All Saints

Best Lane, close to the river Stour and near to the King's Bridge


1927 PEAK FREAN & CO. LTD, Biscuit Manufacturers, Best Lane (phone book)


William MOSS, built some properties in Best Lane between 1793-1799


June 1795 Death, June 1 (21?), in Best Lane, Canterbury, aged 79, Mr. Thomas SHRUBSOLE, farrier, one of the oldest tradesmen in that city Kentish Register

1798 "January 6, Levi the Jew died in Best Lane" (from Westgate wall)

"William RIDGEN, in 1771, bequeathed to seven trustees a certain messuage and tenement, situate in Best Lane, to dispose of the rents annually for the benefit of the poor. The rents amount to about £29. 8s. 6d., a year out of which the expense of repairs, the insurance, and the land tax are paid and the residue distributed amont the poor of hte parish in sums of from six to ten shillings. The surviving trustees are William Simmanns THORNTON, and Dr. CARTER." 1838D


No. 1 Best Lane on the right

No. 1

Charles FEA, Best Lane, Woolstapler (from the poll book 1830)

"An Act for the more easy and speedy recovery of Small Debts within the City and County of the City of Canterbury, and the Liberties and Precincts of the same." Year 1831 - Defendants Name, William MACKNEY - Plaintiff's Name, Charles PITT & Charles FEA - Debt, 10 s. - Costs, 3 s. - Number of Days for which each Debtor committed in default of Payment - 20

The Monthly Magazine 1810 - November, Married at Canterbury, Mr. Charles FEA, to Miss MOSS

....a bill for £500 in favour of Charles FEA, dated August 2, 1836, to which became due on the 31st of October; and a bill for £644, 13s. 9d. in favour of Charles FEA, dated....."The English Reports"

*Charles FEA Bankrupt 1836

1838 Charles FEA, Woolstapler, 1 Best Lane

1839 Charles FEA, Woolstapler, 1 Best Lane

Thomas HEWITT, a former tanner %

Tuesday, July 18th, 1865 Stephen WILKINSON, 1 Best Lane, Canterbury, voted for D (Sir Edward Cholmeley Dering, Bart.) Parish of Qualification - parish of All Saints

A large Tanners shop with many employees, owned by Stephen WILLIAMSON &

Return of owners of Land 1873 (Kent) - Stephen WILLIAMSON, 1 Best Lane, Canterbury 7 2 0 (acres) 30 0 (rent)

1882 Stephen WILLIAMSON, 1 Best Lane

1903 Mrs. Henrietta AUSTIN, Dress Maker

1917-18 "LINDA HOUSE", Percy Edward MILES


No. 2

1838 John Lowther KEMP, Corn factor and dealer, 2 Best Lane

Philip DULY, Tailor %

*brothers William Duly and Frederick Duly (relieving officer and Watch Maker)

Parish of All Saints - Philip William DULY (guardians appointed at Vestries - Guardians of the Poor 1838 & 1839)

Chairmen and Vice Chairmen - Thomas Collard, Thomas Boorman - Relief Districts - The City - Officers - Frederick DULY, 2 Best Lane, Canterbury - Workhouses - Master - G. H. Haisell, Stour Street, Canterbury - for inmates - 408 (1854)

Elizabeth WOODWARD, Manager of the Parish Kitchens &

1917 Caleb KEMP

1934 Caleb KEMP, Writers & Grainers, 2 Best Lane, Canterbury


No. 3, 4, 5 & 6 on the right (just showing a touch of no. 2)

No. 3

Richard MARSHALL, Best Lane, Cabinetmaker *from the 1830 poll book

1838 Mrs. Ann Spencer MARSHALL, Milliner and Dressmaker & Stay and Corset Maker, 3 Best Lane

Ann MARSHALL, Dressmaker %

John R. HORSLEY, Hoyman &* One who navigates a hoy. A common hoyman to carry goods by water for hire.

