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Campaign for Real Ale

Campaign for Real Ale

Capital Pubcheck Update 144 / Updates to 9th Essex Guide

The aim of 'Capital Pubcheck' is to share information about the latest happenings on the London pub scene including new pub and bar openings, name changes, acquisitions, closures, notable changes to beer ranges etc. Cross references to CAMRA's various pub guides covering Greater London are also provided to enable easy updating. Information is gathered from a variety of sources including London Drinker readers, individual CAMRA members and branch contacts, breweries, pub operators, landlords etc. This month we record 12 brand new pubs and bars including a new Regent Inns free house in Ilford, a Yates's Wine Lodge in N12 North Finchley and one each for Whitbread's Hogshead and Brewers Fayre chains in Beckenham and Sidcup. Bass has acquired a former famous CAMRA Investments' pub in NW3 Hampstead, which more recently was a restaurant, and converted it to an 'All Bar One'. The popularity of Belgian beers continues to increase with the opening of two more speciality bars in EC1 Clerkenwell and N1 Islington and the conversion of a pub in E8 Hackney. For completeness the listings this month include a number of changes already reported in recent updates for Essex pubs but which were received too late for inclusion in the new guide.

The numbers in brackets after each entry refer to the page number in the following guides: E -East London & City Beer Guide, 3rd edition; K - Real Ale Drinkers Guide to Kent Pubs, 8th edition; N - North London Beer Guide, 3rd edition; SE - South East London Pub Guide, 4th edition; 3SE -South East London Pub Guide, 3rd edition; SW - South West London Pub Guide, 2nd edition; W - Real Beer in West London; X - Essex Beer Guide, 9th edition.



EC1, AL'S, 11/13 Exmouth Market. No real ale. A bar/cafe in former restaurant premises.

EC1, BAR ROCK, 182-6 St John St. No real ale. A bar and restaurant in former commercial premises.

EC1, DOVETAIL, 9 Jerusalem Passage. No (British) real ale. Small new 'Belgian Beer & Food House' opened March 1999 in former shop unit. 7 keg Belgian draught beers including one guest (currently de Koninck) and 2 keg Czech beers. Numerous Belgian bottled beers including one guest (currently Gueuze Giradin). Tiled floor and metallic chairs and tables. Sister bar to the Dove in E8 Hackney (see below). Open 12-10 Mon-Fri, closes weekends.

WC2, 1/2 WAY TO HEAVEN, 7 Duncannon St. Now badged HALFWAY II HEAVEN. Draught Bass; Fuller: London Pride. Formerly LADY HAMILTON (W54, U64)


E16, MARQUIS OF SALISBURY, 110 Hermit Rd. Greene King: Abbot Ale. Reopened after being totally derelict. Now presumably a free house, ex Wiltshire. Real ale not always available. (E159, U71)

E16, ORDNANCE ARMS, 110 Barking Rd. Bass: Toby Cask; Greene King: Martha Greene's. (E160, U98, U117, U142)

E16, RAM, 26 North Woolwich Rd. No real ale. Reopened. Presumably now a free house, ex Phoenix. Real ale promised. (E 160, U112)

E17, MARKET TRADERS, 200 Hoe St. Guest beer (currently Ridley's Rumpus). Live jazz Sunday lunch. (U119)

ILFORD, EAST SIDE, 55/57 Cranbrook Rd. Draught Bass, Courage: Directors Bitter; Hancock: HB. Latest Regent Inns free house in former shop premises, opened March 1999. Large windows along frontage reveal spacious seating area with comfy sofas, wood panelling, polished light wood floor and exposed brickwork at the front leading through to a narrower bar area with pink walls and modern style lighting. Beyond this is another sitting area with benches and pews leading to an outdoor patio at the rear. Food; TV screens; disabled WC (with radar key). Open all permitted hours.


