Man reading Newspaper c.1826


Dover Express premises

in Snargate Street c.1960.

Dover Express News Room, c.1960

Founder of the Dover Express



Photo:  Joseph Thomas Friend, 
      founder of the Dover Express



The Dover Express, on Friday July 18, 1902, reported the death the previous Tuesday, of Joseph Thomas Friend, who founded the Dover Express newspaper, in August 1858. It was Joseph who sold the paper to John Bavington Jones, in 1873. Aged only 71, Joseph was living in Pencester Road, Dover and had been an invalid for some time.


 He started the Express when he was only 27, having trained as a journalist with the Dover Chronicle under Mr T.B.W. Briggs. After leaving Dover he took a share in the Kentish Express newspaper, at Ashford, in which venture he was very successful, reported the Dover Express.    But, through ill health, he retired about 1892.    He shared with Russell France Bavington Jones, son of John Bavington Jones, an interest in chess, but his major interest was music, being a member for some time of the one-time Dover Amateur Musical Society.   His eldest son, Harry Friend, received a journalistic training under his father at the Dover Express until, at 18, ill health saw him to move to Australia. With the change of climate his health improved, and he joined the gallery staff of the "Melbourne Age," progressing to a post on the original Hansard staff of New South Wales. In 1901 his son became Chief of the Federal Hansard Parliamentary Corps.   Another son, Mr Joseph B. Friend, lived in Dover, at Park Street. 


      In August 2008 when the Dover Express was celebrating its 150th Anniversary contact was made by the newspaper with modern descendants in Australia. An Australian estate agent, Ian Friend has discovered he is the great-great grandchild of Joseph Thomas Friend. He made the discovery after taking a look through a chest of family papers and possessions. "We were obviously aware of our grandfather Dr Colin Friend, but it was not until my father (Robert Friend) passed away (28 years ago aged 58) and left a chest full of possessions of the Friend family that we then discovered a lot more about our great grandfather Benjamin H. Friend, who was the founder of Hansard in Australia. Among these possessions we found all the letters Joseph and his family in Dover had sent to his son Benjamin in Australia.    But more significantly, we found two copies of the Dover Express printed in 1859 and 1963. I clearly remember the day and wondered why we had these copies. Only when we noticed Joseph T. Friend was named as the publisher at the top of the paper did we understand the full significance. 
      More details were published in the Dover Express on August 28, 2008, in a story written by reporter Rhys Griffiths. There are three generations of the Friend family living in Australia, who have been researching their family tree for some time, spearheaded by Ian Friend, who lives in Victoria. In August 1987 the Dover Express received copies of portraits of Joseph Thomas Friend and his wife Amy from Geoffrey Cardew,  who wrote that Joseph was "my great grandfather on my mother's side; she was Mary Elizabeth Friend, second daughter of his younger son Joseph Bertie Friend.


Terry Sutton, was born to be a journalist.  He's simply a 'natural,' and can't stop writing.  As he says in his book "Mr Dover Reporting," he is a Dovorian, born and bred and proud of it.  He really enjoys meeting people and writing about them, and is fortunate to have a very good memory, excellent recall of what people said, or did.  And his capacity for work is amazing.   He was born in 1929, but at 80 he is still turning in a good story.
Talks at general meetings
                                                Bob Hollingsbee,  Dover Express reporter, c.1958.
                                              Bob Hollingsbee, 
                                              Dover Express reporter, c.1958
“A journalist is a giver of advice, a regent of sovereigns, a tutor of nations.  
Four hostile newspapers are more to be feared than 100,000 bayonets”.
(Kentish Gazette 20.4.1847 back page col.1.)
Wm FENTON, Proprietor and Publisher, Dover Chronicle, Castle Street, Dover.
Published on Saturday.   (Kent Directory 1837)
1851 Census:
William FENTON  head widr    48  Editor Dover Chronicle   born Forfar, Scotland
Isabella C.   "          dau  Un    25                                                   Dundee, Scotland
Lilias O.      "          dau   Un   22                                                      ditto           "
William       "          son   Un   19  Reporter                                   Kirriemuir         "
Jean             "        dau   Un   17                                                         "              "
(DOVER, St Mary Parish,  6 Shakespeare Place,  page 12, fol.437, No.49)
(Private) C. BUZAN, R.A.M.C.  (PHOTO of him)  Is now serving at Bramshott.  Son of Mr and Mrs C. BUZAN of 10 Winchelsea Street, Dover.  On Dover Express staff at the outbreak of the war 
(Dover Express 10.3.1916 p.6)
(Private)  C.E. BUZAN, of 27 Douglas Road, Dover  (PHOTO with 2 others)  - local division of St John Ambulance Brigade, now in R.A.M.C. at Bramshott Camp, Hants 
(Dover Express 31.3.1916 p.8 at top)
(Private) R. NORRIS of Royal Flying Corps, Wireless Section, son of Mrs NORRIS of 151 Buckland Avenue, Dover, was on Dover Express staff at outbreak of war.  Serving in war.  (PHOTO of him).
(Dover Express 10 Mar 1916 p.6)