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Half Moon, Putney

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user reviews of the Half Moon, Putney

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Recently ruined by refurbishment. Inexplicably, the Victorian brickwork has been painted over in the drabbest shade of grey, as has the wooden panelling which made the interior so welcoming. An ersatz "circa 1963" crest has been painted on the outside and a similarly tasteless cinema sign now stands over the entrance to the gig venue. The pool table has gone, as has the jukebox and the raised seating area. The food is overpriced, even by the standards of south-west London. This is now just another bland gastropub - leave well alone, especially with the Bricklayers Arms around the corner.
sergeanthp - 15 Feb 2012 10:32
Warning - plastic glasses served in the live music room where the bar shuts early without notice. Barmaid in main bar needs a lesson in customer relations. Definitely not a pub to go for an evenings unspoilt civilised enjoyment. I shall not return.
craftman - 25 Jun 2011 00:58
Having lived in Putney for 4 years i was able to try all the local pubs (most of them on the first night in fact), and this is just about my favourite of them all. Great beer, lovely staff and a wonderful mix of people.....i have never had a bad night here.

The music here isn't what it used to be, but we still enjoyed some great nights watching Harry Hill, the Small Fakers and a few other dubious tribute bands. They have recently added food to the bill and the roasts are cracking value, but this pub is all about the beer and the people. Whenever i am back in Putney i will look to end the night here.
tippingtim - 20 Dec 2010 12:11
I used to be a regular here in the 1980s and enjoyed both of my visits (so far) this year. Glad to see it continuing and thriving as a regular live music venue and the Young's Bitter (£2.95) was fine.
oak_cliff - 7 Oct 2010 00:46
decent little boozer stemmed with musical history. only niggle would be that the beer is a bit pricey!!
gumbo10 - 26 Sep 2010 13:13
Trekked out to deepest darkest Putney the other night for a gig at The Half Moon and was pleasantly surprised at the location .... decent pints of Youngs & Tribute (albeit a lil pricey), fair food (gravy could have been a little thicker but that was more than made up for by the fab onion rings) and most of all very pleasant staff.

Full marks to the barmaid who realised that she had short changed me and brought the fiver over to our table even though I hadn't noticed !!!

The only problem with this pub is that it's too far away to visit regularly.
dGriz - 7 Jul 2010 11:25
Popped in the Half Moon the other wet+windy night. Had a nice little aperitif, b4 mealing with Mrs TJ around the corner. I could not help noticing the 20yr old lad sitting at the bar, in just a T-shirt and jeans! Both his arms, and what u could see of his shoulders and neck were all covered (totally) in tattoos! What possesses a young person to abuse their skin like that...??!! Will he still like the "artwork" when he needs a job, or wants a family, or when he's 50...??? (Mrs TJ always likes the wall-paper changed at least every 7-8 years....!!) And when clothes don't fit anymore, at least you can throw'em away, and buy new ones!! Ho-hum, as some elder spokesman once said, 'youth is wasted on the young'....!
TeeJay - 23 Mar 2010 17:09
Popped in here on Saturday to avoid the hoardes of Tottenham fans visiting for the cup tie. Pub was half empty and therefore service was quick. Even when it filled up the bar staff were on the ball. Lots of musical artefacts on the walls. Quite a big pub and all in all it's ok. Only had the cider in here so can't comment on the ale.
nickthefish - 8 Mar 2010 08:53
This was our final destination for the night. Our friends picked this one as we were also in search of live music. Apparently this place was on the verge of being taken over and turned into a restaurant. Music was only an acoustic open-mic night, so we passed on that. Our friends insisted we sample a ‘ram rod’ – I think it was a 3/4 pint of Young’s Ordinary soon to spiked w/ a small bottle of the stronger Ramrod. This hit the spot for our closing pint for the night.
NM_Ale_Drinker - 9 Jan 2010 17:42
Good to hear that this long established live music venue has had a reprieve from pubco Youngs who apparently seem to have finally become enlightened as to the repeat PR disaster that they might have unleashed again!
Also hopefully customers here will be spared the overpriced pseudo gastro fare so predominantly pedalled in many of pubco Youngs' other London establishments. Sadly though the inferior Charles Well's (ex Youngs) Bitter will presumably remain, as elsewhere, one of the most expensive ordinary bitters in London in view of pubco Youngs' active pursuit and support of the exhorbitant, restrictive and anti-competitive "beer tie"!
alefellowwellmet - 8 Jan 2010 19:29
According to 'The Publican' the music will play on at the Half Moon after the current tenant struck a last-minute deal with owners Young’s.

