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The Bricklayers Arms, Putney, SW15

32 Waterman Street
SW15 1DD
Phone: 02087890222

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Reviews (Current Rating Average: 8 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

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John Bonser left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

Update - July 2014

Called in yesterday lunchtime ( Monday ) - only 5 beers on, of which 4 were from West Berks Brewery ( with the 5th being Bruce's Dogbolter ). This is not the first time in recent weeks that the beer range has been poor, by earlier standards

Quality was good, but, yes, I agree with Moby - this pub seems to have lost its way. It's still worth calling in when in Putney, but it's not the destination pub it used to be and it no longer warrants a specific journey from further afield.

Marked down from 9 to 8.

Update – July 2011

As Roger has already told us, this pub no longer offers Timothy Taylor beers On two recent visits , a good range of microbrewery beers were on offer, all in good form ( eg – Dark Star Hophead, RCH Pitchfork, Triple FFF Altons Pride, Gravesend Shrimpers).

This is one of the few pubs where the “regulars” appear to be the staff – Pattie, Sara and Andy – but I’ve never seen any customer in the pub that I recognise from an earlier visit.

The pub has recently won the CAMRA South West London Pub of the Year Award.

In my earlier review below, I expressed the view that “it’s well worth making the effort to visit”. This pub goes from strength to strength and this comment is even truer now than it was then.

December 2009 review

Multi award-winning pub situated down a side street close to the River Thames and Putney Bridge.

In terms of awards, the pub won the Greater London CAMRA Pub of the Year Award in 2007 and also made the last 16 of the CAMRA National Pub of the Year Competition in the current year - but didn't progress to the last four which were announced recently.

The pub is larger than it looks from the outside - a single horseshoe - shaped bar with bare brick and wood panelled walls decorated with evocative black and white street scene photographs of Putney in days long gone. Note in particular a splendid 1902 large photo over a fireplace showing a works outing leaving from outside the pub. Furniture consists of scrubbed wooden tables and seats and bar stools. Unusually, pub games are available such as shove halfpenny and devil amongst the tailors, although I can't ever recollect seeing anyone playing. There's no TV's or fruit machines, but there is background music played.

The Bricklayers Arms is the oldest pub in Putney, dating back to 1826, although the original fixtures and fittings were sadly lost during a period of closure. The pub last re-opened in mid 2005 and, although a free house, acts as a Southern showcase for Timmy Taylors beers. Read more about the pub and its history in the June/July 2006 issue of London Drinker - a framed copy of which can be found on an inside wall. Regular beer festivals are held, including an Annual Yorkshire Beer Festival.

The full range of 5 Timmy Taylors beers - Landlord, Golden Best, Best Bitter, Ram Tam and Dark Mild - are usually served along with several guests which, on my visit last Sunday, included 2 Downton beers plus Sambrooks Junction from the local Wandle Brewery. The Sambrooks Junction - named after a certain railway station - is a spicy, darkish hoppy bitter and is well worth sampling if you get the chance.

The pub sometimes feels a bit cold and stark to me, but it's virtually unique in Putney in being principally a drinkers pub and it's well worth making the effort to visit

On 22nd July 2014 - rating: 8
[User has posted 560 recommendations about 560 pubs]

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moby duck left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

Disappointed to find this pub empty apart from myself and a lone barman at lunchtime, last Friday afternoon,even more disappointed to find only three of the 12 pumps clipped and in use, all were from Windsor & Eton and the Eton Boatman was very good indeed,I have always liked this pub and continue to do so, but it seems to have lost its way somewhat,given many of its local competitors were bustling at the same time of day, a little tucked away maybe but I would have thought its reputation would overcome this.

previous review 18/6/13
Very quiet on my latest brief visit but it was a Tuesday lunchtime, of the 12 pumps seven were in use ,six beer and one cider ,can't remember what the cider was but from memory the beers were Red Squirrel -Red Dawn Mild,Titanic- Nautical Mild, Downton -Forest Dark, XT -4 and XT - 8 also Triple fff - Ramble Tamble. It seemed a bit heavy on dark beers to me ,but a decent selection and I found both the Titanic and Downton offerings in good form.I still like this pub very much but I feel its not quite the destination pub it used to be , but always worth calling in if in the Putney area.

