Our new pub, The Tankard (its original 1825 name), was designed especially with a large roof terrace so customers could look over the high wall surrounding the grounds of the notorious Bethlem Insane Asylum (known colloquially as Bedlam) and gawk at the goings on there.
In 1936 the grounds became a park and the asylum moved elsewhere to be replaced by The Imperial War Museum.
The pub, however, abides, and is a place of layered London history.
A young Charlie Chaplin was often dispatched there by his Mother to haul his Pa out of the lounge bar for his supper. Charlie cites the characters he met in Kennington pubs as the great influence which formed his unique brand of maudlin physical comedy. Chaplin Senior was a well-known Actor and Singer who performed often in the music halls of Kennington Road – all sadly now pulled down.
And now the Draft House has arrived.
Lovely Rachel Thomas is in charge and we have made efforts to restore the pub to something close to its original Victorian state. Hopefully with better beer. And a tasteful nod to its music hall / Chaplin past. And there are still some not entirely sane people in the park opposite you can observe from our magnificent roof terrace.
We will have good British cheese, matched with an amazing range of rare bottled beers from the four corners of the globe, and a very, very good Sunday Roast.
I hope to see you at the Bar…
10 Jul 2017,