Eating and Drinking establishments of Felbridge – Part I

Eating and Drinking establishments of Felbridge – Part I

This is the first of a series of handouts that will discuss the eating and drinking establishments of the Felbridge area, both those that have long since disappeared and those that are currently still providing service. Information varies from one establishment to another, generally depending upon their duration of existence and the availability of records. All the eating and drinking establishments are listed under their most recently known or used name. The study of these establishments has been grouped together by location and not their chronological order of operating. This first group of eating and drinking establishments are located in what is today known as North End on the Sussex side of the county boundary that runs through Felbridge.

This document sets out to discuss a brief history and development of eating and drinking establishments in general and the history and development of the following establishments in Felbridge, along with the lives of some of the people associated with each property: Pattenden’s Beer Shop, Sussex Brewery, East Grinstead Brewery and North End Workingmen’s Club, the Half-Way House, the Emperor and the Felbridge Hotel and Spa.

A brief history and development of eating and drinking establishments
Today we would consider a glass of water as the most basic way to quench a thirst but throughout most of recorded history people have drunk an alcoholic beverage of some description as it was generally the safest drink available. The most widely consumed alcoholic beverages in Britain were ale and cider as only the wealthiest could afford wine and spirits or, from the mid 17th century, tea and coffee made with boiled water, and only the very poor took their chances with water.

Ale was the safest drink that was widely available. It contained proteins and vitamins that supplemented a poor diet and because the water was boiled in the brewing process most water-borne infections were killed off. English ale was produced without the addition of hops and relied on herbs and spices to give flavour and had to be consumed fairly quickly before deteriorating. It is generally believed that beer made from hops arrived in England in 1400, in a consignment of goods ordered by the Dutch merchants living here who preferred their native hop-flavoured beer to the thick sweet strong English ale flavoured with herbs and spices. It has been suggested that during the reign of Henry VI many major towns tried to prevent the use of hops in brewing beer. However, by the beginning of the 16th century beer was gaining ground and there is a recipe from 1514 using hops, although it is thought that they were probably used to clarify and as a preservative rather than for flavour, [for further details see Handout – Hop Growing and Hop Fields of the Felbridge Area, SJC 09/01].

Historically, the geographical location of Felbridge, as a day’s journey half-way between London and the coast, may have have influenced the number of eating and drinking establishments within the area serving not only the local population and but also the traveller passing through. Since the Roman period the main London to the coast [Brighton] road passed through Felbridge, although not on the alignment of the current main road (A22), which has been the accepted route between London and the coast at least since the 16th century. The Roman London to Brighton road that passes through Felbridge is narrow suggesting that it is early in date and was undoubtedly used to transport iron/iron goods made from deposits of iron found locally [for further information see Handout the Roman Era of Felbridge, SJC 11/01].

During the Roman period the Roman’s built maisons, establishments offering food, drink, and over-night accommodation for travellers and their beasts of burden at about every twenty-five to thirty miles along these roads (the distance of about a day’s journey). These establishments were generally built near a stream/river crossing and, taking into account the Roman daily travelling distances, there should be a maison somewhere in the vicinity of the Felbridge area, unfortunately yet to be discovered. The Romans also brought the taberna, a place in which to sell wine, though, like a maison, there is no evidence of such a place in the Felbridge area. After the Romans had left Britain these tabernas also began to sell the native ale and became known as taverns.

From the 11th century large scale brewing was undertaken in the monasteries; however, outside of these establishments it was women who traditionally undertook the duties of brewing. Known as brewsters, they used their domestic pots and pans to brew ales placing an ‘ale pole’ outside their home to advertise its sale.

From the early medieval period, inns were established for travellers and pilgrims providing food, ale and accommodation. Later, inns were established for the provision of fresh horses and for food, drink and accommodation on the network of routes that crossed the country. Felbridge is located on one of the major routes out of London passing through Croydon to East Grinstead where it either headed east through Forest Row and on to Tunbridge Wells, or continued south to Uckfield where it split with one route heading east to Hastings, the other south to Lewes where it split again into three separate routes. One route headed west and led to Brighton, another continued south to Newhaven and the third headed east to Alfriston where the route split again and headed south to Seaford or continued east to Pevensey and on to Hastings. Being on a main route from London to the coast several inns and alehouses have appeared and disappeared over the centuries in the Felbridge area and perhaps one of the oldest documented references is the Red Lion at Felbridge Water and the most recent being The Emperor at North End.

Alongside taverns and inns, alehouses or tippling houses were established which have now evolved as public houses. These were in response to the excess ale brewed by households for their own consumption being sold to supplement their income, and from the late 15th century ale conners were employed to check the measure and quality of this home-brew. These ale conners later became market inspectors a role that has now developed into trading standards officers.

By the 16th century commercial brewers began to appear brewing not only English ale but beer made with hops, the earliest mass produced beer being porter, so named because of its popularity with ticket porters – men who collected and delivered goods around London’s commercial district and the docks. It was also in the 16th century that the government became concerned with excessive drinking that led to anti-social behaviour and as a response introduced the Alehouse Act in 1552. Under this act, consent was required from the local Justice of the Peace to sell ale or beer. Alehouses, inns and taverns were also required to enter into a bond to ensure good order was maintained within their establishment. A year later the Alehouse Act was followed by the Wine Act that required taverns to be licenced to sell wines. Initially licences did not specify a valid time-span but in 1729 a law was passed that made it necessary to re-new a licence on an annual basis at special brewster sessions. In 1577 a survey was carried out to establish the number of licenced premises in England and Wales and concluded that there were 17,367 alehouses, 1,991 inns and 401 taverns, by then collectively known as public houses. Today a licence is still required by a landlord although it has reverted to an open time-span but it can be revoked if the terms of the individual licence are not met.

In 1636 a survey of taverns was carried out by John Taylor and general observations of his findings show that many of the regulations of the 1553 Wine Act, brought in to regulate the cost and sale of wine, had either been ignored or repealed. The act had stipulated that taverns could only operate in cities, towns, corporate boroughs, port towns, market towns and the towns of Gravesend, Sittingbourne, Tuckisforde and Bagshott, also, no more than two taverns or wine sellers could be licenced in any one town, with only a few exceptions. However, John Taylor found that there were taverns in many more towns and villages that did not appear in the stipulated categories and the quota of taverns frequently exceeded the number allowed. Taylor’s survey found that the taverns of Sussex were conveniently spaced over the county, although wheeled transport was only viable during the summer months. The survey also shows that the existence of iron works increased the frequency of taverns along routes from the works due to the constant traffic from such places. The Felbridge area had both a blast furnace and hammer mill supplying ordnance to Woolwich from the mid 16th century [for further details see Handouts, Warren Furnace, SJC 01/00, and Wiremill SJC 03/06], and although this would have had little effect on the number of local taverns it may have had a bearing on the number along the route to Woolwich.

In 1686 a billeting return was compiled that provides statistical information on the number of inns and alehouses in Sussex, although they are not listed by individual name only the town or village in which they are located. The nationwide return was compiled for the government in response to political unrest and the possible need accommodate the Militia on manoeuvres around Britain. The survey lists 212 inns and alehouses in Sussex, along with associated stabling facilities. East Grinstead, which included the Felbridge Water area, had the highest number of guest beds at 103, with stabling facilities for 247 horses.

General analysis of the figures suggest that in the late 17th century there was an overwhelming need for stabling in Sussex that has been attributed to the poor state of roads through the Weald with the necessity to change horses frequently. To support this suggestion, coachmen travelling through Sussex, unlike other counties, were paid for a day’s travel and not for the distance from London. The poor state of the roads also crossed the county boundary, continued through Felbridge along the main London road, and well into Surrey.

At the time that coaching was at its peak in the 18th century, the most popular beer, porter, was 3d (1½p) a pot but was well beyond the pocket of the very poor. However, gin, which had initially been prescribed as a medicine for gout and indigestion, cost only 1d (½p) a quarter pint (150ml) and being relatively cheap in price and readily available became the poor man’s drink. To try and control the consumption of gin, the Gin Act was passed in 1736 that forbade anyone from selling distilled spirituous liquor without a licence. Unfortunately this had no effect on the consumption of gin and it was not until the 19th century when legislation was passed that imposed a tax on spirits that consumption of gin began to fall.

By the end of the 18th century there were an estimated 41,000 brewers, with 194 common brewers in London alone, a common brewer being someone who didn’t own an inn or alehouse. However, the majority of beers continued to be brewed by inns and alehouses with their own brewhouse attached. In 1830, the Beerhouse Act was introduced that enabled anyone to buy an excise licence for just two guineas (£2. 10) allowing them to sell ale, beer and cider without paying taxes. Freed of licencing control many publicans and shopkeepers saw this as a way of expanding their business which in turn led to a massive increase in the number of beerhouses. As a result the price of beer fell to an all-time low of 4d (2p) a quart (2 pints/1.2 litres) by the mid 19th century.

By 1841 there were 2,258 common brewers in England and Wales, with 27,000 inns and public houses with their own brewery attached, as well as 16,000 alehouses brewing their own beer. However, the fall in the price of beer inevitably led to debt for some publicans making them suitable propositions for common brewers to acquire their premises and tie them to selling only their beer, thus establishing the tied public house. A brewhouse would not be considered a public house. By 1871 the number of brewers had fallen to 3,000. This was due to increasing production costs, leading to many takeovers by more efficient commercial brewers keen to acquire their inns and taverns, and by the end of the century 60 per cent of the country’s alehouses and taverns were either owned or operating as tied houses only able to sell products from one brewery.

In 1876 it was estimated that every man, woman and child in Britain drank thirty-four gallons (155 litres) of beer a year. With the morality of the Victoria age, beerhouses were eventually brought under the control of magistrates after concerns about levels of drunkenness. Under their control licences were refused or suppressed and nearly all resulting closures were of beerhouses rather than public houses. To appease the temperance lobby measures had been introduced in 1872 that included a reduction in opening hours, increased fines for drinking offences and the prohibition of anyone under the age of sixteen from drinking alcohol.

