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Hawley Arms, Camden

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user reviews of the Hawley Arms, Camden

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

Visited for a short time Saturday afternoon. Pleasantly surprised by the quality and price of the beer, (St Austell Tribute), but did not enjoy being filmed by Italian tourists as if I were an exhibit in a museum.
Aztecgoat - 2 Dec 2018 09:24
back for a repeat visit. Very quiet at 11pm on a Tuesday.

Which was pleasant.

Worth checking out for its musical pedigree - loads of interest on the walls and great music.

Some photos at my walking blog -
Mappiman - 4 Mar 2016 12:40
I remember that before the fire bouncers would make punters queue behind a velvet rope, such was the draw of this God awful pub to the desperate chancers of Camden. It is still a tragic experience.

Expensive. Crap service. Crap beer. Tiresome 'craft' lager. Full of those who missed the boat 10 years ago. Amazingly busy...

Green_0nions - 11 Nov 2014 13:04
If this was my local I'd probably end up drinking myself to death in my flat anoll.
juddlinski - 1 Feb 2012 11:36
As we weren't eating here we got the distinct feeling that we were not really wanted in the bar and we were taking up table space which could be used by diners. The rather "haughty" barman appeared well miffed when we told him we just wanted drinks so we had our beers (average quality) and left. Apparently the food is very good and the pub has a bit of history (famous customers and a recent nasty fire). I would suspect that as there is such a huge "given market" in this part of London, pubs like this can pick and choose their customers??
mcroyal - 17 Nov 2011 10:51
I like this pub a lot. The higher you get, the better it is. Ground level, is full and you cannot get to the bar. Hit the stairs, and you will find another bar. Hit the terrace (when it is warm) and you have a great view of london. This is a good pub.
Mappiman - 16 Nov 2011 23:54
I used to enjoy meeting friends in the Hawley whenever I was in London unfortunately that has come to an end. The managements door policy seems to dictate that you can't come in unless you have the ladies with you, when did they come up with this?
Avoid this place, there are so many similar bars in Camden why put yourself through any kind of vetting process I certainly will never be back with or without female company.

Gerardc79 - 13 Nov 2011 19:56
In the early 90's this pub had a real good vibe to it, last few years it has become very poncy. The staff think they are something special. Lagers very average, full of wanna be's. Not for me.
perfect_spy - 4 Nov 2011 03:47
Guilty pleasure. Stop for one drink but don't stay all night. Terrace is nice when its warm but usually packed. Bartenders couldnt care less about you but that is somehow charming there.
Aura7 - 10 Oct 2011 17:05
Visited the Hawley Arms on a Saturday night -- first time I'd been in about a year. Girlfriend and friends were already inside. I arrived with two other male friends and were refused entry because we did not have "regular's cards" (what?). Went away for a bit, met three of our female friends, tried again sending them up to the door first -- they had no problem, bouncer recognised us and accused us of not knowing the three girls we were with. Bouncer then went on to ridicule me for "pretending to use my phone" the first time (i.e. when I was calling g/f to inform her that we were not able to enter) but eventually allowed us to enter when we convinced him that the girls in our party were actually our friends, and not randoms.

Once inside, drank a few flat fizzy lagers, got knocked by a load of drunk punters pushing past and encountered 3 guys doing cocaine in the toilets downstairs. Things improved around midnight as the pub quietened down a little and there was sufficient space to breath.
LondonLion - 22 Aug 2011 18:03
Vastly over-rated (just my opinion obviously)....more for posers and wannabees than pub fans. Not much atmosphere and the beer was nothing special. Not for me....the Elephants Head in the High Street is more fun.
TEL3 - 6 Aug 2011 10:41
Right, so because she drank in this pub - that means then automatically that this review page for the quality of a PUB should now become a tribute page? Or how about it should stick to being a place to review a pub. Her death has got nothing to do with it.
mikeyr1234 - 25 Jul 2011 01:59
amy winehouse RIP-its people that make a great pub.
mother123 - 24 Jul 2011 17:07
pubs are made up of people and Amy was a person - probably better known than mikeyr1234.
maidavale - 24 Jul 2011 08:08
As sad as it is maidavale - This is about reviewing the pub. Not to post RIP's to someone that used to get smashed in it.
mikeyr1234 - 24 Jul 2011 01:10
Amy Winehouse - rest in peace.
maidavale - 23 Jul 2011 20:11
Wow well what can I say about the door 'staff' at this place. You may have seen I have reviewed this place a few months ago. Well me and my mate went to meet another friend who was already inside the pub last night. Unusually for this place it was nearly empty when we went at 9pm which I thought was strange. As we went to go in the little sikh door man said "not tonight, mixed groups only". I asked him his reasoning behind this as there was only myself and my friend who were well dressed and definately not the beer boy type. "Did you not hear me? mixed groups only". I said I did hear him but could he not see the pub was nearly empty? I said to my friend who tried to reason with him that we would go somewhere else to which the little man on the door said "yeh, plenty of places to go so why dont you go". My friend finished his pint inside and off we went around the corner to a much better place with friendly door staff. Before we left the little man on the door said to his doorman friend how I was "running my mouth off". You can imagine the sort of idiots that are stood on the doors here. Avoid it. There are a lot better places to go.
mikeyr1234 - 17 Jul 2011 18:36
nice Greene king pub with small beer garden downstairs and roof terrace upstairs,quick friendly service,three ales on from the Greene king stable,we opted for two pints of sun dance (£7.00)7/10
fat_beer_badger - 26 Jun 2011 15:14
Astonishing. I was refused entrance to the pub on the basis of my gender. I'm not entirely sure what sort of pub turns away customers for being the wrong gender. It wouldn't surprise me if they were also unhappy about admitting "blacks, Jews or Irish". I'd encourage everyone to stay away - there's no place for pubs like in this century.
Muzthing - 28 Feb 2011 15:04
VERY busy on the weekend - not a bad pub but what is it with everywhere in Camden now charging over £3.70 for a Guinness? Sort it out!
mikeyr1234 - 24 Jan 2011 00:45
Greene King pub. Drank in upstairs bar where there were no real ales so don't know what was on. Fun after our Christmas party and friendly enough but hardly the greatest.
GuideDogSaint - 19 Dec 2010 13:52
A great boozer when you hit it at the right time. Best juke box in Camden, decent beer and friendly staff who are excellent at serving people in the right order. Foods pretty good with pies etc. I'm a bit older than most of the customers, so tend to avoid Friday/Saturday nights when it's full of haircut kids preening for attention. But if you visit when you can get a table, maybe with a few mates, this is still a great place to drink.
dead_celeb - 7 Nov 2010 23:16
ok, if you are lucky, you have an amazing and fun time. i would not recommend this as a regular spot though. the staff are fun and cool but could learn a bit from california. some kid dared to criticise one of the bands and got kicked out by the bar supervisor. everyone kinda thought that it was embarrassing. food is pretty good. prices are standard for camden (i.e. too high)

indiesociety - 11 Oct 2010 08:40
Went in for the 1st time before a rehearsal at Scar Studios just around the corner. First impressions - rude bar staff who are really up themselves. I was polite but only managed to elicit a grunt from the girl who served me.

