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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Wellington Connection - Pubs

Today we're taking a look at some of the many, many, many pubs named after the Hero of Waterloo.


















As far as I can make out, the Duke of Wellington was not widely known as a drinking man, so the large number of pubs named in his honour is amazing - almost as many as those named for the Duke of York who, I believe, was a drinking man. And the Marquess of Angelsey, who may not have been a lush, but was certainly a wife stealer - but that's another story. When in London, I heard tell of a man who has taken up the mission of visiting as many of the Duke of Wellington pubs across England as he can. He's going to be very old, and very drunk, by the time he's done. One of the prettiest Duke of Wellingtons I've seen is this one, though I've not personally visited it. Yet.



They're in Surrey - check out the website here.

Whilst I haven't made it my mission, I must admit that I've fallen upon, and entered, a few Wellington pubs myself, such as the one in Portobello Road that features this sign




And Brooke and I visited the Wellington at Waterloo south of the River in June, which you can read about in at prior post. If you've been following this blog, you'll know that I fell upon yet another Wellington pub when in London recently, at the corner of Wellington Street and the Strand. Here's a bit from that post to refresh your memory -

"took a boat cruise on the River Thames then went to Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese in Fleet Street for dinner. It was closed until the 29th - and the cab had left. Fleet Street after business hours is desolate, to say the least. What to do? Well, I thought, I'll just carry on as if I know what the Hell I'm doing. "This way," I told Greg as I walked purposefully towards the Strand. Please God, I prayed, let there be somewhere's nice to eat. We passed The George pub - very old, very atmospheric, very closed. Xmas and the Bank Holiday are playing havoc with opening times. Right then, I told myself, keep marching. We fell upon Somerset House and went inside to watch the ice skaters. Then we walked another three blocks up the Strand when, off on the far right corner I saw something promising - lights were on, people were inside and it looked like a pub. It was a pub . . . The Duke of Wellington in Wellington Street. NO, I'm not kidding . . . saved by the Duke. Again. We had a pint in the bar and then went upstairs to the dining room, where we had a fantastic meal (lamb shank pie for me, steak for Greg) and warmed ourselves by the gas fire. The Duke of Wellington - I ask you, what were the odds!?"

Here are my personal photos of the pub, which don't measure up to those above, but you'll excuse me under the circumstances.



That's the logo for The Lion King just behind the Duke - the pub is next to the theatre where it's playing.



You can read a review of the pub here. To prove the point that one can, and often does, literally fall upon pubs named for the Duke of Wellington,  I tripped over yet another whilst Greg and I were on a Rock and Roll walking tour.




As we had to keep up with the tour guide, I didn't have the opportunity to peek inside.



Which may be just as well, as I've come to learn that it's known for being a gay bar. The Duke of Wellington . . . . . I ask you . . . . couldn't they have changed the name to something a bit more appropriate?




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