It is hoped that this brief history and development of eating and drinking establishments gives a general context in which to view the eating and drinking establishments of Felbridge. This first part, covering the North End area, deals with identified eating and drinking establishments that have existed (or still exist) on what was once Grinsted Downe or East Grinstead Common, the waste lands abutting the demeane lands of the manor of Imberhorne, ‘the freehold of John Goodwin’ and the ‘Customerie lands of Henry Mercer and Nicholas Terrie’, as recorded in the Buckhurst Terrier. (The Terrier was a survey of all the lands held by Sackville family in 1597).

The Terrier records that John Goodwin held ‘lands called Paulters’ amounting to eight acres bounded by Edward Paine to the east, ‘the demeane lands of Imberhorne, called Burchett’s’ to the west, East Grinstead Common to the north and William Goodwin’s ‘freehold called Knights’ to the south. Henry Mercer held by copyhold dated 9th May ‘2 Elizabeth’ (1560), the land called ‘Paulters alias Mercers Land, five crofts sometimes Redneys, and a garden laying towards Picknock field’, amounting to twenty acres (no bounds) for which he paid 6s 6½d rent. Nicholas Terrie held by copyhold dated 22nd September ‘23 Elizabeth’ (1581), ‘land called Rowcroft’ amounting to three acres bounded by the demeane lands of the manor of Imberhorne on the east, south and west, and by East Grinstead Common on the north for which he paid 12d rent. Nicholas Terrie was also recorded as holding ‘land called Newlands’, amounting to nine acres, bounded by Edward Duffold’s ‘Picknott’ to the east, Edward Paine’s ‘Cooks’ to the west, East Grinstead Common to the north and ‘the way’ from East Grinstead to Imberhorne on the south, for which he paid 2s 3d rent per annum. The description puts this land on the site of what became Newlands House, now Newlands Crescent.

The following eating and drinking establishments of the North End area were or are all located on the afore mentioned area of East Grinstead Common.

Pattenden’s Brewery/Beer Shop
There is no documentary evidence for the name Pattenden’s Brewery or Beer Shop it is simply used in this document to identify their brewery/beer shop. Likewise, there is no documentary evidence for the exact location of it other than it being within their property on East Grinstead Common in the North End area.

The first documentary evidence for a connection between the Pattenden family and a brewing business is in the census of 1841 when John Pattenden was recorded as a brewer living with his parents and family on East Grinstead Common. The census order places the Pattenden’s property twelve households north of the site of Halsford House in the area of what is now 17, North End (Jaybee’s Stores). Although John Pattenden was recorded as a brewer in 1841, the following census records his father William and brother Thomas, as brewers, with George Pattenden (possibly his brother), later operating as a Beer Retailer on East Grinstead Common.

The Pattenden family originate from East Peckham in Kent and moved to the area when Samuel Pattenden married Elizabeth Waggone in East Grinstead in 1713. William Pattenden descends from John, a grandson of Samuel and Elizabeth, being born in 1786, one of twelve children of John and Elizabeth Pattenden [for further details see Handout, Pattenden family of Felbridge, SJC06/01].

William Pattenden married Amelia Dearling on 21st October 1814 in East Grinstead, and Amelia had been born in Horne in Surrey in 1791. William and Amelia had eight children, Amelia born in 1815, George born in 1818, James born in 1820, John born in 1823, Stephen born in 1825, Thomas born in 1830 and Caroline born in 1836. Daughter Amelia was born in Lingfield, George in Felbridge, Godstone, and the remaining six children in East Grinstead.

William Pattenden and his family were living at the site of the Brewery/Beer Shop on East Grinstead Common by 24th October 1820 when William purchased a copyhold property (part of ‘Mercers’ of the manor of Imberhorne) from Maurice Halford Barrow, gentleman of East Grinstead, for the sum of £350. At the time of purchase William Pattenden was listed as a yeoman, which is defined as a prosperous working farmer, and the property he purchased was described as ‘3 acres but now measured 4 acres 1 rood 7 perch upon which a tenement has some years been built’, implying that at sometime some encroachment and enclosure of the East Grinstead Common may have occurred.

Maurice Halford Barrow was born on 12th December 1775 in Horsham in Sussex, the son of Maurice and Mary Barrow. Maurice Halford Barrow became an attorney and on 17th September 1800, he married Mary Cole at St Leonard’s, Shoreditch in London. In July 1817, Maurice purchased the copyhold property on East Grinstead Common from John Simmonds for the sum of £192. The transaction, recorded in the Imberhorne Rentals Book, lists the properties former owners which include [John and Stephen] Sawyer, [Edmund and Elizabeth] Chapman, [William] Humphrey and [William and John] Eastland.

A prior entry is found in the Imberhorne court books of 1794 when, by the will of John Simmonds dated 3rd February 1780, he left his ‘2 tenements held of Imberhorne manor one in my occupation the other in my son John unto my son Francis Simmons and my son-in-in law Isaac Long, John’s one to be sold and the money divided between my children John, Bevis, Francis, Thomas, Sarah and Mary. My one to my wife’. The court noted that Isaac Long was deceased by the time. Francis Simmons was admitted to Rough Crofts, paying 12d per annum, along with three pieces of land containing approximately 3 acres, paying 1s 2d per annum to which John Simmons had been admitted on surrender of the holding by John and Stephen Sawyer on 19th October 1764.

In 1810 the Imberhorne court books again refer to a holding of 3 acres called ‘Rough Crofts’ including a ‘cottage, barn and 2 crofts of land’ when Thomas Simmonds, a bricklayer of East Grinstead, surrendered the holding to the manor of Imberhorne to Francis Simmons, a bricklayer of Meastham, Surrey. In this entry the property was described as ‘cottage, barn, 2 crofts of land called Rough Crofts by estimation 3 acres adjoining the common heretofore the lands of Edmund Chapman and Elizabeth his wife, before that William Eastland and John Eastland, once [possibly Thomas] Borers, formerly [Nicholas] Terrys, paying 12d’.

From the East Grinstead Tithe of 1842, it is evident that William Pattenden held over six acres of land, an increase of two acres compared with the purchased copyhold property from Maurice Halford Barrow in 1820, possibly acquiring the holding of John Simmonds of 1794. The East Grinstead Tithe and apportionment details that in 1842 William Pattenden owned and occupied the following land in the North End area:

Plot   Name                          Acreage
2297 Meadow                     02 00 07
2298 Cottage and garden     00 01 21
2299 Meadow                     00 03 06
2300 Meadow and building  00 03 08
2301 Meadow                     01 00 20
2302 Meadow                     01 00 21
Total                                    06 01 03

A comparison between the tithe map of 1842 and the East Grinstead Common map of 1816 shows that field numbers 2299 and 2300 (as numbered on the tithe map) totalling 1a 2r 14p, had been occupied by John Simmonds. This area of meadow and building now includes the site of 17, North End. The remaining four fields from the tithe map, amounting to 4a 2r 29p, appear on the East Grinstead Common map held by the manor of Imberhorne. This area now equates to the site of the allotments and several back gardens at North End. Based on these acreages it would seem that the copyhold property totalling 4a 1r 7p that was purchased by William Pattenden from Maurice Halford Barrow in 1820 consisted of the cottage and garden and three fields that had been held by the manor of Imberhorne in 1816, and that William Pattenden had acquired at some date (as yet undetermined) the two fields containing the meadow and building held by John Simmonds in 1816.

Map evidence suggests that there had been a building in William Pattenden’s holding since at least 1795. It was depicted set well off the road and would suggest that the property was the cottage in field 2298 of the tithe map, on the site of what are now the allotments off Imberhorne Lane. From the tithe apportionment, William Pattenden’s cottage was located in plot 2298 with what was described as simply a ‘building’ situated in plot 2300 adjacent to the main road. The exact nature of the ‘building’ is not recorded so it is possible that it may have been where the William, John and Thomas Pattenden brewed and/or the site of the Beer Shop. This building does not appear on the Gardner and Gream map of 1795 and would imply that it had been built after this date. Unfortunately, no evidence has yet come to light to confirm whether the Pattenden’s brewed from this building and it is not known when the Beer Shop operated. However, three things have been established, William Pattenden gave his occupation as a shopkeeper when he made his will on 28th May 1841, although the census recorded him as a lath renderer. John Pattenden was listed as a brewer in 1841, William and Thomas Pattenden being listed as brewers in 1851, and beer was being retailed from East Grinstead Common by George Pattenden who was advertising in a directory in 1855.

By 1851, it would appear that John Pattenden had ceased brewing as he was listed as a farmer of eight acres. He had left the Pattenden family home but was still living on East Grinstead Common, which in census order was situated five households north of the site of Halsford House. The most likely reason for his move and change of career was that on 22nd November 1845 he had married Frances Walder, the daughter of James and Sarah Walder, and they had started their own family. John and Frances went on to have seven children, Amelia born in 1846, Alfred born in 1847, Thomas born in 1849, Agnes born in 1850, Charles born in 1851, Fanny born in 1853 and Kate born in 1856, all the children born in East Grinstead. Replacing John Pattenden as brewers at North End were his father William and brother Thomas who, by 1851, were both listed as brewers occupying the property on the site of 17, North End and the allotments.

The brewery would have been supported by many local traders. In 1839 and 1840 John Prentice appeared in a local directory as a dealer in malt and hops, both essential ingredients of the brewing process, and in 1845 James Dickinson advertised himself as a corn, hop and seed dealer. The tithe map of 1842 also shows a hop field almost abutting the Pattenden holding (now part of Imberhorne Way off Imberhorne Lane). This field, 2165 on the tithe map, was 2a 3r 18p and based on the 19th century averages that an acre yielded 522lbs of hops and that it took 4lbs of hops to produce a barrel of beer, field 2165 would have produced nearly 13cwt (660kg) of hops, enough to produce about 360 barrels of beer. In 1840, John Dann was advertising as a cooper and in 1852 Edward Pace was advertising as a cooper, producing essential containers for storing beer.

From the court books for the manor of Imberhorne, William was granted a licence to cut down oak trees on various occasions. On 2nd April 1827 a licence was granted to fell ‘28 oak trees then standing on his copyhold of Mercers for repairs to his tenement’ and again on 19th April 1851, ‘7 oak trees for repair to his tenement’. An observation is that thirty-five oak trees would have provided rather a lot of timber for repairs! Unfortunately, William Pattenden died on 29th March 1852 and it would seem that he never actually started the second set of repairs to the tenement as the licence was re-granted by the court in 1853.