Before leaving I left a small amount of flyers for my band's gig on some tables. Having done this before in loads of pubs in Camden, it didn't cross my mind that it would be an issue. However, on leaving the pub I was chased down the road by a member of bar staff. He said to ask next time and then launched a string of expletives at me. Fair enough if they don't want flyers in the pub, but it costs nothing to be polite! Miserable, rude gits.

I'll be heading into the Elephants Head next time I am in Camden.
weekendpants - 20 Aug 2010 11:34
During the 80s and 90s one of the best pubs in London, brilliant fun and a great mixture of people, couldn't keep away from the place, but now I wouldn't piss on it if it was on fire!!!
dalglish - 4 May 2010 14:42
Funny little pub, good to see all the press has calmed down about this place. Really helped now that Winehouse isn't drinking here as much! This pub is pretentious but in quite a charming way. Worth a visit and they've done a great refurb job after the fire.
spike45 - 24 Feb 2010 19:47
Went in with the lowest of expectations, having read so much about the place on BITE and in the tabloid press. However, once inside, I started to cheer up as it appeared that staff and customers alike all looked relatively normal (and it wasn't that crowded at pre-gig time)... Three real ales on, including a decent pint of GK's seasonal Rocking Rudolph served in an old-fashioned jug and closer to full measure than you usually get in these parts. The atmosphere seemed cheerful and the staff were attentive enough. Perhaps the traffic management on the main road - where Camden claim to be creating the first so-called 'naked street' in Britain, apparently - is enough to keep the 'Z'-list (and all that travels with them) away? Anyway, all in all, I rather enjoyed my pint here.
rpadam - 5 Dec 2009 11:35
Absolute rubbish.

Myself and two friends went in here for the first time on Friday night. Without wishing to go on about it (I'm still annoyed), I was sober, my friend had only had two pints, and my other friend was also completely sober. I stood with the friend that had drank two pints beforehand whilst she ordered her drink, perfectly politely, and said thank you to the barman when he gave her the change. Five minutes later, the same barman comes up to us and tells me that my two friends have to leave because they're "too drunk", and that my friend had somehow been rude to four (yes, four) members of staff in the time that it took her to order her drink. This is the drink that she ordered whilst I was standing next to her, and I can definitely confirm unless I've suddenly gone loopy that she only talked to the one barman, and was in no way rude. This is not to mention the fact that the other friend who was sober and hadn't even bought a drink was also apparently "too drunk" and had to leave. Ever thoughtful, they did tell me that I was fine to stay, but that my best mates had to bugger off. Totally awful, and when I pressed him to tell me how my friend had actually been rude to him he literally couldn't say, he was like "Um, she just was".

Now, I don't know what we did to offend them in such a way. Perhaps it's because none of us had silly haircuts or a desire to smoke illegal substances with Amy Winehouse. All I know is that I'm never, ever going back there again.
sianisit - 26 Oct 2009 15:04
Very average pub with staff that are both snooty and scummy, if such a thing is possible. Basically, the're unsmiling, unfriendly and are far more interest in having conversations with each other rather than dealing with us plebs. The fact that they all look like skag-heads didn't help - one prize specimen in particular was in a string vest and had the worst head of unkempt hair i've seen. Tragically it probably took him hours to get 'just right'. Can see why AmyWinehouse would like it in here, next to this lot she doesnt actually look too wrecked.
juddlinski - 3 Jul 2009 10:50
Was in just before fire - not me guv - and popped in sunday - no different in main bar. not a crowd to remark on.
For you beerers there was Tom Woods bomber County - nice Lancaster drawing on pump label, Abbott ale and Old Trip.
Posers, Sunday couples and groups, not trendy enough for the barkeepers who have quiet disdain for the weekend masses methinks. Me? Was drunk weekly in Camden before they were born - too old to care now - so there ha!
gonetolunch - 30 Jun 2009 15:46
Was in here yesterday and I was shocked by the way that the snooty bar staff looked down there nose at me!! My money is exactly the same as these so called celebs! Not a bad place in fairness and a cool little back garden. It was reasonbly priced too considering its press coverage etc. We were caught out however when the heavens opened and loads of people piled in from the street and this is not a nice place to be when full. People pushing past you and clambering over each other to get to the bar. Sort the staff out and get rid of the stupid doormen and this would be a bloody good pub.
bish80 - 28 Jun 2009 16:08
Having never set foot in place before the cleansing power of flame, I canít draw historical comparisons.

I dropped in for one last beer before the Roundhouse and was quite impressed (though admittedly expectations werenít huge). The main drinking area appears to be one long narrow strip opposing the bar which makes for uncomfortable jostling during busy times.

There were a couple of ales on (a Greene King trio of Abbot, IPA and Olde Trip if I recall accurately). My half of Olde Trip was pretty good in fairness.

Bar staff were a bit naff and stupidly overdressed but I guess old habits die hard round here.

Probably worth a swift one before the Roundhouse Ė if you can see the bar and there is more than one person working it.
Quinno - 5 Jun 2009 19:18
Having never set foot in place before the cleansing power of flame did its work, I canít draw historical comparisons.

However, we dropped in for one last beer before the Roundhouse, we were quite impressed (though admittedly expectations werenít huge). The main drinking area appears to be one long narrow strip opposing the bar which makes for uncomfortable jostling during busy times. There were a couple of ales on (a Greene King trio of Abbot, IPA and Olde Trip if I recall accurately). My half of Olde Trip was pretty good in fairness.

Bar staff were a bit naff and stupidly overdressed but I guess old habits die hard round here.

Probably worth a swift one before the Roundhouse Ė if you can see the bar and there is more than one person working it.
Quinno - 5 Jun 2009 19:17
Milfer, family pubs will be the death of many pubs, I fear. They're yet another attack on the working-class by New Labour. I don't smoke, but give me a busy, smoky pub over one full of bored, noisy children any day.

On the Hawley Arms, it used to be a great pub - ambient, lively, warm, cosy - until it was "discovered" by the likes of Amy Winehouse and Kelly Osborne, etc. Since then, the management have lost all sense of perspective and have now got bouncers on at weekends, and if you go in for a beer at the weekend you'll be directed upstairs. Apparently the downstairs bar is for diners only now.

The owners need to wake up or ship out.
adelondon - 28 May 2009 17:47
Response to adelondon.

You're right. A 14 yo kid shouldn't have been in a pub. Licencing laws now allow plenty of this & "family" pubs are the norm.

I frequently have taken him to pubs where we have eaten & I have drunk well ("in moderation").

So I find myself in a part of London, frequented by tourists, & wanting a pee & a cold beer.

Brings me dack to my first point. The pub is terrible. It is for tourists, but the beer & service is shite. Cash is King. Not a pl;ace I want my cash to be.
milfer - 23 May 2009 23:48
was in here last weekend, attentive service, good pie!, and had a great ale to wash it down, not too badly priced considering it has so much publicity, good work.
fro411 - 4 May 2009 17:44
It's allright but crowded, there was bath ales gem on which is unusual in London, lots of Camden types of course which this is renowned for.
rainlight - 1 May 2009 07:16
In response to Milfer's post earlier:

You seem like a reasonable person, and I hate to have a go, but what are you doing taking your 14-year-old son to a pub?