Maybe my signing their petition last month helped a tiny bit.

TiaMariaJim - 8 Jan 2010 12:11
Not one of my favourite pubs for a number of reasons but it is always sad to see a live music venue under threat of closure - especially one as long established as this one. And please not another Youngs' pubco overpriced pseudo gastro pub?
alefellowwellmet - 8 Dec 2009 01:54
Plans are afoot to turn it into a gastropub. Let's hope it's as much of a success as The Dukes Head. Who needs live music anyway?
BruceEllis - 1 Dec 2009 10:43
Yeah it's quite a well known music venue this and there are plenty of posters to back this up and a barmaid also was quite helpful in saying some of the music that had been played there recently. Oh it is also a pub and they do a pretty decent pint of Youngs. Not the best pub in Putney (that would be the Bricklayers, then) but you could do far, far worse.
Oakman100 - 25 Nov 2009 18:14
Large pub outside of the centre of Putney. It was extremely quiet in here on my Sunday lunchtime visit. Young's Bitter, Special, Kew Gold and Wells Bombardier were the 4 real ales on handpull. Snacks were provided on the bar. Decorated nicely enough, it's devoid of any atmosphere during the day. I imagine this changes in the evening, for the live music sessions.
blue_scrumpy - 14 Sep 2009 21:09
Classic pub! Great for live music pretty much any night but if you don't fancy the look of the bands when you poke your head into the venue it's a cool place to just hang out and have a few pints with mates. The main bar is separate from the gigs room so you get a bit of a mix when it comes to customers; music fans, young/old, regulars.
The jukebox has some cracking tunes for music lovers and the bar staff are always friendly, even when it's packed-out you don't end up spending half the night at the bar trying to get an order in!
There are a few tribute bands so if that's not your scene you might wanna avoid those nights, but there are some wicked opportunities to see up-and-coming talent. There's an 'unplugged' night every monday which is an ambient, sit-down with candles sort of affair. About 7 or 8 unsigned acts play a few tunes and you get the chance to buy CDs and have a chat afterwards.
The heated smoking area outside is especially useful at this time of year!
Putney can be a bit of a bummer for nights out and the smaller bars get quite cramped, but The Halfmoon is big enough and fun enough to keep you smiling for hours.
Good times! Deffo a fave!*
funtimefrankie - 5 Feb 2009 00:33
Very good, even without the live music. Good Youngs, great music and comfortable seats - hard to fault.
mtaylor40 - 24 Nov 2008 22:37
I liked it in here as the barmaid was friendly and my pint of Bombardier was good. Youngs Ordinary and Special were also available alongside some standard lagers.

There is a pool table and small TV at one end of the pub and a large plasma screen at the other. I didn’t see any sport advertised, but as mentioned before there is a lot of advertising for upcoming live bands. There is also a beer garden with covered and uncovered seating.

I’d have no problem going back in here if I was passing in the day time, but I’m not really into live bands so I’d give it a miss in the evening as I’m pretty sure that I spotted a sign advertising live music 7 days a week.
Strongers - 18 Nov 2008 16:46
I was in on Friday night on spec with pals hoping to see some good music. It turned out that it cost £12 to see an indifferent T rex tribute band. As they charmlessly thrashed through the wafer thin material I looked at the walls which had posters for innumerable other tribute bands playing there. Live music is thriving? What with - pastiche? Nostalgia? No risks taken at the Half Moon Putney anymore. Adjourned to the public bar and surveyed the featureless refurb, also devoid of charm. Left after a further 20 mins.
Ullage - 15 Sep 2008 11:59
How DARE you?
chrysler1 - 15 Jun 2008 17:53
For anyone who doesn't know, this is a music venue of the highest order, so it gets packed to the rafters in the evenings. Be warned, stranger, it's not the place to go for a quiet pint.
Trying to get served when there's a gig on is a bit of a scrum - but the atmosphere is worth it.
maxc - 8 Feb 2008 20:09
The Half Moon! What a boozer! What a lot of history! Anybody who's anybody has sung live here! I sang here in the wc once! Didn't get asked back though! If you're ever whizzing thru' Putney/Barnes area, checkout this musically historic milestone of a pub!!! (And can i seriously recommend "Emile's" restaurant nearby, in Felsham Road, for a splendid meal aforehand) !! TJ
TeeJay - 28 Jan 2008 01:07
This is my local and I normally pop in at least once a week.

