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The Boleyn Tavern, E6

1 Barking Road
E6 1PW

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

Bucking Fastard left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

An absolute gem,rightly given the highest CAMRA 3* award for heritage and a very fine example of an ornate Victorian pub.Beautifully lit on the outside,the interior is a series of rooms around an island bar each with outstanding features.Take a walk around and linger a while,the former billiards room at the rear with it's magnificent sky light is now an outstanding dining area with sumptious booths and probably the highlight.The vast world wall map in the drinking section of the rear is impressive as is the tiny snug in one corner.From the outside the apex door to the public bar opens into a L shaped room divided by etched glass wood panels with some fine drapes.Quinno's photos give you the idea.It's all very traditional.
I liked the corridor which contains the loos,a shrine to West Ham United with some classic framed photos of their past glories and fine footballers.
On my trip the four ale options were Shepherd Neame Bishops Finger and Late Red along with Five Points Best and Arbor Mosaic (NBSS 3.5). There is also a varied selection of craft keg taps in the public bar which increases drinking options.
The welcome was friendly and such a relief to find decent ale in an area which has become a real ale desert.The soundtrack was not too loud and top quality.
This is one pub you must visit before shuffling off this mortal coil.Full marks from me.

On 11th November 2023 - rating: 10
[User has posted 2775 recommendations about 2775 pubs]

Quinno _ left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

Inaugural visit, as I walked past not long before its closure for restoration thinking “I’ll save this one”. And I’m glad I did – it really is beautiful and a splendid job has been done inside, it is hard to know what is old and what is new – apparently cost a cool £1.5 million but that money has been well spent. I won’t go into a huge amount of textual detail – you can see the uploaded photos and previous reviews for that – suffice to say that it is a multi-roomer with dark wood and glass partitioning and a stunning rear area (was a billiards room) for dining with an ornate skylight, with nods to West Ham players of yore in each individual booth. There was also great quality cask beer, with pints of Sheps Masterbrew and Purity Gold both hitting an NBSS 4 and served-up by an enthusiastic young barman – so the selection and service has improved since Tris’ visit. The keg choices were also pretty good, so you can easily do session in here. The whole group enjoyed their visit and were reluctant to move on. Good Beer Guide listed for 23 and 24, rightly so.

On 27th October 2023 - rating: 9
[User has posted 5239 recommendations about 5222 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Blue Scrumpy left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

Prior to a visit to West Ham football club's new stadium, I decided to visit this classic old East End boozer that stood near West Ham's old ground.

I waited outside with a group of other people for the doors to open. They were mostly West Ham fans who appeared to be tourists from overseas. Once inside, I had a choice of 4 real ales - Shepherd Neame Master Brew & Bishop's Finger, Thornbridge Lord Marples & Big Hug State of Mind Coffee Breakfast Porter. As it was not long after breakfast, it was an easy choice!

The interior is stunning, with a lovely corner bar with etched glass and wooden partitions creating several different drinking areas. On the other side of the bar are a couple of adjoining rooms with a stained glass skylight amongst several other attractive features. This section of the pub appears to be more focused towards dining.

It's well worth a visit here. A really enjoyable local pub that I'm glad has survived the local football club's move to Stratford.

On 23rd January 2023 - rating: 7
[User has posted 2560 recommendations about 2559 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Steve of N21 left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

I have only been here once before back in the 90’s when I sneaked in as an away supporter for a pint of keg fizz ( no real ales or craft beers back then ) and remember thinking that, despite the wall to wall crush of boozy football supporters, it was quite an ornate pub.
So have been meaning to return since June last year when it reopened after an 18 month closure and a £1.5 Million renovation by the Remarkable Pubs Company and I achieved that a couple of weeks ago. In summary Wow !
I read somewhere that a company spokesman on reopening commented “The pub is now of a standard which would have wowed the locals when it first opened in 1899.”
Well I’m certainly not going to argue with that. And I’m not going to try and describe the interior as I wouldn’t be able to do it justice, I implore you to come and see it for yourself. I’ll just say that my personal highlights were that the original 9 sectioned floor plan has been put back in and it was a real joy to explore the front several sections of the pub. The former large billiard and games room at the back of the pub with its wonderfully ornate stained glass skylight has now been turned into a smart dining room/kitchen section with private dining booths along its edges. And despite of being of a different supporting persuasion I fully appreciated the homage to their previous neighbours with the plaques to former West Ham legends in the dining booths and the wonderful collection of old black-and-white photos which adorn the corridor where the toilets are.
The beer is now much better as well. There are groups of four ale hand pumps in both the front and back bar sections and for our visit there were three ales on in the shape of Adnams Mosaic, Shepherd Neame Late Red and St Austell Cornish Best. Between us we tried all three and they were all in good condition. Then there are several banks of keg taps which had a good selection of craft ales of differing styles including one from the Exhale micro brewery on the Blackhorse Road which I thought was a nice touch.
We chose to eat lunch here as well and went for the Cumberland sausage and fish and chips from the mains menu and both were solid pub grub meals in our opinion. The pub wasn’t that busy early lunchtime so we chose to eat in the front bar section, rather than the dining room round the back. Very friendly service levels from the team running the bar and kitchen and all in all I couldn’t find anything to fault with this pub.
This area of East London has lost so many drinking establishments, even before the Spammers moved out , but the Boleyn is now a beacon of light in this area. I hope it gets utilised enough to be able to survive the current trials and tribulations for the hospitality industry, because Britain needs pubs like this to survive.

On 1st November 2022 - rating: 9
[User has posted 2183 recommendations about 2055 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Moby Duck left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

A splendid looking corner pub with an even more splendid interior of woodwork and etched glass. A large central Island bar with several rooms/areas around it. I noted three cask beers, Shepherd Neame Whitstable Bay,Five Points Best and Purity Jimbo, there were a couple more handpumps in the far back room , but I didn't venture in there to see if they had different beers on offer, there were numerous keg tops with some standard stuff but a lot of craft offerings, I settled for a Siren Lumina. pPlenty of room inside on a Thursday afternoon and quite relaxing.

On 26th August 2022 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1919 recommendations about 1892 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Graham Coombs left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

An excellent restoration of a splendid Victorian pub, which very much leaves you wondering what is original and what is new. The island bar is surrounded by separate areas, divided by ornate partitions with some superb etched glasswork. The rear billiard room is now the restaurant, but kept nicely removed from the rest of the pub. A real fire with a couple of armchairs proved irresistible. Some good ales also with a highly-drinkable Southwark Bermondsey Best, Purity Pure Gold, TT Landlord and London Pride. There is a fair range of craft stuff also, for those who must. Well worth a visit, especially in an area short of good pubs.

On 1st December 2021 - rating: 9
[User has posted 3353 recommendations about 3290 pubs]

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Tris C left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

Easy to spot on my evening approach as the pub, which dates from the end of the 19th century, is floodlit.
Recently reopened as The Boleyn, following restoration costing £1.5m; I shan't bother to even describe the interior which is one of our grandest; simply look at the photos on CAMRA's pub heritage link (this is listed as having an interior of National Importance) and the pub website's gallery page. I had expected to view the fabulous billiard room (now restaurant), but it was locked, probably so that staff wouldn't have to walk so far to collect glasses and clean tables.
The barmaid here was very glum, presiding over a tedious array of Oliver's Island, Seafarer and the horror that is London Pride. There was also Five Points XPA which was off meaning that I was presented with the Hobson's choice of dull Fuller's ales, my so-called Pride (£4.50) spaffed into a glass, the barmaid wrestling the pump like the handle on a one-armed bandit; it was too cold and predictably dull so I didn't finish it.
This is a beautiful pub, but what's the point in restoring it if people who make a special trip to see the splendour are denied from doing so? My rating relates to the interior but as a drinking experience, it probably warrants no more than a '3'; all that glisters is not gold. The Denmark up the road is almost as spectacular, has friendly staff and vastly superior beer at far lower prices - I know where I'd prefer to drink.

On 12th August 2021 - rating: 9
[User has posted 2034 recommendations about 1999 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Komakino . left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

A slalom past the throng of matchday burger vans along Green Street saw my first pub visit of the year (and a revisit at that) prior to the early kick-off against Liverpool on the 2nd Jan. This high-ceilinged London corner boozer was packed at 11:30 in the morning as you can imagine, but numerous attentive staff kept waiting times to a minimum. Two handpumps provided London Pride and Wychwood Hobgoblin - the latter of which was in decent enough nick. All prices seemed to come in at £4.00, which probably has more to do with a pre-match tariff than anything else. A revisit will be necessary as I am still yet to inspect the billiards room as previous visits have been on matchdays where it's difficult not to play sardines at the main bar, although after May this year this shouldn't be a problem.

On 3rd January 2016 - rating: 5
[User has posted 1075 recommendations about 1075 pubs]

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John Bonser left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

The Boleyn ( the "Tavern" part of the name seems to have been dropped ) is an imposing street corner local in the shadow of West Ham's football ground.

It's a well preserved multi-roomed Victorian pub which features in CAMRA's book of London Heritage Pubs where it is described as "one of the more spectacular late Victorian pubs in London".

A central island bar serves a number of different interconnecting rooms. A longish narrow room with an entrance on Green Street appears to be the preserve of locals and contains a dartboard and some West Ham pictures behind the bar. At this entrance, we see old etched door glass being the names "private bar" and "saloon and billiards".

The billiards room is the architectural highlight of the pub with a splendid large stained glass skylight and an unusual decorated moulded frieze. The main adjoining saloon bar also has a fine stained glass skylight and some wooden partitions. There's also an original bar counter and some fine cast iron columns.

On my recent Sunday early afternoon visit, with the exception of half a dozen or so customers in the public bar, the pub was virtually deserted. I'm afraid that I formed the view that management is making little real effort - for instance a prominently positioned sandwich board on the pavement outside was advertising the "World Cup Final, Holland v Spain 11 July" even though this game had taken place a fortnight earlier. Similarly, a notice in the billiards room invited me to "join us for the World Cup".

There's no real ale, so I went for the draught Guinness - £ 3 - served by a barmaid who, whilst being reasonably welcoming, seemed genuinely surprised to see someone she didn't recognise.

This pub won't appeal to everybody, but if you're in to ornate Victorian pub interiors, you should seek it out.

Finally, when you're here, don't forget to cross the road to admire the splendid statue of Bobby Moore with his team mates holding aloft the 1966 World Cup.

On 7th October 2010 - rating: 5
[User has posted 560 recommendations about 560 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rex Rattus left this review about The Boleyn Tavern

This is another late Victorian gem that has retained almost all of its original features. All the usual attractive features are present, including carved dark wood and etched and cut glass. I’m not going to describe it in detail – either visit yourself or look at CAMRA’s “The inside Story”. It’s a very large pub, subdivided up into several big rooms, including a lounge at the back that features a pool table and a dartboard. Indeed when I was in at lunchtime during the week, a couple of the bars had not been opened, as they were clearly not needed to satisfy demand. I’m sure it would be different on a match day.
They hadn’t introduced any of those faddish high tables and stools that you see all over the place – only normal tables and chairs for this pub. Unfortunately they didn’t have any real ale either. I suppose that there’s little call for it in this part of the world. As a pub I really like it as it’s incredibly attractive from a historically aesthetic point of view, but the absence of a decent ale is pretty much a fatal flaw in my book.

On 11th February 2010 - rating: 5
[User has posted 2606 recommendations about 2520 pubs]

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