‘Bonkers’ plans submitted to reopen Archway Tavern... with a nursery attached

PUBLISHED: 14:24 06 June 2018 | UPDATED: 14:27 06 June 2018

Archway Tavern and the old public toilets outside have been brought back into the public spotlight.

Archway Tavern and the old public toilets outside have been brought back into the public spotlight.

Dieter Perry

Astonishing plans have been lodged to turn half of the Archway Tavern into a nursery – but still reopen the front half as a pub.

The shock proposals could mean Ofsted is called in to decide whether it is suitable to have people boozing next to a kid’s play school – and that could delay the return of the famous pub.

Owner Dr Imtiaz Sardar has lodged the plans after being told by freeholder Enterprise Inns he must re-open it as soon as possible following years of inaction.

That came on the back of protests over the continued closure of the iconic boozer, 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 square.

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

Whether anyone expected that meant changing the back of the building, currently a nightclub, into a nursery, is another matter.

The bid has been met with bewilderment by the Archway community, with one person calling it “totally bonkers”.

Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz, who was at the meeting with Dr Sardar, said she and fellow councillors were “deeply frustrated” at the prospect of further delays.

She told the Gazette: “We have been working hard to encourage the leaseholder to reopen the pub, and are very disappointed it currently remains closed.

“This application is clearly a major change. In addition to planning permission, it could mean the need for a variation to the leaseholder’s current premises licence, or an application for a whole new licence. Ofsted may also need to take a view on the suitability of the premises for a nursery.

“This will take time, which may mean further delays in the pub reopening. We are deeply frustrated by the further delays to what should be a community pub, and we know local people will share our frustrations.”

CG Architects, representing Dr Sardar, told the Gazette the person dealing with it was too busy to speak to the paper and would call back when he could.

Related articles

Latest Islington News Stories

After months of delays, disruption and the dreaded rail replacement bus, commutes are finally set to get better for London Overground passengers.

More than 15 per cent of Islington Clinical Commissioning Group’s cancer patients waited at least two months to start treatment following GP referral, according to NHS figures.


Islington’s courts were being filled with cases of lazy people “borrowing” cars without the owner’s consent.

Yesterday, 17:08

Shocked commuters witnessed a huge road rage punch-up in the middle of Holloway Road this morning – during which a man was attacked with a baseball bat.

Yesterday, 15:33

Health chiefs say there were “few, if any” signs that could have helped them prevent Finsbury Park man Bidhya Sagar Das from killing his son with a hammer.

Yesterday, 14:44

The senior coroner for inner north London Mary Hassell is set to hold a public consultation into the new policy for how she should deal with deaths in the area, but has only given people a matter of days to send in written submissions.

Yesterday, 14:22

Whittington Hospital was turning pregnant women away as its maternity ward couldn’t cope with a north London baby boom.

Yesterday, 11:08

Jeremy Corbyn this morning praised his “magnificent” community as Islington marked one year since the Finsbury Park terror attack.


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