On the death of William Pattenden, his widow Amelia surrendered the holding at North End to William Dearling of Hackbridge Mill, Carshalton in Surrey, a miller. All that is currently known about William Dearling is that he was born about 1812 in Croydon.

It would appear that although William Dearling owned the copyhold he did not live there as on 7th May 1855 when he was granted an indenture of enfranchisement on the property, he still gave Hackbridge Mill as his address. It is also in 1855 that George Pattenden, possibly John’s brother, appears in Pigot’s Directory as a beer retailer on East Grinstead Common and it would seem likely that the retail outlet referred to was still operating from the site of 17, North End.

It has not yet been possible to determine when the Beer Shop ceased trading, but by 1861 the site of Pattenden’s Brewery/Beer Shop was occupied by Edmund Wise. By this date, George Pattenden had moved to a property seven households north of the site of Halsford House and was working as a lath renderer, the same occupation his father William gave in the 1841 census before being listed as a brewer.

Sussex Brewery
There is some evidence to support the proposition that Pattenden’s Brewery/Beer Shop evolved as the Sussex Brewery, operated by Edmund Wise who was occupying by 1861.

Edmund Wise had been born about 1815 in Bath in Somerset and moved to the site of Pattenden’s Brewery/Beer Shop sometime between 1852 and 1861, although George Pattenden had been operating as a beer retailer from the same property in 1855, the date would have been sometime between 1855 and 1861. The 1861 census records Edmund Wise as a cottager, defined as a yeoman, husbandman or craftsman, a similar trade to that of William Pattenden when he purchased to holding in 1820. Living with Edmund was his wife Lucy and their son Edmund. Lucy had been born Lucy Foat in 1829 and had married Edmund in 1851 in Brighton, her home town. The couple then moved to Paddington in Middlesex where their son Edmund had been born in 1853.

By 1871, the Wise family had moved to Glen Vue (now known as Railway Approach) in East Grinstead where Edmund senior was recorded as working as a brewer, and the property at North End, is named as Sussex Brewery, was being occupied by John Gallacher, a domestic gardener, and his family. The significance of the property being named Sussex Brewery is that in 1862 William Jones appeared in the East Grinstead Post Office Directory as ‘brewer, Sussex Brewery’, the business name later being taken over by Edmund Wise.

William Jones had been the proprietor of the Dorset Arms between 1848 and 1856 before being granted a 90-year lease by Nadler & Collyer on the Railway Hotel, London Road, East Grinstead (now the site of the Broadway Public House). William Jones remained at the Railway Hotel until it was taken over by Charles Hoadley in 1862, the same year that both William Jones and Edmund Wise are independently listed as brewers of the Sussex Brewery. Unfortunately no address is given for the Sussex Brewery until 1866 when Edmund Wise advertised himself as ‘brewer, Sussex Brewery Ltd., London Road’. At this date the name North End was not used and it generally appears as East Grinstead Common but also as London road, as such the implication is that part of the site of Pattenden’s Brewery/Beer Shop could have been used by Edmund Wise as the Sussex Brewery Ltd.

The brewery would have been supported by many local traders and the directories include several names and occupation associated with the brewing process. In 1858 Trayton Dover of Church Street in East Grinstead was advertising as a farmer and dealer in malt and hops. Between 1852 and 1867 Edward Pace and Mrs Elizabeth Pace were advertising as coopers and churn maker.

In 1871, there was a second brewer living a short distance from the Wise family at Glen Vue by the name of George Coomber. To date it has not been possible to determine at which brewery George Coomber was working in 1871. In 1874 George Peter Packham was advertised as a ‘beer retailer, London Road’, and in 1878 George Hinde was also advertised as a ‘beer retailer, London Road’, and it is possible that they were operating from the site of the Sussex Brewery as listed in the 1871 census, formerly Pattenden’s holding at North End. As for George Coomber, he went on to set up the East Grinstead Brewery at North End and by 1891 Edmund Wise was residing at Sackville College in East Grinstead, having lost his wife Lucy in 1873.

East Grinstead Brewery and North End Workingmen’s Club
The first inference of the East Grinstead Brewery at North End is in 1881 with George Coomber, the brewer who had been living near Edmund Wise in 1871, who is known to have a connection with the brewery. By 1881, George Coomber had moved from Glen Vue and was living at North End, working as a brewer. The census order places George Coomber’s property at twelve households north of Halsford House, compared to the site of the Sussex Brewery, formerly run by Edmund Wise, which was eleven households down in 1861 and ten households down in 1871. It important to point out that around this date that North End sees the beginning of a period of intense development and as such, the site of the breweries of George Coomber and Edmund Wise could be one and the same in 1881.

George Coomber had been born at Leggsheath Farm on Ashdown Forest in about 1840, being the fifth child of Edward and Rebecca Coomber [for further details see Handout, More Biographies of the churchyard of St John the Divine, Felbridge – Coomber, Darling, Jupp and Stone families, SJC 09/06]. George married Eleanor (Ellen) Elizabeth Elliot, on 28th October 1869 at Saint Clements, Hastings, Sussex. Ellen had been born about 1850 in Hastings, and they had just one child, Thomas, born between April and June 1867, in East Grinstead.

By 1891, George Coomber was recorded as the brewer of the East Grinstead Brewery, living and operating from 32-33, North End. It has been suggested that George took over from Edmund Wise at the Sussex Brewery as the names of Edmund Wise and the Sussex Brewery disappear from the local directories between 1871 and 1881. If George succeeded Edmund Wise there is map evidence to suggest that he re-located the brewery to 32-33, North End some time after 1876, as the East Grinstead Brewery building does not appear on the Ordnance Survey of 1876, but was up and running by 1891 when George was recorded in the census as residing there. A later addition to the brewery site appeared shortly after 1898, when the brewery at the rear of the property was connected to the property at the front by a long, single storey building on the east side of the plot. Comparison of an old photograph with the building suggests that this building was at one time used as a bottle washing plant, possibly working alongside the brewing operation.

The Sussex Brewery and the East Grinstead Brewery would have been typical small breweries specialising in the production of brown ale, which was a hopped beer by the 1800’s similar to today’s mild, and porter a dark beer resembling light stout, both working men’s drinks. It is interesting to note that at the time that the East Grinstead Brewery was established there had been a general decline in the number of brewers in Britain.

From the commercial entries of various East Grinstead Directories, George Coomber advertised himself as a brewer and maltster, promising ‘all orders punctually attended to’, as well as ‘finest home brewed ales etc. with strong, intermediate and mild ales, pale ales, stout, porter and table beers, the last at 6d to 10d a gallon’. The description of ‘brewer and maltster’ suggests that George not only brewed but also produced the malt required for the brewing process, as the traditional ingredients used in brewing beer are malt (made from barley), hops, sugar, yeast and water. Malt is the product obtained from steeping barley in water, the grain is then allowed to germinate, and then heated to halt the germination process. It is the heated malt that gives the beer its colour and flavour; the darker the beer the longer the malt had been heated. It also implies that George had a malting house somewhere in the area.

Brewery related traders that appear in the local directories around this date include the following. In 1881 Charles Dollery was living at North End working as a drayman, and in 1891 William Strip was working as a drayman and living in Imberhorne Lane. In 1881, Richard Marchant was living in the vicinity of Lingfield Lodge in London Road, working as ‘a clerk to a brewer’. Unfortunately it does not state which brewery he was attached to so he may have been working for either the East Grinstead Brewery run by George Coomber at North End, or The Hope Brewery run by John Dashwood, at Moat Road, on the site of what is now the Fire Station. Listed alongside the supporting traders from at least 1862 until 1890, when he was succeeded by Edward Steer, was Thomas Cramp, the secretary of the East Grinstead Temperance Society.

The East Grinstead Temperance Society was founded by Thomas Cramp who had taken a vow of abstinence from tea, coffee and alcohol in 1837. He had been born in Lewes on 21st April 1810 and had moved to East Grinstead when apprenticed to Mr Palmer, the bookseller, stationer and quill pen manufacturer, and he married Jane Pretty, the daughter of a Wesleyan minister on 25th June 1841. The Society initially met with violent opposition in East Grinstead and as a result Thomas Cramp was suspended from the Zion Church and removed from his post of Superintendent of the Sunday School. However, gradually the cause grew and eventually became one of the strongest temperance societies in England. At the time of his death in 1891 Thomas Cramp had acquired the respect of many leading members of the community and a clock was erected in front of the Literary Institute in East Grinstead in his memory. The following are a few entries to be found in his diary:
15th November 1844, Lord Elenborough passed through the town on his way to Kidbrooke. An arch of evergreens made to honour him, music played and bells rang also, but all was got up by a publican, who reaped the principal benefit, for the rioters spent the evening and part of the night at his house.’
12th August 1868, ‘The Judge has an attack of gout. Drinkers have not always settled their wine account when they pay their wine merchant.’
11th December, 1872, Fair Day. In consequence of the liquor shops being compelled to close at 11, there were but a few cases of rioting.’
9th February 1891 ‘A beershop closed today at Crowborough Town by the East Grinstead Magistrates! Hoo-rah!!’
17th April 1891, ‘First visitor to-day, a retired brewer (Mr Absalom) [The Hope Brewery 1857-1877]; second, a fierce innkeeper and violent opponent of our temperance work (Mr Tracy). Both stayed awhile and chatted very friendly.’

George Coomber experienced the strength of Thomas Cramp and the Temperance Society when he made an application for an off-licence in September 1888. As a brewery, the minimum quantity of beer that could be sold at one time was two gallons and drinking was not allowed on the premises. At a time when small independent breweries were fighting for survival, George applied for the off-licence to enable him to sell beer to the general public in smaller quantities than the minimum two gallons, he reasoned ‘that it was better to buy beer from him for home consumption than to visit the Star Inn at Felbridge’, although at this date the Star Inn was strictly controlled by the Gatty family. However, due to strong opposition from Temperance Societies, the local clergy and the Sunday Schools of the area, the off-licence for the East Grinstead Brewery was not granted.

