Published: 24 September 2021
Pubs are a true London institution - the city has 3,500 of them - and Westminster has the highest share of any borough with around 430. Many of these drinking institutions are steeped in history, dating back hundreds of years. Everyone has their own local favourite, but these are a few of our old-school heroes.
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The Lamb and Flag, Covent Garden
Former haunt of Charles Dickens, this place was once known for its bare knuckle fights. Today, the Georgian institution is a Fullers pub rammed with office workers and tourists in the heart of Covent Garden.
The Prince Alfred, Bayswater
A traditional Victorian bar with live music and a vibrant atmosphere, the Prince Albert also serves decent pub dishes. It’s been on Queensway since 1851, and usually has enough space upstairs to grab a seat.
The Royal Oak, Pimlico
A homely atmosphere in an up-market part of town, the Royal Oak is a 19th Century local serving good quality food and mezze platters to a backdrop of funky wall collages. They pride themselves on their fine beers, wines and ales.
The Morpeth Arms, Westminster
Located between Vauxhall Bridge & Tate Britain on the north bank of the Thames, the Mopeth Arms has an original spy-themed private bar upstairs, inspired by the fact it’s overlooking the mi6 building. The main pub serves up hoppy craft beers and a wide selection of gin.
The Heron, Paddington
An unassuming pub on Norfolk Crescent, you’d never guess from the outside that this old-school boozer serves sensational Thai cuisine alongside pints of lager.
The French House, Soho
An absolute classic on Dean Street, this is one of London’s best known pubs for a reason: it’s a total institution, with excellent pub grub and antique wooden interiors ticking all the boxes for an unmissable stop.
The Newman Arms, Fitzrovia
A historic boozer dating back to the Great Fire of London, this place has great wood panelling and equally great pies - chicken, steak and venison are just some of the delicious options on the menu.