December 26, 1896, Henry J. UPTON, Undertaker & Funeral Furnisher, Funerals conducted to and from all parts. Terms strictly moderate. House Agent and Rent Collector. 3, Best Lane, Canterbury

1903 Henry John UPTON Jr. Undertaker, 3 Best Lane

Dec 1905 AD - Henry J. UPTON, Undertaker and Funeral Director, Funerals conducted to and from all parts. Terms strictly moderate. Coffins in Elm, Oak, Mahogany, etc. 3 Best Lane, Canterbury.

1907 Henry J. UPTON, Undertaker and Funeral Director, Funerals conducted to and from all parts. Terms strictly moderate. Coffins in Elm, Oak, Mahogany, etc. 3 Best Lane, Canterbury.

1917 Henry J. UPTON, undertaker


No. 4

1838 Edmond ADDIS, Leather Cutters and Currier, 4 Best Lane

Edmund ADDIS, Currier %

Eliza WILLES, Schoolmistress %

Edward ERRIDGE %

Elizabeth COURT &

1873 (return of owners of Land, Kent) Thomas WIKLINSON, 4 Best Lane, Canterbury - 18 0 19(acres) 42 10(rent)


No. 5

Old Stained glass factory to the rear of No. 5

1838 Henry JONES, Mason and Statuaries, 5 Best Lane

James CALLOWS, Parchment Maker %

John MARSH. Where do you live? 5, Best Lane. What are you? A labourer, a thatcher. Did you get anything about the last election? Yes. How much? 10s. Who from? Mr. Hart. Was that for your vote? Yes..... PP Jan 6 - Aug 27, 1881

George KINGSWORTH, Carrier/Carman &

Anges HARRIS (w) )

1917 Miss CRUNDEN


No. 5A

Henry G. TOLPUTT, Marine Store Dealer &

Charlie HITCHCOCK, Hairdresser )


"The Monastery had two other gates or passages besides the one described above, one in the street near St. Alphage church, and the other in Best Lane, near the water-lock, opposite the "Prince of Orange" lane, near the Rush Market: this passage led directly to their church." COT


The building on the right is No. 6

No. 6

John C. CLARIS, Best Lane, Schoolmaster *from the poll book 1830

1838 John Chalk CLARIS, 6 Best Lane (listed under Nobility, Gentry, Clergy and retired persons)

John CLARIS, Newspaper Proprietor, wife Ellen, sons Percy, Arthur and Sydney, daughters Zitella, Agnes and Laura $

1796-1866, son of a Mr. CLARIS, bookseller, went to King's School, Canterbury, Editor of the Kent Herald (1826-65), poems published under Arthur Brooke, died in Best Lane, January 10, 1866

John Chalk CLARIS, Newspaper proprietor and editor %

*wife Ellen CLARIS (Surrey, Kensignton), children Nitella Claris, Arthur H. Claris, Eva Emily Claris all born Canterbury

Marriage of John Chalk CLARIS of All Saints Canterbury widow and Ellen Swainson of Harbledown (20 father deceased, guardians, George Trimmer, John Tilbury, junr. and James Fyfe) at Harbledown, June 26, 1832

John Chalk CLARIS - (1797? to 1866), journalist and poet, was born at Canterbury, where his father was a bookseller and publisher about 1797. He was educated at the King's School Canterbury, and about 1826 became editor of the "Kent Herald" there. This post he held till 1865. He was in bad health some time before his death, which took place at Best Lane, Canterbury, January 10, 1866. He was survived by a wife and family. CLARIS was a man of cultivation. As a journalist he was devoted to the cause of reform and wrote eargerly in favour of catholic emancipation and the first Reform Bill. Under the name of "Arthur Brooke" he published the following poetical works...., he also contributed to Adams's Kentish Coronal, 1841. (Kent Herald, 11 and 18 Jan 1866; Notes and Queries, July and August 1872, pp. 29, 95. Gent. Magazine March 1866, p. 439; British Museum Catalogue.