After failure to obtain an off-licence it was suggested that a club be formed which was supported by Mr Stenning, whose family owned much of North End. The club, which became known as the North End Working Men’s Club, was set up in July 1892 with thirty-nine members, all working men living in the area. At or around the same time, the East Grinstead Brewery was taken over by Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd of Westerham, Kent.

Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd can be traced back to the early 19th century under Robert Day, a maltster and brewer who had descended from a family of maltsters of Westerham. The brewery assumed the name of the Black Eagle Brewery at around the same time as Robert Day was a member of a partnership that purchased the Black Eagle Brewery in Whitesgrounds, Bermondsey. The Bermondsey business traded successfully under Day Noakes & Company until Robert Day relinquished his interest in 1860 to concentrate on the Westerham business. The Bermondsey business was eventually purchased by Nevile Reid & Company Ltd of Windsor in 1918, being acquired by J Canning and Sons of the Royal Brewery of Windsor, in 1921, and eventually by Courage & Company Ltd in 1930. As for the Westerham business, Robert Day formed a new partnership in 1860, the partners being himself, Henry Spike, John T Noakes and Robert Muriel Martins. This partnership was dissolved in 1862 and replaced by a partnership between Robert Martin and Benjamin Collard Bushell, and it was Ben Bushel who was to guide the growth of the Black Eagle Brewery in Westerham for the next forty years.

The growth of the Black Eagle Brewery at Westerham centred round the development of the rail network that was gradually being built in southern England. Permission for two branch lines were granted in 1864, one between Duncton Green and Westerham and another from Westerham towards the west to link up with the Croydon line at Oxted, although it was not until 1881 that the first line was opened. The opening of this line gave access to the Metropolis, cutting the cost of transportation for both raw materials and finished products to and from the brewery. However, the second line was not constructed and it appears that because of the failure to build the line to Oxted, Ben Bushell decided to expand his markets to the south and east of Westerham. The East Grinstead Brewery at North End was purchased in 1892, one of the first expansions to the south for the Black Eagle Brewery of Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd.

George Coomber continued the brewery operation at the East Grinstead Brewery, trading under the name of Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd, until around 1899 when he and his wife Ellen moved to 21, North End, where George began operating as a milk dealer. Living next door to George and Ellen Coomber at 22, North End was John Hedger, who in 1901 was employed as a drayman, most probably working for the brewery at North End.

Although the brewery had been taken over, the North End Working Men’s Club was retained and in 1901, C H Everard JP was recorded as the honorary secretary, and William George West had been installed at 32-33 North End by Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd as the brewer’s agent and manager of the Working Men’s Club. William had been born the son of James and Mary West and had been christened on 29th April 1855 in East Grinstead. James and Mary had possibly eleven other children apart from William, they include, James born in 1845, William born in 1846, Louisa born in 1848, John born in 1850, Eliza born in 1852, George and/or Sarah Ann born in 1854, Caroline and/or James born in 1857, George born in 1859 and Stephen born in 1860. William Wise married Charlotte Berry [Bury] at St John’s Church, Felbridge on 30th September 1876. Charlotte, the daughter of Edmond and Mary Berry, had been christened at Slaugham in Sussex on 31st August 1851. Charlotte’s siblings include, Eliza born in 1853, William John born in 1855, Louisa born in 1858 and Edwin born in 1862.

William West remained as the manager of the North End Working Men’s Club until 1905 when he was succeeded by John Brown, being himself succeeded by Frederick Holder sometime before 1909. Frederick Holder held the position until 1911 when he was succeeded by Woodus Bannister, being then described as the caretaker of the club. Woodus remained the caretaker until 1923 when John Stone took over being succeeded by Richard Laker who remained there until 1937. In 1924 Harold Raw held the position of secretary of the club and by 1934 Leonard Scott had assumed the responsibility of secretary.

It is unclear when the brewery operation ceased at North End but the last advertisement for Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd, as brewers of North End appeared in 1905. Although Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd had ceased brewing they still controlled the North End Working Men’s Club, which had become known simply as the North End Club by 1928.

During the war years, Reginald Roper took control of the club until his death in 1948. It was under his stewardship that the North End Club celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1942 and two of the original thirty-nine members were still alive to celebrate the occasion, Thomas Coomber, the son of George Coomber who had initially set up the East Grinstead Brewery and the club, and Charles Baldwin of Imberhorne Lane. In 1946 Reginald Roper died and his wife Dora and daughter Nancy took over the club. A popular event during the time of the Roper’s was the Rabbit Pie Supper evenings that were given by the Blount family of Imberhorne. Nancy also recalls that on a Sunday morning there used to be a queue of men up to the North End Post Office (21, North End), waiting for the club to open at 12.00, this would be followed by the inevitable squabble over who had the straight glasses and not the ones with handles! The Roper ladies ran the club for two years, Nancy being paid the princely sum of 5/- a week to caretake, clean and serve in the club, before George Davis took over the stewardship in 1949. George Davis remained at the club for two years before being succeeded by Charles Polkington in 1951. Charles Polkington was succeeded in 1956 by Albert Edward Pitt who remained in the position of Steward of the club until his death in 1962.

During this afore mentioned years, the club was very much a male only, working men’s club. The steward and his family resided in the house at the front whilst the club consisted of a long building at the rear that contained a snooker table in the front part with the bar behind where the room narrowed, and the large room at the back with a very high ceiling (formerly the brewery), was used as a darts room. There was a door from the snooker room into the bar and another entrance to the bar was from a passage outside. Toilet facilities (men only) were accessed through this door and down an alleyway at the back, to the side of the darts room. By the mid 1970’s rules had been relaxed and the wives and girlfriends of the members also began to frequent the club. The snooker table was joined by a pool table, the two tables being re-located to the large room at the rear providing a larger bar and social area in the long room where discos were occasionally held.

In 1959, Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd, who still held the North End Club, were taken over by Taylor Walker, who in turn was acquired by Ind Coope (London) Ltd on 1st October 1962. Throughout all these take-overs, Bushell, Watkins & Company Ltd continued to brew until they went into voluntary liquidation on 19th July 1961, although the Black Eagle brewery continued to brew beer for Ind Coope for a further three years before finally ceasing on 3rd March 1965.

It has not yet been possible to determine how all these take-overs by different breweries affected the North End Club, but it remained open and active until October 1987 when fire wrecked the interior of the building shortly before completion of a refurbishment. The club remained closed after the fire and over the years became a derelict and dangerous building. At the time of the fire the club was the property of a registered Friendly Society held by three trustees whose names and whereabouts had become forgotten after thirteen years. In 2000 they were traced and in the summer of 2006, the property was put up for sale, affording an opportunity to view. The following is a description of 32 and 33 North End in 2006:

Front Reception Room: 19ft 3ins (5.9m) by 14ft (4.3m) [once two rooms]
Back kitchen: 12ft (3.7m) by 14ft (4.3m)
Basement: 18ft (5.5m) by 11ft 9ins (3.6m)

First Floor reached by a central staircase rising from the front reception room:
Bedroom 1: 13ft 9ins (4.2m) by 11ft (3.4m)
Bedroom 2: 13ft 9ins (4.2m) by 8ft 9ins (2.7m) [extending over a vehicular entrance on the north side of the property].
Bathroom: 10ft 7ins (3.3m) by 5ft (1.5m) [taken out of one of the bedrooms]

Long section: 55ft 6ins (17.1m) by 20ft 3ins (6.2m) opening to 22ft (6.8m) [original width: 15ft 3ins (5.8m)]
Rear section: 22ft 3ins (6.8m) by 21ft 9ins (6.7m)
Lean-to on north side: 28ft (8.6m) by 7ft 3ins (2.2m) [bottled beer store]
Brick outbuilding 25ft 6ins (7.8m) by 5ft 6ins (1.7m) [beer keg store]

Plot width: 30 feet (9.2m)

The Long section of the club appears to be where the fire started as it is heavily smoke stained and blackened and the ceiling has disappeared exposing charred rafters. Ceiling tiles have melted, dropping to the once lino covered, wooden floor. This wooden floor is badly rotten and set about 1 foot (30cm) above a concrete floor, which although only visible in one section where the wooden flooring has completely vanished, appears to be sloping south to north. The interior of this building shows scars of previous walls and there is evidence of a staircase that once ran from the north side of the building to a first floor, although this would have had very little headroom. When compared to an early photograph of the previously mentioned bottle washing plant this room shows striking similarities, with many of the walls matching features of the plant. The roof of this building is slate with a cowl in the ridge in the first third of the roof and a chimney stack on the south side just before the half way point.

The Rear section is a two storey building that was once the brewery as marked on the Ordnance Survey map of 1898. There is evidence that this building once had a first floor, although it is difficult to determine whether it was built with a first floor or whether it was a later insertion, but whichever the case it has long since been removed. The walls of the ground and first floor are made of brick with windows set into the north and south walls under clap-boarded gables with a tiled roof.

The arrangement of completely derelict and over-grown buildings currently take up the entire plot except for a small courtyard at the backdoor of the house extending to the rear of the vehicular access from North End on the northern end of the property. To date, no one has risen to the challenge of renovation or redevelopment of the site.

Half Way House
The Half Way House was a café that started operating in the early 1930’s, located at the junction of Imberhorne Lane with the main London Road at North End.

The site of the Half Way House was once part of the East Grinstead Common held by the manor of Imberhorne. On the East Grinstead Common map of 1816, the site was recorded as field no. 90, amounting to 1 acre 3 rood 12 perch, occupied by Samuel S Slater. On the tithe map and apportionment of 1842 the field was numbered 2162 and was recorded as part of East Grinstead Common being 1 acre 1 rood 18 perch, described as furze, held by John Wright as part of Imberhorne Farm, owned by the Earl of Amherst.

The first property on the site appeared between 1918 and 1924 when Laurence Arnold was advertised as a boot repairer of North End. He was joined in 1928 by F Webber, advertising as a hairdresser, North End.

