Blast from the past

Last week I went to Earls Court which used to be the major stomping ground in London before Soho became gentrified and got more bars than brothels. I went for a drink at the Colherne. Okay so it’s not been the Colherne for ages and is now a trendy bar called the Pembroke but to me it will always be the Colherne. Then dinner at Balans West which seems to have stood the test of time. Then we went to Bromptons, again no longer Bromptons and now Infinity and definitely hasn’t stood the test of time!

Talking of blasts from the past, The Bridge (425 New Kings Road) has been foremost in my mind recently also for a few reasons. Including that one of the regulars who with his partner were dear friends has sadly passed. Another is I keep bumping into people who used to drink there. Oh and then of course there is Andy God – not his real surname but then there were a lot of Andy’s, Andrew’s and Drew’s in the place for some reason. Last night for the first time I discovered his surname!

So back then the internet wasn’t as slick as it is now and AOL still ruled the roost. It was mostly made up of home pages with spinning email icons. Pages basically like this one which is a resource page that time forgot!

Of the bars and dance clubs listed I think seven were owned by the same brewery and about half are now closed or open for other purposes 😉

  • 79 CXR 79 Charing Cross Road.
  • Bar Code 3/4 Archer.
  • Black Cap 171 Camden High Road.
  • The Bridge 425 New Kings Road. (Now a gastro pub)
  • Brief Encounter 42 St. Martin’s Lane.(now Bungalow 8)
  • Brompton’s Bar 294 Old Brompton Road. (now Infinity)
  • The Champion Bayswater Road at Ossington.(Now a gastro pub)
  • Club 180/Earls 180 Earls Court Road.(Now Wagamamas I think)
  • The Colherne 261 Old Brompton Road.(Now a gastro pub)
  • Comptons of Soho 53 Old Compton Road.
  • The Edge Bar/Cafe 11 Soho Square.
  • Halfway to Heaven 7 Duncannon.
  • Ku Bar 75 Charing Cross Road.
  • The Queens Head Tryon Street, Chelsea.
    About the nearest thing to a “traditional” pub in London’s gay scene.
  • Market Tavern 1 Nine Elms Lane.(Closed/Colloseum?)
  • Penny Farthing 133 King Street.(Now a gastro pub)
  • Trade 63B Clerkenwell Road.(Closed for redevelopment of site)
  • The Two Brewers 114 Clapham High Street.

The website owners say “Help us keep this listing up to the minute. Are there new places in your city? Have any places closed? Not quite up to par? Let us know! Send us an e-note” I may well just do that but where do I start?