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First and Last


The First and Last at 55 East Cliff was known, from 1866 until 1970, as the Prince Alfred.  At various times it was owned by George Beer & Rigden, Gardener's Ash Brewery and Whitbread.

In 1898, the Prince Alfred was one of 20 houses that were permitted to open at 5 a.m.  Another 18 were opening at 3.30 a.m.  This concession was withdrawn in 1889.

It was closed and sold as a private residence in 1976.  It can be seen in the foreground of the picture (bottom) with the black painted panels and the sign bracket, with lights, between the 1st floor windows.

After this house was closed the sign was moved down the road to another house, formerly the Albion, owned by Shepherd Neame, Britain's oldest brewer.  The picture below shows the Albion as it looked in 1983.

(Picture Courtesy of Eddie Chard)

The origin of the name  is obvious when you realise that it stands about 100 yards from the dock gates in East Cliff: coming into the country it is the first pub you come to, leaving the country it is the last!


Information on this page taken from Smith (1991)