Throughout his life, Ireland was a frequenter of the English pub, often staying in rooms in inns. Having lived in Deal in 1939, he returned to that town in 1947, staying in the Swan hotel in Queen Street in part to recover from what he calls ‘nervous collapse’ (letter to his sister Ethel, 21 April 1947), but also because the people with whom he was at that time lodging in Essex were on holiday. The Swan had a long history, and had always been a coaching inn offering accommodation, known to have been visited by Dickens. The images below trace its changing face in pictures taken in 1908, 1938 (when it was completely rebuilt), 1952 and 2012. Its name has also changed several times, from The Five Bells to The Swan Hotel, then the Swans and in 1997 becoming Hole in the Roof. Now it trades as the Queen Street Hotel.