By 1930, Laurence Arnold had relocated his business to Railway Approach, East Grinstead, and Barnard J Richardson had established a ‘coffee stall’ on the premises at North End which by 1934 had been re-named The Half Way House. Operating from a reasonably substantial house, Barnard Richardson advertised himself as the proprietor, stating:
‘Parties catered for; snacks at bar; hot and cold dinners; day and night services; good pull-up for transport; reasonable prices.’

Local residents recall the Half Way House as a ‘high class transport café’, being ideally situated on the main London Road, half-way between London and the coast, offering a convenient stopping-off location for lorry-drivers and travellers by car to buy a meal and refreshments on their journey. Barnard Richardson also had an arrangement with Mrs Hewitt of Imberhorne Lane who was often called upon to accommodate over-night stays for lorry drivers and on the odd occasion, for the bar-maids that served at The Half Way House.

Evidence suggests that Barnard Richardson went to great lengths to ensure that his customers were well catered for and fed on visiting The Half Way House, even during the war years (to the point of falling foul of the laws of the land), as the following newspaper article that appeared in the East Grinstead Observer on 28th August 1943, testifies:
A well-known East Grinstead resident, Barnard Richardson, of Half-Way House, North End, and proprietor of the Elite Café, London Road, has been fined £5 with 10 guineas costs, for supplying false figures to the ministry of Food and gaining more food points than he was entitled to. William Harry Leppard of 47, Cantelupe Road, East Grinstead, said he was employed from February 1st to 6th by Mr Greatorex, the East Grinstead Food Control Officer, to keep watch on the Elite Café and enter in a book the number of customers. On February 1st there were 153, 2nd there were 161, 3rd there were 157, 4th there were 155, 5th there were 141 and on the 6th there were 126. Miss Molly Fry of the East Grinstead Food Office estimated that the defendant was only entitled to 828 points, whereas on the number of meals he is purported to have served, the Food Office issued him 2,150 points.

Barnard Richardson was not alone in the violation of official regulations regarding the rationing of food during the war, and it is estimated that around 900 inspectors were eventually employed by the Ministry of Food to make sure that statutory orders were obeyed by customers, retailers and wholesalers.

It is not yet been possible to ascertain how long Barnard Richardson remained at The Half Way House, but in 1947 the property was occupied by Gerard Richardson along with Charles and Lillian Kemp and Sheila Sloman. Charles Kemp had been in business with his brother running Baldocks in Middle Row, East Grinstead, but took on The Half Way House as a solo venture, remaining there until 1953 when Donald and Irene Woodward occupied the property. Donald was a chef at Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel and Irene served in the Lobster Pot Bar at Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel. Local knowledge suggests that Barnard Richardson took over a new café at Purley in Surrey and The Half Way House was eventually bought by Harry Gatward of Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel from the Kemps. Again it has not yet been possible to determine how long Harry Gatward kept the property as a café but it was eventually sold and converted as a petrol station and garage, with flats above being taken over by Sargent and Brooker when they vacated their garage site in London Road in East Grinstead town. The garage operated until the early 1980’s before closing as a Mobil petrol station with repair workshops, remaining empty for many years before being redeveloped in June 2000 as offices, now occupied by Knighthood Corporate Assurance Services.

The Emperor
A more recent addition to the eating and drinking establishments in the North End area is The Emperor, a stylish Chinese restaurant and take-away specialising in Peking and Cantonese cuisine, located at 2, The Parade, Felbridge.

The site of The Parade at Felbridge was formerly part of Mercers enclosed off the East Grinstead Common, in the area of Felbridge known as Felbridge Water.

In 1842, the East Grinstead tithe and apportionment shows the site of The Parade as field 2307 owned by Earls De la Warr and Amherst of the manor of Imberhorne, occupied by William Payne, and field 2306b owned by the Earls De la Warr and Amherst, occupied by Charles Saunders.
Plot Name        Acreage
2307 Meadow 00. 03. 18
Total                00. 03. 18

Plot     Name     Acreage
2306b Meadow 00. 00. 20
Total                  00. 00. 20

William Payne held another property that was also part of the manor of Imberhorne in 1842. The tithe records the copyhold of the property held by George Lowdell, [pronounced Loud-ell], whose residence was Baldwins, Baldwins Hill in East Grinstead.
Plot   Name                  Acreage
2309 Arable                00. 03. 36
2310 Meadow             00. 01. 36
2311 Meadow             01. 02. 32
2312 House and garden 00. 01. 00
Total                            03. 01. 24
The house and garden in plot 2312, which was known as the Blue House, is now the site of the close of houses called The Feld, and the remaining plots encompassed the sites of Felwater Court and part of Stream Park, [for further details see Handout, Old Felbridge House and The Feld, SJC 02/01].

Charles Saunders also held another property that was part of the manor of Imberhorne:
Plot     Name                      Acreage
2306a Cottage and garden 00. 01. 39
2308   Meadow                 01. 00. 16
Total                                  01. 02. 15
The cottage and garden in plot 2306a, which was known as Rose Cottage, is now the site of Treck Diagnostics Systems Ltd in Imberhorne Lane.

On 30th May 1877, Sydney Poole Lowdell, the son of George Lowdell, purchased field 2306a and 2308, by then re-numbered as 77 and 89, from the Earl De la Warr of the manor of Imberhorne and on 13th October 1884, he purchased field nos. 2306b, 2307, 2309, 2310,2311 and 2312 amounting to 4 acres 1 rood 22 perch. On 6th November 1886, all this land which included the two cottages and the site of The Parade at Felbridge was purchased from Sydney Poole Lowdell by Charles Henry Gatty of Felbridge Place, for the sum of £2,000.

In 1911 the site of The Parade, plot number 27 amounting to .748 acres, was put up for auction as part of Lot 7, which was advertised as ‘a very valuable Freehold Building Estate’ for a ‘Gentleman’s First-class House or Villa Residences’. The area, including the site of Felwater Court and Stream Park, was purchased by Talbot Hugh Palmer but was developed as a parade of shops in response to the development of more housing at North End in the early 1930’s. Little is known about Talbot Palmer other then he was born in 1886 in Weybridge, Surrey.

After completion in 1936, The Parade included a butcher’s shop which is now a motorcycle shop; a hardware shop that eventually became Unwin’s off-licence, now The Emperor; a hair-dressers which is now a beauty and tanning outlet; a grocer’s shop which is now a car-phone sales outlet; a haberdashery shop which is now a hat hire shop and lastly a newsagent, tobacconist and confectioner’s shop that is still operating as such.

After the closure of Unwin’s in the early 1990’s the property was purchased by Eddie and Pauline Lai who converted the premises as The Emperor, a high-class Chinese restaurant with a take-away service that opened in September 1992. The Lai’s were not new to the catering business as they had been running Sandy Lane Fish Bar, the fish and chip shop in Crawley Down, since 1988 and Pauline’s parents had always been in the restaurant business.

The Emperor at Felbridge flourished, offering an up-market alternative to other Chinese restaurants in the area. Its popularity necessitated an expansion of the premises which were extended in 1997. Although still compact, the interior feels spacious, the illusion created with the positioning of large mirrors on the end wall. Having established The Emperor at Felbridge the Lai’s decided to expand their restaurant business, acquiring a site in Cyprus Road, Burgess Hill where a second Emperor was opened in May 2006.

The Emperor at Felbridge offers an extensive range of Peking and Cantonese cuisine along with Chef’s Specialities, as well as suggested set menus for between two and four people. One of the highlights of The Emperor’s culinary year is in February with its celebration of the Chinese New Year which consists of a special dinner that has been known to be accompanied by fire-crackers. A traditional Lion dance is sometimes performed as part of the festivities which is believed to bring happiness and luck and to scare off demons. The lion consists of a head with a long silk body and a tail that is elaborately painted and decorated with strings, fringes and tassels, under which dancers perform almost acrobatic movements to rhythmic drumming.

Felbridge Hotel & Spa
The Felbridge Hotel and Spa, formerly known as Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel, is not as old as its former name suggests being built in the early 1920’s to accommodate the growing number of motor vehicle travellers on their journeys between London and the coast.

The Felbridge Hotel is situated on the London Road on what was once East Grinstead Common, part of the manor of Imberhorne, in the area of Felbridge historically known as Felbridge Water. In 1816, the site of the hotel appears on the East Grinstead Common map as field nos. 1 and 2, occupied by Isaac Lowdell held of the manor of Imberhorne. The Lowdell family held a large portion of land in the Felbridge Water area.

In 1842 the East Grinstead tithe and apportionment record that the site of the Felbridge Hotel was still owned by Earl De la Warr of the manor of Imberhorne and occupied by George Lowdell, although the fields had been re-numbered as 2334 and 2337, the future site of the hotel being in 2334.
Plot   Name                  Acreage
2334 Furze and Rough 11. 02. 00
2337 Pasture/Meadow 01. 03. 21
Total                            12. 01. 21

On 1st March 1882, 2334, the site of the Felbridge Hotel, along with field nos. 2335, 2337, 2338, 2340, 2341, 2342 and 2343 totalling 27 acres 3 rood, was purchased from the De la Warr family by Charles Henry Gatty of Felbridge Place for the sum of £3,522 1/-. At the same date Charles Gatty also purchased the title and tithes on the 27 acres 3 rood for the sum of £74 4s 2d. The site then followed the same course as the estates of Felbridge Place, being inherited by Alfred Leighton Sayer and Charles Laine Sayer on the death of Charles Gatty in 1903, and purchased by Emma Harvey and the East Grinstead Estate Company in 1910. However, the site was not included in the initial auction of the Felbridge Place estate in May 1911 but did appear, as part of field no. 19, in the 1918 auction included in Lot 9.

Lot 9 was advertised as Summerlands Garden Village Estate, being described as ‘a charming rural site … on the main London Road… to appeal to the speculative builder for residences from £26 to £45 per annum for which there is a large demand from the town’.

Plot Name/description Acreage
19pt. Pasture 11.121
22 Pasture 3.280
23 Pasture 1.991
24 Pasture 1.351
25 Pasture 2.099
66pt. Pasture 1.563
1076 Pasture 3.129
Total 24.534

The catalogue then went on to say:
‘The attractions of garden village life, its convenience, its healthfulness, the possibilities of beauty for which it offers, not only within one’s own property but in the ideal surroundings, the interest of social life, and at the same time the easy access to London, combine to make these residential plots specially attractive to the purchaser of limited means.

