I am a journalist, a wife, a mother-of-three and a long-time lover of pubs. Perhaps it stems from those childhood days when my brother and I were forced to while away many hours sitting in cars outside pubs with a Pepsi and crisps? We were too young to be allowed in but that wasn’t going to deter our parents from stopping off for a swift drink. I wasn’t able to catch so much as a glimpse at the bar, yet I knew there must be something wonderful inside.
Since then I have visited hundreds of pubs and am constantly amazed at how many London hostelries have managed to retain the atmosphere of a local. Many a pub in Britain’s smaller towns and villages have turned into restaurants and gastropubs in order to stay afloat. But the traditional, old-fashioned boozer with its Victorian tiles, oak beams and dimly-lit corners is alive and well and flourishing in our capital city.
As a lover of history I am fascinated by the many stories attached to these establishments, many of them relating to well-known figures from our past. Hence this blog about London’s most historic pubs. And it is also about cosy pubs, the ones hidden down side streets that the casual visitor might find it hard to discover by themselves.
So come with me to the pub. It will be an education for all of us.