About Us

Here is just a little info to let you get to know us better...

History

Here is a little potted history of our pub and the local area... if you have a spare minute or two and maybe a cup of tea (or is that a G&T), we think it's well worth a read.

The White Hart at Chipstead was built in 1731, during the reign of George II.

The legend

A 'hart' is a male deer or stag, but the white hart took on a mythical quality through its association with Herne the Hunter (pronounced 'Ern the 'unter ).

Herne worked for Richard II in Windsor forest, but was fatally injured while defending the king against a cornered white stag. A local wizard restored him to health but, in return, Herne was forced to give up his hunting skills and eventually through frustration and disappointment hanged himself from an oak tree near the castle. Richard II subsequently adopted the White Hart as his crest.

Here is a detail from a portrait of
Richard 11 painted around 1306,
The Wilton Diptych, showing him wearing
a brooch with a white hart emblem

King Richard's White Hart had golden antlers and a golden crown around its neck with a gold chain hanging from the crown. Heraldically, the Hart symbolises peace and harmony, the White denoting purity.

In 1389 Richard passed an Act making it compulsory for pubs and inns to have a sign outside in order to identify them to the official Ale Taster, "otherwise he shall forfeit his ale." Consequently, a great many pubs were named "The White Hart", after Richard II's own heraldic emblem.

Chipstead

The pretty village of Chipstead sits on high ground on the North Downs surrounded by woods. The name 'Chipstead' has been subject to various spellings throughout history with Tepestede, Chepestede, and Schipsted all shown in historical records. The name is likely to have been derived from the old English word ceapstede, meaning the 'market place'.

From the earliest times, Chipstead was blessed with a number of substantial ponds, which would have made it an attractive stopping off point for herdsman taking their livestock to London. These were first noted in the 7th and 8th centuries.

Domesday book

The Domesday survey of 1086 tells us that the principal manor of Chipstead was held by Richard of Tonbridge, whose descendants became Earls of Gloucester. There seems never to have been a resident Lord of the Manor until the 17th and 18th centuries when the manor was held by the Lords of Upper Gatton and subsequently by the Lords of Merstham.

The Village Fair

Chipstead has an annual Village Fair, first recorded in Edward VI's reign in 1549 and held on St.Margaret's day. It may originally have been a large cattle fair held on Church Green, and was subsequently moved to Fair Green near Shabden as a sheep fair.

In the early centuries annual village fairs were of considerable importance and attracted large numbers of people. Cattle and sheep farmers would travel long distances in search of suitable livestock and the ordinary people would find goods and services unavailable elsewhere.

To Flourishing Times

The village remained an isolated rural parish until the late nineteenth century. There was a small amount of industry in the parish: indeed, at one time there were two water mills that were used to grind tobacco into snuff, but it was the opening of Tattenham Corner railway station that led to a prolonged period of development. The rise of the railway led to the construction of a number of mansions built for successful City businessmen, so planting the seeds for the Chipstead which exists today.

Second World War

Due to its proximity to London, Chipstead suffered consiserable bomb damage during the second world war. Altogether, as recorded on a stone on Church Green, there fell upon Chipstead in World War II two parachute mines, some 450 high explosive bombs, 12 V1 flying bombs and one V2 rocket, besides innumerable incendiaries.

Perhaps the most spectacular achievement of the Chipstead community in World War II was the factory organized in the Peter Aubertin Hall. On the 19th June 1940 Mrs Neame of Sopers Cottage and Mrs Brooks of Merstham (a member of staff at the Royal School of Needlework) began training Chipstead women in the art of covering aircraft wings, ailerons and rudders with fabric, and in the production of lifejackets. To the end of 1944, the Chipstead Aero Supply Co had completed over 100 airframe unit components and 12,449 lifejackets.

(With thanks to the Chipstead Village Society)

If you'd like to put a name to a face, allow us to introduce you to the crew...


Front of house

Lauren Noble

Manager

Lauren joined us straight out of completing a music degree in Chichester. She's rescued a little pup from Croatia called Flynn and he is set to be our Pub Dog joining us on our monthly walks before retiring to his bed in the office. Lauren has been in hospitality most of her working life, originally joining us when we first opened The Horse and Groom in Twyford as bar staff. Working hard she moved on up to be the Assistant Manager, then she took up post at The Duke of York. She left us for a spell to manage a speciality coffee shop in London but soon came back with oodles of coffee knowledge to pass on to the team here.

