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Submitted on Wednesday, 27th September 2017
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The Compton Arms, N1

4 Compton Avenue
N1
N1 2XD
Phone: 02073596883
Correct details

Pub Type

Greene King

Served areas

Reviews of The Compton Arms (Average Rating: 7 of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Tris C left this review about The Compton Arms

14th February 2018:

I first came here in August 1988 - it was the last time I bought my dad a pint, though the first time was at the former King's Arms a few hundred yards from here about 20 minutes earlier.
Named after the Marquis of Northampton's family, this is a pleasant little out-of-the-way place dating back to at least the late 19th century but rebuilt as a result of bombing in 1944, and now very much a male locals' pub. It was also George Orwell's pub when he lived in Canonbury Square and is rumoured to be the inspiration for his Moon Under Water (TV wasn't available then). The interior is fairly traditional - a bit like a village pub - with some bare beams, a low ceiling, bulls-eye glass, partly bare boarded and dark wood; furniture is in keeping with the interior. There's a carpeted lowered area to the right though the men's lav opens directly onto it which noshers may find off-putting. On the end wall there's a big TV and opposite a smaller one, catering for fans of the local league football club located a mile or so from here. There's a bijou carpeted snug of sorts to the rear which makes for a nice little den if you gather your mates round. Out back, there's a small partially covered garden, handy for fine weather and smokers. There's hot food but it's of the baguettes/burgers/fish, pie and mash or chips looking tasty enough and at reasonable prices which belies the Canonbury location.
A Greene King pub but the ale - typically five - is better than the brand would suggest so it's typically IPA, Abbot, Compton Arms Bitter (probably GK) and a couple of guests. This is a decent, traditional little find and is much appreciated if you fancy a break from the noise and glare of typical pubs along the Upper Street strip but avoid on match days. Lavs are basic too.

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Reopened after a short period of closure and now sporting a simple, tasteful colour scheme shorn of its Greene King livery. Inside, and the changes are subtle too. The 'village pub' appearance remains but it has been cleaned up a bit with the woodchip wallpaper removed. The walls are white but the wainscoting and other wooden elements are now painted in a very dark chocolate brown. There's a new wood floor throughout too, where once there was a mix of patterned carpet and dark boards. The walls have contemporary sconce lights with filament bulbs but the bar and pot shelf are new; furniture is new and fairly traditional. The ceiling beams are still - wrongly - painted black; a lost opportunity to sandblast them back to their original bare wood.
The barman was friendly and the choice of ales is now superior with Adnam's Broadside along with Purity's Gold, Mad Goose and Pure Ubu.
Some will complain that this pub (rebuilt after World War II) has lost some of its charm while others will say it's now more attractive. Either way, I think it will now appeal to a younger client base as well as women. I for one would no be more inclined to return, not least because of the improved ale choice.

On 23rd August 2018 - rating: 8
[User has posted 959 recommendations about 944 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Moby Duck left this review about The Compton Arms

The Compton Arms is hidden away down a side street,a basic one roomed boozer, simply decorated with wood paneling all around the top portion of the walls and ceiling are painted in a cream colour, there are some pump clips on the overhead beams to give you an idea of past beers. It is Greene King owned and thankfully there is a guest ale policy in place, five handpumps all working with the choice of GK IPA and Abbot, Compton Ale (no doubt some re-badged nonsense), St Peters Ruby Red Mild and Blacksheep Pathmaker Pale, I tried the latter and it was in fair shape. There is a beer garden but it was "closed for maintenence " on my visit. A nice enough pub and worth a look.

On 18th September 2016 - rating: 6
[User has posted 1327 recommendations about 1313 pubs]


Please Note: This review is over a year old.


Pub SignMan left this review about The Compton Arms

Tucked away down a quiet back street that makes it easy to forget just how close you are to the bustle of Upper Street, this is a quaint local's boozer with something of a stripped-out feel to it. You enter into the bare boarded bar area with the dark wood servery directly opposite the front door. The main room is wide but quite shallow, so that there is only space for bar stools and a ledge under the front windows in the area opposite and to the left of the bar. The room opens out slightly to the right, on a lower level, with carpet and a mix of standard tables and chairs and a few low stools. A TV here was turned off but suggested that live sports are normally shown, whilst music was quietly piped through the room instead. The décor consists of lots of black and white photos of the local area and a collection of pump clips along the dark wood ceiling beams. A second room can be found to the rear left - also bare boarded and with some basic perimeter seating and a large mirror on the back wall which gives the impression that the room is much bigger than it really is. Meanwhile, over to the rear right, there is access to a beer garden which I was unable to get a good look at in the darkness. A big stack of board games can be found on the end of the bar counter and I also noticed various magazines and flyers on a shelf, including copies of London Drinker.
The ale range comprised three Greene King brews - IPA, Abbot Ale and Down the Dragon - plus two guests in the shape of Roosters YPA and Truman Runner. The friendly barman, who was heading out for a quick fag when I arrived, made his way back to the bar to pour me a pint of the YPA, but I have to say it wasn't in particularly good shape.
I had mixed feelings about this place as I felt the interior lacked the character I would expect to find in such a nice, historic building and the beer was pretty ropey as well. Having said that, the service was good, it offers an oasis of calm from the surrounding area and there was a welcoming, inclusive vibe. It's probably worth a second look and the fact that it's so handy for nearby venues such as the Union Chapel, Islington Assembly Hall and Highbury Garage means I will doubtless be back at some point.

On 12th July 2015 - rating: 6
[User has posted 2472 recommendations about 2472 pubs]


View more reviews of The Compton Arms (10)
External web links for The Compton Arms

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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location corrected by Steve C
Highbury & Islington, 0.29 miles, 5 min walk (show)
Highbury & Islington, 0.29 miles, 5 min walk (show)
Essex Road, 0.37 miles, 7 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for The Compton Arms, N1
9th Jul 2020, 20:36
Web Link submitted by Tris C approved
 
9th Jul 2020, 18:48
Web Link submitted by Tris C

Pub Details

Pub details supplied by members of this site to the best of their knowledge. Please check with pub directly before making a special trip.

  • Accommodation : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Bar Billiards : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Beer Festivals : No last updated 30 April 2018 by Komakino .
  • Beer Garden : Yes last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • CAMRA Discount : No last updated 30 April 2018 by Komakino .
  • Car Park : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Child Friendly : No last updated 30 April 2018 by Komakino .
  • Darts : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Dog Friendly : No last updated 30 April 2018 by Komakino .
  • Function Room : No last updated 14 February 2018 by Tris C
  • Hot Food : Yes last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Jukebox : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Karaoke : No last updated 04 November 2017 by Tris C
  • Live Music : No last updated 04 November 2017 by Tris C
  • Live TV Sports : Yes last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Micropub : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Pinball : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Pool Table : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Quiz Night : No last updated 30 April 2018 by Komakino .
  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 30 April 2018 by Komakino .
  • Real Cider : No last updated 12 July 2015 by Pub SignMan
  • Wheelchair Access : No last updated 04 November 2017 by Tris C
  • WiFi : Yes - The Cloud - last updated 30 April 2018 by Komakino .
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