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Friend at Hand, Bloomsbury

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user reviews of The Friend at Hand, Bloomsbury

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

Easy to find either by road or tube as next to Russell Square Underground. Busy of a Saturday lunchtime with sport on, plus many people eating A pub where one would feel more suited to be sitting than standing. Worth a visit.
ESCAMRA - 28 Mar 2018 15:54
Typical Taylor walker place with the smell of brown food and bleach aroma wafting out of the bogs. Plenty of ales on though, as well as excellent portobello lager. Wouldn't rush back though.
TommyRogers1979 - 7 Feb 2015 17:46
Found myself in the at Russell Square tube and popped in as I used to frequent this pub when staying at local hotels. Air condition so its colder than the freezer section of a supermarket, I took my pint out to the relative warmth of the outside seating. And what a pint..... black sheep in central london. Nithing outstanding and nice enough.
Mappiman - 8 Jun 2014 12:13
Cosy little pub tucked away down a side road behind Russell Square tube. Always seems to be busy, popular with local office workers and a few European language student from the local colleges. Very friendly bar staff, quick service, pub is kept immaculate, Sky Sports News silently on TV. Very nice place to meet for a drink.
Rogermant36 - 17 Nov 2012 11:47
Impersonal place to meet friends and swiftly move on. Lots of TV screens and not much room to move about due to all the tables and chairs. Handy for Russell Sq tube.
rpf1955 - 6 Nov 2011 17:51
Unremarkable sort of place (apart from a rather striking pub sign), looking like it has been decorated using a 'typical London pub in a box' kit. Three handpumps - Greene King IPA, Youngs London Gold (reasonably, if curiously, priced at £3.16) plus another one temporarily off. Close to Russell Square tube station.
rpadam - 8 May 2010 10:30
Always pop in for a pint if I am staying in the area. You can always rely on getting a decent pint in this small pub, mind you there is not much in the way of competition close by. Not tried the food, but looks good for the price.
griff9of13 - 8 Feb 2010 15:39
Its very very dark inside. That aside, good food menu, with various offers available, concentrating on a 'Great British' menu. Good selction of drinks. The female staff member that served us was really polite and friendly. Had the same problem with one of the staff on another visit, the manager made her apologise! Definitely needs lights.
liamhamilton - 17 Jan 2010 19:44
Nice enough little pub tucked away just off Russell Square. Three real ales - Youngs Original, Young's London Gold and London's Reinbeer Ale. Big screens show live sport. The pub is dark. But the ambience is fine.
blue_scrumpy - 1 Jan 2010 22:40
Dec 09 visit

I propped up the bar for 2 pints here. 2 female staff-one of them friendly & attentive, the other was bordering on rude with most people she served. She only needed the slightest reason to be curt and she went for it. Felt she shouldn't really be in a customer facing job.
oscail - 16 Dec 2009 22:26
Staff were fine today, youngs bitter and speckled hen on (bombardier conditioning). Has espn and sky. Nowt special tho'
oftenscore6 - 9 Oct 2009 17:13
Run of the mill pub. Speckled hen was fine even though served less than an English pint each time. Staff disinterested really. Average.
nickthefish - 7 Jun 2009 13:57
This was the first pub I ever visited in England back in '97, so it always held a sentimental spot with me. I stopped in yesterday with family before going home to the States and it's still an okay pub but not like it once was. Real ale selection was disappointing (Bombardier and LP) but the food was quite good and enjoyed by all. Staff were friendly enough and attentive. I will probably go back in every time I find myself in Bloomsbury, even if it's for sentimental reasons and not for a really good variety of ales.
fr21555 - 16 Feb 2009 20:48
There’s nothing much really wrong with this pub except for the attitude of the staff.

The only ale still available was Courage Best as the other two were off. The barmaid took my order and wandered off coming back with Becks. I, quite politely, pointed out that I had ordered a Best, but she refused to change it and said that I had in fact ordered Becks. Sure I did.

Maybe the manager of this pub has instructed this rude jumped up barmaid to behave in this manner when small misunderstandings occur at the bar and maybe it is their company policy to treat customers with contempt. I won’t be going back to find out.
Strongers - 24 Nov 2008 10:31
A great little, proper pub. It's, personally, great for me as it's a stop-gap on the way home from work. Friendly staff, too.
peterg - 6 Nov 2008 18:58
Nothing special, typical Spirit Group establishment, there are dozens of identical pubs in central London. The beer range hasn't changed since Millay's last visit. Handy if you want somewhere to meet by Russell Square tube but otherwise you can do better than this. Oh and go wrapped up, icy blasts from the air con last night, it was colder inside than out - many of the punters clearly found sitting out in the autumnal drizzle more comfortable.
nickdavies - 3 Oct 2008 14:34
Their Cask Marque accreditation flatters them a little. Three pumps, Pride, GK IPA and Bombardier and the first two had signs saying that the pipes were being cleaned when I went in Friday evening (could be they close weekends). The two pints of Bombardier that I saw being pulled were both woefully short on measure but I got the impression this is the sort of place where neither the staff nor the customers see this as an issue. On the plus side they have Hoegaarden, Star and Leffe on tap and there are plenty of attentive bar staff.

Millay - 12 Jan 2008 19:14
Disabled access, by a slight ramp in the front entrance, but no disabled toilet.
Martinl - 22 Aug 2007 22:03
Went into this pub last night and had a bite to eat. I had a Steak and ale pie with chips, veg and gravy which was outstanding. The staff were excellent and the beer had a great selection, i had a Bulmers over ice which was served in a bulmers glass as well. Will be recommending this to friends and returning myself.
anonymous - 10 Aug 2007 17:00

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