N1, BIERODROME, 173/174 Upper St. No (British) real ale. The first of an offshoot of the Belgo restaurant chain, being a Belgian style beer bar (with food) rather than a restaurant. 10 keg beers (£1.85-£2.55 a half pint) and 201 bottled Belgian beers available (including many bottle conditioned) and a range of Belgian jenevers (gins). Opened February 1999 in former Council office premises. Imaginatively decorated with large panel near door with English and Belgian words linked by rhyming slang or word association. The open kitchen beyond the bar gives table service to the restaurant area at the rear. The seating area at the front and within the wood panelled 'tunnel' has optional table service for drinks and/or food. Draught beers served in crown stamped, authorised monogrammed glasses. Open 12-11 Mon-Sat, 12-10.30 Sun.

N1, DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE, 30 St Peters St. Adnams: Bitter (£2.70), Broadside (£2.95); Caledonian: Golden Promise (£3.35); Pitfield: Singhboullon (£2.80), EcoWarrior (£3.00). Reopened as a bar and restaurant specializing in organic food and drink (at a price!). Real ales rotate from the above range and must qualify as the most expensive in London. (N41 U 119)

N7, VICTORIA, 203 Holloway Rd. Courage: Best Bitter. (N91)

N12, WISHING WELL, 686 High Rd. No real ale. New Irish run free house in former shop unit. Opened February 1999.

N12, YATES'S WINE LODGE, 698-702 High Rd. Boddington: Bitter; Worthington: Draught Bitter. Latest London outlet for the chain, opened December 1998 in former shop premises. Brightly lit and decorated in traditional extravagant style with coloured glass lighting, raised seating areas, fussy carpets and tiled bar area. All the usual attributes including wines and spirits. Food. Pictures of other Yates's establishments and old photos of North Finchley decorate the walls. 'Music' can be intrusive in evenings. Open all permitted hours.


NW1, BOATERS WINE BAR, 56-60 Park Rd. No real ale. Bar under new development. Keg beer only.

NW3, NACHOS, 79/81 Heath Street. Renamed ALL BAR ONE, Draught Bass; Fuller: London Pride. Latest opening for the Bass owned chain in premises with a chequered history. Originally the Nags Head, it was renamed Cruel Sea in the '60s as one of London's early theme pubs, commemorating the long forgotten war film `Cockleshell Heroes'. It reverted to the Nags Head as one of the handful of ill fated 'CAMRA Investments' free houses set up to demonstrate the demand for real ale as an offshoot of CAMRA in the '70s. It was acquired by McMullens in the '80s but never lived up to expectations with the limited beer range then available. It was sold in the early '90s and was renamed 'Market Bar' with handpumps removed. In the mid '90s it became 'Nachos', and has been closed for a while before being 'rescued' by-All Bar One. Unsurprisingly all signs of its sensitive refurbishment by CAMRA Investments have now disappeared to be replaced by the standard ABO format - pine floor and furniture, blackboard menu, clock etc. Open 12-11 Mon-Sat, 12-10.30 Sun. (N188)

NW3, OLD ORLEANS, 02 Centre, 255 Finchley Rd. No real ale. A restaurant and bar in new shopping and entertainment centre.


SE16, QUINCEYS, Mast Leisure Park, Surrey Quays. No real ale. Free House/restaurant and bar in new leisure complex.

BECKENHAM, HOGSHEAD, 150-154 High St. Boddington: Bitter; Ridley: Bitter; Wadworth: 6x; Whitbread: Abroad Cooper. 2 guest beers on (H) and 4 on (G) behind bar. New Whitbread pub in former shop premises opened December 1998. Wide frontage with french windows. Entrance leads into predictable conversion with wood panelling, chunky wooden furniture, exposed brickwork and overhead ventilation, wooden flooring, tiles around bar, raised seating area and glass screens. Blackboard displays menu, Belgian beers available. Old photos of Beckenham adorn the walls. Disabled WC. Open all permitted hours.

