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Hope and Anchor, Camden

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user reviews of the Hope and Anchor, Camden

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

The sad situation as on April 17 2015.
jukeofstony - 19 Apr 2015 11:28
This pub is closed and for sale , i doubt if any one wil want it apart from developers for conversion to flats.
mr.toes.5_ - 26 Jul 2014 03:58
I worked here in 1990-91. One of the best(90%)/worst(10%) years of my life.

The good stuff;

1. The locals like Tommy from across the way and down a few, "Liz Taylor" the sherry lady, the bunch from the "Judge Dredd" comics, the squatters from the house behind the alley behind the pub who stole the arm off the sailor on the roof.

2. The old-timer with the big, white sideboards who came in one day, looked around the place and exclaimed "By God, I haven't been in here since before the war!" (WW2 presumably)

3. The very old (90+) old-timer who came in most days with his young minder, drank a small glass of lager, and only ever said "Ta". (Once when he came in, once when I brought him his beer and once when he left.)

4. When the Camden Palace had a big show, the queue would often come down the side of the Pally, in the west door and out the east (corner) door. (Good and Bad) Good for sales. Sometimes the bands came in (Radiohead...Madness). Bad behavior (gulping 3 lager and limes in 10 minutes and puking just before getting out the door).

5. The lock-ins with Tommy and his lovely wife (name ?), Billy (the karaoke king) and not his CUNextTuesday girlfriend, Pat the cop from across the street, Pete and Claire's other landlord friends, etc.

The bit that sucked;

1. Going through 6 landlords in 6 months. In particular , the Geordie gangster wanna-be family who claimed to be personal friends with the Cray's and who's bovine 'eyes 5 inches apart', fat slag twin daughters kept stealing my blue jeans.

2. Rob, the former landlord of the Caernarvon Castle, a dishonest fellow, creep and all around firkin bustard.

Overall, this was a great time. Nothing's perfect, no? Pete and Claire (from Crewe) eventually became the landlords, and they were fun. I moved in with a nice girl in Belsize Park and spent a lot of time up around Hampstead. I met a lot of wonderful people and few truly horrible douche nozzles.

If any of my old regulars recognize yourself or me from this post, please drop me a line.
IvanOrsecock - 18 Jul 2013 12:21
Not bad.More locals than your typical Camdent Town pub,not necassarily a bad thing. Not great,but ok.
tottenhamsean - 28 Feb 2013 17:26
Oh my god...i worked here back in 2000 and lived above it and Sean was my boss...he made my life miserable,,,he had a major drink and attitude problem,,,cannot believe he is still allowed to work there!!!!!!!!!!!1
sarahbear28 - 8 Oct 2011 03:18
A classic corner pub with a certain scuzzy charm to it, that's ok for a quick pint or two but not somewhere you'd choose to spend the whole evening. Selection of drinks is reasonable but unremarkable and the price is ok for the area. Service was fine, nothing more nothing less. It has a jukebox which wasn't on whilst I was in there, a pool table and TVs showing with the sports channels for entertainment. There are some nice features to admire in the building itself and sitting looking out the window as the people of Camden pass by is a reasonable way of spending an hour or so.
The raised rear area is spacious, but I definitely got the vibe that it was an area for the regulars and that passers by are less welcome here than in the lower front area.
The main drawback to the place (other than the fact that there are many better pubs within a short walk) is that it has a rather unpleasant smell to it (a combination of stale beer and rot) which makes you less inclined to stay than you might otherwise have been.
Mr.Monkfish - 27 Mar 2011 19:04
This is a grotty pub with standard lagers and an ale offering of Courage Best. There is a dart board and a pool table up the back of the pub on the way to the toilets. There are also three TVs and a projector screen for the sports.

The barmaid was very friendly and the governor was very jovial as were his cronies (read in to this what you may).

