A pub with a nationally important historic interior, the result of CAMRA's pioneering effort to identify and help protect and promote the most important historic pub interiors in the country.
On the dark wood panelled walls are four superb huge advertising mirrors painted and gilded by Forest & Son of Glasgow, one of the largest suppliers of decorated mirrors in the UK in the 1890s. This pub is taken from the national inventory of historic pub interiors, CAMRA's pioneering effort to identify and help protect the most important historic pub interiors in the country.
A pub with a regionally important historic interior, the result of CAMRA's pioneering effort to identify and help protect and promote the most important historic pub interiors in the country.
LONDON, GREATER - Hoxton, London N1, Stags HeadAn historic pub interior of regional importance55 Orsman Road, Hoxton, London N1, N1 5RADirections: Jct. To the left is an elegantly panelled lounge used mainly for food and non-alcoholic refreshments. Creating a memorable restaurant or bar—a destination that customers will enjoy and return to again and again—requires planning and skill, but most of all it requires artistry. Licensed in Maryland,DC and Virginia, KingCaire Construction is a family run business with over 30 years experience in commercial and residential construction. For beer enthusiasts in Sweden, the Stockholm Beer & Whisky Festival is pretty much like celebrating christmas and your birthday at the same time. That’s why Carlsberg got in touch with us – and they gave us a simple, fun and yet challenging brief: Give us an exciting exhibition booth that can cut through the beer buzz and house all Carlsberg’s different products without being branded to pieces. We soon came up with an insight: A fair is a meeting place – not a pub, and Carlsberg isn’t a bunch of bartenders – it’s a brewery. We’re actually very pleased with the result, and happy that we got to work with a corageous client that allowed a creative and different interpretation of the brand guidelines. One hundred years ago, there were many ornate pubs like this throughout the city, as publicans went to great lengths to outshine their competitors at a time when skilled labour was cheap. The Victorian original remains by way of extensive wall-tiling and large, framed advertising mirrors.
It was built in 1908 of red sandstone for the East of Scotland Public Houses Trust in Arts and Crafts style and still retains its original interior.
Since 2001 the building has been extended at the rear to include a small brewery (opened May 2004). It was built in 1874 but the wonderful fittings we see today are from a remodelling by Arthur Dixon in 1898-1900 at the height of the fin de siecle pub building boom.
The task of creating just such an interior identity and atmosphere from a mere empty shell might be daunting to some, but it wasn’t to KingCaire. Highlights of the woodwork in particular include the outstanding oak bar and storage area for spirits, as well as a massive oak staircase, balusters, and posts.
KingCaire can build an unforgettable interior for any restaurant or bar, no matter what its theme or character. It’s also the biggest event where breweries can show off their products for restaurant and bar owners and their likes.

We took the visitors on a tasty journey through Carlsberg county by drawing inspiration from old train stations with woodwork and hyper pleasant color scales that we married with pub interiors and a dash of a market hall feel. Thereby we created more space for meeting and hanging out  in the actual booth, and we put a lot of effort into furnishing the booth to accommodate as many visitors as possible and create a spatious vibe.
This is one of the last remaining Victorian 'palace pubs' in Glasgow; sadly, similar interiors have been ripped out in recent times only to be replaced by poorer quality modern fittings. There would once have been several small rooms but it is hard now to work out exactly how things once were. The ground floor is faced with mottled blue and brown tiles that were then very popular for pub frontages. Its amazingly tiny snug, with match-boarded counter and fixed wall benches, is claimed by the Guinness World Records as the smallest public bar in Britain. The pub was sold to the London-based Trust Houses Ltd in 1919 and then in 1965 to Bass and operated as a conventional commercial pub. The separate drinking areas have gone but there is an amazing amount of excellent decoration.
Brennan’s Irish Pub was a brand new restaurant when we were brought on to give it that authentic Irish pub look and feel.
Brennan’s warm and inviting ambience is a direct result of all the woodwork that KingCaire crafted and installed. The large bar has a magnificent dark wooden back gantry incorporating two sets of four whisky casks either side of a mirrored centrepiece, a pediment and central clock.
Note the colourful painted windows on the two sets of inner doors and in the vestibule entrance on Admiral Street, where a jug and bottle was originally situated. It is quite small and originally consisted of two narrow bars either side of a servery plus a ‘home sales’ compartment (now disused, of course). However, research by beer writer Martyn Cornell suggests it may not be as old as one might think. By the mid-1990s it was failing, and in 2001 it was closed but passed into the hands of the present enlightened ownership. The Gothenburg system originated in the Swedish city in 1865 as a means of encouraging temperance. We worked with all the project partners to style and build the space so that it was appealing, efficient, functional, and unique.
But, in a restaurant, the back of the house and the customer facilities are equally as important as the front of the house; KingCaire also built these. There was a tier of smaller barrels in the recess below the large barrels but they were removed some time ago. Other original features include a panelled ceiling, carved woodwork, mahogany panels above the seating; there are only modern fittings in the downstairs lounge bar. The social (and price) distinction between the two sides is mirrored in the bar counters – commonplace matchboarding for the public bar and a more elegant streamlined effort in the saloon.

He believes it was installed some time after 1911 by the then licensee who thought his single-room, fully licensed premises contravened the Licensing Consolidation Act of 1910 and so he created the diminutive snug to rectify matters. After meticulously restoration, it re-opened in 2003 and won the CAMRA national conservation award for the quality of the work. A key principle was that managers gained no benefit from alcohol sales but did so from food and non-alcoholic drinks.
Another highlight is the small, glazed-in office in the rear of the serving area that was used for conducting the administration of the pub. The original long bar counter with some part glazed short partitions has a new polished stone top. In the 1950s or 1960s an extension was added on to the saloon though it seems they couldn’t quite get the tile match right. Happily the toilets in both halves of the pub have not experienced modern refits and the tilework still appears as it did to those answering the call of nature seventy years ago.
However, he needn’t have bothered, Cornell argues, since, if a single-room, fully licensed house had existed before 1872 (as was the case with the Dove), the Act did not make it a necessity to put in a second room. The public bar is a wonderful room with superbly designed features – low, segmental arches at the sides with vertical struts, deep green tiles, panelling and a spectacular jug bar. Profits above a certain percentage (usually 5%, as here) were devoted to projects for the benefit of the community. The ceiling too (which probably dates from the original build), with its swirling relief panels, is a fine sight.
However, had you been drinking here on 7 January 1928 you’d have been waist-high in water judging by a small brass plaque recording that day’s mighty inundation.
The latter involves a tiny cubicle (with a seat on the right) in front of the entrance lobby and includes woodwork of considerable intricacy. A final curiosity is the heavily carved, sliding door at the rear to the private quarters above. Some of the woodwork here, along with that in the vestibule, might even go back to the 18th century and, if so, could be some of the earliest purpose-built pub fittings around. Post-war repairs in 1948 saw the addition of the substantial brick fireplace with its exuberant Portland stone carving of the dove returning to Noah’s Ark with an olive branch. The rear room at the Dove is modern but the terrace beyond overlooking the Thames is a delightful place to enjoy a drink on a fine day.

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