Died January 10 at Canterbury, aged 69, John Chalk CLARIS, esq., for nearly forty years editor of the Kent Herald. He was also the author of "Durovernum, a Poem" and of other poetical works published under the name of "Arthur Brooke," between the year 1814 and 1824. GM

Arthur Brooke of Canterbury (4th s. x. 29) - This was the late Mr. John Chalk CLARIS, of Canterbury, for upwards of thirty years editor of the Kent Herald. He published several little volumes of poems from 1816 to 1824 including "Durovernum" (the Roman name for Canterbury), "Retrospection," "The Elegy on the Death of Shelly" as well as others which were very favourabley received in the literary world of the day. Some of his poetry is very graceful. Mr. Claris was educated at the Canterbury King's School. His father was a bookseller, and publisher of several of the books used in the King's School at that time. W. D. -Y. Canterbury (notes and queries)

Charlotte F. OLIVER, Schoolmistress (School)

Fannie S. FROST, Governess/Teacher &

Louise C. BEANEY, Teacher &

Adele DELAHAYE, School Teacher (Languages) (

James DELAHAYE & Adele DELAHAYE (french teacher) )



No. 10 - 7 Best Lane, showing where Hobday Square used to be located


No. 7

Valentine STEDDY, Carpenter %

70's - 90's George F. YOUNG, Carpenter &

Jane YOUNG (w) )

1917 Mrs. Jane YOUNG


No. 8

William WISE, Hop Sampler and Strainer &

--- )

1917 D.H. FEDARB


No. 9

William DAVISON, Best Lane, Tailor *poll book 1830

1838 William DAVISON, Tailor, 9 Best Lane


George GAMBRILL, Tailor ^

Edward BURNELL, Steam Thrashing Machine Driver &

Frederick DAVISON, Tailor )


No. 10 Best Lane on the right (Olive Grove)


No. 10

1838 Mrs. Sarah SMALL, 10 Best Lane

1838 Mrs. SMALL, 10 Best Lane

1850's - 90's William DAVISON, Tailor

Charlotte O'DONNELL (w) )

1917 Cantebury Motor Car Co.


No. 11

1838 John POOL, Boot & Shoe maker, 11 Best Lane

John POOL, Cordwainer $

George WEST, Ostler % ^

Louis OGERWINSKY, Hairdresser (German) &

Joseph HATCHINGS, Grocer (

--- )

1917 Cantebury Motor Car Co.

Scientific Horticulture, 1932. Annually. £1.75. H.E.A. Publications. The Elvy & Gibbs Partnership, 11 Best Lane, Canterbury, Kent




No. 12

Thomas PRATT, Best Lane, Watchmaker *from the poll book 1830

1838 Thomas PRATT, 12 Best Lane

1839 Thomas PRATT, Watchmaker, 12 Best Lane

Thomas PRATT, Watchmaker & mother Jane Pratt $

Thomas PRATT, Watch Maker %

Henry COLLARD, Farmer of 200 Acres ^


William Richard RIGDEN, Whitstable, dredger to Mary* Inge, 12 Best Lane, Canterbury, Grocer CCA-U372/X/211/65 *says Mary, but I suspect it's May Inge

Walter A. ELLS, Furniture Dealer )


No. 12A

Walter Albert ELLS, Furniture Dealer and Coffin Maker (

May 1896 - Walter A. ELLS, Undertaker and complete Funeral Furnisher, next to All Saints' Churchyard, Best Lane. Coffins made of the best quality materials, combined with good workmanship at the lowest possible prices.