Take him to McDonald's, or a cafe, or a restaurant that serves alcohol. Take him anywhere, in fact, but a pub, which is supposed to be for adults.

adelondon - 28 Apr 2009 13:59
Lunctime visit saturday 4th. They only serve ale at the downsatirs bar but you cannot sit downstairs unless you are eating.
Upstairs bar serves fizzy beer only.
Had a pint of tastless Hare Raiser and a slightly better pint of Ale Pull Fool, Not much else on offer but then its a Green King pub so same old same old.

CambridgeBlue - 6 Apr 2009 13:59
The two problems about this pub has always been the staff....

...and nothing's changed since it re-opened.

Again, popped in there for a friend's birthday and the bar staff are so uniterested and surly it's untrue. Unless I'm very much mistaken, they're working behind a bar, not starring in a critically acclaimed indie film or playing the 02 arena.

Surely you should hire someone because they're good at their job, rather than because they wear skinny jeans and flannel shirts or tights with no skirts?

Has no-one in there seen Nathan Barley?!
lookmother - 26 Jan 2009 13:11
Forgot to grade it with a big fat ZERO
milfer - 26 Jan 2009 04:00
Went Sunday after a fantastic lunch elsewhere. Rarely have I been treated with such disdain.

Asked if I could have a drink with my 14 year old son & partner. Told no problem. Waited at the bar & told EVENTUALLY that no drinks for "drinkers" were served at the bar!

Directed upstairs. No ales on tap, but I was then told the (very underworked) ladies could order it from downstairs.

Then waited 8 minutes(yes I did time it) for (very mediocre pints) of Abbot & Hoegaarden to be served (after eventually asking). Head all knocked back & lacklustre.

I know it's tourist town, that's why I was there with my son. Do standards really have to be this low? Remember in the recession boys & girls, a pound note is a pound note. It's not worth more if it's spent by a boy with tight pants, wearing his hat indoors & pretending to be "sooo waasted"!

GK liven this place up. I like your beers, but I don't like having the P taken out of me.
milfer - 26 Jan 2009 03:58
Much better than I had been expecting. Friendly staff, beer in good shape. A real fire burning on a rather cold day was very welcome. The mugs were a nice touch and I managed to use the same one for the whole session. A few media-knobber types hanging about but overall a good Camden pub. Why is it these wannabe Herberts all look like they use the same optician as Brains from Thunderbirds?
Zaphod - 26 Nov 2008 10:05
Visited for the first time since it re-opend at lunchtime on saturday the 22nd. Its all done out nice again but there was only 2 ales on, IPA and Abbot. Most of the Lagers had run out as well.
Not quite the pub it used to be.
CambridgeBlue - 24 Nov 2008 09:14
When I first started going into the Hawley it was a decent and fairly quiet place where people would go for the pub itself rather than the people who hang around in it. Once it became celebrity obsessed I stopped using the place but decided to pay my first post fire visit yesterday, more out of curiosity than necessity, and to be honest very little seems to have changed as far as the renovation is concerned. Most of the damage appears to have been done to the upper floors and rear of the building whilst the main bar has been hardly affected (I note the old concert ticket stubs are still on display and I would have thought something like that would have the first thing to perish). A slightly different colour scheme to what it was but apart from that, all the old characteristiocs and furnishings are as you were. 3 Ales all from the Green King range (IPA, Abbot, Old Trip) at prices comparable to the area and unusually for a pub that gears itself towards a younger crowd, the Ales are served up in old pint mugs. Service can be slow when busy and fighting your way through the hanger ons at the bar is a bit of a pain. Naturally it is going to be busy on most evenings with Borrell / Winehouse spotters and it can be quite uncomfortable being forever jostled and barged into by people roaming around the narrow bar area but find a quiet spot during the day and the Hawley can still be a fairly pleasant place for a pint. Some sanctuary during busy periods can be found in the small triangular rear courtyard (which Iím sure wasnít there before) if you donít mind sacrificing your lungs for somewhere to sit. I do long for the day when the pub loses popularity and maybe I would use it a bit more but I think it will be a long way off.
RogerB - 21 Nov 2008 13:26
Not been since it reopened but expecting to go this week. Hopefully smack heads such as Winehouse won't be Noel Gallagher said of her, she is a 'demented horse'!
DrunkGeorge - 17 Nov 2008 07:46
Pub is re-opening on October 30th, expect Daniel North to be excited about this
Dan1976 - 7 Oct 2008 16:30
I think Amy Wino has traded this place for the Monarch, which is a good thing. Looking forward to the re-opening!
good_pubs_are_rare - 12 Sep 2008 22:45
i have started work recently on the hawley arms
so hopefully in the next 2 months you will have your pub back up and running
ifixburnedpubs - 18 Jul 2008 21:22
Since it was burnt down, it's gone up in my estimation, excellent potential for residential development?
kenincamden - 9 Jun 2008 12:09
A week or so after the fire they said that it would reopen in around 6 months. I walked past Friday night and it is still boarded up and showing a lot of signs of fire damage, as is the market behind it.

I wouldnít hold your breath!
Strongers - 28 May 2008 07:53
Is it all up and running again now?

I haven't been down that way for a while.
KittyP - 27 May 2008 16:55
Is it tru that it's Noel Fieldings Local?
chii_xo - 26 Apr 2008 21:20
I'm going there with the cricket lads tomorrow, good place to watch the ashes.
JuFoster - 29 Feb 2008 17:01
Daniel North I dont know you. But I hate you.
JuFoster - 29 Feb 2008 16:59
Babylon's Burning!!!! Used to be (15 years ago) one of the best pubs in London, I had a stall behind it under the arches and drank there every day and every night, as well as the sorely missed Stags Head. I'm sure Kate, Amy etc will pitch in for the refurb!
dalglish - 23 Feb 2008 14:00
I really liked it, although the w*nkers were starting to take over a bit more.
I can remember falling asleep (not through drunkenness) on one of the sofas, on a Sunday afternoon, while the ashes was on, paper on my lap, one of the bar guys brought us over some free monster munch to wake us up and that is one of my most pleasant London memories ever! It was a lovely day although about 3 years ago now.
I'm really sad for the guys but the comment about 'the refurb hopefully taking long enough so that the w*nkers move else where' I agree with.
I just hope they get the timing right.
KittyP - 21 Feb 2008 19:05
I think my comments have been completely misread if you read it correctly you would have seen that I was writing the poem on how Camden as an area has been a big aspect for me and not to mention the livelihoods that lookmother rightly pointed out that has been destroyed in the fire. The poem is not solely based for the hawley arms but I thought that it would be nice to add it here as it was affected badly from the tragedy, I have visited the pub itself just a few times between 1999-2002 so I can't see how I can put in any stereotypical catagories, especially from people that don't even know me. I think there are people on here trying too hard to look "cool" themselves by being a hater. I never had a problem with it, it served its purpose well as I added it to a crawl I had with friends between these times, hence my rating.
poetichand - 19 Feb 2008 18:26
a godawful place, recently improved by fire.
kenincamden - 18 Feb 2008 15:25
The rating from Daniel North says about all you need to know about the pretentious, self important fools that used to drink here and will probably flock back once reopened only to say"oh, it,s not as good as it used to be". Well, it hasn't been good for years, the main problem being the to cool for school brigade that drank and served there.Over priced and over hyped. Good points: the fire, bad points:now all the oafs will try and ruin another good LOCALS pub
conflictuk - 18 Feb 2008 15:21
Hi there,

I was completely heartbroken over the recent Camden fire and wondered after the Hawley is restored that the proprietor would be so kind as to print off and keep a copy of this safely behind the bar for customers to enjoy. If any other landlords in Camden read this and would like to show it feel free but it would be nice to hear from you first before you do.

