You think you’ve had a bad day. I’ve just had a row with my barber about the pointlessness of Christmas Day.  While he was cutting my hair*.   Just glad I didn’t tell him there’s no Father Christmas (sorry, Pauline).

Anyway, more London pubs for you in places you’ve never heard of and will never visit unless your name is Duncan, Martin or Simon.

I wouldn’t even have known what the postcode covers.  New Southgate, Arnos Grove and a bit of Friern, apparently. So what’s to know about Naughty N11 ?

Naughty N11

This is the picture of Arnos Grove on Wikipedia.

Photo acknowledgements: Philafrenzy

Exciting. At least I found this vaguely Art Deco swimming pool on the walk from The Prince (I really did walk it).

Future micro called “Swimming In Beer” unless pool has an ACV

One of the best sources of background info on London’s postal areas is the estimable local CAMRA guide of 1995. But it struggled with N11.



The real excitement comes in those pub descriptions. Back in the day of Blur v Oasis or Pulp v Menswear, the real ales available in N11 were (drum roll);

  • Draught Bass
  • Worthington Best
  • Courage Directors
  • Theakston Best
  • Younger Scotch
  • John Smiths Bitter
  • Tetley Bitter    etc.

What a time to be alive, eh ?  What went wrong, North London CAMRA ?

I was hoping my first N11 tick would be called “The Murky Milk Snatcher Micro“, but the Arnos Arms will do.  Nice Bass lamp which would look great in my garden.


It was quite lively at 3pm with the sort of mixed crowd you sometimes get in rambling pubs near tube stations.  Designed more in the style of Stonegate than Antic, I sensed some major recent investment.

Loads of traditional pub entertainment to go along with your “filthy chips“.

19 points clear
A choice of traditional pub pursuits

23 years ago, the Arnos had Bass and Worthington; now it was Redemption and Black Sheep.  Lose some, lose some.

The Redemption was undrinkable (NBSS 1), the rectification proved the redemption.

The clip was turned round, the barman apologised, and a replacement Black Sheep proved as good as you could reasonably hope for (NBSS 3.25).

Never doubt the Masham

Checking my giant spreadsheet, I see I’ve never ticked in N15 (South Tottenham) or N20 (Whetstone).  I live in hope.

*I only use him because he doesn’t speak.

16 thoughts on “MY FIRST GBG PUB IN N11

    1. I lived and worked in London for six years.

      It might disappoint our American friends, but I don’t recall a single foggy day. Compared to the rest of the UK, it was notably undamp too.

      It was bloody cold when the wind came in from the East though.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The fog was imported from Wigan when Dickens made those Dickensian films in the 1850s.

        If you look at my photos you’ll see how rarely it rains in Manchester when I’m there twice a month.


  1. It’s N11 because New Southgate is alphabetically between Muswell Hill (N10) and North Finchley (N12).
    Muswell Hill is more famous because that’s where Tim had his first venue nearly forty years ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “While he was cutting my hair*”

    That’s either brave or… something completely opposite.

    “Naughty N11”

    I like how the North Circular Road is ‘south’ of both Southgate and South Barnet. Proving that London is indeed the centre of the universe (at least in the minds of Londoners). 😉

    “Future micro called “Swimming In Beer” ”

    I think the landlady was already trying to do that in the Hackney Carriage. 🙂

    “Nice Bass lamp which would look great in my garden.”

    We won’t tell on you. 😉

    “A choice of traditional pub pursuits”

    Pinball Wizard or something, something, Maypole?

    “The Redemption was undrinkable (NBSS 1)”


    “and a replacement Black Sheep proved as good as you could reasonably hope for (NBSS 3.25).”


    “*I only use him because he doesn’t speak.”

    You’re braver than I thought. Using a barber who converses via hand signs or pantomime? 🙂



  3. Now isn’t that a coincidence.
    I popped in for a quick trim yesterday and was lucky to get Tadgh who is an excellent cutter ( important when you have silky fine hair ) and good fun because he’s a screaming queen in the John Inman tradition.
    He was looking forward to Christmas with his current beau and their dogs but as you know I cannot stand Christmas with a vengeance.
    As we bantered I heard myself say and instantly regret “I’m full of bah humbuggery”
    He paused,mid-clip,and cackled ” Ooh,I should be so lucky.”
    Diplomatic incident avoided I went off and drank seven pints of fiendishly strong Dunkelweiss from Tipperary
    On a school night.
    Which is why I’m awake at this ungodly hour.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Before he died I always got my hair cut by Tommy.
      He operated out of a tiny shop front in town for decades and was legendary for his prices – €4 for a cut even at the height of the Celtic Tigers.
      He had a disconcerting habit of watching daytime TV on a small set high up on the wall while simultaneously cutting your hair.
      Tommy was also fond of picking up his trusty old guitar between clients and warbling Country and Western songs to passing shoppers.
      He also drank and smoked far too much for his own good but was still at work in his mid-70s.
      I liked Tommy very much because he never once asked where I was going on holiday – mainly because he had never set foot on anything other than Irish soil and never regretted it.
      And also because,unusually for an Irishman,he was mad keen on cricket and loved Ian Botham.
      I attended his wake but only for the first couple of days.
      Anyway I’ll stop rambling as it’s nearly 6am and time for a cup of tea.When you’re awake half the night I always think 6am is the official start of a new day.

      Liked by 3 people

  4. There was – maybe still is – a barber’s in Brighouse, run by Ron and Bruce, the Urquhart brothers.

    That surname is pronounced rather as a Scouser might say “haircut”, and so I thought “what’s in a name?”, as you do.

    I called in once for a trim, and remarked that they must get sick of the jokes. Ron – or it might have been Bruce – explained, that they didn’t get any, “as their name is spelt U-r-q-u-etc. and not h-a-i-r…”

    Well, it was in Yorkshire…

    Liked by 1 person

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