travel st. georges tavern gem of london

St. Georges Tavern: Gem of London

The St. Georges Tavern in London is a special place that I hope to visit again soon.  It’s been far too long.  I spent several months after I finished college in the neighborhood of Stepney off Commercial Road in London, the St. Georges Tavern acted as my local pub.  Most evenings ended there.  Most nights started there as well.  

You never know what type of person you may meet in the St. Georges Tavern.  It’s beer garden keeps all types of local hooligans and misfits yearning for adventure.  It’s the local pub of so many special characters.  On any given night you can meet a million and more people that you never would have if you hadn’t popped into this grand spectacle of a place in East London.

On one occasion I spent the evening in the beer garden of the St. Georges Tavern, there I am, with a pint of cider in one hand and a massive spliff in the other, and I’m talking with the foursome of glam punks from Toronto.  They were there playing shows in town and with them was a british guy, probably in his early forties and they all had been hanging on him the whole night.  Which frankly, was kind of a nuisance because they were cute in a wild leather studded jacket sort of way.  

So I’m passing the spliff around and it comes to him and he starts smoking and the two of us get to talking.  Just about nonsense really, nothing of any consequence.  Then one of the girls asks me if I knew who he was, and honestly I didn’t have the faintest idea, so I just simply told her no.  Then they asked me if I liked the Cure and I of course do, but he didn’t look familiar and then they went on about how he was the keyboardist in the band but was kicked out or left years earlier.  I looked him up when I got home that night and realized that it was him.  After the girls told me about his exploits, I managed to guage that he wasn’t too fond of his old bandmates, particular Robert Smith, which kind of annoyed me.  He went on and on about how the guy is fat, and an asshole, and it just made me dislike this guy even more.

First you are spinning stories to these girls and making a name for yourself off a band that you seem to have ill to say about the experience.  And turned out that he is this band’s manager.  Blah, blah, blah, Robert Smith made your career.  Then again who knows, I don’t really know the guy, maybe he has cause, but game recognize game, and let’s not pretend that this whole manager of the four piece all girl punk band isn’t all just a ploy.

Like I said, you never know who you will meet or what will happen at the St. Georges Tavern.  Live music plays a big part in the pubs good times.  They have some great local bands that come to rock out on the dance floor right there with the crowd.  Upstairs I have heard that there is a theatre of sorts that puts on events and plays as well.  St. Georges Tavern itself is owned by an artist, that I heard tell lives in her studio up on the top of the building.  

People from Atlantic Records, twenty-one piece all female alt choir GAGGLE, people dressed in all sorts of odd bits taking polaroids on a car parked in the beer garden of the St. Georges Tavern.  A vehicle that is an art piece done by the owner of the establishment.  The automobile is covered in broken mirror and has been used by the likes of Amy Winehouse and Jarvis Cocker for photo shoots and what not.  

Another rumor I had heard was that the St. Georges Tavern used to be used by founding members of the communist party for secret meetings, this however could be bullshit, you never know.  But this wonderful corner of London is an example of British culture and it’s ability to stand strong through all the years of change and industry.

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