A clang of the ‘last orders’ bell at the pub on a Friday night is met with a groundswell of dismay before a clumsy rush to the bar ensues to secure a round before begrudgingly heading home.
While many (rightly, in most cases) lament the myth of London’s 24-hour-city status, we might now have the most robust case for the defence yet — which happens to come in the form of a reveller’s equivalent to the Marauder’s Map.
Yes, journalist – and, clearly, absolute hero – James McIntosh (@JimmyMacMusic) has curated the map to London’s pubs that are open past 2am. You may not need to utter I solemnly swear I am up to no good to gain access because the map already knows that; why else would you be looking up this information?
There are, however, some rules to the late-night London geography: each venue shown must be open until 2am or later, must not be a nightclub, and needs to be free to enter. There’s 181 of these venues on the map so far, with its creator on the lookout (and welcoming suggestions) for any other local haunts that fit the bill.
The late night pub map is handily colour-coded to show venues closing at 2pm, those closing at 3am, and any stragglers that keep it going further into the night. While you’re looking at quite a central cluster of places, the map will also still take you as far north as Enfield, as far east as Romford, as far south as Sutton, and as far west as Uxbridge.
Following his investigation into late London pubs, Jimmy Mac shed some light on the matter in his Twitter thread, saying: “Things I’ve found: there’s a lot of places open til 1am or 1.30am. It’s good, but it’s not quite right. Almost all of these places are only open late on Thurs – Sat. All in all, the late night assessment of London is: not as bad as people complain about, but could do better.”
Through his deep dive, a pub in Harrow was even earthed up that claimed on Google to be open all night. Séan óg Free House, we salute you.
When the bell in your local goes a-ringing, you’ll now always be equipped with a free-to-enter guide of the late night pubs in London. Raise your glasses to the maverick that is Jimmy Mac.
Check out the map to London’s pubs open past 2am here. Jimmy Mac has also put out a request for any suggestions to add to the growing map.