On 29th June 2014 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1186 recommendations about 1175 pubs]

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Bucking Fastard left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

It's a small pub but the outside is adorned with signs showing off the various CAMRA awards that have been collected over the years,so my expectations were high on a visit before a Fulham v Palace match over the river.Few Fulham fans inside,but the modest interior was rammed with Palace fans,no doubt attracted by the 2014 GBG entry.The interior is unchanged from previous reviews and the beer garden is quite large and can accomodate a lot of overflow if the weather is good.The owners had decided to show case Cotleigh ales with Tawny Owl,25,Commando Hoofing,Barn Owl.Honey Buzzard,Old Buzzard and Long Eared Owl as the only real ale options.I found this policy somewhat strange,I have never rated Cotleigh beers and on sampling three of the choices my drinking companions and I came to the same decision that their beers are predominately malty,with little difference apart from strength.The very definition of booring brown beer.Maybe the owners are Fulham fans none too keen on away supporters,but their ale policy on my trip had the desired affect,we pushed off in search of better options.
It is quite possible we were unlucky,but I would be wary of a return if the team here feel that Cotleigh is a decent brewer.Now if they had been showcasing Marble..................................

On 12th May 2014 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1908 recommendations about 1908 pubs]

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Aqualung . left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

Not having been to Putney for well over twenty years it is unsurprising that I hadn't visited this famous pub as it was originally a Watney's house. According to an old SW London beer guide there is a rumour that the Great Train Robbery was planned here. There's not much to say about the building that hasn't already been said. It's a typical small wooden floored ale house with twelve handpumps. On my Thursday lunchtime visit nine were in use with three Dark Star, two Hobson's, Downton Chocolate Orange Delight, Mayfield Priory, Milton Tiki and Mulberry Duck Gold Sparkle. I went for the Downton beer (£3.80) which despite sounding like an item of confectionery was not at all sweet for the strength.
Places like this are always worth a visit and I would definitely return.

On 15th November 2013 - rating: 9
[User has posted 2119 recommendations about 2114 pubs]

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paulof horsham left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

I've not been here for a few years, but I enjoyed my return just as much as I'd expected. 12 hand pumps: 1 for cider, 1 turned and the rest dominated by Oakham and Dark Star. I tried more than one and all were in great nick (I'd have preferred the Inferno to have been a degree or two cooler on a hot afternoon, but it didn't stay long in the glass even so).

This is very much an ale-drinkers haven so, if you're expecting Fosters, Carling and the like, you're going to be disappointed (or pleasantly surprised, perhaps). The taps serve up beers from Freedom and Meantime, including their own lagers.

As mentioned in recent reviews below, The Bricklayers wasn't as busy as I'm sure the management would have wished, but it filled up throughout my stay and all the tables outside became occupied, with reservations noted on some inside as well.

Still one of London's best on the strength of this call, and I can see no reason not to make a return visit in the near future.

On 9th September 2013 - rating: 8
[User has posted 252 recommendations about 245 pubs]

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john gray left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

Not as busy as it was a few years ago when it had the Taylors beers on.Still a good friendly pub with 8 northern beers on my visit..One of the best in Putney.

On 3rd April 2013 - rating: 7
[User has posted 886 recommendations about 874 pubs]

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Roger Button left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

Dating from 1826 and originally called the Watermans Arms, the Bricklayers claims to be Putney’s oldest pub. The interior consists of a front main bar section with basic stripped back furnishings and several old pictures of the area. A long narrow extension runs off to the rear that in turn leads to a paved beer patio at the side of the pub. Featurewise there isn’t really a great deal of interest, it’s all quite basic and functional and can be quite cramped when busy as it does inevitably get, especially on Fulham match days. The toilets in partucular are insufficient for the number of people often to be found. There is a Big Screen usually for football and a table skittles board but entertainment isn’t the pub’s priority. That lies with the beers.

