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White Hart pub in east London, then and now

East End pubs: then and now

As our interactive gallery illustrates, times are tough for London's cockney boozers

By David Clack

In 1973, a pint of beer in a London pub cost, on average, 15 pence. Based on inflation, today’s price should be somewhere around £1.58. Yet as any thirsty Londoner will tell you, in reality you’ll be lucky to wet your whistle for double that.

Rising taxes and duties on booze are undoubtedly one of the big reasons why London pubs are closing at a rate of 90 per year. And while the industry is by no means on its arse, it’s certainly undergone a big change in the last couple of decades. No longer are a bit of company and a regular quiz enough to entice punters in – you need a monthly vintage clothing sale, a ukulele night and nostalgia-pricking film screenings. And while some pubs have adapted well to the brave new face of boozing, others, well – see for yourself.

Use the slider handles on the images below to flick between past and present. Got an old photo of London we should re-shoot for our next gallery? Tweet at @TimeOutLondon.

Abbey Arms, Plaistow, late nineteenth century



Boleyn Tavern, Upton Park, early twentieth century



Galloway Arms, Limehouse, 1981



Grapes, Limehouse, 1975



Hand and Flower, Bow, 1970



Spotted Dog, West Ham, early twentieth century



White Hart, Whitechapel, 1960



More then and now galleries

Covent Garden: then and now

Things to do

It wasn't always fashion flagships and gawping tourists, y'know. In fact, travel back as little as 40 years and the West End area now known for its shops, museums and theatres becomes all but unrecognisable…


Soho: then and now

Things to do

The times, they are a-changin', and nowhere is it more apparent than in the West End's lively grid of food, booze and vice

Show more

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