The Alma


The Alma


On St Martins Hill, at the bottom of Folkestone Road, stood The Alma.  The picture above shows it dressed overall for the Silver Jubilee celebrations in 1977. 

Once owned by Thompson and son, brewers, of Walmer, Smith (1991) records a Mrs Paramour opening the doors at 5 a.m. in 1876.

Originally no. 19 Folkestone Road, the numbering was changed when the various terraces between here and York Street were incorporated into the numbering, when it became no. 37.

When it closed it was owned by Charrington's Brewery.

The pictures below show the pub and its sign as it looked in 1983.


(Picture Courtesy of Eddie Chard)

(Picture Courtesy of Eddie Chard)

The pub was closed for some years during the 1990s, but has recently been refurbished and re-opened as the Renaissance.

To the right of the pub is a flight of steps leading to Military Road and Christ Church used to stand the other side of these steps.  To the left was a row of shops and cottages where my family lived for a time in the early 1900s - these are long-since gone, having been damaged in the war.




Further down Folkestone Road at No. 3 was the Griffin.  Smith records that it was built as a beerhouse around 1845 under the name of the Upholsterer's Arms and opening at 5 a.m. from 1878 along with the change of name to the Griffin; this continued until the early years of the 20th century.

The first mention of the Red Cow on the corner of Folkestone Road is, according to Smith, in 1791, when it was kept by Thomas Starr.  In 1805, mine host was one "Mighty Merit".  In 1810, a piece of meadow land near the pub was used to form Priory Street.  "Ye Olde Red Cow Inn" was set back from the road and had a yard and stables; it was the terminus for coaches to and from New Romney and coaches to Ham Street also picked up passengers here.

The houses in Folkestone Road were built from about 1843.  The pub was re-built around the turn of the century, probably when Priory Place was widened in 1895.  The Red Cow was a casualty of the York Street Bypass project, being closed and purchased by the Corporation in June 1971; it was demolished in October that year.  The site, along with that of the livery stables and garage that adjoined it, is now under the tarmac where York Street meets Folkestone Road.


Information on this page taken from Smith (1991)