A number of pubs across the UK, including four in London have been given new or enhanced protection to ensure their historic designs are saved for future generations. In London, two pubs have been given listing protection for the first time, while two others have had their existing protection upgraded.
The list of pubs was put forward by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) Pub Heritage Group, as part of an ongoing collaboration between Historic England and CAMRA to protect historic pubs and their interiors.
London pubs given new protection
Blythe Hill Tavern, Catford, SE23
Blythe Hill Tavern (Grade II) with its unusual T-shaped layout was designed to create a serving counter in each of the three rooms. The inter-war fittings survive throughout, including curved counters, freestanding benches, imitation wood panelling, and two fireplaces – one with a decorated metal hood and another with a grey-blue tiled surround featuring a sailing ship.
Admiral Vernon, Dagenham, RM10
Built to serve the Becontree Estate, one of the largest and most ambitious council estates of the period, its interior is much as it was when its first customers walked through its doors in the 1930s.
The building is in the popular ‘Brewers’ Tudor style with characteristic timber-framing and brick chimney stacks. It has kept important elements of its original plan, fittings and character. Its almost completely intact interior, includes a games room, private bar, saloon bar and publican’s offices behind the counter.
London pubs with upgraded protection
Prince Alfred, Maida Vale, W9
This pub, with its lavish fittings and exceptionally well-preserved bar compartments, dates from the height of the pub boom in the 1890s and gives a clear sense of the way pubs would have looked and functioned.
Five small compartments, each with its own entrance, radiate from an elaborate peninsula servery. The drinking compartments are divided by ornate screens, all of them with a low service door to allow ‘pot boys’ to duck through to collect the glasses.
The original set of ‘snob screens’ to the Ladies Bar was designed to give privacy to women ordering at the bar here. The screens are an extraordinarily rare survival with only around eight authentic sets known to remain in pubs across England.
A pair of cast-iron lamp standards at the front of The Prince Alfred have also been newly listed at Grade II.
The Red Lion, Mayfair, SW1
This is one of London’s most remarkable pubs and a fine example of a Victorian gin palace style. It was built in 1821 but its frontage was reworked in 1871 by architect W H Rawlings.
There are three doorways at the front of the pub, which is a sign that it was subdivided internally with separate spaces around the central servery.
There is a glass panel from a doorway marked ‘private bar’, which gives access to a glittering room at the back lined with etched and diamond-cut mirrors. It is a showcase of the finest late Victorian pub-fitting.