Best regards,

Daniel North

The blaze of sorrow

While I look at all the burnt residue

My heart lands on a thorn bed of disbelief

The marketplace is now full of coal skeletons

Yet I try my best to keep my chin up during the grief.

While I witness the heaps of blistered debris

Places of where I took pictures by the canal

Reminiscences of birthday treats, meals in the rain

Each one of the archways could tell many a tale.

However this place has been a big aspect of my life

And believe that it will emerge again from the cindered

Was it a simple mishap? Or a proceed of a shadowy hand?

Whatever it was, its magic will never be left as hindered.

I canĎt help but feel sorrow, seeing the smoke scars

The shocking ruin of North Londonís most distinctive gown

But I still hold onto the memories, its unmistakable vibrations

Not to mention the emotions in the soul dedicated to Camden Town.

© Daniel North

poetichand - 15 Feb 2008 21:45
bit burned down at the moment, possibly back in action for the summer
andyross - 15 Feb 2008 01:06
I used to drink here (and the Carnarvon Castle, Good Mixer, Oxford Arms, Elephants Head, Halfway House etc.)
The last time I got to the Hawley, it was caled the Cafe Noire or some shite like that.
I amazed they turned it back into a half arsed version of what it used to be.......everything changes, its life.

scaldy - 13 Feb 2008 20:19
Bit too hot.
RubberJohnnyBorrell - 13 Feb 2008 16:48
I told you it was like Sodom and Gomorrah - 25 Oct 2007 - and now it has gone the same way.
PeoplesPalace - 11 Feb 2008 20:36
"Wouldn't piss on it if it were on fire."

Lowroder, still loving your stuff!
LemonGrass - 11 Feb 2008 18:49
I am not sure you can answer a rhetorical question but never mind.

Surely that is the natural cycle of pubs and clubs, that they become successful and change. The people that used to go there find somewhere else, just look at the history of the Crown & Goose or the Good Mixer. Don't be bitter just because you don't like the people that go to a pub.

I agree with JamieL, we have lost a good pub and it has been a victim of its own success. Great something that works! Now the landlord who has spent many a year building that place up, now has to spend the next 6 months rebuilding it or sell up and if he does I bet it won't be a pub again. So shame on you for taking glee in someone else's misfortune.
pubbman - 11 Feb 2008 17:33
In answer to your questions, no i wouldn't, i checked no one had been hurt before i remarked.
The Hawley arms was a good pub, but became full of arseholes who think they own Camden Town(please note the name, its Camden TOWN, not CAMDEN, thats the borough)
CT use to be such a great place, now its been ruined, and the Hawley Arms is typical of what has ruined it .Hence mine,and others comments
tottenhamsean - 11 Feb 2008 15:09
Oh I am absolutely gutted about the fire, its terrible news for Camden aswel as The Hawley Arms. Staff must be devastated as this is by far the best pub in Camden x

And as for the people that have wrote the comments below are selfish arrogant pigs. I wonder if you'd be writing them if people died in the blaze because they were trapped
JamieL - 11 Feb 2008 13:17
Went there yesterday, bit smokey for my liking
JuFoster - 11 Feb 2008 13:17
Burn baby burn (Disco Inferno)
beerbarber - 11 Feb 2008 11:51
full of glorified junkies and the odd coke sniffer where will they go now.ha ha its gone up in flames.
cofirocboy - 10 Feb 2008 13:42
Wouldn't piss on it if it were on fire.
lowroader - 10 Feb 2008 12:37
Cracking BBQ!!
tottenhamsean - 10 Feb 2008 10:03
up in smoke
JohnnyCrow - 10 Feb 2008 08:25
The Hawley Arms is indefinitely closed as of two hours ago.
travis - 9 Feb 2008 22:15
Full of tourists and desperate wannabes. Avoid like a syphilitic whore.
Dannysigma - 18 Jan 2008 09:27
We fell in love with this pub long before it tripped the light fantastic.Yes its changed.Yes its full of wannabees and egocentrics,but this is Camden central.Great selection of beers and spirits and service can be slow but barstaff do their best to quench thirsts under very busy conditions at times.It boasts the best smoking deck upstairs and without doubt has the best jukebox around.And a huge thanks to cool blond irish guy in a red bennetton shirt who saved my girlfriends bag from being nicked over xmas.This pub is full of good heads if you ignore the sheep.If anything The Hawley is a victim of its own success.
livelyjoe - 16 Jan 2008 20:07
Me and a mate use to drink here all the time when we were younger. Now it's full of wannabe pop stars hoping to bump in to Amy Winehouse or that stupid drug-addict husband of hers. The beer is expensive (and poor), the clientel is 18-24 year old with bad attitudes and the landlord has a bad attitude.

Can you not see it you morons? The landlord is striping you up? Best avoided.
anonymous - 8 Jan 2008 20:58
As an ale drinker this is about the best pub in Camden for ales. No Ale at the upstairs bar so you have to stagger up a few floors spilling ale on the way. Has upstairs outdoor seating next to railway line.
CambridgeBlue - 3 Dec 2007 11:42
Three years ago this was the best pub in Camden Ė ambient, warm, lively, good mix of punters. Now it's been 'discovered' by Kelly Osbourne, Amy Winehouse and those sad bastards it's got its head up its backside. The last Saturday I went they even had a cordon outside and a doorman, choosing who should and shouldn't be admitted. I wasn't cool enough.

Must be sour grapes. Either that or this pub has gone down the tubes.

A real shame
adelondon - 30 Nov 2007 17:53
I used to drink here (and the Stags Head across the way, now sadly gone)years ago and it was one of the best pubs in London. Once saw the governor stick a meat clever in the bar and whatever happened to the barman with the woolen socks, dirty fingernails and silver sandals? Seems to be a bit up its own arse now!
dalglish - 22 Nov 2007 16:52
Went here last week - used to be quite a nice old boozer, but now it is like sodom and gomorrah rolled into one. If you are not already completely plastered when entering this pub, then don't bother, as the people in there will make you question the worth of humanity if you are sober!

