Dover Kent UK

History of Dover Garages

3 Mill Lane

I am grateful to Keith Parfitt and his father Ray for their time in sending in the information below, Ray also said that prior to this he worked for Mr Husk at Whitfield garage.

Mill Lane Garage, Dover


3 Mill Lane, Dover (opposite the river – now under the Bench Street carpark)

The building

The building itself was rented on a temporary lease through local estate agents Worsfolds.

It was a somewhat ramshackle structure fronting onto Mill Lane, apparently being roughly restored after War-time damage. It was quite a long, narrow building with an upper storey at the back (used as an office and store). Large folding, green painted wooden doors opened onto the street.

The building had once been a stable for milk delivery horses and several original fittings still remained at the far end of the building. There was a date stone of 1812 in the north-west wall indicating that the building had had a long history before it ended up as a garage. The structure was eventually demolished in 1973–4 to make way for Centurion House, now also demolished and recently replaced by a carpark.

The Business

A small accident repair/panel beating/car respraying garage from 1964 to 1973.  Never
sold petrol or did servicing, etc.

Proprietor: Raymond Edward Parfitt

The business was originally founded at 3 Mill Lane as ‘FJS Motors’ in about 1962.

Taken over as a going concern by Ray Parfitt in late 1964, it operated under the new name of Mill Lane Garage until 1973.

Ray had one part-time employee for several years.

The garage closed in 1973 due to forthcoming redevelopment of the site (Centurion House).

Clientele: Most of the garage’s clients worked on the ferries, were Trinity House pilots, customs officer or were employed by other dock related companies. Other customers  included local business people from the adjacent town.

Keith & Ray Parfitt

September 2016

Mill Lane

mill lane