May 1896 - Strong, respectable and willing lad wanted at once. ELLS, Undertaker, Best Lane


Corner of High Stret & Best Lane


No. 13

Thomas PROLL, Watchmaker &

Thomas PRATT, Watchmaker ^

1878 Henry Harts, Pawn shop, Best Lane

Apr 1881 - Jun 1885 William John MOOR, assistant to Mr. Hart Pawnbroker

June 1886 - Sept 1888 Matthew LILL, assistant to Mr. Hart Pawnbroker

Pawnbrokers Shop (

1895 Sydney HART, Pawnbrokers assistant Best Lane

1897 William HART, assistant to Mr. Henry Hart, Pawnbrokers of Best Lane

Oct 1897 Matthew Lill Manager to Henry Hart Pawnbrokers, Best Lane

Jan 1901 Matthew LILL, manager to Mr. Hart, Pawnbroker, Best Lane CCA

1903 Henry HART, Pawnbroker *many things that were stolen were pawned at Henry Hart's shop according to conviction notices cca

1917 H HART & Co. (ltd) Pawnbroker


No. 14

George Frederick WOOD, Cordwainer %

James BUCK, Hawker of Earthenware ^



Cathedral View from Best Lane, across Dancing School Yard, which is the Rear of The BEANEY, No. 15 Best Lane on the right


No. 15



(being demolished 2010 to make an extension on the Beaney Institute)


George Frederick WOOD, Cordwainer %

James W. SPRADBOW, Boot & Shoe Maker ^

Edward KNELL, Fish Dealer &

George GAZE, Carpenter (

John William FAIRBRASS (

Maria Foulard )

Patience CROTHAL )


1917 No. 2 Kings Brigde Villas - Mark TASH, tailor & No. 3 Mrs. WOOD


No. 16


James ROBERTS, Best Lane, Woolstaper *from the poll book 1830

1838 James ROBERTS, Woolstapler and Fellmonger, 16 Best Lane

1850's - 70's Thomas WILKINSON, Solicitor *he was born in Yorkshire

1830, Poll of the Electors - Thomas WILKINSON, Residence is listed as "Terrace", which is likely St. George's Terrace, Noted as Gentleman

1833 Secretary of the local Canterbury Committe of the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge - John Brent, Esq. Alderman, J. G. K. Bart M.D. Treasurer, H. Carter, M.D., F.R.S.E., William Masters Esq.

*Parish Registers - St Peters: In a Vault beneath repose the ashes of William MASTERS an old and respected inhabitant of this parish died 27 September 1834 also of Phoebe his wife died 15 August 1846, aged 78. Also of William Arthur Masters died 20 May 1847, aged 28. Also of Mary Ann their only daughter wife of Thomas WILKINSON of this city solicitor died August 26 1850 aged 46. Foot to Vault: W.M. 1834

1837 - Undersheriff - Mr. Thomas WILKINSON, Canterbury - Agents, Messrs. Constable and Kirk, 10 Symond's Inn

1839 - Undersherrif - Thomas WILKINSON, Canterbury - Deputy, Mr. Thomas Kirk, 10 Symond's Inn

(1840 directory Thomas Wilkinson, 23 St. George's Terrace)

1845 - from The Jurist - list of Sheriffs and Under-Sheriffs, with their deputies and agens, for 1845 - Canterbury (city of) - Rob. Geo. Chipperfield, esq., Canterbury, Undersheriff - Thomas Wilkinson, Esq. Canterbury, Dep. T. Kirk, 10 Symond's Inn, Chancery Lane

1857 - Undersherrif of Canterbury - Thomas WILKINSON

Tuesday, July 18th, 1865 Thomas WILKINSON, 16 Best Lane, Canterbury, voted for D (Sir Edward Cholmeley Dering, Bart.) Parish of Qualification - parish of All Saints

1873 (return of owners of Land, Kent) Thomas WILKINSON, 4 Best Lane, Canterbury - 18 0 19(acres) 42 10(rent)

Thomas Wilkinson, died in Canterbury in 1877 c. 80 years of age

February 9, 1861. The Solicitors' Journal & Reporter. Friday Feb. 8, 1861. Assignments for Benefit of Creditors. Charles DUNN, Cordwainer, Canterbury. Feb. 5. Solicitor. Wilkinson, 16 Best Lane, Canterbury


Florence L. WRAIGHT, Boarding house keeper )?