In garden villages one enjoys all the best of the convenience of the town, the healthfulness and comfort of modern home-making, together with all the best that country life can offer.

Summerlands Garden Village, which it is proposed shall be laid out on the site of the old Stream Farm, comprises a number of freehold plots, having frontages up to seventy feet on the main London Road and with depths up to two hundred feet. The land, which is now choice pasture, faces south-west, and is situate on the confines of East Grinstead. It is absolutely ripe for development, and enjoys company’s water, sewerage, and lighting. These plots offer very attractive site for the erection of small or moderate-sized villas.

The Summerlands Estate offers special opportunities to builders and to purchasers for investment who know well from observation of other popular villages that houses readily sell long before they are completed.

An advantage rarely offered elsewhere is the extent of back land available at Summerlands.

Nearly every man or woman who loves the country seeks to prove his or her ability to raise for the family table better and earlier vegetables and fruit that can be bought from the markets or from neighbouring gardeners. The wife who wishes to furnish her table with eggs and poultry from her own pens wants space in which to carry on her poultry farm without annoyance to the neighbours. The family which has a number of young children wishes to keep a cow or two. To all of these, while they appreciate the beauty and convenience of the garden village frontage, the need for an extra acre or two is almost imperative, and it is fortunate that at the Summerlands Garden Village the extent of good farming land and meadow land at the back of the plots makes it possible to secure any extent of extra land that may be required.

The excellent Schools in East Grinstead, the Libraries, the facilities for all kinds of study, and for indulging every kind of interest; the Churches of every denomination; the social life of the town; the excellent shops in the town and the daily service by tradesmen’s cart, add to the many rural pleasure of Summerlands.’

This wedge-shaped area of land encompassed the current site of the Felbridge Hotel at the northern point, extending south along the east side of the London Road to what is now Yew Lane, along Yew Lane and then back along what is now Lowdell’s Lane and Furze Lane. It has not yet been possible to establish who purchased this piece of land in 1918 but in 1922 Major Thomas Stewart Inglis owned at least the site of the hotel when the first foundations were laid for the Felbridge Hotel. At a later date a field and a strip of land to the north of the wedge-shaped site were added to the site of the Felbridge Hotel complex being purchased from the Margary estate of Chartham, off Baldwins Hill.

Major Thomas Stewart Inglis, known as Major Inglis or T Stewart Inglis, was born the son of Thomas Stewart and Cassandra Inglis, in 1872 in St Pancras, London. Thomas Inglis senior was born in 1835 in Scotland and had married Cassandra Copping on 15th September 1860 at Weston St Mary, in Lincolnshire. Cassandra had been born in 1838 in Weston Hills, Lincolnshire, the daughter of Henry Copping, a farmer and his wife Millicent. At the time of their marriage, Thomas senior was working as a piano tuner and his father James Inglis was recorded as a piano forte manufacturer.

Thomas and Cassandra had five children including Thomas Stewart, Cassandra Stewart born in 1861, Louisa born in 1867, Beatrice Stewart born 1869 and Leopold James born in 1874. A little is known about their children, Cassandra married Edward Fincher in 1885 and they had three children, Ethel born 1888, Mable born 1889 and Muriel born 1893. Louisa married Alexander Colquhoun in 1898. Leopold enlisted with the Canadian Mounted Rifles, 1st Battalion in Winnipeg after being apprenticed to a piano maker. Leopold rose to the position of Sargent Trooper by the end of 1900 but sadly died of fever on the transport ship Roslin Castle on 1st January 1901.

In 1861, Thomas and Cassandra had moved from Lincolnshire and were living at 7 Hampstead Street, St Pancras, and Thomas was still working as a piano tuner. By 1871 they had moved to 117, Albany Street, St Pancras, and Thomas was working as a piano forte salesman. By 1881, with the Inglis family complete, they had moved again, this time to 39, Albany Street, and Thomas was working as a clerk to a piano forte manufacturer. In 1891, the Inglis family had moved yet again and their new address was 27, Oppidans Road, Hampstead. By this date Thomas was working as a commercial traveller for a piano forte manufacturer and his son T Stewart, by then aged nineteen, was working as an architect, and youngest son Leopold was working as an apprentice piano manufacturer.

On 15th July 1897, T Stewart Inglis married Ellen Mary Ann Austen at St George’s, Bloomsbury, London. Ellen was born in 1868, the daughter of Edward Austen a corn merchant and his wife Martha. At the time of their marriage, T Stewart was living at 24 Little Russell Street, London, working as an architect, and Ellen, known as Ann, was living at 80 Queen’s Crescent, London. T Stewart and Ann Inglis appear to have had only one child, Robert Stuart who was born in 1898. By 1901, T Stewart, Ann and Robert Inglis had moved to 7, Oppidans Road, a short distance from T Stewart’s widowed father Thomas who was still residing as 27, Oppidans Road, continuing as a commercial traveller.

During the First World War, T Stewart Inglis fought with the 9th Battalion of the Royal Field Artillery, being awarded a Distinguished Service Order, rising to the position of Major before receiving his 1914-15 Stars on 25th June 1915. It has not yet been possible to determine where his family was living during the war period but it is interesting to note that by 1914, T Stewart Inglis had embarked upon the development of west side of Rowplatt Lane, the first houses ready for occupation by 1915. It is known that by the mid 1920’s T Stewart Inglis had an architect’s office at 58, London Road in East Grinstead (now the site of Abbey National) and the Royal Institute of British Architects lists him as flourishing between 1916 and 1926 with an office in Streatham. He was made a Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1925 and was also a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries and a Fellow of the Institute of Structural Engineers. Wherever he was based, T Stewart Inglis must have been in the area or had contacts in the area at the time of his purchase of the site of the Felbridge Hotel.

The Felbridge Hotel was designed by T Stewart Inglis and constructed by W M Heselden, a local builder. One of the men employed in the construction of the hotel, Thomas Pentecost, recalled many years later:
There was nothing there – just a field. I was the first one in the field and there was just grass, a farm gate and a big pit. There were also a lot of furze bushes in the area. I don’t know where people get all these ideas from about older buildings. There was nothing there. We started from scratch. Major T S Inglis employed twelve men to build the property and it took about a year, but since then there has been many additions to the hotel. Before the car park there was a row of garages at the front.

I remember putting up a big sun dial on the wall by the main entrance, but I haven’t seen it for many years. I don’t know if they took it down, sold it or if it is covered by ivy. I believe the oldest features of the hotel are the bricks used to build it. Major Inglis used to own a brickyard and we used old materials from there.

The site was common land with a public footpath opposite Imberhorne Lane. In return for being allowed to develop the site Major Inglis built two roads for the council, one of them being Furze Lane.

The hotel opened under the name Ye Felbridge Hotel and resembled a large private house with an assortment of exterior wall finishes. The building included tile hanging, stone block-work, timber framing and jettying, typically fashionable features in the first quarter of the 20th century that harked back to the Tudor and Jacobean periods for inspiration and style. The tiled roof incorporated an assortment of heights, a long catslide, gables and dormer windows, and at the first floor level on the east side of the property there was an open balcony under an over-hanging roof, reminiscent of the balconies found on several of Inglis’ smaller properties in Rowplatt Lane.

Within a few years of construction the hotel had been extended with a short range abutting the catslide roof, with three dormer windows in the front wall that cut into the roof line. Attached to this came a long wing resembling a Wealden house with timbered first floor jetties either side a central recessed wall with an entrance way beneath, running parallel to the London Road. There was a further extension to the ‘Wealden’ wing with a lower stone and brick built wing set with dormer windows and extending to the rear, a similar extension, thus creating a courtyard effect behind the entranceway. The main building of the hotel was also doubled in size with an extension to the rear.

In 1928 T Stewart Inglis purchased a piece of land opposite the Felbridge Hotel, now the site of Felwater Court and Stream Park. This had been operating as Stream Place Gardens Ltd, market gardeners, under Secretary George Hadaway in 1927. In 1934 and 1935 Stream Place Gardens were still operating but were now occupied by Walter Henry and John Ironside. It is currently unclear whether the market gardens supplied the hotel with all its needs but the plot housed greenhouses in which flowers for the rooms were grown, along with a kitchen garden with soft fruit, rhubarb and vegetables. The gardens were still in use in the late 1940’s when Jim Chewter was offered a job there by John Farmer. Jim had been working at Hogger’s Nursery after leaving the forces. In Jim’s time, the greenhouses were used to grow tomatoes and the surrounding kitchen garden grew vegetables like potatoes, produce used at the hotel. He also cut the grass and lawns around the hotel and trimmed the hedges. The kitchen garden and greenhouses were still in use when he left the employ of the hotel in about 1958, but they had ceased being cultivated and lay derelict by the early 1960’s.

In 1928 an advertisement appeared for the hotel that read:
The Felbridge Hotel
(fully licenced)
No connection with “Felbridge Park” Hotel

“Where the visitor is an individual not a number”

The Leading Family and Motorist’s Hotel in the district, with a world-wide reputation for Comfort and Best English Food.

Private Luncheon and Dinner Parties specially catered for.

Sandy soil – 300 feet above sea level – 14 acres – two Hard Courts – 25 Bedrooms – Hot and Cold running water – Four Bathrooms – Log fires –
Old-world Dining Room seating 100

Only the Best English Meat is served in this Hotel.

Resident Proprietor: Manageress:
T Stewart Inglis Miss E Brown

Phone East Grinstead 223

The Hotel is on the main road, one mile from, and on the London side of East Grinstead.

Initially T Stewart Inglis was a resident proprietor at the Felbridge Hotel and many of the staff appear to have lived-in, including the manageress of the hotel. In 1928 T Stewart Inglis opened The Roebuck Hotel at Wych Cross, which he had purchased from Mrs Fisher, the widowed daughter-in-law of Bishop Fisher the vicar of Forest Row, for the sum of £4,150. At the time of purchase the property was a private house having had its licence surrendered by a previous owner in 1887. T Stewart Inglis opened The Roebuck as a hotel shortly after purchase and like the Felbridge Hotel, set about extending The Roebuck Hotel, installing a staff block and forcing house by 1933.

