to the rear of the pub with a covered timber colonnade built against the flint wall along the east boundary of the site.

EXTERIOR The Brown Jug Public House is a two-storey vernacular building with a pitched, tiled roof on each of the two wings of the L-shaped plan. The external walls are constructed of knapped flint with stock brick quoins and window dressings. The pitched roof over the front part of the principal building is bookended by brick chimney stacks with corbelling and tall clay chimney pots. The brick chimney breasts continue down the gable ends to ground floor level.

The front (south) elevation has symmetrical fenestration with four C20, leaded casement windows, two to the ground floor with brick segmental arches and two to the first floor with timber lintels continuous with the brick dentil course below the eaves. A third, centrally positioned third-floor window has been blocked up and rendered, and is partially obscured by a rectangular panel bearing the name of the pub. Situated centrally between the two ground-floor windows is a projecting, rendered porch with a moulded cornice and a flat roof. The porch incorporates a single timber door with nine glazed panes in the upper half, and a Grosvenor-style lantern hanging above the door on a metal bracket, added in the C20. A large ornamental brown jug set on top of the porch is constructed from reinforced concrete and dates from the 1930s or 1940s. A traditional pub sign, probably a C20 replacement, bears the name of the pub and a painted image of a brown jug, and hangs from a bracket mounted on the south-east corner of the building at first-floor level.

The west side elevation has no fenestration and abuts the boundary wall and single-storey garage of the neighbouring property. The rear elevation of the principal building has at lower-ground floor level a small casement window beneath a segmental brick arch providing light to the cellar and an adjacent door providing access to the cellar from the garden. The upper floors of the rear elevation have no fenestration, and the flint wall is partially rendered at ground-floor level. The historic brick chimney stack to the rear gable end survives and still serves the fireplace in the rear first-floor room.

The east side elevation of the rear wing has a leaded casement window with a brick segmental arch and a door accessed by concrete steps to the ground floor, plus a casement window to the first floor. The rear, flat-roofed extension is constructed from brick. It has a leaded casement window to the ground floor on the east elevation, plus a small ground-floor casement window and two modern first-floor casement windows on the rear elevation. A brick chimney stack with a modern clay pot arises from the flat roof and serves the repositioned fireplace in the tap room on the ground floor.

The east lean-to extension has a six-over-six timber sash window to the front elevation. The façade above the window level has been reconstructed in brick and the original pitched, tiled roof replaced with a corrugated sheet metal roof with a shallower pitch. A single door to the rear elevation provides access to the beer garden.

INTERIOR The front door opens into a small entrance hall with the staircase ascending to the first floor and doors leading to a room on either side. The larger front room to the right, originally the parlour or snug, has an early-C20 tiled and wood surround fireplace with a copper hood, and retains historic floorboards, skirting and dado rail. Either side of the fireplace are built-in cupboards with glazed and panelled double doors. To the left of the entrance hall is a smaller front reception room served by the bar. This room has a 1970s brick fireplace that replaced the earlier kitchen range, a timber, panelled bar counter probably dating from the early C20, historic bar back shelves, and dado panelling.

In the north wing at ground-floor level is the large rear bar or tap room. This wing may have been an extension to the original farm cottage, as evidenced by the visible masonry joins to the exterior of the west wall. This wing was extended further around 1950 by the addition of a two-storey flat-roofed extension to the north elevation. This room has a timber, panelled bar counter probably dating from the early C20. The 1930s-style brick fireplace with a Tudor arch was repositioned as part of the 1950 extension. The walls are half timbered with a timber plate shelf.

The lean-to extension to the east elevation originally housed the larder. A plan dated 1950 indicates that this room at one time housed the ladies’ lavatory, but latterly it appears to have been used for storage. This room is only accessible via the garden by an external door to its north elevation.

A narrow corridor linking the bar and the parlour provides access to a staircase descending to the cellar, which extends across three separate rooms spanning the whole floor plan of the building (excluding the 1950 extension). The room to the east, directly under the parlour, has a door leading out to the garden via some steps and a small window providing light from the rear of the building. A fireplace with a historic, iron cooking range is situated against the east wall, and the remains of a coal chute served by the street survive to the south wall. The room to the rear of the cellar, below the rear bar, also has a brick fireplace in its original position, indicating the position of the fireplaces above prior to the 1950 extension. The external walls of the cellar are flint, mostly rendered, while the internal walls are of rendered brick and exposed lath and plaster.

The staircase, seemingly added after 1842, leads up to the first floor and has timber panelling below the handrails. On the first floor there are two bedrooms at the front of the building, both retaining historic floorboards, frame-and-panel doors, built-in cupboards, and skirting boards. The east bedroom also retains a historic brick fireplace. To the rear is a large living room, with an adjacent kitchen and bathroom in the 1950 north extension. The rear room has historic floorboards, moulded dado and picture rails, and a 1930s style brick fireplace. Internal walls to the first floor are of lath and plaster construction.

SUBSIDIARY FEATURES A flint boundary wall with brick coping extends from the east lean-to extension along Ramsgate Road to the north-east. It is attached to the lean-to extension with a brick quoin. Just to the east of the lean-to extension there is a wooden gate in the wall providing access to the beer garden, with two brick gate piers topped with pyramidal capstones.

Along the inner face of the flint boundary wall there is a covered timber colonnade running the length of the beer garden. The colonnade is formed of plain vertical posts and concave braces forming pointed arches on the open side, with wider round arches against the boundary wall. The colonnade is covered by a corrugated sheet metal roof.


Books and journals
Barnes, D, Picture of Broadstairs and Neighbourhood, Historical and Illustrative of that Fashionable Watering Place, and Surrounding Scenery, (1832), 20
Dover Kent Archives Public Houses: Brown Jug, accessed 27 October 2020 from
Pub Heritage Historic Pub Interiors: Brown Jug, accessed 27 October 2020 from
'An Old Inn Changes Hands', Thanet Advertiser, 21 October 1949.
'To Be Sold By Auction', Kentish Chronicle, 14 September 1813.


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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