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‘I just want to get cracking’: pubs in and around Southwark reopening on April 12

Since Boris Johnson announced the roadmap out of lockdown, the News has profiled pubs across Southwark planning to reopen their outdoor areas in April, writes Kit Heren…

Read on for a selection of places to drink, relax and meet friends in and around the borough as Covid-19 rules recede and spring arrives.


The Kings Arms

Staff at the Kings Arms are “bloody excited” to get punters back in from April 12, the Bermondsey pub’s general manager has said.

The Kings Arms, on Tooley Street, is taking bookings for its outdoor tables, with room for about 40 people in total. The pub is also doing takeaway drinks, manager Jade Dowsett-Roberts said.

The Ancient Foresters

The Ancient Foresters pub in Southwark Park Road.

The Ancient Foresters will be reopening its outdoor areas on April 12, but its landlady called the decision not to allow pubs to open indoors “disgusting”.

Sandra Smith said: “What happens when it starts raining? Do you just leave your drink and run away? How about when you need the toilet? Can you come inside then?

“We’ve got sanitisers and we wear our masks so why can’t we open now?”

The Grange

The Grange pub, Grange Road

The Grange pub is set to reopen on April 12. The pub, on Grange Road near Bermondsey Spa Gardens, will be opening its garden and putting out tables and chairs in the outdoor space to the side of the building.

The Gregorian

The Gregorian on Jamaica Road, Bermondsey (Image: The Gregorian)

The Gregorian in Bermondsey have given their staff special outdoor service training ahead of their April reopening.

The pub on Jamaica Road claims to have the ‘biggest beer garden in the area’ making it more than suitable for the initial outdoors only regulations.

The Horseshoe Inn

Horseshoe Inn
Horseshoe Inn

The Horseshoe Inn near London Bridge is set to reopen its garden and street seating areas on April 12.

Landlord Peter Collie said that tables at the pub on Melior Street, between Guy’s Hospital and Bermondsey Street, are already completely booked up on four or five days.

The Ship Aground

The Ship Aground, Wolseley Street

Bermondsey pub the Ship Aground, on Wolseley Street, is set to reopen on April 12 for the first time since November, but concerns remain about the weather.

“It’s been a very tough year – it’s a long, long time without earning” landlady Pat Jarman said. “I’ve still got to pay my bills.

“Hopefully we’ve got through it now. We just hope the weather holds up in April”.


The Blacksmiths Arms

The Blacksmiths Arms on Rotherhithe Street will be opening its outdoor areas from April 12 but bookings are only for two hours.

The Mayflower

The Mayflower pub

The Mayflower in Rotherhithe is “very excited” to reopen so its customers can enjoy the beautiful view again.

It will be opening up its cobbled front and decked jetty for customers from April 12.

The outdoor space boasts a perfect accompaniment to a pint; a beautiful view of the River Thames.

The Yellow House

The Yellow House on the corner of Lower Road near Southwark Park

The Yellow House has limited outdoor seating so is encouraging its punters to book early ahead of its April 14 reopening.

The pub, located on Lower Road near Southwark Park, will open for outdoor use only from Wednesday 14th April as they are usually closed on a Monday.


Ciaran Canavan at another of his bars

Ciaran Canavan, who runs Whelan’s on Rotherhithe Old Road, plans to open the pub garden with room for about 60 people on April 12.

But he said he did not understand the difference between sitting inside with doors and windows open to let air come through – which will not be allowed until May under the current timeline – and sitting outdoors.

Midnight Apothecary

Rotherhithe’s Midnight Apothecary outdoor bar will reopen on Thursday April 15 offering a range of new seasonal cocktails.

Midnight Apothecary, which is in the grounds of the Brunel Museum on Railway Avenue, has socially distanced space for up to about 140 people across its terrace and roof garden.


The Rake

The Rake inside Borough Market (Image: @TheRakeSE1)

The Rake in Borough Market has ramped up its safety measures ahead of reopening in April.

Based off Winchester Walk, the Rake is known for its “impressively large’” beer selection while having a “famously small” seating area


The Dog and Bell

The Dog and Bell on Prince Street, Deptford (Image: The Dog and Bell)

The Dog and Bell in Deptford hopes April will be the last reopening as landlord Seamus O’Neill says he won’t be ‘rushing back into it’.

The pub, which won the 2020 CAMRA South East London Pub of the Year, is more than set up for reopening outdoors only, having invested in new equipment back in October.

The pub purchased large red umbrellas, multiple heaters and outdoor lighting for their outdoor stretch on Prince Street.


Prince of Peckham

Owner Clement outside the Prince of Peckham, Clayton Road

The owner of the Prince of Peckham pub on Clayton Road is itching to re-open on April 12 after the Prime Minister’s lockdown roadmap announcement.

Clement Ogbonnaya said that it was “nice to know where everyone stands” but hoped that the roadmap was “not one that is too soon”.

Bussey Rooftop Bar

The Bussey Rooftop Bar, Credit: Ewan Munro

Sat atop the iconic Bussey Building, the Bussey Rooftop Bar is the highest drinking spot in Peckham with a stunning 360-degree view of the London skyline.

From April 12, they will be offering a “fully seated, fully covered and fully hosted experience” for groups of up to six people.

Orders for wood fire pizzas, signature cocktails and other food and drink will be online, cashless and delivered straight to your table.

East Dulwich

The Plough

The Plough pub on Lordship Lane in East Dulwich will reopen its outdoor areas on April 12 with space for more than 200 people, manager Jaan Mottus has said.

About a third of those spaces will be covered and be close to outdoor heaters, he told the News. Bookings have been very busy, with spaces on the first weekend after reopening fully taken, Mottus added.


Some eight Young’s pubs are opening in Southwark, alongside six in Greenwich.

The Founders Arms pub in Bankside
  • Bunch of Grapes, London Bridge
  • Cherry Tree in Grove Vale, Dulwich
  • Coach and Horses, Greenwich
  • Cutty Sark, Greenwich
  • Enderby House, Greenwich
  • Founder’s Arms, Bankside
  • Old Brewery, Greenwich
  • Richard the First, Greenwich
  • The Clockhouse, East Dulwich
  • Wheatsheaf, Borough
  • White Bear, Kennington
  • Wood House, Dulwich
  • Woolpack, Bermondsey


The Surrey Docks Pub in Rotherhithe Credit: Ewan Munro

JD Wetherspoon announced last month that 394 of its UK pubs will reopen on April 12 – and 4 of them are in Southwark.

The list of Southwark Wetherspoon pubs that will reopen are:

  • The Fox on the Hill, Camberwell
  • The Capitol, Forest Hill
  • The Moon & Stars, Penge
  • The Surrey Docks, Rotherhithe


Half Moon public house, Herne Hill

Two Fuller’s pubs in Southwark will be opening their beer gardens from April 12.

Beer garden bookings are now open for The Ship in Borough and The Half Moon in Herne Hill.

Parched Pubs

The White Horse and the Montpelier in Peckham, the Roebuck in Borough and the Grove in Camberwell are all due to reopen their outdoor areas on April 12, Parched Pubs manager Isaac Tooby said.


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