PeoplesPalace - 25 Oct 2007 16:16
Too cool to serve you?? After ordering a round of 9 drinks in increments of 3 at a time I was told my the bar man that I had "wasted his time" by not giving him the full order in one sentence. This was the service offered by the bar manager himself! Just plain rude and unnecessary.

If you like to queue for an hour to get in, wait for half an hour to get served and then be insulted, this is the place for you, otherwise I would highly recommend you stay well away. There are much better places to drink in Camden.
Angel01 - 4 Oct 2007 13:15
Two years ago this bar was pretty much dead on a thursday night, now it's rammed to the gills. Unfortunately the minisule floor area leaves no space to breath let alone get to the bar - and even when you do the bar staff are too cool to serve you, faces offering no threat of breaking into a smile. There's nothing special about this bar whatsoever, also, I'd like to add; If you queue up to get into a pub on a thursday night there's something wrong with you.
ketabank - 27 Sep 2007 19:33
Used to be known by locals as the "The Dead Hippy" was sold. converted into a fake french bar and has now been re-converted back into an imitation of the Dead Hippy.
Its handy for the market, you send the tourists there and you drink whilst waiting for them. Like the Mixer its a place to take tourists to say they have been somewhere. But really it needs fumigating.

There is now nothing special about this bar.
Silentio - 24 Sep 2007 00:38
Popped in for a friend's birthday last week and, although I didn't think it was possible, it's even worse than it was six months ago.

The female clientele is now made up ENTIRELY of Lily Allen/Kate Nash a-likes, with the male clientele favouring the skinny-jeaned Kooks/Razorlight look.

Add inefficient, posturing bar staff, stupidly high beer prices and and you've got one of the most ludicriously over-rated pubs in the UK.

Birthday or no birthday, I will not be returning.
lookmother - 17 Sep 2007 16:13
Pretty overrated. They don't keep a good pint and it's full of trendy youngsters trying desperately to imitate Russel Gland and comPlETE Cockerty with their stupid skinny jeans, long hair and white trainers. Up it's own rectum. Avoid.
kidpaprika - 8 Sep 2007 09:16
Pete Doherty frequents this establishment, which gives a strong case for non attendence of this venue. On the whole not a bad place to drink the only trouble is you get a lot of youngsters hoping to see Doherty and his ilk.
anonymous - 27 Aug 2007 12:14
Went here some time ago, and like others on here, am completely baffled by its sudden status. It's thoroughly mediocre; a typical, characterless modern bar.

I'm surprised (and relieved) the idiots didn't take over a good pub in an attempt at appearing authentic. I suspect that says something not just about the patrons, but about the world in which we live.
ChapmanBaxter - 19 Aug 2007 23:09
Gets busy with 'celeb types' being all up themselves
kenincamden - 2 Aug 2007 14:47
We visited this pub on Saturday evening and on first impressions it was a great little boozer. Good music and a good atmosphere. We stood outside and the craic was great until what turned out to be the landlord turned up and started acting like a proper little Hitler because people were stood more than a meter away from the wall. He really ought to learn some manners. Without a doubt he was bulled at school.
molby1976 - 20 Jul 2007 00:16
I visited this pub for the first time yesterday / last night and thought it was excellent. We arrived about 4pm and while upstairs was packed, it wasn't too difficult to find a seat downstairs or out the back, and it never got what I'd call busy right through until last orders (this was a Sunday night). Speaking as a single bloke, there were loads of really gorgeous women there which is always a Good Thing, and the bar staff were both helpful and friendly. I wouldn't know a celebrity if they came up and hit me in the face, so I have no idea whether Moss or Winehouse were there, but generally the clientele seemed pretty mixed and quite laid back. There were even two disabled OAPs sitting at the table next to us! Maybe I was lucky, but I'm giving this pub a 9, and the title of "My favourite pub in North London".
kingston_toon - 11 Jun 2007 11:12
Anyone have any idea at all how this pub suddenly became the alleged cool place to drink? One celebrity goes there, a couple more follow, and then the hoards of hangers-on and fashion victim twits descend en-masse?

It was only ever an average place to begin, perhaps too over-polished. Now you have trouble even getting space to stand up there. They're all welcome to it.
travis - 6 Jun 2007 19:20
If you're a vacuous, fashion victim, would-be rock star, coked-up, celebrity spotting, airhead - this is probably the place for you.
The fact that they feel the need to put a notice outside saying "a real boozer!" just about sums up what an awful, sheep-infested hole this place has become. pardon me, but i'm not going to wet myself just because i might see Kate Moss or Amy Winehouse staggering out of the loos with freshly powdered noses.
And the bald bloke behind the bar (owner? manager?) is the rudest, most ignorant git i have ever bought an over-priced drink from.
Never again.
anonymous - 5 Jun 2007 16:14
Really great pub, don't believe the trendier-than-thou set telling you its not fun anymore just because people have heard of it now. Great music, everyone was having a good time, and none of the attitude I'd expect from somewhere that celebs and rockers go to. Have a few beers out on one of the terraces in summer, brilliant.
dmw77 - 5 Jun 2007 10:33
Given this boozer's location in the heart of Camden it should not come as a surpise to anyone, that the clientel are trying to be rock stars. Many of them are! Would the same people critise City pubs beacuse they were full of rich bankers!

Regardless the beer is good, the staff are friendly. Service is usually fast but the upstairs bar seemed slow one Friday night. I've not eaten but the menu looks attractive. The upstairs terrace is also a bonus, but will soon be pack full of smokers.

Overall top banana. Much better than that rip off Proud Gallery across the road.
bunglebear - 1 Jun 2007 14:41
This is a very lively pub, even for early Sunday evening. There was a bouncer on the door that seemed to be letting some people straight in and making others wait outside until someone left, which I thought was a little strange.

There were people dancing on tables and everyone seemed to be having a laugh. There were a few wannabes in there that thought that they were the coolest thing since sliced bread and a few plonkers that seemed to take issue with any faces they didnít know, but all in all it was a good time had by all.

I donít see this place ever becoming my local, but it is worth going for an odd night out.
Strongers - 29 May 2007 15:52
Was in on Saturday afternoon for a a couple of pints. Interesting place worth a visit. Decent beer and interesting decor and good music. Very pleasant female doorman. Staff were pretty attentive and plenty of them. Despite the pub being very busy there was very little wait at the bar - always a good thing
atsoutar - 14 May 2007 16:05
Well, I wrote last year that it was teetering on the brink and sadly it's fallen off the wrong side.

What was once a great, welcoming pub with a cool jukebox and wonderful staff is now populated by Kooks and Razorlight look-a-likes...who might actually be the real thing.

Impossible to get a seat, snooty barstaff and skinny jeaned scenesters have ruined this one for anyone who used to drink there pre 2006.

Not that the owners will care - they're probably raking it in!
lookmother - 22 Feb 2007 15:47
Used to be my favourite pub in Camden. Now, just too pretentious. Bye bye Hawley Arms, I enjoyed our summer together, but, alas, it's over...until the trendies bugger off somewhere else, anyway.

vic_of_india - 14 Feb 2007 16:15
Unfortunately the combination of odd c-list celebrity and free london rags has turned this otherwise brilliant pub into sardine tin of hair-gelled mini-razorlights. Victim of it's own success. Real Shame.
SpecialK - 14 Feb 2007 16:08
Has been discovered by a few 'celebs' and their Heat magazine reading fans. Can still get a good night in there, though.
Planner_21 - 5 Feb 2007 21:34
I'm growing to quite like this gaff. Friendly barstaff and a bouncer who didn't act like a complete t*at.

