I am that rare thing – a Yorkshireman who is delighted to be wrong. Reports of the Bell’s death were exaggerated, despite all the eyore-ish scuttlebutt from some locals. After my gloomy recent post the Twitter faction of East London and City CAMRA made a call to the Bell’s pubco, getting the reassuring news that they were in negotiations with a new tenant. The place was worryingly silent and forlorn for a couple of weeks, but a recent walk past the Bell revealed that the men in hi-viz are back supping their Carling and their Guinness. I’m not sure what they’ll make of the new tenant’s touches – the most visual being romantically lighted candles in all the windows.
One pub that really is very dead indeed is Lincolns (TIW passim), still sat halfway up the High Road like a beached galleon. When the Police kicked the dodgepots out a few years ago, it was mooted that Lincolns might revert to its traditional name of The Elms and become a decent, real-ale boozer – a role since fulfilled by the just-keeps-on-getting-better Red Lion. However, Lincoln’s is getting demolished next month to make way for housing association flats. The old place did have one last hurrah – it was made over as ‘The Taj’ – an exterior set for the filming of The Magnificent Eleven. A rumour that Robert Vaughan was later seen buying a large doner from Leytonstone Kebabish has been difficult to prove.