Claudette Thake

Deputy Manager

Claudette's been here, there, and everywhere. Starting out in the pubs and restaurants of Tunbridge Wells, Kent. She then became Deputy Manager at The Nevill Crest and Gun before taking over at The Bailiwick then settled here at The White Hart. She took a year out on maternity leave as she is now a proud mother to her little boy Freddie. She is a massive fan of the TV show Friends, has two cats, and a lover of all things Pinot Noir. If you ever want to bribe her, there's three ideas for you!

George Baker

Assistant Manager

George is a local lad and joined us back in December of 2017 as bar staff. He has shown great dedication to the pub and moved his way up the ranks. His recent promotion to Assistant Manager has seen him take responsibility to the next level, from running shifts to looking after our bar and stock. He's the guy to talk to about our beers and ciders. George is one of six children and is often the voice of calm on busy shifts. He believes that the most important thing in life is to enjoy yourself, so after a shift don't be suprised if you find him on the other side of the bar with the locals and a Jack or two.

Tomas Ivanauskas

Assistant Manager

Tomas started his hospitality career when he was 17 and since then he's been travelling the world. Taking a spin on cruise ships he's floated everywhere from South America to the Meditteranean and even around Scandinavia. Tomas is a real foodie and wine connoisseur and has gained his Level 2 Wine and Spirits (WSET) qualification. When he's not working Tomas loves to ride motorcycles, having owned everything from scooters to hogs, he's been in a few scrapes. Tomas has his hands full at home with his new addition. We don't think you can fit a baby seat on the back of a hog though Tomas! He's even started to show his little one year old Ellias the ropes in the kitchen. Look out there's a new Gordon Ramsey coming!


Kitchen

Tony McDonald

Head Chef

After some time away from the hustle and bustle of busy kitchens, Tony has decided its time to step back in, and were sure glad he did. He has joined us after a short stint finding his feet again at Jamies Italian. Tony is rather an illusive character but we know he has two daughters, supports Sunderland football team and hails from sunny South Shields in Newcastle.

Alasdair Mackenzie

Sous Chef

Alasdair has worked for the company for many many years now, progressing onwards and upwards with each of his roles. Working his way up the ladder. He is a truly likable guy, and a laid back character with a cool head and heaps of experience. Alasdair once said that if he wasn't a chef he would pursue a career as a dog surfing instructor, fair enough!

William Wilson

Junior Sous Chef

Will wasn't always a chef, in fact he's represented London Boxing and was Champion 4 years in a row. Will was also born with a heart condition and had to give up his career as the doctor told him his heart looked like "swiss cheese". After having open heart surgery he started cheffing around 4 years ago. Will now leads a quieter life chilling with his friends and girlfriend, walking his dog Frazer and cooking for everyone at home. In fact you can check out his food on his instagram willonthegrill86. Will is now taking on more responsibilites in the kitchen and learning what it takes to lead a team.

Steven Wilson

Chef de Partie

Steve is a local lad originally hailing from Caterham. He's only been with us less than a year but he's already helped out at our sister pubs to cover chef holidays. Steve has been in the chef business for 5 years and when he's not crafting delectable starters at work he's playing video games or Prop position in Rugby for his local team. Taking a break only to look after his new son Mason. Mason is only 4 months old and is the perfect rugby ball according to Steve...we hope you're kidding Steve! Steve is also a big fan of Ryan Reynolds and you'll hardly ever see him without his Deadpool cap but he's also signed a promise to all the lads in the kitchen that if England win the Euros 2021 he'll dye his hair with the England flag. That's dedication!

James Monsell

Kitchen Porter

James came to us to do some work experience and simply never left. He is extremely polite and always has time to ask how you are. James enjoys watching films, playing computer games and going on trips with his family.


Maintenance

Richard Dunning

Gardener/Maintenance Person

Rich is a jack of all trades and can turn his hand to pretty much anything. When he is not gardening or tending to one of the jobs on our ever expanding 'to do' list, he is promoting live music at the local club and repairing computers. He does manage to find time to have a few jars of an evening too, of course.