As others have noted the refurb is not too bad, although it's a shame they got rid of the long table in the corner and I'm not sure about the raised platform bit by the windows.
I normally love this pub but a couple of things have concerned me of late.
Firstly, I don't know what has happened to the majority of the usual bar staff but their replacements, mostly, are pretty shocking.
Lack of noticing who has been waiting at the bar longest, no friendliness of any description when taking your order and paying for the drinks.
One of them kept the small amount of change I was due back, when I asked her for it, she seemed put out that I would want change at all.

It may be that I have just been really unlucky the last few times I have been served, time will tell.

I do like this boozer, I really do, but something seems to have gone a bit wrong with some of the new bar staff, they just don't seem to care, which is a shame, as they always used to.

One last point - serving Staropramen now is great. £3.80 a pint is borderline theft.
TheClaw - 5 Dec 2007 12:37
Well, the toilets are working now. They were a necessary change. Some of the other changes were not.

It is clear that the Half Moon management have fought hard to stop Youngs/Wells vandalising this pub in the same way they have to so many others in the area. There is still too much of that mauve/grey paint for my liking and they have removed the old long tables.

The pub has lost a little bit of atmosphere, but this is still an excellent pub with great beer and staff. Thank God the Half Moon has not gone the way of the Horse, the Duke's Head, the Halfway House and the Duke of Cumberland [where the nightmare began].
paulgough - 5 Nov 2007 15:30
Fantastic refurb, the old character is still there but with a modern twist, weel done to The Half Moon team,(the landlord assures me they did all the work).What a pity Youngs cannot get useable toilets done on time, I will be back when the loos are done.
anonymous - 6 Sep 2007 09:47
Visiting the Halfmoon for the first time last week since the refurb. I think they have managed to keep the old charm whilst making the pub look up to date an acheivment that most refurbs fail to do. Plus the music heritage is truley celebrated with the photos looking great.
What a shame that Young's have not managed to get the toilets ready on time and even more upsetting is that there is no disabled toilet available and I hear that Young's refused to pay for an accessible portaloo. They must be so proud of themselves !!!!!!
anonymous - 4 Sep 2007 14:41
It's good to hear that the refurb is fairly minimal and is really to improve facilities (which, let's face it, is probably long overdue). There are many years of smoke damage etched on the ceiling and this could probably do with a paint job now smoking is no longer allowed. I look forward to checking out the new-look Half Moon later in the month and will be reporting back with my views.
gearbox - 7 Aug 2007 16:12
Don't worry too much about the refurbishment - from what I've heard the tenant is largely doing it himself, rather than letting Youngs in to Duke's Head/Spotted Horse the place. Seeing as how he's the one who rescued the 'moon from the blue-painted, upside-down swimming pool monstrosity it was a few years ago I think it's in safe hands.

Apparently we can look forward to redecoration, new flooring, extended toilets (and a new disabled toilet), and a few changes to the bar area, although the barman assured me they're going to keep the character of the place.

Good. Let's face it, it's just about the best boozer in the area.
anonymous - 2 Aug 2007 17:18
Gearbox's comments re. refurbishment worried me somewhat, and sure enough, on a visit to the HM a few days ago I spotted the ominous notice on the wall.

How much damage can be done in 2 weeks..?

Youngs, if you are reading this, please, please don't mess about with this place too much. It is a special pub, and is a piece of music history. OK, the loos could do with a tart-up, and some of the couches are very manky, but please don't do anything else!!
Sweeps - 1 Aug 2007 14:27
I see from the web site that the pub is about to close for refurbishment from August 8-22.
I just hope that Young's does not repeat the mistake it has made in so many pubs, (The Duke's Head, for example), that is, taking a traditional boozer and turning it into a trendy bar with no personality for 20-somethings with loads of money. We will be watching. The Half Moon is a great music boozer with real character. It could do with a update but must not lose its personality. You have been warned...
gearbox - 17 Jul 2007 16:40
An oasis in a desert (Putney).
Viva Half Moon!!
Prague - 10 Jul 2007 12:54
Great vibe, cool staff, nice drinks - great for the boat race!
fouxfox - 22 Apr 2007 19:34
Really great pub, interesting clientele and really friendly bar staff - after 5 pints of Guinness I asked the barman how he managed to draw 3 leaf clovers in the head and he invited me behind the bar to show me!

They did mess up our food order - kept us waiting for about half an hour but then came out and apologised and offered us all a free round. Food came shortly after so was no real problem.

The music is separated from the pub in another room so isnt over bearing. The walls are decorated with old album covers and other music memorabilia, very atmospheric.

