White Rock Brewery

From Historical Hastings

This squat building which stood in the location of todays Palace Chambers was constructed in 1831/2 by Mr. Henry Tindall. Whilst in his hands, he frequently made excavations and cuttings out of the cliffs behind, employing Cornish miners for the task, whether to extend his premises or construct the chimney which features in images of the site is unknown.

It is possible the caves behind the building pre-date the brewery:

...it had a capstan room at the end and a bracket for a huge reflector for a lantern that could be seen out to sea but only at one point. The reflector a multifaceted mirror was still upstairs when I worked there. When the capstan room was opened around the turn of the 19th century there were found inside the capstan and the remains of 3 donkeys shot through the head. The larger cave was part natural, the smaller side connected to a partly concealed door through a narrow bricked passage. The whole thing could be sealed with a massive iron door on rollers...[1].

The property was undermined by the sea in the Storm of 1834, but was secured. In 1838, it passed into the hands of Charles Deudney and Harry Hurst, the latter of whom lived in one of the adjacent properties. By 1846, the brewery was in the ownership of Peter Pagden, with five men being employed at the premises[2]. The brewery was demolished in 1885[3], White & Norton taking over the site in 1896 with a new purpose-built premises, although the caves behind remained to be utilised again in WW2 as Air Raid Shelters, with a further usage in the 1960s as a restaurant/club.


References & Notes

  1. Brian Lovett White Historical Hastings Facebook
  2. 1851 Census
  3. Brett Manuscript Histories Vol. 3 Chap. 37