Archway Tavern: Bizarre plans to re-open pub as wine bar and NURSERY are rejected

PUBLISHED: 15:46 21 August 2018 | UPDATED: 15:46 21 August 2018

Archway Tavern and the old public toilets outside have been brought back into the public spotlight. Picture: Dieter Perry

Archway Tavern and the old public toilets outside have been brought back into the public spotlight. Picture: Dieter Perry

Dieter Perry

Bizarre proposals to reopen the Archway Tavern as a wine bar with a nursery attached have today been rejected by council planners – who reckoned the joint uses would be “incompatible”.

The application from leaseholder Dr Imtiaz Sardar raised eyebrows when it was lodged in June because of their unusual nature, which would have meant Ofsted inspecting the building.

Dr Sardar had lodged the plans shortly after being told by freeholder Enterprise Inns to re-open the iconic pub as soon as possible following years of inaction.

That letter from the landlord came on the back of protests over the continued closure of the pub, which featured on the album sleeve of The Kinks’ Muswell Hillbillies.

It hasn’t opened its doors since a failed stint as rock venue The Intrepid Fox in 2014 and is now at the centre of the redesigned Navigator Square.

Dr Sardar and a business partner also met frustrated Islington leader Cllr Richard Watts and ward councillors in April and said their vision for the venue was for it to have more of a family focus.

But no-one thought that meant an actual nursery.

Islington planners said the proposals would mean the loss of a pub of community and heritage value.

“No evidence has been provided to demonstrate the current use is no longer viable as a public house,” they said. “This application seeks to remove this primary function which is unacceptable.”

They added: “The proposed change of use to a nursery and the retained drinking establishment use are considered to be incompatible uses within the same building.”

Officers also said the plans would harm the town centre and that there was “inadequate” access.

Community development chief Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz said: “Archway Tavern is an iconic landmark in the middle of the fantastic new public space at Navigator Square, and the community deserves for it to be re-opened as soon as possible as a community pub.

“The application proposed major and time consuming changes. I am relieved the council has refused the application, calling time on this bizarre proposal.

“We remain deeply frustrated that the pub remains closed and once again call on the leaseholder and freeholder to act quickly to see sense and reopen the pub in its former glory.”

Related articles

Latest Islington News Stories

Two rogue landlords have been prosecuted for dangerous and sub-standard conditions after Islington Council found 35 people living in a two bedroom flat in Grosvenor Avenue.

Yesterday, 19:26

Emily Thornberry today branded Universal Credit a “complicated and intimidating system” while speaking at a community conference in Holloway Road.

Yesterday, 17:33

Senior coroner Mary Hassell has today unveiled the new policy that will dictate how her office decides which deaths to deal with first.

Yesterday, 12:57

A former waste worker has rubbished claims drink and drug abuse among staff is partly to blame for the department’s £2million overspend.

Yesterday, 12:31

The queer archive at Islington Museum is collecting memories so it can compile a comprehensive history of LGBTQ+ culture in the borough – and this week the organisers are calling for material on transsexuality, transvestism and transgenderism.

Yesterday, 11:20

Jeremy Corbyn has written to Network Rail bosses expressing his concern about the company selling off its railway arches in the Holloway Road and throughout the country.

Yesterday, 09:18

Two men have been arrested after a fight outside Finsbury Park tube station saw a man taken to hospital in the early hours of this morning.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Monday night saw Islington’s most creative gardeners celebrated at a glitzy town hall ceremony.


Fostering older teenagers means giving them the skills for life as an adult. Here, a supportive lodgings carer with Islington Council and young adult who has left care share their stories

Newsletter Sign Up

Islington Gazette twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now