SIDCUP, SIDCUP PLACE, Sidcup Place, off Chislehurst Rd. Flowers: Original Bitter; Fuller: London Pride; Wadworth: 6X. Whitbread Brewers Fayre family pub and restaurant opened March 1999 and created in a listed 18th Century house, used most recently as Bexley Council offices and surrounded by public parkland. The building dates from 1743 and was altered and added to during the 19th Century. In 1907 it became a school and to prevent its development it was acquired in 1933 by the then local council and used as its headquarters with the grounds open to the public. The main entrance is now via a tiled porch from the large car park. The maze of ground floor rooms, including the former Council Chamber, has been sensitively converted into individual eating/drinking areas retaining some of the original panelling, fireplaces etc. The rooms at the opposite end of the bar are non-smoking. The front staircase leads up to a first floor indoor supervised children's play area with separate toddlers' area (open 12-9). The main staircase gives access to three upstairs meeting rooms available for hire (without bar facilities). Emphasis is on eating but rooms to rear, decorated with period kitchen equipment, offer a potential refuge for drinkers. Nappy changing facilities and disabled WC on the ground floor. A patio area provides for outdoor drinking adjacent to the car park and garden area. Open all permitted hours.



W1(S), TAYLORS. Allied. No real ale. (U48)

WC2, EXCHANGE. Free House, closed and being converted into Pizza Express restaurant. (U92)

WC2, MAPLE LEAF. S&N. H removed following refurbishment. (W55, U93)

WC2, OXYGEN. Free House. No real ale. (U92)


E5, MARKET HOUSE. Ascot, closed, future uncertain (E114, U99)

E5, SIR WALTER SCOTT. Whitbread, now converted to Georgian restaurant named 'Little Georgia' (E116, U73)

ILFORD, RAT & CARROT. Renamed BLAH BLAH'S, Greene King, H removed. (X73)


N1, DRAPERS ARMS. Greene King, closed and boarded up, future uncertain. Formerly OLD HUNGRY HORSE. (N54, U117)

N7, NEW QUEENS HEAD. Whitbread, closed, future uncertain, signage removed. (N89)

N7, TIRCONAILL BAR. Renamed PRIDE OF THE WEST, Free House, No real ale. (N91)


SW2, HOPE. Renamed BABUSHKA. Now presumably a free house, ex S&N. H removed. (SW53)

SW11, SPIKEY HEDGEHOG. Inntrepreneur, closed and boarded up, future uncertain. Formerly QUEEN VICTORIA. (SW89, U125)

MITCHAM, SWAN. Allied, closed and boarded up, future uncertain. (SW 147)



EC1, LONGROOM. Renamed GATE. (U116)

W1(F), ROSE & CROWN. Reverted to BLUE POSTS. (W32, U108)

WC1, CARPENTERS ARMS. Now simply CARPENTERS, although retaining full name on hanging sign. (W45, U76, N19)

WC2, GRIFFIN TAVERN. Now simply GRIFFIN. (W54, U59, U142)

WC2, KENT CONNECTION. Renamed KENT TAVERN. -Tetley: Bitter; +John Smith's Bitter. (W54, U74, U90)

WC2, LEMON TREE. Now JACK BEARD'S AT THE LEMON TREE, run by CC Taverns, formerly Grand Met (Watney). -beers listed; +Courage: Best Bitter; +Guest beer (currently Courage Directors). Completely refitted with a lemon and blue exterior, clear windows, pale wood chairs and tables. It has lost its 'thespian' character but kept a few actors' photos. (W55, U58, U80)

WC2, NEW SAVOY TAVERN. Renamed TUP (SAVOY). -beers listed; +Draught Bass; +Brakspear: Bitter; +Courage: Best Bitter. Formerly part of the S&N Youngers estate, acquired in March 1998 and added to the expanding 'Top' free house chain, now eight strong. The lack of kitchen facilities means that customers are invited to bring their own lunches! (W55, U54, U62)

WC2, POPSTARZ BAR. Renamed RETRO BAR, formerly GEORGE, still fizz. (W53, U90, U 126)


E1, OLD BLUE ANCHOR. Now run by Mercury Taverns, ex Bass. (E70)

E7, LIVE & LET LIVE. Real ale not always available. (E108, U117, U125)

E8, DOVE. Now DOVE FREE HOUSE & KITCHEN. -Fuller: London Pride; -Marston: Pedigree; +Guest beers. Now specializing in Belgian beers (of which there are 6 on keg) and food. (E112)

E10, COACH & HORSES. -Courage: Best Bitter; +Harvey: Sussex Best Bitter; +2 guest beers. (E123, U74, U124, U134, U140)

