History fascinates me. The thought that people sat in the very same chair hundreds of years ago blows my mind. In our current disposable society it’s hard to get over the fact that back then buildings were built to last and last they have done. I’ve sat in many a pub in London, not only to enjoy a pint or two, or maybe even a good old Sunday roast, but to admire the building and be taken back a few hundred years and imagine life then. A life when water was so contaminated that beer was the only option to quench your thirst. A life when important decisions that would shape a nation were made over a pint or two. A life when people would take refuge and reprieve within the warmth of the dark timber walls. I guess some things never change…
It was said to be 1667 when Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese was built to quench the thirst of those working on Fleet Street as they rebuilt the city after the Great Fire of London. What is amazing though is that a pub has been at this very location since 1538 called the Horn. The cellars of this pub are thought to be from a 13th century monastery. Amazing! I used to pop down to this tucked away treasure during my lunch break when I worked on Fleet Street. The smell of the timber and beer, the warmth of the fireplace and the darkness that held thousands of stories. Oh what these walls could tell you!
The names of the pubs have also always fascinated me. Names such as The Hung Drawn and Quartered, The Frog and Toad and our local at the time, The Spread Eagle. If you dig a little deeper then you will find out that the name usually means so much more than a reason to make you giggle.
You just can’t beat a pub roast on a Sunday but did you know that many pubs serve Thai and Indian food too? You will be amazed at the quality and value for money if you find a pub just outside the city centre.
My most favourite pub memories are not the work day lunches, not the Monopoly Board pub crawl and not the escape from the London rain, although these are highlights. It would have to be on a long summer night sipping a pint overlooking the Thames river with the city skyline framing it. That to me is a treasured memory and if I close my eyes I’m back there again…
What are your favourite pub memories? or maybe your favourite pub? We’d love to hear about it in the comments below!