Tube map designs highlight the changing face of St Albans pubs scene

The St Albans pub scene in 2015 is different to four years ago

The St Albans pub scene in 2015 is different to four years ago - Credit: Archant

A quirky illustration of the St Albans pub scene likening it to the iconic London tube map has highlighted the stark change in the selection of watering holes across the city,

The St Albans pub scene in 2015 is different to four years ago

The St Albans pub scene in 2015 is different to four years ago - Credit: Archant

The map, designed by John Coates for Pubstops, made its first appearance several years ago as a mouse mat, but due to popular demand it has debuted as a poster this year.

John said: “My grandad lives opposite the Cathedral and St Albans always seemed a fitting place to do a design, there are so many pubs.

“We just started with a mouse mat in the tourist centre but we’ve had so many people ask about a poster we branched out this year.”

But compared to the same map in 2011, the rough overview of the iconic St Albans pub scene has vastly changed.


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The number of establishments featured on the map has dropped from 69 to 62, and many have been re-branded or taken over, with some set to shut down.

Noted absences on the 2015 map include the Cross Keys, Blue Anchor, and the Duke of Marlborough and many have been turned into gastro pubs.

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Phil Defriez , chairman of the St Albans Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), said: “A lot of pubs are closing because times are changing and some people aren’t willing to go to the traditional pubs.

“A lot of them are surviving through serving food, but we’ve been quite lucky here really, compared to the rest of the country, not to have more close.”

St Albans has recently seen numerous applications for pubs to be listed as ‘community assets’, where the building becomes protected under planning law and the nearby community have the opportunity to bid on it.

St Albans CAMRA have helped with these applications, most recently for The Rats Castle.

Phil added: “Pubs are the hub of the community, where people meet for special occasions, they have their own sports teams, to discuss local issues. Everyone has a pub at the heart of their local community.

“In St Albans we have a great pub scene, eight of our pubs were featured in the Good Pub Guide this year and we want to keep it that way.”

If you would like to purchase a ‘St Albans pub map’ click here.

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