Wenlock Arms, Wenlock Road, Hoxton, London. (c) fancyapint.
A new one for us as we've never been in here (though must have been close during our Angel-to-Highbury pub crawl last May) but when news reached us of the Wenlock Arm's impending demise it brought to mind our very own Crown & Cushion. Both pubs are off the beaten track, but while the Crown & Cushion is a big old city pub run by a family brewer, the Wenlock is a small, single-roomed, backstreet local's boozer specialising in up to 10 ever-changing real ales.
Wenlock Arms bar. (c) gettothepub.
The interior remains resolutely pre-war, although the old boys and cockney knees-up regulars are joined by student, hip locals and real ale boffins giving the place a relaxed atmosphere. The Wenlock can be traced back to 1836 (so not quite as old as the Crown & Cushion) as the Wenlock brewery tap, and although it was shut for a period, it reopened in 1994 as a real ale haven. Since then it has won several awards and is North London CAMRA's pub of the region. Sadly the rumours that it is to close in October-November and be demolished for redevelopment of the area appear to be true. See the CAMRA discussion and campaign blog for full details.
Wenlock Arms interior (c) Marianthi Makra / gettothepub.
Unlike the with Crown & Cushion, which may be lost without much of a whimper, the residents of Hoxton, Shoreditch and Islington are putting up a fight by challenging the local council and redevelopers. The next few months will be interesting to follow in the campaign to save one of London's classic ale pubs. Good luck...
CAMRA discussion: http://forum.camra.org.uk.