The story of Royal Victoria Bull Hotel. This is almost certainly Dartford’s oldest inn and was probably owned by Dartford’s Priory. The ‘Bull’ in the name refers not to the animal but to ‘bulla’ – a seal or papal edict secured by a seal. Indeed the Inn’s early name was the ‘Holly Bull’ – the holly seal or holly edict.
The Inn was rebuild in 1703 with a gallery overlooking the yard into which stagecoaches and carriages would enter through an entrance twice as wide as it is today. The open yard was glazed over by the landlord in 1826 to provide a sheltered corn exchange.
Over 100 years ago (1906), the workmen digging in front of the Royal Victoria and Bull Hotel at Dartford High Street in order to lay paving discovered the remains of the old town. Unfortunately the workmen did not realise the importance of their find and damaged most of the discovered materials. The items that survived can now be seen in Dartford Museum.