- Alfred P. DRAYSON, Schoolmaster

Matthew LILL, Pawn brokers manager *works for Henry HART Pawnbroker Best Lane )

1917 Joseph HIGGINS

The Lovely Warwick House, prior home to Thomas Wilkinson for many years

No. 17

Philip W. DULY, Best Lane, Tailor *from the poll book 1830

1838 Philip William DULY, Tailor and Draper, 17 Best Lane

Philip DULY, Tailor $

Abagail TILBE, Dressmaker ^

Frederick BAKER, Master Mariner &

Henry MAJOR (

Albert BARNES, Butchers Asst. )

1917 Thomas HENRY HUNT


No. 18

William OAKENFULL, Town Crier %

William OAKENFULL, Town Crier ^

Richard FOWLER, Boots at Hotel &

Harry A. KEMP, Bill Poster (

Charles HOOKWAY )


No. 19

George BRETT, Tripe Dresser ^

George BRETT, Tripe Dresser &

Harriett LUCAS (w) )


No. 20

Annie ADAMS, Dress Maker ^

Frederic HARMAN, Labourer &

James A. BARBER, Shop keeper (

James A. BARBER, Hawker )

1917 A. J. BARBER


21 Best Lane (a recent photograph), now called Thomas Becket (name changed c. 1970's)

No. 21



1828/9 John BURTON

1832 George GORELY

1838 William COLLARD, Tavern and public house "Bricklayers Arms", 21 Best Lane

Charles JONES, Wheelwright & Victualler

Charles JONES &

James DODD, Pig and General dealer &

Catherine WATERS, victualler*

William BARNES (

Eliza WILLIAMS, Victualler )


* A photo of the front of the shop in Canterbury A second selection by Derek Butler


No. 22


Chares CARRICK, Schoolmaster ^

Charles CARRICK, Schoolmaster &

Ester NORRIS *

Amelia ELLENOR (w) )

1917 Mrs. DEVERSON


No. 23

Elizabeth FOLWELL, Dressmaker (

1905 General Employment Agency, 23 Best Lane, Canterbury - Apply Friday or Saturday (Maidservants wanted - Cook for Canterbury (used to large institutions and schools), age to 35, wages £30. Cook, for Walmer, gentlemen's house, wages £24. Parlourmaid, for Canterbury (valet and carve). Other Maidservants wanted for all parts. Lady Secretary.

1905 - Dec, The Secretary, Sun General Employment Agency, 23 Best Lane, Canterbury, has well recommended Domestic Servants now Disengaged. Office hours, 9:30 to 8 pm. Telephone 23y2. Supplies always ready. Patronized by the nobility, gentry, clergy. Press Notices.Kentish Gazette and Canterbury Press, Hearth and Home, Myra's Journal, John Strange Winter


Charles and Christiana CARRICK, Schoolmaster, Schoolmistress *

William BURNISTON, Coal Merchant )



Best Lane Junction with The Friars, Orange Street and King Street

1515. Hawkeswood's tenement, in Allhallows-lane (since called Best's-lane) parcel of the Three Tuns, afterwards converted into a storehouse, and so used for many years by the corporation, comes into their possession this year, and has been since sold by them. HT

In consequence of the rapid melting of the snow, which commenced on Monday evening, a great number of houses in Canterbury were overflowed, and the furniture in many materially damaged. The thaw continuing all Tuesday, and the greatest part of Wednesday, occasioned the river Stour to spread its waters to a greater depth and extent than at any time since the year 1776, over all the adjoining low lands from Ashford to Sandwich haven. At noon on Wednesday, the flood increased so rapidly, that many houses in Stour Street, Beer cart lane, Lamb lane, Bests Lane, St. Radegund's bath, Pound Lane, part of St. Peter's, Cocklane, St. Dunstan's, and North Lane, had their ground floors laid under water, those nearest the river several feet deep. The inhabitants were obliged to betake themselves to their chambers for safety, and some families to leave their habitations. In the afternoon it again began to freeze, which probably in some measure checked the supplies of the torrent, and lessened its rapidity; and between ten and eleven at night the waters were perceived to subside, and in the morning marked their progress, by leaving the streets covered with broad and broken sheets of ice. TSMFeb1795