One of the more ejoyable pubs in Putney
anonymous - 11 Apr 2007 13:09
Very expansive pub, but it would still not be difficult to find someone like Marilyn Manson in here. As others have said, the live music is situated in the back room, but they apparently play it on the jukebox as well.
Will2 - 8 Apr 2007 22:34
You'll find this to be a good pub for live music. They even have real ale here, the young's bitter may well be to your taste
aleman - 6 Apr 2007 01:16
Love it - the staff are all very firendly and you very seldom have to wait any more than a couple of minutes to be served. I went there recently to see a band and everything from the music to the service was top notch - will be returning very soon.
nickyq - 3 Apr 2007 16:56
What a great pub, really helpful staff and a wonderful atmosphere. It was my first visit after recently moving to Putney the mix of pub and music venue is great and after trying some of the other souless pub offerings in the area, the Halfmoon will now be my local. Keep up the good work.
anonymous - 3 Apr 2007 14:02
This is probably the best pub in Putney, one of a few real “spit and sawdust” pubs that haven’t had the themed gastro treatment. Great music (plus regular live events out the back) and a fantastic selection of beers and real ales.

Cannot recommend enough.

anonymous - 2 Apr 2007 09:46
Nice venue - gigs on in the back room, saw a superb band called Rosalita in there, will return!
anonymous - 26 Mar 2007 09:29
Come on you slags, go to this pub, why don't you? I can't believe there was almost nobody here on a Sunday afternoon. Friendly staff, good Young' s beer, jazz in the back; what's not to like? Local equivalent of the Grey Horse in Kingston (and yes, it's Young's as well, or should that be it's Wells and Young's), but less smoky and less poky. Still love the Grey Horse but I can walk there in 10 minutes and the Half Moon is a busride away. I shall take the bus.
beeronaut - 4 Feb 2007 19:00
Went in for the first time prior to the Fulham v Newcastle game,cant believe I`ve never been in here before. A proper pub with great musical heritage, hope it stays that way because you never know when a gastro refurb is about to strike.Will definitely use before Fulham games and look forward to seeing my mates band the Vee nex play there on Feb 27th.
TSW - 4 Feb 2007 12:25
I love this pub for several reasons: Good vibe, an eclectic mix of drinkers, excellent & regular bar staff (I have never waited long to be served), and fantastic music (The Who, Killers, Stone Roses, White Stripes...). I also like the fact that this pub has not been mucked around with; it hasn't been "gastroed" or done up - it has stayed true to it's roots. I hope it never changes! One down side is it can get extremely smokey, however with the new laws about to come in this will cease to be a problem. I feel lucky to have this piece of rock and roll history as my local!
Sweeps - 29 Jan 2007 14:27
To "a_polite_customer" (or the manager) hereunder - I can only report the facts of the occasion as they arose and accordingly we will not be returning. I am also glad that it is the only music venue of its kind left in south west London - all of the other venues are far more welcoming and appreciate and understand that customers come out to enjoy their evenings.
zeitlin - 21 Dec 2006 20:34
I'm surprised at the coment below. Out of all of London's pub music venues the moon is one of the best run and it's strong reputation is well deserved. It's a fantastic and friendly venue to drink at, and to play at too if you're in a band. And it's the only music venue of it's kind left in south west london, all the others are in camden and shoreditch these days. keep up the good work guys.
a_polite_customer - 18 Dec 2006 21:51
Arrived at 7.45pm last Sunday evening to attend Catfish Keith - went straight into music room (no signs on doors which were open) only to be brusquely told to leave as it was not open yet - no information was offered as to start time or ticket availability. In view of attitude of staff/manager(?)which we had experienced on a similar past occasion some time ago we decided to abandon seeing Catfish Keith at the Half Moon and instead catch him at The Borderline later this month. We left the premises and repaired to the hospitality of the Bricklayers Arms nearby. In future we will never go to the Half Moon no matter who is performing there.
zeitlin - 31 Oct 2006 13:47
Remember keep music live. Beer average but the music is the main pulling point.
Ziggy66 - 2 Aug 2006 21:50
Excellent, efficient friendly service and the best Young's bitter in Putney. The atmosphere was convivial, and the pub is virtually unchanged sice my visit in 1992 during the "135" crawl. The pub is further from Putney bridge than the Duke's Head, but it is well worth the extra walk.

I hope Young's brewery retains this excellent hostelry and music venue when they rationalise their estate.
lad_newton - 13 Jun 2006 11:37
good for night out with bit of fun music, tribute bands always top a good time, prices no dearer than other boozers in area which was pleasent surprise
chrissyboy - 7 Apr 2006 19:19
Great local night out to see bands.
The Jamm always rock the house.
Good atmos, good beer, good staff
PurpleRocker - 14 Mar 2006 22:46
Belting pub - as everyone says the music side of things is great and the atmosphere out the front is top of the shop too. Beer is decent, staff are by and large are really nice, and if you ask the tall barman (apparently called Girth?) he may just show you a magic trick.

