In the heart of London, amidst the bustling streets and historic landmarks, a timeless treasure stands as a testament to centuries gone by. The debate over London’s oldest pub has sparked fervent discussions, with numerous establishments laying claim to this prestigious title. However, according to Hidden London, the coveted honour of being the oldest pub in London belongs to the Seven Stars of Holborn. This historic establishment, with its roots dating back to the year 1602, stands as one of the few surviving relics of the Great Fire of London in 1666. Nestled in proximity to the Royal Courts of Justice, the Seven Stars is undeniably a historical gem within the British capital.
A Brief Chronicle of the Seven Stars of Holborn
Situated in Carey Street, London WC2A 2JB, United Kingdom, the Seven Stars boasts a rich and captivating history that traces its origins to the distant year of 1602. Originally known as “The League of the Seven Stars,” this pub was inaugurated to serve the Dutch community that had settled in the vicinity. It was initially envisioned as a brewery and has since continued its operations uninterruptedly for over four centuries.
One of the most distinctive features of the Seven Stars is its historical resilience, as it stands among the buildings that withstood the ravages of the Great Fire of London in 1666, a cataclysm that laid waste to a significant portion of the city. Over the years, the pub has garnered notable popularity among local lawyers, who frequently gather here to celebrate their legal triumphs.
The Seven Stars is a relatively small establishment, characterized by a long corridor divided into three beautifully adorned rooms, all crafted to recreate the ambiance of a waterfront coffeehouse. The pub has been bestowed with the prestigious Grade II historic building designation and is recognized as one of London’s “Real Heritage Pubs.”
The Dutch Community’s Role in the Seven Stars’ History
The Dutch community has played a significant role in the annals of the Seven Stars. The original name of the pub, “The League of the Seven Stars,” appears to allude to an appeal to Dutch sailors, presumably connected to the Seven United Provinces of the Netherlands. The Seven Stars was initially a well-frequented brewery by Dutch sailors who frequented the area.
Today, the Seven Stars is universally acknowledged as London’s oldest operational pub and remains a popular destination for both Londoners and tourists alike.
Evolution Over the Centuries
The Seven Stars has undergone some significant transformations since its inception in 1602. Originally known as “The League of the Seven Stars” and conceived to serve the Dutch community, the pub was a brewery frequented by Dutch sailors. Over the centuries, the Seven Stars has remained in operation for more than 400 years and withstood the Great Fire of London in 1666, cementing its status as a historic institution.
In the 19th and 20th centuries, the pub underwent remodels and significant alterations. In 1840, it was rebranded as “The Seven Stars Hotel.” Today, the Seven Stars stands as a welcoming pub with a lengthy corridor divided into three rooms, paying homage to its history as a coffeehouse for waterfront laborers. Its Grade II historic building status and recognition as one of London’s “Real Heritage Pubs” testify to its historical significance.
A Meeting Place for Lawyers and Tourists
Over the years, the Seven Stars has become a focal point for lawyers choosing to celebrate their legal victories in this charming locale. Similarly, the pub draws numerous tourists and Londoners eager to immerse themselves in the city’s rich history. Offering a wide selection of authentic beers and a unique glimpse into London’s history, the Seven Stars is a must-visit for those seeking to experience a piece of London’s past.
In conclusion, the Seven Stars has undergone various transformations over the centuries but has managed to preserve its historical charm, remaining a beloved destination for both Londoners and visitors. With over four centuries of history, the Seven Stars of Holborn is an extraordinary place that continues to illuminate London’s pub scene with its timeless allure.