William Moss, a builder who had a business in St. George's Street where he kept all his building materials, horses and carts, built some properties in Best Lane between 1793 and 1799. CCA-CC-P/E/CP/1

Died at Canterbury, Mrs. Lepine, relict of Mr. D. Lepine, of Best Lane, where she had resided constantly from her birth. - MM Jan 1799 pg 86

"August 1820, Died at Canterbury. In Best Lane at an advanced age, Mr. P. Gambier." MM1821


"Best Lane, continued a little farther, brings us to a crooked lane on the north side of this friery, leading us to a large water-mill, for grinding and dressing of wheat, below which is another waterlock, where the curious old arches were destroyed in 1769"


...and in our way, near the mill, we see an ancient stone door-case, perhaps a back door to the house of the Knights Templars, but no remains of that are now to be seen in Best's Lane, where probably was the front of it.

This lane ends here, against another ancient door-way of stone, where the priests of the Black Prince's chantry had once their house, and the place is still, or was some years ago, privileged under the Board of Green Cloth." WG1777



Joseph WRIGHT, bricklayer

Richard PETMAN, brick maker and lime burner


Mr. STEPHENS, Best Lane - from a list of subscribers to England's topographer 1830


1811 - Mr. Thomas PRATT, Best Lane, "A topographical dictionary of England" 1811


From the Poll Book 1830

Henry PRATT, Best Lane, Plumber

George PENN, Best Lane, Carpenter

Stephen PHILPOTT, Best Lane, Victualler

*list of Freemen - James MOUNT, Best Lane, Musician

John DAVISON, Best Lane, Tailor


March 1821 - Died at Canterbury in Best Lane, Mr. R. POTTMEN, Sr. MM


1838 Louis Laurent RAZE, Artist and professor of the French Language, Best Lane (1805-1873)

*Louis Laurent RAZE of Holy Cross Canterbury, bachelor (23) and Ann NISBETT of St. Alphage, Canterbury, Spinster (24) at St. Alphage, 10 May 1823

*Has a Fanny TERRY (b. Minster), working for him in the 1860's in St. Lawrence Thanet, Kent

(Showing of his work in the Royal Museum and Art Gallery, High Street, Canterbury, 1992)

Worked for 30 years at the King's School, Canterbury


1838 R. ROYLE, Best Lane


1850 Benjamin BROWNE, Circuits, Canterbury, 110 - years 2, Postal Address - 12, Best Lane, Canterbury


June 15, 1857 - Death in Best Lane, Canterbury, aged 76 the wife of the Rev. Joseph WILSON. GM


William RIGDEN, in 1771, bequeted to seven trustees a certain messuage and tenement, situate in Best Lane, to dispose of the rents annually for the benefit of the poor. The rents amount to about 29 pounds 8s. 6d. a year, out of which the expense of repairs, the insurance, and the land tax are paid, and the residue distributed among the poor of the parish in sums of from six to ten shillings. The surviving trustees are William Simmanns Thornton and Dr. Carter.



Thomas PRATT, Watchmaker

John GAYORY, Post Boy

William DAVISON, Tailor - No. 9

James GOULDEN, Cabinet Maker

George PAIN, Coachman

John CLARIS, Newspaper Proprietor - No. 6

Henry JONES, Stone Mason

Edmund ADDIS, Currier - No. 4

Elizabeth RUSSELL, Schoolmistress


Ann MARSHALL, Dress Maker - No. 3

Charles FEA, Wool Stapler - No. 1

Caroline OVENDEN

Thomas SANDERS, Confectioners Clerk

William COLLARD, Publican - No. 21?

William HARMAN, Bricklayer - No. 20?


George BRETT, Tripe Manufacturer - No. 19

George TUBB

James ROBERTS, Fellmonger - No. 16

© T. Machado 2014