Iíll not be returning here as there are better pubs in the area.
Strongers - 29 Jan 2009 16:31
I think those that left negative reviews of this place must've been on crack when they were there. I have been going to this pub regularly since I moved into the neighborhood, and I love it. The crowd is friendly, unassuming, and full of a colourful cast of regulars. THe landlord is a sweetheart, even walking me back home late one night so I wouldn't walk alone in what can be a sketchy neighbourhood, and arranging for a taxi to pick up a friend that had been there with me.
I recommend this place to anyone who's looking for an authentic pub experience. You can go in by yourself for a pint and be sure you'll make friends in minutes.
The Hope and Anchor KICKS ASS.
Frizzy - 28 Sep 2008 23:48
The Jekyll and Hyde pub of Camden. I was in there one a night, playing pool, pumping money into the juke box, chatting away to the bar staff, drinking after hours and had a great night. Walked in there the very next night and the first thing the barmaid said to me was "are you drinking the same as you were last night?" and I thought I was in for another good night. Later on in the evening I was accused of passing a fake £20 note, even though I had been paying for drinks with £10 notes all night and after the last round I had bought I had only a few quid change, obviously from a tenner as the round was for myself and 1 other person. I protested my innocence and she claimed she'd never seen me before. Enter Sean, the alcoholic landlord, who made a huge point of ripping up the fake note in my face and shouting at the barmaid that it was coming out of her wages. I walked straight out of there and went round the corner to The Cobden, which is a much better pub with friendly staff and punters. Needless to say, I've never been back to The Hope and Wanchor.
craigarden - 7 Sep 2008 15:00
Reading past reviews about this pub, I am shocked to see that the same Landlord works here. Visited the pub on Saturday night with a few friends, and enjoyed a perfectly nice pint, and apart from the scary looking locals who had apparently been drinking since the pub opened, we experienced no trouble.

Until closing time that is and I went to visit the toilets. As has been mentioned several times before, the door was blocked by an extremely drunk fellow who I can only assume was 'in charge' (so he slurred to me) One of the toilets was broken, but the other one fine, but rather than let me use that one, I got a torrent of bad language and a fistful of aggressiveness. As a woman, having a man who clearly shouldn't be served more alcohol than he can take, shouting at your face mere inches from your own, wasn't a pleasant experience. Suffice to say I returned to my table, put on my coat and left with my friends vowing never to return to the place again.

I simply do not understand the stupidity of management, regardless of whether they're working or not, drinking to such an excess that surely they must know that it really isn't a good advertisement for your pub.

In the end I used the loo in a lovely Irish pub around the corner with a charming landlord who even got us a cab back to the sticks for us when we left. Perhaps this neanderthal thug of a landlord could learn from his example.

Awful place, and avoid at all costs unless your looking for a fight.
MD16 - 18 Feb 2008 11:21
Interesting two tier layout, the bar is at street level with a larger area reached by stairs either side of it. Nice looking traditional back street boozer, etched glass, brewery mirrors, pool table, no tourists, locals chatting, that sort of thing. We need proper pubs like this to survive, so many are disappearing and being sold for development. It is opposite the disgusting looking Purple Turtle.

Millay - 23 Dec 2007 21:07
I popped in for a quick pint before going to a gig at the Purple Turtle, the barmaid was nice and friendly and my pint of Courage Best was fine. I didnt have to use the loo so I can't comment on them. I'd definately go back for a few pints before a gig.
mannyowar - 14 Sep 2006 12:18
I wouldn't go here if I were you. And if you haven't been here then I truly want to BE you. It's the worst pub I've ever been in - no lie. And I've been to Benidorm. It's so bad, in fact, that I felt it necessary to sign up here and write a review to forewarn you.

Friendly advice... Don't bother trying to be polite to the group of has-beens huddled to the right of the bar, because they won't reciprocate. In fact, I felt lucky to escape with my limbs intact. And God forbid you need to urinate without solid proof that you were one of the nine punters present on a Friday night who purchased a pint in there (a simple equation for the landlord: beer + bladders = urination). Come to think of it, the landlord was one of the most unfriendly human beings I've ever met. And I ought to stress again, I've been to Benidorm.

I can't be bothered to write any more 'review' because it's genuinely depressing me thinking about this place. I can only hope somebody, somewhere daubs a big capital 'W' in front of the word Anchor, with an accompanying arrow, pointing directly at the spot where the landlord stands. Looking dyslexic is a small price to pay for telling would-be punters the truth.

Hell, if they've got time on their hands, they could always cross out the 'and' and replace it with 'less' - I've heard policing is poor in the area, so...

spuz_gumph - 19 Aug 2006 00:06
For a moment there I thought I'd got the wrong pub! Seems I must have got on the right side of the landlady! I've visited a couple of times recently, and although the music is a bit loud, its ok. I coudn't remember where the toilets where, which as I'm blind can make finding the toilets in a crowded pub a bit of an issue, but the staff were very helpful offered help without being patronising. I agre its not like it was in the good old days, but compaired to a lot of the local pubs its still quite good.
valbear - 9 Aug 2006 17:22
What a shame. Back around 97/98 this was one of the best pubs in that end of Camden, a quiet, unspoilt and interesting interior. Dark booths, and heavy curtains drawn at closing time for the odd lock-in. Then one day it was gone, transformed into yet another bland pine furniture 'n burger menu pubs. Never went back after.
OldRogue - 7 Aug 2006 13:20
Went here with a group of people on Friday night and it is easily the WORST pub I have ever been to in London.

