The Utter Confusion - arising from failure, in 1971 at first registration, to account for the Legal Presumption to own down to the MHWM by properties adjacent to the sea- the location of Divers Storehouse that later Became the
Stag Inn...
And assumptions - made regarding the meaning of the dotted line on the Commissioners of Sewers Deed Polls, together with aggressive claims made by the local Oyster Company... has cloaked the underlying truths regarding ownerships and boundaries. The attempt... in 1971, by the officers of the Oyster Company involved in the sale of Stag Cottage, as vendors solicitor and estate agent... to represent graphically- the words of the documents named on the contract before sale - (the 1946Deed said Root Title and also the 1860 agreement @ £1 14s 10d)... by means of a plan, and the rejection of this plan by Land Registry who created another false plan, has only intensified that cloaking.

The disputes pre-dating this situation, begining in the 18th C, are characterised in the Whitstable Council's minutes during the 1920s and 1930s where discussions over ownership of and responsibility for the beach were fairly regular.

Earnest Stroud (mentioned in 1946 Deed), it seems, often represented the interests of the Company.

The Company was essentially bankrupt in the late 19th C - a result of its many legal exploits ...and one of its senior officials absconded to America with some of its funds : its liabilities had outstripped its ability to fund them.

In order to deal with this...The Company was re-formed by a Victorian act of Parliament in 1896.

During the 20thC it seems as though the new company sought to consolidate its perception of its title lands, advancing its claims to the Board of Trade and generally to those residents of Whitstable and Seasalter whose properties were adjacent to the sea. Its directors also squabbled amongst themselves for control of the Company and this gave rise to -
the Coulthurst Case.

During the late 19th and 20thC the Company produced various charts and maps and other documents in support of its claims and many of these seem contradictory. For example one chart produced in 1870 has the words "Sea Beach" emblazoned across the beach above the MHWM, by the company surveyor. This shows either lack of comprehension of the meaning of the term or an intent to deceive. In either case if this is the basis of later understandings then arguably it is wrong. Their Barrister Mr Needham had told them this in 1848.

In the particular case of Stag Cottage there is no mention pre-1946 of the Free Fishers and Dredgers (FF&D) or Whitstable Oyster Fishery Company (WOF) in any of its deeds nor mention of any ownership lying between the MHWM and the built structure that was the pub... shown here in a photo circa 1920...
this is almost exactly as it is shown on the 1872 Ordnance survey.
The Balcony seems to have been added after 1872.

All Stag PH was conveyed in 1924 to a Mrs Emmeline Venus who was then in occupation, having rented from Flint & Co.

The conveyance from Flint conveyed with the proviso that, regarding such part as was in the occupation of Earnest Stroud, the Company conveyed and confirmed only so far as they had title (if any).

Earnest Stroud it seems occupied the two storehouses with ladder stairs on the LHS of Stag...
He ran a smack called the Gamecock.

On her death the property, then known as Sheppey View, was conveyed to her resident daughter Emily.

This conveyance in 1946 instances the first mention of WOF in relation to grant of title for the property.

This description of the property as conveyed has not changed and it was conveyed by that description in 1951 1nd 1971.

Return To Main Page