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Windmill, Brixton

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user reviews of the Windmill, Brixton

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

Didn't understand mfawkner's comment until I saw the place but yes, I did think 'there's some kind of community centre but it may have been a pub before'. No, it is still the Windmill. A good lineup last night, a shame the beer (Pedigree) wasn't that great - a bit musty. Still, you could always drink something else and the place is really about the music.
rainlight - 9 Mar 2010 08:12
Anyone else amazed by the size of those two German blokes in there on Friday night? Must have been seven feet tall, thought I was standing in a friggin' hole. Top blokes mind you, and a great venue
bongobilly - 19 Oct 2009 13:01
ran this place in the early 1990s does anybody know george parry or mick hughes?
wexy1 - 29 Jun 2009 14:09
Yeah, my first thought was community centre (do take the time to check out the actual Windmill in the park, quite surreal) but serves a good Guinness, friendly locals, quite good. Will be back to see bands and I do like the late opening aspects (they have a sign above the bar for last trains from Brixton Tube). That's a good sign.
mfawkner - 26 Aug 2008 13:33
Great music venue. Sure it's a bit grotty but that's part of the appeal of an indie venue. Gigs are cheap and they often have some really good stuff on. Well worth seeking out for a visit if you haven't been before.
DuchyBoy - 2 Jun 2008 13:04
Good music, awful venue. Cramped, and badly laid out, the stage should be 3 meters to the left instead of tucked away behind the bar. I've had better experiences at the Mean Fiddler?!
bumpby - 16 Oct 2005 11:09
The first impressions of the Windmill are that it would look a lot better from the driving seat of a bulldozer. In an avenue of elegant Victorian houses, the Windmill is a monstrous, ugly block that has little architectural merit other than to act as a bad example of taste. Armed with reviews from previous visitors I expected a vast improvement inside but to be frank it was little better once through the door. Having read about the “finest ceiling in London” I was somewhat disappointed to find little more than what looked like a failed o-level art class project. The bar was probably knocked up by their colleagues in the woodwork class and the whole place was a design disaster with the bar taking up so much space that the punters are confined to a narrow corridor that leads down the stage area. The beers were the basic keg varieties and there are no real ales despite there being hand pumps available. The prices were very good for a music pub – little more than the average pub price. The toilets are surprisingly clean, spacious and hardly a sign of any vandalism or graffiti aside from the odd band promo sticker.

Of course, the main reason anyone ventures near the place is to see the live bands and there is a good selection of live music almost every night with several notable bands having played here in their embryonic stages. Most gigs are £4 admission and for that you will normally get 3 bands. Actually seeing the bands however, is a nightmare. With the stage little more than 6 inches off the ground and in a blind spot from 75% of the pub you are lucky to get even the briefest glimpse of the action. If there are more than 15 people standing in front of the stage you will not see a thing – I am well over 6ft and saw little more than the tops of the artist’s heads. By way of compensation, the sound quality was very good and the bands I saw were very professional.

In a nutshell, the Windmill as a pub is a dump, but as part of the live music “toilet circuit” it has an important role in the development of up and coming bands and, as a music lover, I applaud it’s efforts and would certainly go back if there is a band I want to see (or at least try to see!).

RogerB - 24 Aug 2005 10:41
Looks like a drug drop-in centre from the outside, but inside is a revelation. The service is great - even on a busy Saturday night, I was served immediately every time. There was a free barbecue at the back and a very entertaining sausage-eating dog. We were there to see a band - unfortunately, the stage is so low, I couldn't actually see anything. Apart from that, it's a surprisingly great place.
DaveTheDog - 8 Aug 2005 10:23
I had such a fantastic time here a couple of weeks ago. a pub that stays open after 11pm! thats's a novelty in itself plus the DJ played my ultimate drunken song the Violent Femmes Blister in the Sun. This place rocks big style!
francie_star - 22 May 2005 23:07
This is a great, intimate, down-to-earth music venue, with good bar service. This place has real character, even if it does look like an old scout hut from the outside. Shame there don't seem to be any ales available, but apart from that it's a refreshing change from run-of-the-mill corporate venues. I dunno what time the bar stays open to but they were still serving when we left round about midnight on Friday, so seems like a good place for a lateish drink if you're in the area.
zel - 3 May 2005 15:44
Fantastic for seeing live music in a totally unpretentious atmosphere. A good night is virtually guaranteed here. The only criticism I would have is that it's a bit of a trek up the hill from Brixton, but that's hardly the fault of the pub! Nice one.
Chris - 18 Mar 2004 12:10
Now more of a live music you can still get in for free for an early evening drink. Boasts one of the finest pub ceilings in London which has organically grown over the years. Looks like disused 70s social security building but inside there's always something going on.
Tom Wallace - 30 Dec 2003 19:51

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