The ‘Tourist Welcome Coaches Welcome’ sign isn’t blind optimism: stuck out on a bend of the main road between Peckham and Europe, this idiosyncratic gem once attracted busloads of adventurers bound for Dover.
Somewhere in the attics of neat homes across Holland must be snaps of this weird English pub with zebra heads and maritime knick-knacks; perhaps even a group shot with laconic Stan, the timeless landlord, and his evergreen bar ladies.
It’s not only Eurostar and easyJet that have changed the dynamic of this low-ceilinged anomaly: locals who 20 years ago would have scoffed at the Casiotone entertainment provided by Peter ‘Two Moogs’ London from the main stage now cherish the place.
On Sundays, when medieval-sized hunks of meat are slathered in gravy and served to the compact row of dining tables, you can’t move. Regular gigs bring a fresh crowd from Goldsmiths, happier with the plain lagers rather than the three or four ales.
The first Friday of the month is alternative night (as if this place weren’t already alternative enough): expect wacky bands from Slovenia or anything rhombus-shaped from south-east London.