Nasty locals. Nasty landlord or whoever it was blocking the door to the toilets. Couldn't wait to leave.

anonymous - 7 Aug 2006 13:03
Average boozer spoilt by an agressive landlord.
anonymous - 5 May 2006 13:12
Some of the rudest service I have ever received in a pub! The landlady barked "yes" at me while not bothering to look up from aggressively drying pint glasses - as if I had done something offensive by merely waiting politely at the bar. She then snatched my money from my hand while storming away from me, without any verbal acknowledgement or eye contact. Throughout the hour or so that we were there, she made a point of repeatedly "asking" customers to tuck their chairs in as she shoved past on her bad-tempered rounds. It's a mystery to me why this pub has any punters at all, and can only assume that its proximity to Koko allows this place to stay open.
Emi - 2 Mar 2006 09:54
Further to the view expressed immediately below this one, I'd like to add my own experience of this pub. I arranged to meet a couple of friends here for a beer on a recent Friday night prior to moving on elsewhere. Before leaving I decided to use the toilet, but upon walking through to the back room where the toilets were I found an oldish gentleman blocking my way aggressively refusing to let me through, at first asking for £2 to go through and then telling me there was a private party. The coin finally dropped when after a minute of arguing in disbelief he insisted I couldn't use the toilet as I hadn't been drinking there, which of course wasn't true, and I remembered that on the way in there was a sign on the door to this effect, but he chose not to make sure of this before refusing to let me past. Then one of the barmaids joined in, herself angrily asserting that they were 'only asking', when it was precisely because the gentleman who for all I know was one of the punters [I asked him if he worked there but had no answer] hadn't asked me anything in the first place that I had not unreasonably - and certainly in no way aggressively - tried to understand why I was being stopped from going through.

As if this wasn't bad enough, when I finally got through to the toilet there was an unfriendly-looking chap in there shouting angrily and sliding around in vomit which covered the floor and stank the place out. And on the way back I also heard the same gentleman telling a couple of other people trying to get through who had also been in the pub that they should 'p*ss outside on the street'.

They obviously have a problem with people queuing for the club next door wandering in and out to use the toilet, and being annoyed with these people is entirely understandable but that is no excuse for unreasonable or threatening behaviour towards people who have chosen to spend their money and who should expect not to be intimidated. If there is a real problem, the landlord or the brewery should maybe think about installing a couple of bouncers. Perhaps if this was a one-off I wouldn't have been inclined to post anything, but it seems others have had a similar unwelcoming experience, and also bearing in mind the lack of consideration given to actually keeping the precious toilets you have to fight so hard to use as a paying customer clean clearly speaks volumes about the way the people running the pub views visitors so I too will never drink here again, will tell my friends to stay away and advise everyone reading this here to do the same.
robbim01 - 26 Feb 2006 20:08
Me and a few friends popped into this pub for a beer before going into the nearby Kokos, nature being what it is a couple of the girls needed to use the facilities immediately. They were set upon by the feral clientelle who were drunkenly trying to start a fight. Needless to say. The least friendly pub I have ever been in, staff and drinkers. Cannot rate the beer as we left. I will never return to this pub in this life time and I suggest others do not either.
JoSchmo - 4 Feb 2006 18:35
Averagely nice pub, but occasional thuggery ruins the experience.
HartleyHare - 18 Aug 2005 19:14
Pool table is good, though the cues are somewhat deformed. A few ales on pump. Not a bad jukebox - could be better. Its conceivable i'd go there again but im not planning to.
spleen978 - 10 Feb 2005 14:25
I popped in there for the first time in eons for lunch this week and was quite pleasantly surprised. Ale was ok as previous lads said, pool table was quality and its nice and bright and reassuringly traditional. The barmaid was a bit robotic but as a fan of the 70s German combo Kraftwerk I quite enjoyed that and attempting to turn up her smile.
John - 30 Oct 2004 11:58
Yes, most likely the best pool table in the area. Courage beer is as good as Courage gets - which doesn't say much. Was a good place for a quiet drink and/or to watch some football. Am interested to see what it's like on a Friday or Saturday...
travis - 20 Oct 2004 13:49
After actually going there for the first time since last year sometime, my previous comment holds sway. Nice pool table, Courage Best @ £2.30. Food not served.
Owen - 18 May 2004 17:28
This is a half decent local, good jukebox, usually reasonable real ale (Courage Best), pool table, dart board and big screen sky sports. The staff are usually friendly, but try not to talk to anyone else.
Owen - 28 Apr 2004 14:42

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