Until fairly recently the Bricky was London’s only Timothy Taylor pub however a dispute has meant that the only TT offerings these days are the drink mats. Where there were once 4 or 5 TT ales plus a smattering of guests, there are now 5 or 6 pumps in regular action with a selection of guests albeit there seems to be a specific brewery being showcased everytime I go there (most recently 3 or 4 from Isle of Purbeck). Where the pub really takes off is during the regular themed festivals when all pumps are going 10 to the dozen and 50/60 casks are racked up in the beer garden and attracts people from far and wide. I have always found the service to be prompt and efficient whatever the circumstances and the customer base always civilized and accommodating even when packed with football fans.

The pub is widely regarded as one of the Capital’s top ale destinations and has rightly won many awards.including the 2009 Greater London Pub of the Year and the most recent accolade was finishing 3rd in the National geographic Bets Pubs in England. That may be pushing the boat out a little but visitors to London with any real interest in ales will do a lot worse than pay the Bricky a visit.

On 9th February 2012 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1238 recommendations about 1232 pubs]

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Alesonly . left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

I Like this Pub and I was back in here last week whilst on a few days leave. What I like is they always have a good selection of Timothy Tailor Ales including the Ram Tam & Dark Mild that I Love and don't hardly see anywhere else in London in. In my opinion its worth the visit just too get these. I always find the staff & other customer very welcoming & friendly and would have no problem recommending this Pub too others its well worth a visit if your in the area.

On 5th August 2010 - rating: 9
[User has posted 132 recommendations about 105 pubs]

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Rex Rattus left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

On my recent midweek lunchtime visit they seemed to be showcasing Timothy Taylor (as always) and Pirbeck Brewery ales. I had the Pirbeck IPA, which was excellent – and pulled through first in order to ensure the quality of the ale being served. There was no food at lunchtime. In the front of the bar there are a couple of large scrubbed tables, with standard seating; there are a couple of armchairs on the right; and it extends back a fair way on the left with an area containing some more tables and chairs. To the left of the bar counter are a couple of rarities as far as London pubs are concerned – a functioning shove ha’penny board complete with smooth halfpennies, and a table skittles. There’s some interesting stuff on the walls, mainly beer and brewery related, including a framed What’s Brewing article featuring the pub, and the London Drinker from Jun/Jul 2006, also featuring the pub on the front cover. It’s certainly been on the front at least once since then.
The ale selection and real pub feel to the Bricklayer’s makes it a must visit pub for anyone who appreciates a decent pub and well kept ale. I’ve visited before and will undoubtedly visit again.

On 29th July 2010 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2477 recommendations about 2398 pubs]

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Pub SignMan left this review about The Bricklayers Arms

This is a small traditional pub, set down a side street just away from the River Thames. The pub offers a full range of Timothy Taylor beers, with usually a couple of guest ales and one or two ciders on as well. The Ram Tam and Dark Mild in particular are very good here and were served by some friendly and efficient barmaids.
The pub's front room has a very traditional feel to it, with a few seating options around the edges, but it can get a bit cramped when busy. To the rear there is what looks like an extension, which has a very functional layout and offers a lot more seating. A side door leads to a small beer garden. The décor is fairly standard, but the walls had a lot of old posters from previous beer festivals which were nice to look through. These festivals are still put on at various stages throughout the year.
Given it's proximity to Fulham Football Club, it can get very busy on match days and sadly the beer is then sold in plastic glasses, so plan ahead in that respect to avoid disappointment.
All in all, a very good pub and the perfect stop off point for anyone doing a walk along the river.

On 24th June 2010 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2269 recommendations about 2269 pubs]

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