The silver screen has some of our favourite boozers. Should they be considered national treasures?
1. The Rovers Return, Manchester
The Rovers Return Inn, built by the brewery Newton and Ridley, opened in 1902. It’s been a free house since 1995, although the brewery continues to supply it. It is said that the name comes from Ye Olde Rovers Return (demolished in 1958), a 14th-century building in Withy Grove, Manchester.
The Rovers is particularly popular with the residents of Weatherfield and often hosts community events. The Select function room was used for hosting events and was part of the original layout, but after the pub was damaged by a fire in 1986 (accidentally set by Jack Duckworth), the Rovers was modernised, with the Snug and Select removed and the Public expanded.
2. The Queen Vic, London
The Queen Victoria Public House – known as The Queen Vic by the locals – was built around 1860, during Queen Victoria’s reign.
It originally had two bars the public and the saloon. In 1985 publican Den Watts decided to dismantle the partitions between the two bars, opening it into one bar as it remains to this day.
It’s said that the pub is the most haunted spot in Walford, considering the number of deaths in or outside the pub, including Den Watts, Archie Mitchell, Bradley Branning, Tiffany Mitchell and Tom Clements.
3. The Woolpack, Yorkshire
The Woolpack was built around 1776 and was owned by Ephraim Monks Brewery until 1973. In 1976, the bar was subsequently moved to its current location when it was found to be slowly collapsing due to subsidence.
The pub has had many landlords – its longest-reigning landlord being Amos Brearly (43 years!) – and withstood many disasters, such as a plane crash (1993), a storm when the pub was hit by lightning (2003/2004) and The Woolpack Siege (2013), when Cameron Murray took several regulars hostage.
4. The Leaky Cauldron, London
Is this the site of the oldest pub in London? The Leaky Cauldron was built by the witch Daisy Dodderidge in the early 1550s as a gateway between the non-wizarding world and Diagon Alley – a hub of magical shops and restaurants. Regulars include Rubeus Hagrid and Dedalus Diggle.
The wizard Harry Potter first visited the Leaky Cauldron in 1991, but to muggles (non-magical people), The Leaky Cauldron first appeared in 2001 as an opticians in Bull’s Head Passage in Leadenhall Market. One of the oldest markets in London, its ornate roof structure was designed by architect Sir Horace Jones in 1881, a superb example of Victorian construction.
In 2004 though, the entrance to the pub magically changed to a small shop in Borough Market.
5. The Nag’s Head, London
It’s unknown when The Nag’s Head in London was built, but Mike Fisher has been its landlord since 1983. The regular of Derek ‘Del Boy’ Trotter, his brother Rodney and their friends and family, some may know the pub as The Pelton Arms in Greenwich.
Whilst it’s not where Del Boy famously fell through the bar, The Nag’s Head has served up many memories for its regulars – including Rodney and Cassandra’s wedding reception, Uncle Albert’s birthday – and been the scene of many of Del Boy’s dodgy dealings.
What have we missed? Let us know your favourite fictional pubs in the comments below.