Search

Fight to save iconic Hoxton pub begins

14:04 27 September 2010

Tessa Norton (brown coat) and Sian Murphy outside the Wenlock Arms

Tessa Norton (brown coat) and Sian Murphy outside the Wenlock Arms

Archant

Award winning boozer up for sale with locals fearing property developers ready to pounce.

TWO regulars at an iconic real ale pubs have started a campaign to save it from the wrecking ball.

The multiple-award winning Wenlock Arms, in Wenlock Road, Hoxton, is on the verge of being sold by owners Steve Barnes and Will Williams, who have presided over 16 years of unrivalled success.

Property developers are believed to be circling and charity worker Tessa Norton and teacher Sian Murphy are so heartbroken at the thought of losing their local they have taken up the fight.

Ms Norton, 29, who works for a community development charity off Goswell Road, Finsbury, said: “Community development is all about people power and I love this pub with all my stupid heart. So when the bar staff told us it was probably going to be demolished we had to do something.

“The current owners have done such an amazing jobs that no-one would begrudge them retiring, but we want whoever buys it to realise just how special it is.

“If it stops being a pub, if it’s knocked down, or if offices are built, it can never go back. That site that’s been a pub since 1835, survived the Blitz, survived 80s dereliction - will never exist again. All that history, that community, will just end.”

Tessa and Sian have started a blog where they post pictures and memories, set up a facebook page and are using twitter to get as many people as possible involved in the campaign. And last week they had a meeting with representatives from the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra).

John Cryne, chairman, North London Camra, said: “The Wenlock Arms is among the ten best Real Ale pubs in the capital and is a four time Camra North London pub of the year winner.

“The current owners bought it 16 years ago as a run down back street boozer and transformed it into an iconic real ale pub. They led from the front and began selling ales and ciders at a time when they were not that fashionable.”

Current co-owner Steve Barnes said: “The pub will probably go on the market this week and of course we would much prefer whoever buys it to keep it as a pub.

“We can’t really control that but I can say that some recent events have made it more likely it will stay as a pub than it was looking at one stage.”

- To share your memories and photos of the Wenlock Arms go to http://savethewenlock.blogspot.com

0 comments

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 18:42
Sirus on his motorbike in Hackney's Finest

Welsh Jamaican arms dealers, crooked cops, drug-trafficking Afghans and ruthless Russian thugs feature in a spoof gangster movie inspired by the ‘heroin scene’ in Hackney a decade ago.

Yesterday, 16:14
Pop-up benefit gala dinner at Gayhurst Community School in Hackney with head chef Nocole Pisani and a dedicated team of friends and colleagues. Photo Kristian Buus

A chef who made her name in Yotam Ottolenghi’s Soho restaurant called on former colleagues to set up a special pop-up restaurant to raise £3,000 at the Hackney school she jacked it all in to work at.

Yesterday, 16:01
Emergency services outside Old Street tube station. Photo: Léonie Chao-Fong

A man was killed by a tube train as he tried to save the life of his younger brother who had jumped onto the tracks to get something he had dropped.

Yesterday, 13:27
Peter Kerrigan, 26

A man who robbed the equivalent of a home a day for four years has gone on the run, after giving security guards the slip whilst on escorted leave from the John Howard ‘secure centre’.

Most read news

Which makes us wonder what other animal-themed parties Joey thinks are standing. Miliband’s Labrador Party perhaps?

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Hackney Gazette e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder