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Willoughby Arms, North Kingston, Kingston Upon Thames

47 Willoughby Road
Kingston Upon Thames

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

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Quinno _ left this review about Willoughby Arms

No change since my visit 5 and a bit years ago (that long?? I blame COVID for blotting out two years of memory). Five cask on (a couple too many, I thought...); I plumped for Twickenham Banoffee (NBSS 3.5), Twickenham Summer Dowm Under (pump tired, 2.5). Jumbo dog in attendance, slightly smelly and I think it was also here last time. It’s a decent pub but my two visits have given me 50% warm beer so turnover is a problem and means it goes down a mark. 7.5

December 2016
Large Victorian corner local in the suburban backstreets. Quite traditional inside with red pub carpet, quarter-length wood panelling, various mounted animal heads and plenty of papers. U shaped interior (though it’s effectively an island bar as you can travel between the two bars via a corridor behind it) with a sports bar (plus darts and pool table) over on the right hand side. Rugby on over multiple screens. Disabled toilet, though good luck getting the wheelchair to it. Food available which seemed to be pizzas and they looked and smelt impressive, I was almost tempted to have one myself. Numerous CAMRA awards are displayed above the bar. Seven ales on and an impressive selection; West Berkshire Dr Hexters Healer, Cropton Monkman Slaughter, Saltaire Triple Choc, Thornbridge Jaipur, Elland 1872, Oakham Citra and Twickenham Naked Ladies. The 1872 was a bit warm (first one out for a while) whilst the Citra fared better. Despite the impressive ale selection, I appeared to be the only person actually drinking it, which I found odd especially as the pub was pretty busy. The landlord clearly knows the regulars as there was plenty of chat and banter across the bar. As noted below, it’s quite a bloke-heavy atmosphere but not a particularly intimidating one and a couple of ladies were in attendance. An interesting service quirk here is that the staff will do table service for drinks for no extra charge. This pub is a fine example of a backstreet community focused pub and its continuing success shows what can be achieved by enthusiasm and effort. Rated 8.5

On 18th March 2022 - rating: 7
[User has posted 5239 recommendations about 5222 pubs]

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Mark Holliman left this review about Willoughby Arms

The Willoughby Arms is in a very residential street in north Kingston. A great real ale pub with lots of different cask ales to try. It is male dominated and a drinkers pub. It could do with some redoration and updating but we enjoy here just for the good beer. Watch out for the beer festivals occasional held here.

On 9th January 2012 - rating: 8
[User has posted 16 recommendations about 16 pubs]

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Pub SignMan left this review about Willoughby Arms

This cracking local's pub is located in the back streets of Kingston, without being too far from the town centre and train station.
Entering via the front bar, three ales were visible including Greene King IPA and Surrey Hills Shere Drop. I ordered a pint of the latter from the friendly barmaid amidst a barrage of questions from the inquisitive and colourful locals.
Having moved through to the sports bar in the next room I spotted a couple more pumps, this time with London Pride and Twickenham Spring Ale. The room was set up for the late afternoon match between Spurs and Chelsea, so all of the tables and chairs had been arranged to face the big screen at the front of the room.
As mentioned by others below, this room hosts quite an amazing collection of sporting memorabilia including signed football shirts and boxing gloves, numerous trophies, framed photos, a replica of the World Cup trophy and to my delight, an AFC Bournemouth pendant hanging from the ceiling!
A pool room can be reached from the rear of the sports bar and again there is plenty of interesting stuff on the walls including snooker and movie memorabilia. There was also access to a beer garden.
This is a great community pub and well worth seeking out if you're in the Kingston area. I'll certainly be returning.

On 21st April 2010 - rating: 8
[User has posted 3140 recommendations about 3140 pubs]

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Malden man left this review about Willoughby Arms

Good community local run by an enterprising landlord who clearly knows how to make a pub like this thrive whereas other similarly located pubs can struggle. Two seperate bars, one given over to sports and games (darts and pool table plus machines), with the front bar being more for drinkers. The sports bar has a museumlike collection of signed shirts, pictures etc and footballs and club pennants hanging from the ceiling.

Good selection of ale, Bombardier and Pride supplemented recently by Surrey Hills Shere Drop, Twickenham Scrum Down and Caledonian Six Nations. Nice to see the beer pulled through before my pint was served too.

Signs advertise a good deal for rugby fans during 6 nations games, 4 pint jugs of Twickenham Scrum down or Marstons Sweet Chariot for £8/9.

Visit dated 06/03/2010.

As good as ever, the hands on guv gave our group of 6 the choice of the late Saturday TV game after we entered following the match at AFC Wimbledon.. Guest beers were Sambrooks Junction and Twickenham Grandstand. Both in good nick. We sat in the small back room I've not noticed previously, it has lots of old bric a brac on shelves plus books on a shelf. It's the pub dog's favourite bit too, good fun to watch him reclaim his corner as you walk in.

On 7th March 2010 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1708 recommendations about 1681 pubs]

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Rex Rattus left this review about Willoughby Arms

There were “only” three ales on during my midweek visit – London Pride; GKIPA; and Twickenham Autumn Blaze. I went for the Autumn Blaze (of course) and it was pretty good, and at £3.20 a pint the norm I suppose. This pub had the sort of lived in look that could be mistaken for slovenliness, but I prefer to regard it as a traditional pub character of the sort achieved effortlessly by pubs like the Wenlock Arms. There really is nothing fancy about this place. One disconcerting thing was the array of stuffed animal heads on the walls, one of which (a sow I think) had been accorded the appellation “Charlotte” by some wag, and another (a moose or large elk) had more worryingly been given the name “Rex”.
There was what might be described as a sports bar on the right. It is obviously a dog friendly pub, as a mongrel looking (my apologies if he really has a pedigree!) specimen obviously found me an object of interest as he liked to put his paws on my knees. But he was well behaved.
I really liked this pub and will no doubt pay a return visit, but I have to say that for a pub that has won so many awards, three ales, including two of the usual suspects, is not brilliant.

On 8th February 2010 - rating: 8
[User has posted 2606 recommendations about 2520 pubs]

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Nick Davies left this review about Willoughby Arms

Finally here after years of trying to get to this fine old-fashioned boozer full of fine old-fashioned boozers. It's as good a community local as you'll get and shows what can be done with some imagination and of course a lot of hard work. If only the same could be said about so many other pubs in the area. A whole range of beers on for their current beer festival, I'm not going to list them as they'll doubtless be different next week but suffice it say all top notch stuff. A destination pub of course if beer is your thing but in any case the best bolt hole in town should you need to seek refuge from the nearby retail hell that is Kingston.

On 26th April 2009 - rating: 8
[User has posted 574 recommendations about 566 pubs]

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train man left this review about Willoughby Arms

Very good pub. Quality ales regularly rotated; choice of 4 yesterday but can only remember Surrey Hills Shere Drop, which was delicious. Rear bar is very sports orientated with framed shirts & paraphernalia, two 'drop down' big screens for the football (was packed last England match). Pool room walls are covered with superbly iconic movie photographs and this area leads out to a good-sized grassy beer garden with a large protective lean-to already erected presumably for the post-01July-smokers. Wish we'd had time last night to stay to listen to a blues/folk duo who were setting up to start at 21:30.

On 24th June 2007 - no rating submitted
[User has posted 412 recommendations about 411 pubs]

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Roger Button left this review about Willoughby Arms

Having done the majority of my drinking apprenticeship in the pubs of Kingston, I was surprised that pub has remained anonymous to me but its occasional visit to our humble Top 40 and some large adverts in the London Drinker guide put me on a mission to partake in their services. From the outside, the pub is a bit disappointing with the windows and doors plastered with notices advertising the forthcoming football matches giving it a bit of a cheapo look. The interior looks much smaller than it does from outside due to the fact that there are several dividing walls. The 2 lounge areas are comfortable enough but animal campaigners should be warned - it looks like the result of a hunting expedition with several “trophys” on display. Above the well stocked bar are many of the certificates that have been awarded for the numerous guest beers, best garden, best drinking pub and so on. The larger sports bar is particularly worthy of attention, almost bordering on a museum. The walls are covered in signed football shirts (and we talking about the biggest names in the sport - Henry, Zidane, Zola, Rooney, Hurst, Davids and Kluivert are among those represented). There is also plenty of rugby and boxing memorabilia on show. There are plenty of seats with barrel tables and well positioned TVs and big screen. The adjoining pool room pays homage to showbiz and you can play pool in the company of Munroe, Bogart and Dean Martin amongst others. There is a real community feel about the place and they have regular live music, beer festivals, pool teams, darts teams and theme nights. Whilst not perhaps the most aesthetically pleasing of joints, they do offer pretty much all you can expect from a pub and praise must be given for their approach and the efforts that have transformed this place from what could otherwise be a rather dull and bland pub.

On 7th February 2006 - rating: 8
[User has posted 1239 recommendations about 1233 pubs]