Ok selection of beers with real ale should that be your bag. Very popular but then you don't want to go somewhere dead on a Saturday night.

One to go back to and amazing that it's so close to the tourist heaven that is Camden High St.
anonymous - 4 Feb 2007 13:52
Denzil194 - 13 Jan 2007 15:42
after moving to camden and getting straight out to a few pubs i was disappointed after all i had heard about this place, its ok but bar staff seemed a bit full of themselves and inside wasnt much to write home about. thought it was 1996 not 2006 when i was in there which was an odd feeling, good fish and chips though.
smokenewboy2 - 29 Dec 2006 15:11
Goo pub, good guinness,staff ok, and juke box great.
Downside Kelly Osbourne drinks in here!!Now if she brought her dad along, all her awful records would be forgiven!!
tottenhamsean - 13 Nov 2006 18:05
this is what I call a boozer,great ambience,awesome jukebox and full of characters,staff were friendly and the beer well kept.It is nice to see individuality in a pub,the pictures,candles in the windows and the selection of cola bottles,rhubarb and custard sweets and monster munch crisps as bar snacks was a nice touch,will definatly be back.
nickragingthirst - 12 Nov 2006 13:34
A fairly good little pub. I'm not sure if it is officially tied to Greene King or not, but the three ales currently on are Ridleys Old Bob, GKIPA and Abbot Ale. The pint of Old Bob I had was excellent, as was the half pint I had bought for me when a bloke knocked the dregs of my beer over. Low efficiency of bar staff led to quite a long wait at the bar, and when I was inadvertantly over-assertive and got served before some stroppy bird, she exclaimed 'for f***s sake' extremely loudly, which amused me no end. My female toilet correspondant thought the pub was a bit too noisy, but I didn't mind as the music was pretty good. The large framed picture of Joe Strummer did leave me feeling rather melancholy though.
ChrisF - 20 Oct 2006 10:10
Well said Zeppo, This pub was a belter back in the day. I remember the table football & posters on the ceiling. Your right that it hasn't got half the character as it had then. I'd rather drink in the mixer instead!
P.S. Anyone remember the Debbie Harry lookalike that used to frequent this establishment in the late 80s?

ganger - 8 Oct 2006 07:08
Teetering on the brink this one. Itís just had a refit, adding a roof terrace which is great, and the jukebox and beer standard is still second to none.

Sadly the new bar staff are a mixture of complete incompetents and try hard poseurs. The friendly welcome and cosy feel of the place was what made it great, so let's hope itís just having a few teething problems at the moment. Studied cool and detached indifference may be en vogue at the Lock Tavern, but letís hope itís not spreading.

Also, if everyone would stop singing The Hawleyís praises on here, perhaps I'd get a seat! Selfish sods.

lookmother - 15 Aug 2006 17:30
Well this is still a good pub, can still get busy but perfect for a relaxed afternoon pint with mates... but hang on.. this was one of the most surreal, fantastic, rockin boozers in the whole of London! In the early 90's this place was stuck in the 70's and all the better for it, then change came along and made it what we see today. It's still a good pub don't get me wrong but it hasn't a tenth of the personalities and Character that it used to. Anyone remembering the table football, Ploughmans lunch the size of a house, the waxwork man leaning over the balcony,the endless music posters and flags all over the ceiling and the worlds greatest jukebox will no EXACTLY what i mean!
Zeppo - 20 Jul 2006 13:23
When I die and go to Heaven, please make it like The Hawley Arms...

I've been there three times now. The first was a very chilled Sunday afternoon, sitting in what we now call 'John Peel Corner', listening to The Clash, lounging on the collapsed sofa, just soaking in the great rock memorabilia, fantastic jukebox and great beer.

The next two times were for football matches. England v Sweden, where it was full but not heaving, there were a fair amount of tv's around so everyone could watch, and the staff still managed to serve us in a reasonable amount of time (most pubs seemed to go onto a go slow during England games). Last week I was in there to watch Argentina v Germany, again on a big comfy sofa, and with most of London's Argentianians on the back terrace. Again, a brilliant atmosphere, great clientele, fantastically friendly staff, a sun terrace, only the best tunes on the God, I love this pub!!!

vic_of_india - 5 Jul 2006 14:37
Monkfish, you really should go back.

This is the greatest pub in the world, end of. If it were possible I'd drink here every night.
jimd - 22 Jun 2006 12:30
Very, very chilled out. Diverse jukebox, really good guinness, simple but well prepared and served food. None of the pseudiness of the Lock Tavern, none of the gothic metal nonsense of the Caernarvon Arms, a real oasis. Some of the soft drinks are v. cheap which is good if you're driving. A favourite among market stall holders having been assaulted by millions of people in Camden who want whatever it is for less, don't speak English, want stuff for free, ignore you completely, can get this stuff for half the price in (insert place here) whatever - after a day of aggravation the Hawley Arms is the perfect antidote. Was closed for 10 weeks but opened bigger and much better. Nice work fellas.

Hang on - that means loads of people will pile down there & we won't get a seat... no it's rubbish - don't go, it's terrible :) (it's not working is it)

a hidden gem in the heart of Camden.
uptoeleven - 22 May 2006 17:34
It was shut last sunday evening...don't know if its just for a refurb??
EdgarBriggsMI5 - 1 Apr 2006 01:02
fantastic magnificent J'adore the hawley arms nice homely familiar atmosphere my second home ............unpretentious but cool
queen_of_the_mods - 26 Mar 2006 23:08
Top staff, top jukebox, top food and beers. A pub for grown ups, which promises to be even better after its refit.
hissyfit - 15 Mar 2006 15:57
Must try harder. D-.
Expensive, devoid of atmosphere and distinctly up itself.