By the 1930’s, either by default or design, the Felbridge Hotel resembled a rambling building of considerable age, presumably prompting the name The Old Felbridge Hotel that it had acquired by then. This image was also endorsed by the sun dial that sported a 1700’s date which had been affixed to one of the exterior walls by Vernon Shinn, another local builder. The interior of the hotel also echoed the ‘old’ appearance of the exterior, with dark wooden beams, inglenook fireplaces and lattice windows.

In 1937 T Stewart Inglis switched his residency from the Felbridge Hotel to The Roebuck, leaving the Felbridge Hotel under the management of Miss Emily Brown who had been the manageress at the hotel since it opened in 1922. T Stewart Inglis remained at The Roebuck until 1944 when he sold it to Captain Ralph Lowther Jolliffe, having already sold the Felbridge Hotel the year previous to Harry Gatward. It has not yet been possible to determine where T Stewart Inglis went after he left the Roebuck Hotel but he died at the age of eighty-one in Cardiff, South Wales.

Harry Gatward took over the Felbridge Hotel in 1943 and in 1953 the Gatward family took up residency at the hotel. Over the next ten years, Harry Gatward, together with his wife Olive, initiated a series of changes and developments that saw the hotel grow from a quaint, ‘olde worlde’ local hotel to a major hotel with modern facilities and conveniences. During the 1950’s the hotel still had permanent residents and was a stopping off point for travellers wanting a meal in the restaurant, particularly well-healed customers, on route to Glyndebourne. The Gatwards also purchased Old Felbridge House opposite the hotel [for further information see Handout Old Felbridge House and The Feld, SJC 02/01], and a large property called Redgarth to the south of the hotel, the pair of properties being used as annexes to the hotel for staff accommodation.

By the mid 1950’s the Lobster Pot Bar had been opened which offered slightly less formal meals and The Oak Room had been opened to accommodate private functions. An advertisement from 1958 stated:
Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel

Dinner Dances every Saturday, 8.15 till Midnight, Dancing to Henry Blakeney and his Band, Evening Dress optional – 17/6 per person.

The Oak Room
is now available for private Dinners, Dances, Wedding Receptions, Birthday and Cocktail Parties.

Lobster Pot Bar
for Grills, Cold Buffets, Oysters.

Further changes were made by the Gatwards based on ideas gained from trips to Europe, Africa and North America, and in 1960 the Bahama Pool and Bahama Bar was opened to the public. The outdoor pool was advertised as the first in Europe to be heated by solar energy and was set in a landscape of sun-loungers and palm trees with the Bahama Bar serving exotic cocktails reminiscent of holidays spent in the Caribbean. At a time when most people holidayed in Britain and with the birth of the Mediterranean holiday in its infancy, the Bahama area of the Felbridge Hotel would have seemed very exotic.

By the mid 1960’s the hotel had gained a further fifty bedrooms, all equipped with a private television and a bathroom, and the parking facilities had dramatically increased to cater for those staying in the hotel and accommodate those attending private functions. In 1968, Harry and Olive Gatward retired from the hotel business leaving their sons to run the Felbridge Hotel.

The Gatward boys continued to expand the hotel and by 1970 the Tudor Ballroom was opened, and a second private function room. The hotel brochure pointed out to its reader the following:
Dining room seats 250, outdoor Bahama Pool adjacent to the Bahama Bar, resident band – Al Peters Quartet, catering for Saturday Dinner Dances (open to non-residents), licenced Club with Dancing and Dinner to 2am, membership on application, Lobster Bar for quick and tasty meals. Rooms: Lounge, Restaurant, Cocktail Lounge Bar, Lobster Pot Bar and Tudor Room. On Boxing Day morning the Old Surrey and Burstow Hunt meet on the forecourt and are served with a Hot Stirrup-cup.

It is unclear when the tradition of the Boxing Day Meet was started at the Felbridge Hotel but it was an annual event, which before these politically correct times, was enjoyed by participants and on-lookers alike. At one Meet in the early 1970’s it was estimated that there were ‘three thousand spectators, thirty horses and riders, three serving wenches and old Uncle Tom Cobleigh and all’, uncle Tom being played by Albert Palmer of Lingfield dressed in a Cobleigh costume of smock, gaiters and top hat. Another character that attended the Meet regularly was Jimmy Edwards who was well known as a radio and television comedian. Jimmy was born James Keith O’Neill in 1920 and served in the Royal Air Force during World War II, earning the Distinguished Flying Cross. His Dakota was shot down in 1944 and his resulting injuries required plastic surgery which he disguised with a large ‘handlebar’ moustache that became his trademark feature. Being a rather large gentleman he was easily recognisable at the Meet, sat astride his equally large grey dappled horse. A more elegant regular participant was a striking lady who rode side-saddle, dressed in a blue velvet riding habit and long skirt with a veiled, short black top hat.

Tragically in the mid 1970’s the Felbridge Hotel was damaged by fire that ripped through the Gatward accommodation above the Lobster Pot Bar, fortunately being contained mostly to this area. Repairs were swift and the Felbridge Hotel brought out an updated brochure that advertised the following:
Tudor Room with seating capacity of 250, Lobster Pot for informal snacks and drinks, Lounge Bar, Restaurant, Oak Room – seating capacity of 100 or buffet capacity 200, Acorn Bar – attached to Oak Room, Felbridge Club – resident’s bar, Bahama Pool and Bahama Bar.

By the mid 1970’s the Felbridge Hotel played host to the 208 Disco, held weekly on a Sunday evening in the Oak Suite, a large function room at the rear of the hotel, presided over by the DJ’s from Radio Luxembourg. In keeping with new trends this was succeeded by a Roller Disco when roller skating became a popular past time.

At the end of the 1970’s and the beginning of the 1980’s the Felbridge Hotel suffered a series of three fires. The first was in 1979 but fortunately the fire was contained to a banqueting room. A year later in December 1980 a wooden store was gutted at the hotel, but nothing could compare to the fire that broke out in February 1981. It was the biggest fire seen in the Felbridge area and damage to the hotel was put at between £1 million and £1½ million. The fire was said to have started in a canopy covered barbeque adjoining the hotel where a baron of beef was being slowly roasted for the following day. Over 600 people had to be evacuated from the hotel attending a disco in the Lobster Pot Bar, and a wedding reception party and celebration dinner in the function rooms. Fortunately the only casualty was a fireman, who was not badly injured, who fell from a collapsed roof.

Although sixty per cent of the hotel had been gutted and seven bedrooms were completely destroyed, the hotel re-opened in May 1981, and a programme of re-building commenced to replace the banqueting facilities as well as providing a completely new Leisure Centre and indoor Swimming Pool and Night Club. Sadly Harry Gatward never saw the completion of this extensive re-build programme as he died at the age of eighty on 29th December 1982 on one of his periodical return trips from the Caribbean where he had made his home to the Felbridge Hotel.

In 1983, after the completion of the re-build, the Felbridge Hotel offered a new carvery restaurant in what had been the Lobster Pot Bar, facilities for residential and non-residential conferences, a fully equipped Health Club with an indoor swimming pool, sauna baths and a gymnasium, and the Night Club. However, the Night Club, called The End of the Universe, did not prove successful and was refurbished as a bar area called the Felbridge Pub. In an article, the hotel was described as 3 Star with a ‘red-carpeted lobby furnished with French-style reproduction chairs and settees upholstered in gold dralon. The 48 bedrooms, each with private bathroom and colour TV are in an L-shaped block over-looking the swimming pool’. It was a time when many of their clientele were air crews from Gatwick and business men visiting international companies based at East Grinstead. It was also around this time or shortly after that the Gatwick link minibus service was instigated to ferry customers and their luggage to and from Gatwick airport.

In 1986, the Gatward family decided to sell up the hotel business and leave England, settling in Jersey, and the Felbridge Hotel was purchased by Ladbroke Hotels. In 1988, Ladbroke Hotels bought the world renowned Hilton chain of hotels and changed their name to Hilton. On acquisition the chain of hotels were divided into three categories, which were: 1) Hilton International, very large, top class hotels, 2) Hilton International, not so large hotels in England only, and 3) Hilton Associates, smaller Hilton. Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel fell within the last category. On 1st June 1988, Michael Golder, with financial backers, bought seven of the Hilton Associate hotels, which included the Felbridge Hotel, and began business as Penguin Hotels.

Over the years the Felbridge Hotel has played host to many notable people. As already mentioned Jimmy Edwards was a regular visitor at the Boxing Day Meet and, as a supporter of the Guinea Pig Club, entertained them at their reunions held annually, this year being the last official reunion to be held at the hotel due to the advancing ages of most of the club members. The name ‘Guinea Pig’ was affectionately given to the burns victims who received treatment from Archibald McIndoe at the Queen Victoria Hospital as a result of injuries sustained during World War II requiring plastic surgery. In 1941 the Guinea Pig Club was formed and was primarily for ‘Guinea Pigs’, patients who had been a member of an aircrew and received at least one operation at the hospital. Doctors, surgeons and scientists were honorary members, and Club benefactors were Friends of the Guinea Pig Club, with Archibald McIndoe as president.

The club had intended to be just as a social drinking club that would disband after the war had ended, but it grew in strength and through the generosity of many people became financially sustainable. By the end of the war there were 649 Guinea Pigs, made up of British, Canadian, Australian and New Zealander fighter pilots and bomber crew who had received plastic surgery at the Queen Victoria Hospital as a result of burns received during the war. After the war communication has been maintained by a magazine published twice a year which is distributed worldwide, and the annual reunions generally held at the Felbridge Hotel. Since the death of Archibald McIndoe in 1960, the position of president has been held by Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, who has visited the reunions on several occasions.

At the reunions, the Guinea Pigs have enjoyed a series of top line names who have entertained them at the events. One of these entertainers was Jimmy Edwards, who was a great supporter of the Guinea Pig Club. Other top names have included Arthur Askey, Cilla Black, Leslie Crowther, Rolf Harris, Dame Vera Lynn and Norman Wisden. Another celebrity who was a guest at the hotel was John Wayne who stopped off on route to the home of Sir Winston Churchill at Chartwell in 1974.

