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Submitted on Tuesday, 30th May 2017
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The City Barge, Chiswick, W4

27 Strand On The Green
W4 3PH
Phone: 02089942148
Correct details

Pub Type

Metropolitan Pub Co (Greene King)

Served areas

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Reviews of The City Barge (Average Rating: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Bucking Fastard left this review about The City Barge

A Greene King house based on the Thames Path,the stairway from the towpath in needed as spring tides will flood the path and the flood door may preclude any entrance or exit at very high tides,use the street level entrance.There are tables on the Path giving a pleasant spot.
Inside the main tap room is large,wide and quite faceless, with the bar running along the right wall,while at a lower level in the restaurant area unvisited by me.
Disappointingly although there were 7 handpumps only GK IPA,a house Argy Bargy 3.8% (probably GK crap) and an indestinct Sambrooks Wandle (NBSS 2).That's a poor selection.I didn't inspect the food menu .
If traversing the Thames Path,keep on walking.

On 4th September 2021 - rating: 5
[User has posted 2309 recommendations about 2309 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

John Bonser left this review about The City Barge

CLOSED - This pub closed at 4pm yesterday ( 15/12 ) and is not expected to reopen until May 2014.

Greene King are planning to introduce an upstairs restaurant and to develop the downstairs interior. The Area Manager for GK has told me that "we are investing in The City Barge in order to provide an excellent Public House for both drinking and dining". Furthermore, " we are especially conscious of the need to retain the history and heritage of this site. Original fixtures and fittings will be retained and reinstated as far as possible ( including open fires, original bar frontages and 5 hand pulled local real ales )" - well, I suppose they would say that, wouldn't they ?

Just for the record, beers on during the final Sunday session ( I was there basically until throwing out time )included Twickenham Naked Ladies and Hardy and Hanson's Rocking Rudolph, both in fine form. Given that there had been a farewell, rather boozy, party the previous evening, which sadly, I had to miss, staff were as brilliant as ever.

This isn't the best pub I've ever been to by a long chalk, but I doubt it will be improving for the better, at least from the drinkers' perspective, when it finally reopens in May next year

Original review - October 2013

The City Barge is one of a cluster of three pubs at Strand on the Green, a small picturesque section of the towpath on the north bank of the Thames going eastwards from Kew Bridge. It’s a conservation area with many attractive cottages and houses facing on to the towpath.

On the wall outside the pub, a fascia board tells us that the pub was built in 1484 as The Navigators Arms, but was renamed in the 19th century when the state barge of the Lord Mayor of London had its winter moorings outside the inn.

It’s a rather plain looking exterior, but a noticeable feature is a bank vault style sturdy steel door which keeps the river at bay at high tide, when the towpath floods .At very high tides, enterprising customers sit on the outside picnic style tables themselves at the front of the pub as the seats can be under water. It’s a great place to be on a sunny afternoon, with splendid riverside views in both directions and just the occasional rattle of a train passing over the railway bridge on its way to or from Richmond ( Underground District Line and London Overground )

What would appear to be the original part of the pub is a small area on the right as you go in with a quarry tiled floor and some bench seating. Above the bar are a number of old photographs showing The Beatles being here in 1965 when a sequence in the film “Help” was shot on location here. To the left of the entrance is a larger seating area, the walls of which have several fine framed paintings of the pub in days long gone. A collection of pump clips above the bar counter here gives a good indication of the wide range of ales that have been on over the years. There’s a TV on the far wall, but I’ve hardly ever seen it being on.

A flagstoned staircase on the right hand side leads up to a newer upstairs bar in what appears to be an extension to the original building. This is mainly used for dining and has a rather standard chain pub interior. There’s a separate bar counter here, but it’s seldom staffed, necessitating a walk down the stairs to get served for both food and drink. This upstairs bar has a separate entrance from the small car park behind the pub – this entrance being particularly useful when the towpath entrance is closed at high tide.

Greene King acquired this pub a number of years ago – it was a Courage pub in the 70’s and then had a spell under the Spirit Group banner if my memory serves me correctly. Greene King IPA and Old Speckled Hen are the standard offerings, but there’s usually at least two non – GK beers available – in recent months, these have included beers from Twickenham, Sambrooks, East London and, from further afield, Hydes and Skinners Betty Stoggs. Quality is generally good in my opinion, although the pub never seems to get into the CAMRA Good Beer Guide.

In July 2013, the enterprising and enthusiastic manager, Paul, arranged for a Beatles tribute band to perform from the pub’s balcony overlooking the river one Sunday afternoon. This was a great success and certainly attracted a good crowd to a pub which, unfortunately, often seems quite quiet when compared to The Bell and Crown and The Bull, the other two pubs close by on this section of the towpath.

Greene King are not everybody’s favourite pub company by a long way, but there’s no question in my mind that this pub has vastly improved since they acquired it. It’s the most pubby of the three pubs on this stretch of the river and, taking everything into account, is the one to go for.

On 19th December 2013 - rating: 8
[User has posted 560 recommendations about 560 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about The City Barge

This Greene King pub looks like it originally comprised two separate buildings in a terrace, both quite plain, but with a great riverside setting next to Thames. Two bars on different levels, with traditional furniture and decor. Some patio seating out front on the riverside path, with more wooden benches to the rear. Three handpumps on each counter, offering IPA, Old Golden Hen and Olde Trip (£3.20). Overall, a nice spot for a pint if in the area.

On 15th September 2012 - rating: 7
[User has posted 6951 recommendations about 6951 pubs]

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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location corrected by Steve C
Kew Bridge, 0.56 miles, 10 min walk (show)
Chiswick, 0.62 miles, 11 min walk (show)
Gunnersbury, 0.8 miles, 15 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for The City Barge, W4
4th Sep 2021, 11:57
Review submitted by Bucking Fastard
30th May 2017, 22:21
Picture submitted by paulof horsham approved

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.

  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 29 July 2013 by Dave McNally
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