.This trip actually begins near Bank and covers the area within the City that includes Leadenhall, Threadneedle Street and Fenchurch Street itself. The nearest Underground stations are Bank and Monument. From the latter the route is along the underpass that goes west under London Bridge. Half way across take the exit right to Gracechurch St. Walk up on the left,west side crossing the Lombard and Fenchurch St junction. This is where anybody arriving via Bank or Fenchurch St mainline station would join the route. A little further up on the left is he first port of call. Approximate leaving times are shown in [ ].
1. The Crosse Keys - 7 ~ 12 Gracechurch Street EC3 [18:30]
Courage Directors (£1-79p per pint); Shepherd Neame Spitfire; Fullers London Pride + 2 guest beers (Castle Eden Nimmo XXX and Everard's Tiger.
2. The Counting House - 50 Cornhill [19.15]
Fullers ESB, London Pride, Chiswick and Red Fox.
Now a Fullers Ale & Pie House, his was obviously a bank in former times. The mosaic floor indicates an origin of 1766. Not as large as pub number 1, but still substantial. Similar in layout to The Old Bank of England in Fleet Street, it has a central island bar, a tall ceiling with a large domed skylight and three sizeable chandeliers. Despite the latter, the interior of dark wood and wooden floor is much gloomier than the that of The Crosse Keys. It is busy and the hubbub of sound drifts up to the upstairs gallery reached by staircases at either end. At the back (where we entered) there are various separate rooms, but no sign of a vault.¶ Leave by the front door this time,.turn left and continue down to the pedestrian crossing lights. Cross over to Finch Lane where down on the right is ...
3. Cock and Woolpack - Finch Lane [19.45]
Fullers London Pride; Charles Wells Bombardier.
Odd pub down a side alley that has to resort to alerting passers-by on Cornhill to its existence with a large chalkboard at the start of the lane. The board describes the pub as traditional and it certainly is a contrast to the previous two. This is a small one-bar establishment with TV, background music and a distinct lack of "city types". Yes, there is a dartboard, but it is wedged above a cigarette machine in an alcove with a video arcade game and a fruit machine lining the way! Beware of low-ceiling in the Gents (use the urinal instead - Ed.).¶ Turn right and walk up to Threadneedle St strangely devoid of commerce, then turn right into the southern end of Bishopsgate where along on the right is ...
4. Cafe Pacific East - Bishopsgate [20.30]
Bishops Bitter (4.4%), Weiss Beer (5%), Pils (5+%).
This is reminiscent of Mash on Charing Cross Road. Beers are brewed on the premises as is evident from the large brewing apparatus en view in the front window. There is a sparsely furnished open area inside rather like an All Bar One, but actually more like a students union bar. Many of the customers were wearing suits however. The beers, including the bitter, were brewed to a Belgian style. There was continual background music, but not too intrusive. There was a cascade of water flowing down a wall-mounted mural on the stairs leading up to another seating area also used for dining.¶ Now turn to the right and walk down to the junction with Gracechurch St. Carry on down this crossing over to the entrance to Leadenhall Market, where on the corner is ...
5. The New Moon - Leadenhall Market [21.45]
Fullers London Pride; Wadworth 6X.
A seemingly old pub on the corner of Gracechurch Street and one of the few in this direction that remains open past 9pm. It is an L-shaped establishment with a capacious main bar. Fairly busy. Bare floorboards and a traditional bar counter all along the far wall. It is apparently associated with Pizza Hut, although nobody seemed to be partaking of such fare.¶ Because of the uncertainty f pub opening hours in the area although we just managed to get to the East India Arms on Fenchurch St, it was about to close. Those that fancy a pint of Youngs in this fairly basic establishment may care to rush ahead, but otherwise we recommend going to pub number 6 as follows: probably simplest to return down Gracechurch St, cut along Fenchurch St and turn right down Mincing Lane to Eastcheap/Tower St. Somewhere at this junction o the opposite side of the road is .
6. Hung Drawn and Quartered - Tower St(?) [22.00+]
Fullers ESB, London Pride, Chiswick + Taylors Landlord (guest).
Excellent pub that opened last year to replace the much lamented and long-gone Monument Tavern that closed 10+ years ago. Again this is an Ale and Pie House with a basic style of furnishing, all wood and no carpets. The seating comprises benches and the tables are all unvarnished. The interior is quite compact, but fortunately it was not at all busy when we visited @ 9.30pm. ¶That is the end of the trip. Fenchurch St mainline station is nearby as is Tower Hill tube. Various buses are available in the vicinity too.
Trial Run: Tues 17th August 1999
Present: Edmund & James Featherstone and John Wright.