BARKING, HOPE. -Ruddle: Best Bitter; +Greene King: IPA; +Bass: Toby Cask. (X11)

REDBRIDGE, RED HOUSE. -beers listed except Guest beer; +Marston: Pedigree; +Wadworth: 6X. (X99)


N1, HANBURY ARMS. Renamed H (RESTAURANT & BAR). -Wells: Eagle. Emphasis now on food. Menu refers to Hanbury Restaurant & Bar but 'H' only displayed externally. (N47)

N1, HUNTINGDON ARMS. -beers listed except Draught Bass; + Webster: Green Label. (N48, U 123)

N3, OLIVERS. -beers listed; +Courage: Best Bitter; +Theakston: Best Bitter. (N70)


NW1, WINDSOR CASTLE. Now only sells Brakspear's seasonal beer alongside Brakspear Bitter and Special. NW3, SIR RICHARD STEEL. Now subtitled STEELES. (N189)

SOUTH EAST SE8, HARP. -beers listed; +Courage: Best Bitter; +Hancock:HB. Formerly numerous names including ROUND THE BEND. (SE82, U103, U109, U124, U129)

SE8, MECHANICS ARMS. Now a restaurant called Tomi's Kitchen. (SE81, U113,U120)

SE8, WINDSOR CASTLE. Now badged again as `Windsor Castle' but as a young people's centre. (SE82, U138)

SE14, CROWN. Now LITTLE CROWN. (SE126, U102, U120)

SE14, MARQUIS OF GRANBY. Now subtitled KELLY'S BAR. (SE128)

SE27, KINGS HEAD. Renamed SOUTHERN PRIDE. Open evenings only. (SE229)


SW1(B), MARABELS. Still a restaurant and now renamed Roussillon. (SW38, U 129)

SW2, EFFRA HALL TAVERN. Now simply EFFRA. (SW52, U 142)

SW3, BUILDERS ARMS. -beers listed except Boddington: Bitter; +Adnams: Bitter; +Fuller: London Pride. Now under new management. (SW55, U122)

SW3, CROWN. -beers listed except Boddington: Bitter; +Fuller: London Pride; +Morland: Old Speckled Hen; +Wadworth:6X. Now under same management as the Builders Arms. No longer sells guest beers. (SW56 and GBG '99 p203)

SW3, QUEENS ARMS TAVERN. Further to U129, ground floor has been converted to `Bromptonbay' restaurant. (SW57, U 129)

SW5, DUKE OF CLARENCE. Renamed BRAM STOKER TAVERN. -beers listed except Courage: Directors Bitter. Fitted out with a 'Dracula' theme and run by the 'Eerie Pub Company' complete with sadistic sandwiches - uh! (SW62)

SW6, IMPERIAL ARMS, 577 Kings Rd. Now simply IMPERIAL. (SW67, U 143)

SW6, IMPERIAL ARMS, 8 Lillie Rd. -beers listed except Courage: Best Bitter. (SW67)

SW8, DEWDROP. -Guest beers. (SW76, U141)

SW8, MASONS ARMS. +Wadworth: 6X. (SW78, U141)

SW8, NOTT. +House beer. Formerly NOTTINGHAM CASTLE. (SW78, U131, U141)

SW8, VICTORIA, 642 Wandsworth Rd. -Draught Bass; +Worthington: Draught Bitter. (SW80, U141)

SW8, WHEATSHEAF. -Courage: Directors Bitter; +Wells: Bombardier. (SW80)

SW11, FALCON. -Worthington: Best Bitter; -Guest beers; +Morland: Old Speckled Hen. Interior saved from remodelling in 1998 after objections from English Heritage, locals and CAMRA. Claims to have Britain's longest bar. (SW88)

SW11, UNION ARMS. -Webster: Yorkshire Bitter; +Webster: Green Label. (SW90)

SW17, CASTLE. +Young: Winter Warmer. (SW108)

SW17, FREEDOM & FIRKIN. -Firkin: Full Mash Mlld, Citizen, Golden Glory; +Firkin: Best Bitter; +Firkin: Guest beer. (SW 109)

SW17, JACK BEARD'S. -Webster: Green Label. (SW 109)