In 1983 the hotel was the setting for what could be a novel written by Frederick Forsyth, full of mystery and political intrigue. At the height of the cold war, Oleg Bitov, a Soviet journalist who had returned to Russia after defecting to the West, claimed that he had been drugged, kidnapped and tortured by British Secret Service agents and held against his will at Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel. In response the Home Office denounced his claims as ‘absurd and offensive’. Oleg Bitov claimed that he had been taken to the Felbridge Hotel by British Intelligence Officers and had stayed there under the name of David Locke. Hotel records confirmed that a David Locke had checked into the hotel on 10th September 1983 and stayed for two nights, paying cash to settle his bill. Reception staff did recall two men who also stayed at the hotel around the same time who had since been named as British Intelligence officers. They were remembered for their business-like dress although they kept different hours to normal businessmen. Unfortunately none of the staff could remember David Locke!

On another political level, John Major, former Prime Minister, visited the hotel in November 1999. He was appearing as the guest speaker at the annual dinner hosted by the chairman of the Mid Sussex Conservative Association. The dinner was also attended by Nicholas Soames, the Mid Sussex MP.

By the 1990’s the Felbridge Hotel had changed its name from Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel to the Felbridge Resort Hotel and in 1994, was sold to Jarvis Hotels, being renamed The Jarvis Felbridge Hotel. Two years later the hotel was advertised as the Jarvis Hotel and Country Club and had secured Sebastian Coe’s name to back the Health Club which included the indoor swimming pool, the outdoor heated swimming pool, sauna, whirlpool spa bath, steam room, gymnasium, cardio theatre, aerobic studio, tennis courts, beauty salon with sports therapy and hair salon. By 2002, the hotel had yet another name change, this time it became known as the Ramada Jarvis Hotel, East Grinstead, when Jarvis went into partnership with Ramada UK.

In February 2005, the Jarvis partnership with Ramada UK sold the Felbridge Hotel to Paul Warren of New Century Property Development, with the name change to Felbridge Hotel. He currently works as a property developer for the company New Century Property Development Ltd based in Wilson Street, London. A keen Formula Palmer Audi driver, Paul is currently sponsored by the Felbridge Hotel.

In April 2005, the Felbridge Hotel was advertised as:
120 en-suite bedrooms including executive studios fitted with power showers and large family rooms able to accommodate five persons.
Extensive conference and meeting facilities.
Comprehensive events facilities.
Ballroom capable of taking events with up to 300 people.
Health Club with swimming pool, spa, steam and sauna rooms, fully fitted gym, treatment room and hair salon. Available for use by hotel guests and local memberships.
Licenced to conduct civil wedding services.
Hotel bar.
Non-residential breakfast, morning coffee and afternoon tea.
Airport parking packages with on site parking.

In early 2007, the Felbridge Hotel began an extensive refurbishment programme and re-branding to bring it into the 21st century, and on 19th April 2007, the new style, 4 star, Felbridge Hotel & Spa held its official opening. The hotel now offers 120 bedrooms all with en-suite and high pressure showers, air conditioning, flat screen television, high speed internet access and twenty-four hour service. There are six grades of rooms, Superior Double, Executive Double, Luxury Double/Twin, Luxury Studio Double/Twin, Junior suite and Luxury Junior Suite, and a Honeymoon suite. Robes, slippers and luxury products are provided in the luxury studio and luxury junior suites, a welcome basket of fresh fruit and bottle of red or white wine will also be offered to those checking into the luxury rooms, and rose petals and chocolates await the honeymoon couple.

There are two restaurants, a new Anise Fine Dining Restaurant that provides lunch and dinner with the flavour of the West End, and the Bay Tree Brasserie which can seat eighty guests and will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner with a wide selection of reasonably priced food. Both restaurants are open to both guests and non-residents. The ballroom has been enlarged to accommodate 300 seated guests and 500 delegates for a theatre style conference. It also has acoustic sliding doors to enable the room to be reduced in size for smaller events. The room opens onto a large courtyard area with landscaped gardens making it an ideal venue for weddings. The Ashdown suite offers an exclusive venue that can accommodate 100 delegates and the Business Centre offers ten rooms for conferences and meetings.

The Chakra Spa and fitness centre includes a gymnasium, five fully equipped beauty treatment rooms, as well as the completely re-vamped kidney shaped indoor swimming pool and separate spa pool. Treatments available include facials, a complete range of massages including full body, back, neck and shoulder, Indian Head and aromatherapy, body wraps, tanning and waxing, as well as a nail bar and hair dressing salon.

The Felbridge Hotel & Spa now seems set to not only face the 21st century but also its 100th anniversary in fifteen years time.

Eating and Drinking establishments of Felbridge – Part II
The second part of the eating and drinking establishments of Felbridge will cover the area of Felbridge known as Felbridge Water situated on both the Sussex and Surrey side of the county boundary that runs through this area. The eating and drinking establishments to be covered are, Inkpen’s Alehouse, the Red Lion, Harts Hall Hotel, the Star Inn, the Happy Eater and the White Duchess Hotel.

General Introduction
Handout – Hop Growing and Hop Fields of the Felbridge Area, SJC 09/01, FHA
Brewers and Distillers by R Burliston
Handout – Roman Era of Felbridge, SJC 11/01, FHA
Pubs and Publicans by R Burlison
Sussex Taverns in 1636 by J B Caldecott, SASC, vol79 p61-73, ESRO
An Historical Atlas of Sussex by K Leslie and B Short
Handout – Warren Furnace, SJC 01/00, FHA
Handout – Wiremill SJC 03/06, FHA
Buckhurst Terrier, FHA
Pattenden’s Brewery/Beer Shop
Pattenden Family Tree, FHA
Handout – Pattenden family of Felbridge, SJC06/01
Imberhorne Rentals Book, AMS 5909/13, lib 9 p125, ESRO
Imberhorne Court Book, 1810, Will of John Simmonds, 1780, AMS 5910/3, ESR0
East Grinstead Tithe map and apportionment, 1842, WSRO
East Grinstead Common map, 1816, Ref 39454, WSRO
Gardner & Gream map, 1795, after Yeakell & Gardner map 1778, FHA
Census, 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891, 1901
Pigot’s Directory, 1839, 1840, 1855
East Grinstead Post Office Directory, 1851, 1852, 1855
Kelly’s Directory, 1890, 1891, 1899, 1903, 1905, 1911, 1913, 1915, 1927, 1938
Melville’s Directory and Gazetteer of Sussex, 1858
Deacon’s Court Guide, Gazetteer and County Blue Book, 1881
East Grinstead and its Environs, c1890
Sussex Brewery
East Grinstead Post Office Directory, 1851, 1852, 1855, 1859, 1862
East Grinstead Brewery/North End Club
100 Buildings of East Grinstead by M J Leppard
East Grinstead Bulletin no.28 p9, FHA
Handout – More Biographies of the churchyard of St John the Divine, Felbridge – Coomber, Darling, Jupp and Stone families, SJC 09/06, FHA
O/S map 1878
East Grinstead Post Office Directory, 1878, 1887,
Kelly’s Directories 1924, 1927, 1928, 1930, 1934, 1938
East Grinstead Electoral Roll, C/C 70 100-161, ESRO
Documented memories of N Kingshott, FHA
Westerham Ales – A brief history of the Black Eagle Brewery, Westerham, by P Moynihan and K Goodley
Local newspaper article, Men’s Club goes up for sale after fire, EGC, 3/2/00, FHA
Local newspaper article, Club owners are found after appeal, EGO, 2/2/00, FHA
Half Way House
The East Grinstead Directory, 1928
Kelly’s Directories 1928, 1930, 1934, 1938
East Grinstead Electoral Roll, C/C 70 100-161, ESRO
Documented memories of Barbara Harnblow, former resident of Imberhorne Lane, FHA
Documented memories of A J W Jones, former resident of Stream Park and Imberhorne Lane, FHA
Barnard Richardson article, EGO, 1943, FHA
Black Market, http://66.102.104/search?q=cache:tpedjTr9tGoJ
Felbridge Hotel & Spa
Handout – Old Felbridge House and The Feld, SJC 02/01, FHA
Felbridge Place Estate sale catalogue and map, 1918, FHA
Army Service Records, WO/372/10, FHA
Memories of T Pentecost, EGC article, 5.3.81, FHA
Inglis service records, WO/372/10, FHA
Thomas T Stewart Inglis, RIBA archives
Thomas T Stewart Inglis, Who’s Who 1925, WSRO
The Roebuck, Wych Cross by EC Byford and M Leppard, EG Bulletin 43 p10-12, FHA
East Grinstead Electoral Roll, C/C 70 100-161, ESRO
Stop off point for well-healed opera fans, by M Leppard, EGC article, 17.11.05, FHA
The History of the Felbridge Hotel, by anon. member of staff, FHA
Man behind hotel success, EGC article, 27.1.83, FHA
Advertisement for Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel, 1958, FHA
Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel brochure, c1960, FHA
Advertisement for Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel, 1970, FHA
Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel brochure, c1970, FHA
3,000 at Hunt … And Uncle Tom Cobleigh, local newspaper article, c1970
Advertisement for Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel, 1975, FHA
Advertisement for Ye Olde Felbridge Hotel, 1983, FHA
Night of the Big Fire, EGC, 26.2.81, FHA
Jimmy Edwards,
Guinea Pig Club,
Memories of Stalag 9C, NIF article, 2&4.7 1987, FHA
Film Star lunch, local newspaper article, 1974, FHA
John Wayne,
Britov claim denounced, D Telegraph article, 19.9.1984, FHA
Former prime minister is a Major hit at Tories’ dinner, EGO, 18.11.99, FHA
Sebastion Coe Health club brochure, FHA
Advertisement for The Felbridge Hotel, 2005, FHA
The Felbridge Hotel brochure, 2005, FHA
Revamp takes hotel in 21st century luxury, EGC, 18.1.07, FHA
The Felbridge Hotel,

Our thanks are extended to Eddie and Pauline Lai for help and information on The Emperor;
Trevor Carpenter, concierge of the Felbridge Hotel and Spa for his information regarding the hotel and Bob Marchant for his information on the Guinea Pig Club reunions.

SJC 05/07