Mr.Monkfish - 18 Jan 2006 15:26
The greatest duke box in London bar none - and that includes Soho's magnificent Endurance (whose Duke box seemed to be going down hill last time I was there). Such aural delights are not wasted on the decor either, which is busy with plants, interesting pictures and a towering ceiling which gives the place a grander feeling than it might ordinarily merit. Together these most important of things come togther to inform what has to be the best boozer in the whole of Camden. But wait - it just gets better, because the staff are diamonds too. What more could you ask for? Superb.
Good for: Whenever.
thenationofjames - 18 Jan 2006 13:38
Nice atmosphere, nice beer, friendly staff and a barmaid who seems to be about 3 feet tall. But most importantly, you can light matches on the brick at the bar. Genius. I'm going back just to do that.
Lord_Science - 10 Jan 2006 14:37
Just discovered this one last week. What a find, a Camden pub where you don't feel like a geriatric over 30 or have to yell into the ear of people right next to you to be heard. Might have been extra quiet being midweek but perfect. My new favourite in Camden.
realalesnob - 31 Oct 2005 18:19
Overpriced, poncey, lifeless, bad service, crap jukebox, don't need to say any more except it's shit. Toilets are nice though.
junction25 - 18 Oct 2005 14:15
Stopped in on a recent Sunday at noon.. No crowds, quiet and realxed and just far enough away from the market scene. Extremely friendly - and glad to see us!
tutzt00 - 15 Oct 2005 22:22
This is my 'local' despite the fact that I live in SW London. Jukebox is rockin', the staff are fun and friendly and the atmosphere is just what you need for a cool n groovy night out - happening but not too hectic 10/10 xx
Dannie - 13 Oct 2005 21:32
lovely lovely lovely lovely lovely

but needs jukebox additions

bob dylan
belle and sebastien
john coltrane
ok computer
neil_young - 16 Sep 2005 19:33
Went to this pub for someone's birthday bash. Was early so had to wait at the bar. Delicious beer on tap, assortments of treats (kola cubes, wotsits, chubba chupps) behind bar, staff having fun, a good number of customers obviously enjoying themselves. The more time I spent looking around the better it got - original vinyl classic singles on the wall (Stranglers, On Golden Brown being but one), and the velcro wall league placing for the football so you know what's gone on that Saturday afternoon.

And then after that we had food served for the party - lovely pizza bits and REALLY GOOD fat chips in Hoegarten glasses. Superb.

If I haven't mentioned it already, the staff were excellent. Atmosphere in this place is electric to boot.

Definitely one of my favourite pubs in london. Despite living on the other side of the city I will be going back at the first opportunity.

casemore - 1 Sep 2005 22:25
I love dropping into this pub on a Friday night - there's always a good crowd, and they always have the funkiest music. I don't think I've been in yet and left without hearing Curtis Mayfield or James Brown.
mrfrisky - 28 Aug 2005 14:43
The history of this pub, is that is was a proper rough hole, full of druggies and bikers, I should know it closed down in 1997, had a refurb and reopened in the July of that year as a gastropub by ME!
Greene King bought it the following year.
I visit quiet often usually on a Sunday and even though its now had a lick of paint it has still got the quirky character of 8 years ago, I LOVE IT, well done to the current owners, food is great, staff are a credit to you. And thats from someone who is very critical of her very first pub she opened. WELL DONE!10/10 from me!
pubcustomer - 5 Aug 2005 18:05
I am a fairly new patron to the Hawley Arms having only been drinking in there since Spring 2005 so not sure about the history. It is however the best pub I have found in Camden so far and a bold statement, but possibly my favourite London pub at the moment.

Good staff, good beer, excellent jukebox, great food and just off the beaten path in Camden so that it does not get full of idiots.

Badgers - 5 Aug 2005 17:37
This pub is the mutts nuts, the best in Camden by absolutely light years. The beer is great, and they do pints of chips and Wotsits in a bowl. The jukebox is effing incredible too.

And Alan behind the bar is a legend. I only hope that this posting doesnt encourage a load of Camden bellends to start drinking there, its perfect as it is.
jimd - 10 Jun 2005 16:54
well ganger welcome to 2005 - there are still pubs around in Camden playing the classics and that's one of the things I love about the area - something for everyone even the media types who were absent on my visit to the Hawley - I was welcomed instead by the friendly staff, pleasant atmosphere, a great soundtrack and an approachable clientele.
starr - 8 Mar 2005 17:04
I totaly agree with anonymous (23 May 2003). I used to drink in this pub in the late 80s to the early 90s and it was a great pub, full of atmosphere and characters. There used to be old rock posters pinned to the celling and the juke box was stocked with classic tunes from the 60s-70s. I went back there recently and was shocked that they'd turned it into a generic Camden Town boozer, decked out with comfy leather sofas adorned with media types. Oh the Horror!!
ganger - 5 Mar 2005 15:29
a lovely pub,it has a really personal and amiable feel, created partly by the barstaff who have personalities, brains and oh yes wit which is a bit of a rarity these days. Very unpretentious and great atmosphere.The food is great and has a nice range of prices to fit all wallets. You have to rate somewhere that sells jelly babies in jars.
It has style too and the ladies is filled with lots of interesting articles and pictures for us to look at whilst we are waiting!Love the log fire too.
rosalind - 25 Feb 2005 16:45
Yup Travis you got me dead to rights, I do have an interest in this pub - I like drinking in it!!!
Express your opinion mate, but don't call me pathetic for expressing mine. Working in Camden for the last four years I think I can safely say that I've drunk in every over-priced poncy lounge bar and flea bitten pit it's got - I've found this place a breath of fresh air since it reopened.
When your used to some of the dodgy boozers in SE London (where I live) you long to have somewhere like this on your doorstep - unpretentious with decent music and nice people.
Give it anothe try - you might find you like it!
danny_cascarino - 17 Feb 2005 17:40
like dirty "Arry said".....opinions are like.......... every one's got one" right?

hey obviously the rain is falling somewhere (bit obvious that too).

As my local, i obviously have an interest as its on my door step (obviously)
i tell you this pub used to be rubbish, no one went in except for rodents and low life. it didnt sell real ale good bad or average and the 1664 came out like Hoegaarden! or was it the Budvar?

call me phoney but i wouldnt want anyone to go out of their to go to the Hawley, but as a new local haunt on my doorstep, its improvement is a thousand fold and can only be welcomed obviously!!
plugstar - 16 Feb 2005 21:08
What an obvious bunch of phoney reviews obviously written by someone who obviously works there and/or has an interest in the place. I don't know why these people bother. It's pathetic.