All in all a friendly place to go. Two thumbs up.
anonymous - 13 Mar 2006 14:32
Barman seemed more interested in selling Xmas trees, which were stacked up in the pub garden, than in serving beer last Saturday lunchtime, and appeared only to do so grudgingly.

This is one of Young's famous music pubs, but unless you are going to a gig, I would be inclined to carry on down the road to The Dukes Head by the riverside, where the Youngs is cheaper and in better condition and the staff appear civil
JohnBonser - 19 Dec 2005 11:32
Great music, average Youngs beers, above average prices. Otway, Hamsters, Genesis 'In The Cage' (tribute band) are all regulars well worth seeing.
Macbeth - 7 Nov 2005 03:48
great pub that serves good beer and is easily the best pub in Putney
samualbo - 19 Oct 2005 10:43
Good pub and great spot for a gig. Much better than the typical Putney chain pub.
edwardx - 26 Sep 2005 13:03
Quality boozer as long as you are not on the pool table side. Good beer, friendly and do good gigs. well worth a visit, gig or not!
JockStrap - 3 Sep 2005 17:35
a proper pub with a laid back feel - (that's unusual for Putney!), and pretty much yuppie free.

evers - 29 Aug 2005 15:08
Love this pub, no frilly cosmetic changes, just serves good beer at a decent prize and not full of freaks wearing either trucker caps or a suit jacket with jeans.

Beer garden could be jazzed up a bit though, best pub in Lower Richmond part of town.
TheClaw - 27 Jul 2005 10:58
The only pub in Putney that can claim true world-wide fame! The Stones, The Who, U2 have all played there and they've just had Kasabian among others. Not bad for an old boozer on Lower Richmond Road and certainly more of an interesting history than Putney's chain-bar massacre. Love the photos on the walls of who's played there. Sort of place you take a friend from out of town.
a_polite_customer - 15 Jun 2005 13:42
Useless bar staff. The beer is good and usually the music too. Years ago I saw a great tribute band. The band were almost as good as the Rolling Stones they were immitating!
dinorino - 23 May 2005 12:43
The berr is good and they have live music. These are the only good points about this pub I suppose thats all you need but i have to say the asst manager is the rudest most miseable git it has ever been my misfortune to come across. Go there but don't attempt to talk to the staff for they will treat you with the contempt they deserve in most casaes. Insulting.
davidkv - 25 Feb 2005 13:53
I've been doing Monday night acoustic gigs at the Half Moon for 3 years and as far as audiences in London go, this is up there with my all time favourites. A crowd that LOVES their music, and help create a very friendly atmosphere.

...and Ralph McTell (The Streets Of London) can often be seen having a pint at the bar!
benfuller71 - 30 Jan 2005 14:21
Friendly bar staff and clientele (The later is pretty rare for most places in Putney). A poor range of ales though. When we went only ordinary Young's and Special where on tap.
anonymous - 7 Dec 2004 13:45
More a venue for live music than a pub in itself. Messy, raucous clientele, and it's usually too loud to sit and enjoy a drink. Go for the bands, not for the pub.
Kevin - 23 Jun 2004 17:40
Great pub, lively atmosphere and some top bands playing. Keep an eye out for a band called Riverway who play there quite frequently. They are superb!!
Bueller - 17 May 2004 11:59
This is easily the best pub in Putney, one of my favourites in London. Wasted on the stuck up tossers who now make up the majority of Putney's residents.
stickman - 22 Jun 2003 12:36
I went there regularly, it was a fun pub to go to and had a great atmosphere, but too many bad memories now.......what can I say the barman broke my heart! P.S watch out girls for the barman with a dodgy mole!!
Anna Hill - 16 May 2003 11:08
Roland is a great barman
anonymous - 15 May 2003 15:32
Not bad-great venue pub and usually has interesting bands playing there.
anonymous - 2 Apr 2003 19:48
Some of the best music in the area can be found in this pub. The Hamsters regularily play here. As does John Otway. The pub itself is only OK. Wouldn't really go there if there wasn't a band on.
Mike - 19 Mar 2003 13:34
How has this lovely pub, probably the nicest in ALL of Putney been overlooked? Great atmosphere in the front bar, laid back slightly 'older' clientele. Live music 7 Days.
Mike - - 12 Nov 2002 14:31

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