Bryant & May's London: The Cross Keys

Christopher Fowler
This lovely old pub in Endell Street, Covent Garden is a Free House and one of a dying breed. Filled with music mementoes and knick-knacks, it attracts locals, trendies and the odd tourist. It's interesting to note that such pubs seem popular with the young, who don't always want sterile club bars or hotel cocktail lounges. But it's one of a handful left now that seem to have remained unchanged. So long as a pub has a good landlord it can survive, but too many have had temporary managers who pass through and move on. The breweries are to blame, trying to make bigger profits and clinging to passing trends. Such pubs are doomed and soon fall prey to the City's slimy property developers, looking to turn a buck. Bryant & May have popped in here for a pint many times.
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Paul D. Brazill (not verified) Mon, 29/11/2010 - 10:09

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Cracking pub,that!

Diogenes (not verified) Mon, 29/11/2010 - 11:29

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

If you don't protect your old pubs, Thatcher/Blair will win. As she said "They're casting their problem on society. And, you know, there is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women, and there are families."

I saw this on the net about pubs.

Professor Preece says the closure of pub can be very damaging, particularly to rural communities. "In many cases the pub is the last community facility left — the village shop went years ago and the Post Office and bank have gone," he says. "There may be a village hall but it is not an inviting place to sit and chat. The pub was the place where the football team and the darts team were run from. Their loss is a great shame."

Anne Fernie (not verified) Mon, 29/11/2010 - 12:27

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

This is something horribly apparent in northern towns where every other pub is boarded up. Go into the centre however and there is a plethora of drinking barns often converted from beautiful old bank buildings etc. The corner pub - certainly in Manchester- is nigh on extinct.......

Helen Martin (not verified) Tue, 30/11/2010 - 19:56

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Does it have to do with tied houses vs independents? Do the breweries help finance their tied houses? Perhaps there should be a foundation to which independents could apply when they need a short term loan or the termites get into the beams.