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The Ship Tavern (Bar)

Picture of The Ship Tavern in City of London, London

12 Gate Street, Holborn, City of London, London, WC2A 3HP
Cuisine: Pub
Tel: 0207 405 1992 | Email to The Ship Tavern | Transport: Holborn | Write review

The Ship Tavern Description

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The Ship Tavern was established in 1549 & has been at the heart of Holborn's social scene for over 500 years. The original Tavern was then only half the size as it is today Constructed mostly from timber. Its main purpose was to quench the thirst of exhausted labourers who were tending to the nearby fields, now partly Lincoln's Inn Fields.

As well as being a public house, The Ship Tavern has served many purposes in its lifetime. Notably during the despotic reign of Henry VIII, Catholics would sneak into the Ship Tavern to attend mass, conducted by outlawed priests who would conduct mass from

behind the bar. Lookouts would be posted around the neighbourhood, and a pre-arranged signal would warn the congregation when the king's zealous officials came in to view. The warning would, hopefully, give the priest time to escape into one of the several 'hidey-holes' some of which are still exist today, and allow the congregation time to take up their tankards and become just another group of regulars. However, some priests were not so lucky and were discovered hiding in the basement & subsequently executed on the spot. Their chilling screams can still be heard echoing around the pub to this very day.

Other famous guests to visit the Tavern over the years include Richard Penderel who helped King Charles to escape & also Smeaton who built the first Eddystone lighthouse which has now been relocated to Mutley Plain in Plymouth.

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Customer Reviews for The Ship Tavern

Average (based on 2 votes): 2 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of The Ship Tavern.

“I enjoyed it so much that I went back with twenty one others for a 60th birthday and now going back for a 50th in a few weeks. Superb food and the beer was surprisingly good considering it is London and even with the London prices we thought it was value for money. My son also liked the fact that you prepared him a white Russian without fuss even though it was not on the menu.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Ian Burrows, Welwyn Garden City (3 years 6 months 1 days ago)

“The best pub in Holborn by a mile! A real jem of a place. Tucked behind Holborn tube station the Ship Tavern was like a breath of fresh air after a hard slog at the office. I also went there for lunch and had probably the best burger I have tasted to date. Not only that to top it all the service was friendly! (something which is hard to find these days) I should also point out I was very impressed with the music, not your usual juke box rubbish. Top marks from me and well worth a visit.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Andrew Horesly, London (12 years 7 months 19 days ago)

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Venue ID: 1897

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