SW17, SELKIRK. -beers listed except Courage: Best Bitter. (SW 110)

SW18, ALL BAR ONE. -Fuller: London Pride. (U129)

SW18, ALMA. +Young: Winter Warmer. (SW111)

SW18, CRANE. -Young: Winter Warmer. Now one bar, with a mix of sofas and other seating. (SW111)

SW18, ROYAL STANDARD. -beers listed except Morland: Old Speckled Hen; +Draught Bass; +Young: Bitter. Refurbished with light wood bar, tables and chairs. (SW1I4)

SW19, BROADWAY. Renamed JIM THOMPSON'S FLAMING WOK. -beers listed; +Morland: Old Speckled Hen; +Tetley Bitter. Now a Taipan Taverns free house, ex Inntrepreneur. Refurbished in oriental style with about half the pub given over to restaurant area. Beer range may vary. Currently operates normal hours but late licence applied for to allow midnight closing Thurs-Sat evenings, as per guide. (SW116)

SW19, CASTLE. -Tetley Bitter; now available only in nitrokeg form (SW 116)

CHESSINGTON, HARROW. -beers listed; +Fuller: London Pride. (SW 134)

KINGSTON, FIGHTING COCKS. -beers listed; +Flowers: IPA; +Guest beer. Now a Free House, ex Corporate Catering. (SW142)

RICHMOND, VICTORIA INN. -beers listed except Flowers: Original Bitter; +Greene King: IPA; +Young: Bitter. Now Pubmaster, ex Whitbread. Some minor refurbishment. (SW159)

SURBITON, LAMB. -Benskins: Bitter; + Greene King: WA; +Marston: Pedigree. (SW161, U135)


W12, TYPHOON TAVERN. Renamed JIM THOMPSON'S FLAMING WOK. -Adnams: Bitter; +Marston: Pedigree. Formerly SEVEN STARS. (W92, U136)

W14, VIA ROSSA. Renamed FAMOUS THREE KINGS. -beers listed except Courage: Directors; +Greenalls: IPA; +John Smith: Bitter; +Young: Special. Formerly THREE KINGS. (W95, U71, U95, U127, U128)

ISLEWORTH, ROSE & CROWN. -beers listed; +Boddington: Bitter; +Guest beer. Now operated by Wizard Inns, ex Grand Met (Watney). (W131, U55, U60, U83, U91, U99)


A new edition of the Essex Beer Guide was published in November. Updates now cross reference to the new guide. Several changes however were reported in recent updates which were received too late for inclusion in the new guide. For completeness they are listed below, together with some corrections, and the new guide should be updated accordingly. BARKING, BARGE AGROUND. S&N, H unused. (X10)

BARKING, BULL. Bass (East London Pub Co), H unused, (X 10)

BARKING, ROYAL OAK. Allied (ex Taylor Walker), 1-1 removed. (X12)

CREEKMOUTH (BARKING), CROOKED BILLET. Now part of the Bass, East London Pub Co estate (X44)

DAGENHAM, CHIQUITO RESTAURANT & BAR. Address should read: Cook Rd, Dagenham Retail Park, off Ripple Rd. (X45)


HORNCHURCH, SPENCERS ARMS. `Taylor Walker' should read 'Allied'. (X71)

ILFORD, PLOUGH. Now part of the Bass, East London Pub Co estate. (X73)

MARKS GATE, CROOKED BILLET. Allied. No real ale. (X87)

MARKS GATE, HARROW. S&N. No real ale. (X87)

WOODFORD BRIDGE, THREE JOLLY WHEELERS. should be listed alphabetically after CROWN & CROOKED BILLET. (X131)

WOODFORD GREEN, TRAVELLERS FRIEND. Now acquired by Ambishus Pub Co. (X132)

In addition, the numbers on the Barking map (page 11) are incorrect and should be renumbered as follows:-1- renumber as 2; 2-5 as 4-7; 6 as 1 ; 7-9 as 8-10; 10 as 3; (11-14 are correct.) 15 as 24; 16-24 as 15-23. (C1 is correct.) Nos. 12 and renumbered 19 should be shown as fizz pubs and renumbered 15 as real.