The Dickens Inn E1W 1UH (Tube: Tower Hill)

This pub annoys me to the point I’m not entirely sure where to start. Because of this I’m not even going to try and write a proper review and am instead going to just list the things which infuriate me.

  1. It’s a royal pain in the hind quarters to get to as it’s parked smack in the middle of St Katherine’s dock. You can see it from miles off but to get there means negotiating a web of passageways and bridges which would confound Captain Pugwash. By the time you get there the first pint will be wasted on calming your nerves.
  2. It’s not real. Whilst it looks ‘well old’ it isn’t. The original was moved nearly 100 metres to this site in bits and this structure is a folly. This is the pub equivalent of rebuilding Stonehenge in Guilford with half the original bits missing and saying it’s the same thing.
  3. A critic quoted on their website described it as “The most atmospheric spot in the whole of London”. It isn’t. The only way I can fathom they came to this conclusion is if their visit was limited to this pub, WH Smiths in Euston Station and Upper Crust on Platform 8.
  4. The toilets smell of cheese.
  5. It’s endorsed by Cedric Dickens. Charles Dickens died in 1870 and unless good old Cedric has a TARDIS hidden in his shed I’m fairly sure that the two men have never met. Trying to launch a pub into fame by saying ‘My Great Grandfather would have loved this inn’ is ludicrous and tasteless. There are tons of pubs that can be linked to Dickens but this isn’t one of them. You can hardly blame them for trying though given that their only other ‘celebrity’ visitors have been the late Joan Rivers and Katie Melua.
  6. It does its own merchandise. Why? Just Why?

There are some vaguely good bits but they’re hardly stellar and arguably fall under the category of ‘Things That Pubs Do In Order to Succeed at Just Being a Pub’. Selling beer, crisps and food in a room in which you can sit hardly makes up for the annoyance factors. I have only ever visited for lack of other options nearby when in the company of lazy people. I’d suggest that’s really all it’s good for. The End.



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