The Royal George opened in 1851 at 31-32 Station Road, and gained a full licence under George William Thwaites to serve the local railwaymen at Hastings Railway Station and the adjacent Central Cricket Ground. According to the planning application, the pub was to serve a higher class of clientele than the nearby Old Golden Cross, but it rapidly became the haunt of tradesmen 'tramping' into the town to sell their wares. An application to show films in the upper rooms of the pub was lodged prior to WW1, but this appeared to have stopped by 1912.
Under various ownership in the late 1900s and early 2000s, the pub went by Grace’s Wine Bar, The Priory, Frank's Front Room, and briefly once more The Royal George.
The pub closed in 2020, and faced a planning application to convert the building into residential usage. This plan, which would have involved adding an extra floor to the premises to give eight studio and one-bedroom apartments went to appeal due to non-determination of the plans by Hastings Borough Council. At the appeal, the Council argued that the application should be refused due to the impact upon the character of the area, disruption to residents and the potential for poor living conditions for future residents. The applicant disputed these grounds, but the Planning Inspector found in favour of the Council and refused the plans.
References & Notes
- Sad demise of Hastings pub that was railwayman’s favourite and an early cinema | Hastings and St. Leonards Observer, accessdate: 10 February 2020
- Hastings and St. Leonards Observer: Decision made on bid to convert former Hastings pub into apartments | Hastings and St. Leonards Observer, accessdate: 24 August 2021
- Hastings Borough Council Planning application ref HS/FA/20/00028
- Meet the owners of the new Hastings town centre pub opening at Easter (The Sussex Express)