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History

The Nell of Old Drury is one of the oldest pubs in Covent Garden and has undergone a number of incarnations.

An underground tunnel connects the pub and the Theatre Royal opposite which was allegedly used by Charles II when visiting Nell Gynne during the late 1600s.

The pub was originally called the Lamb but was re-named The Sir John Falstaff by the Victorians. During this period, pubs were often used as exhibition venues for what was considering exotic at the time. The Sir John Falstaff was host to such including a tattooed man from the South Seas and a Zulu warrior woman!

The present day Catherine Street is an amalgamation of what was Brydges Steet and Katherine Street. The pub's former address was 15 Brydges Street and was a regular for a number of the literary and theatrical figures over the centuries.

The pub was also a regular haunt of the market traders when the Covent Garden Fruit and Veg market was still in existence. It even made a cameo appearance in the Hitchcock movie 'Frenzy', which was set in the area.

 

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Nell Gwynne

 

The Nell during the 1970s

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