Don't believe any of this hype. The Hawley is an average boozer with average ale. Bit overpriced too, but it's OK for an occasional visit. I'd hate to think anyone would go out of their way to get there based on the reviews below.
travis - 16 Feb 2005 15:36
Stumbled across The Hawley Arms the other day and hesitated about going in. The last time I was in this neck of the woods I managed all of half hour in this joint before getting my pocket felt and offered more than just a pint. However, things have changed and managing to nab the sofa by the fire we stayed until tossing out time. The atmosphere was great and they had an excellent juke box. One of the barmen (I think his name was Alan) talked us into coming back the next day for a roast, and I'm glad we took him up on it as it was the perfect cure for our previous hangover, if only we hadn't started drinking again. Definitely gonna do my best to stumble this way again...
Highly recommended!
sonny - 10 Feb 2005 10:03
a great new addition to the camden lock pub scene. once a pub that was slowly dying an excruitiating cloudy beer death, the Hawley has been revitalised by a cheeky pair of chaps who obviously know and love their beer and fine food offerings. To their credit not much has changed, just enhanced making this a fine english boozer to visit after a long day of market hopping, chris evans spotting. cracking stuff chaps
plugstar - 9 Feb 2005 12:59
I've drunk (and been drunk!) in nearly every pub in the the Camden Town/Chalk Farm area. Accept no substitute: this is the best boozer in the area.
Not only is there a good selection of beers (bottled and draught, kept well and at prices reasonable for Camden), but an awesome array of whiskies and other splendid spirits, served by the friendliest and most likeable staff I've ever met in London (and you can't put a value on things like that when you're a regular liquid luncher). By day it's a nicely-lit, spacious place to lunch and relax, by evening it has a lively, but warm atmosphere and there's nice seating for tastes both comfy and hard, a tasteful and eclectic jukebox and - beyond all doubt - the best pub grub in town, with items ranging from the classic (a beautiful steak/ale pie and mash; beer-battered fish & chips with mushy peas) to the whimsical but welcome (egg and soldiers, inspired!) - and all cooked from scratch to order.
It would almost be a shame to rate this pub highly and raise its profile: after all, you wouldn't want just anyone in on your secret, would you?
Paulie - 7 Feb 2005 14:48
Drinking in Camden can be a chore (something I'm not often known to say when booze is involved) what with surly regulars, moody staff and dubious jukeboxes. The Hawley however, since the new management has taken over, has become something of an oasis. The staff make nipping in for a pint a pleasure, and an evening session feels more akin to chilling in a mate's living room than visiting a public house. With an excellent menu, a cracking jukebox - with a little of something for everybody- and decent selection of drinks this really has become the place to go for a night, or indeed a lunchtime, out. SlaŪntť!
danny_cascarino - 7 Feb 2005 12:23
New Years Eve 2004-2005. I hate this evening usually, to much planning, too busy at the bar, to expensiveto get in. We marched around Camden and luckily happened to pass this pub. I had been in before but this time, it looked different. To my surprise and delight, the place had been taken over by two very affable, young, experienced and friendly chaps who had chosen to have a closed door for friends that night. The turnout was nothing short of spectacular and as a newcomer, my friends and I were treated very very well. The drink wasflowing and also, may I say, the dukebox was superb. Since New Years Eve, I have been back and can highly recommend The Hawley arms to any regular of Camden or indeed passing traffic. The regulars are very friendly and always keen to have a chat with you about anything from music to pottery (I was there and heard the chat myself!!). You also will be left alone if a quiet drink is what you fancy. I will also say, and I doubt id be thanked for this, that for the star spotters, it does regularly satisfy the drinking needs and eating needs of a very famous actor (who apparently likes swinging - according to the SUN) and numerous bands/ music peeps. All very exciting!!
CamdenCasual - 3 Feb 2005 16:36
I'm from Dublin but studying in Wolverhampton where the social life is on par with slahing your backside with a blunt knife and sitting on a packet of salt 'n' vinegar crips.A few of us headed to London for a weekend before we lost the plot and were drawn to The Hawley Arms as if by fate.The staff were just insanely friendly,the couches comfy and they really went out of their way to make us compfortable,even though we weren't exactly big spenders.I'm from Dublin,a capital city with a similiar rep as London as having a lot of yuppie-ised pubs where staff are jaded and unfriendly and make you feel like you're putting them out of their way to serve you a pint.You can tell the staff enjoy what their doing and this is reflected in the satified customers like myself.Great sounds too.Perhaps it was legendery "back in the day" as a metal bar but there's no cliquey vibe here.Just a decent,comfy,friendly welcoming pub.Thanks lads.
siamese_bagel_eyes - 1 Feb 2005 15:51
If you're looking for a laid back place for a pint, homecooked meal maybe rounded off by a stint on a sofa with a good magazine then look no further than Camden's Hawley Arms.
While other reviewers seem to be jaded by the fact the pub is no longer a haunt for Iron Maiden loving bikers, anyone who's on the button will realise the pub has just come under new management and is now just a good old British Pub open to anyone looking for a relaxed haunt to escape the hustle and bustle of London life.
The food is tops, the beer is good and with a open fire in the winter and a lazy beer garden in the summer what more do you want?
PS: If you're a music lover look out for some choice cuts in the jukebox, you'll find things that even if you've never heard before you'll wish you had.
Lynette - 13 Jan 2005 13:30
What a boozer, friendly staff, great sofas and a open fire. It's now my home, from home.I went there on Sunday, a haven from the hussle and bussle of the market. Had a Sunday Roast, Roast Pork and Crackling. The Pork was from Norwich according to the Barman(my favourite place for pork?????). Filled me up and I washed it down with a tasty pint of ale.
Thank You The Hawley Arms, I'll see you very soon
Roy_Clutch - 14 Dec 2004 10:20
Same place, new face! Under new management since December and they've done a cracking job so far. Had a party here on opening weekend, attention to detail with food and service was superb. It's such a relief to go somewhere in Camden where you can can get good home cooked, quality food, a place thats still funky but without the poncey attitude that so many pubs in Camden have been overrun with. Wicked music, nice love-worn(oo-er!) leather sofas and even a log is happy! (but no marshmallow toasting, boo!) My new local!
Blon_dee - 13 Dec 2004 19:34
I've been here a few times without ever being too sure why. It's one of those long bars without too much room, although it's rare for a long pub to have its long bit parallel to the road.
I guess the ale is OK, and there was a nice dog asleep on the sofa there once.
I gave it a pat.
And then left.
travis - 31 Aug 2004 15:07
If a pub's closed when it should be open (I think a pub should be open at 1.45pm), its probably crap.
Owen - 21 Jun 2004 16:58
unfortunately the new manager let the pub down.atmosphere is miserable,the barstaff does not speak english at all.but they do have excellent sunday roast.
roberto - 30 Apr 2004 14:56
This is a cracking pub - relaxed, good atmosphere, friendly staff and (usually) good music. It's well worth a visit.

I dunno what all these rockers are getting their denims in a twist about - go to the Fusilier & Firkin around the corner.

Chris - 1 Oct 2003 13:38
Used to be the best bloody pub in Camden - legendary for its clentele (where are they now?) now it is another faceless, lifeless crappy Camden bar
x - - 14 Aug 2003 12:26
This pub as I understand it used to at times reflect the days and times of a London Brothel. I had never seen it prior to itís refurbishment so I am not able to comment. I do know that the food seemed better a year ago than it does now. I donít like the design of the menu and the grub is not as varied. The dťcor is quite similar to the Jolene Celeste in Kentish Town and I could quite easily class this as I scaled down version. The service has always been friendly and will not ever give you hassle if you want to pay by card and your order is under £10. Itís not a huge pub but has feel to it.
Doofer - 6 Aug 2003 12:56
I don't know about those heavy metallers with their rechercher a les pubs perdu but this pub is fantastic - nice comfy sofas and seats, traditional decor, cool music. Usual London prices and I haven't tried any food but great for a quiet drink in the evening.
Carlos Doppler - 7 Jul 2003 16:24
They ruined this Pub, It was a legend in the late 80's early 90's
anonymous - 23 May 2003 17:00
Oh shit!! Someone deserves to be locked up for what they have done to this pub. Once it was a haven for heavy metal fans. The juke box was full of Led Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, Hawkwind etc. There was a bar football table, pinball machines and genuine dropouts who refused to leave the 70's behind. This was a brilliant pub and always full in the evenings. Now they have given it the full yuppie treatment. Disgraceful.
Peter - - 18 May 2003 19:03

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