The Honor Oak closes

The Honor Oak pub (1 St German's Road, SE23) has shut and will reopen under new management. An announcement on the former management's Facebook page says:

It is with a heavy heart that I must let you know that The Honor Oak is no more. The doors are closed the tears are flowing. 

When faced with such a difficult operating environment, couple with a distinct lack of support from Punch Taverns, we have had to throw the towel in, not least for our own sanity. Thank you to everybody who has supported us, played music, sung, danced, quizzed us or helped us plug holes in this disastrous building. We will miss you all and hope very much that the corporate management group moving in will be sensitive to the needs of the community.

The pub doesn't benefit from a lot of local footfall so has to work hard to attract customers. Unfortunately, the latest team to run the place seemed to struggle and standards fell at what has traditionally been one of the area's best boozers. Let's hope it reopens soon.

With thanks to BarCar.

33 comments:

Tim Lund said...

Another case for Councillor Canute?

SeaHorse said...

It's been a busy pub in the past. When we moved nearby five years ago you could only get a table for lunch on a Sunday if you booked in advance. I'm pleased to hear it'll re-open. Let's hope the new management can read the local market and offer what people want.

NAT said...

Let us all be thankfull that lot didn't get their hands on The Talbot, as was planned

Brockley Nick said...

I think you are thinking about the previous team at the Honor Oak, who actually did a pretty good job.

NAT said...

Erm, Where are they now?

Pub lover said...

Really confused about what went on here, the team who redeveloped it and opened it as the Honor Oak, (was this Jamie as the owner?) did a great job about 5 years ago, and it was very busy and welcoming place.


I think they then left (what was the reason?) and the current crew took over, and downhill it went...


I really hope it becomes successful again, as it will be good for that area of Forest Hill / Brockley

NAT said...

In their mecifully brief tenure of The Talbot they managed to diminish an already tiny trade, alienate any stalward still on the premises, announce an opening night to which locals wern't welcomed, Host for themselves quite a 'fuelled' closing party, again from which long lasting locals were pointedly excluded, oh and nick the outdoor furniture for their new venture

Fabulous.

NAT said...

I have consulted my notes and taken some advice and now realise that no funiture, if indeed any outdoor furniture existed, at the time in question was taken from The Talbot on any occasion and am indebted to friends, learned and less so, for this insight.

Alison said...

Gutted its gone staff were brilliant,manager was awesome
Food was good and they always catered well for my sever
Allergies, went there today and was shocked it had gone
Gutted hope the old manager is still path of the team
Alison xx

Anonymous said...

Use of the phrase Corporate Management Group worries me. Is it definitely reopening as a pub?...

Brockley belle said...

Damn the one decent pub where you didn't have to take out a second mortgage to drink beer. I will miss you...

Brockley Nick said...

It's the outgoing team's phrase. I'd take it with a pinch of salt.

Matt-Z said...

Jamie was the manager, didn't own it, used to run the Student Union bar at Goldsmiths many moons ago.

Can't say much about the recent incumbents as I've not been in too often, but the place was looking tatty and run down on the last few occasions I was there.

Punch Taverns are known for sweating their assets, wringing every last penny out of their tenants, and making it very difficult for them to run a pub to a decent budget. This is a problem with many pubcos, largely because their property portfolio is mortgaged to the hilt at unrealistic values, and they struggle to service this debt.

mkeynes said...

Big mistake removing the amazing engraved windows and replacing with clear plate glass. Just started to look dirty and empty.

NAT said...

In more positive local pub news, people tell me, The Wickham, has turned some kind of corner and is in new and better hands, will check it out on Friday when the fabulous 'Lost Chords' play there.

Rosemary said...

Not having a lot of natural footfall didnt pose a problem in the past. The pub was very busy even on a Monday lunchtime and we always struggled to get a table at Sunday lunch. The place was always heaving. It's a good 25 min walk for us but we always did it even when wet and cold. It had a good reliable brand and the original managers ( the Jamie's) had a natural flair for marketing and they knew what their clientele wanted. It all fell apart however- we tried to book it for a party last year and no one ever returned our calls. The attitude was very much , you come and run after us. So no one did. The only other reliable brands locally are the All Inn One ( never been disappointed yet) and the Dartmouth. Hopefully someone will again wave the magic fairy dust over the Honor Oak and bring it back to life.

Honor Oak Gal said...

Sad it's gone however - ever since it was redecorated black it had its character taken away. I used to go a lot but was really put off so started going elsewhere. It became too dark, too open and looked like a funeral home. Loved it before when they had bunnies and great pictures in the wall.

George said...

The footfall wasn't the problem. The current crew seemed inexperienced and didn't have the ability/desire to turn it into a pub locals wanted to visit. The place was uncomfortable, and on my last visit, management and punters were going out back to smoke pot every 20 minutes.

Kevin Johnson said...

Err. What about the Blythe Hill Tavern? Having had a pint in The Honor Oak before it shut I can't say it was noticeably cheaper than any other local.

Kevin Johnson said...

I don't know what happened there. Used to be great for Sunday
dinners. I've spoke to a few people who were disappointed that they
stopped hosting music there. I went in one evening before it closed and
it was pretty dire.

On a happier note The ivy House seems to be
slowly coming back due to the love of the local community. You can still
invest in it's future!

SarahF said...

Hi we are moving to Cranston Road which is very close to this pub. I am a bit concerned about it closing and the fact that there are no signs of works being carried out and it reopening. Does anyone know what is going on? Thanks

Kevin Johnson said...

Well the Honor Oak may have gone, but you are still only 5 mins from the Blythe Hill Tavern which is one of the best pubs in South London if not the whole of London.

Brockley Jon said...

I believe even before the management change, they were having issues with direct neighbours, so this could explain the lack of live music.

Brockley Jon said...

You are only minutes away from the All Inn One, Dartmouth Arms, and Sylvan Post - something for everyone there so I wouldn't worry!

Sarah F said...

Hi thanks for the replies. Looking forward to trying out all those pubs. I was a little concerned as some have told us we are moving to the wrong bit if FH and that its not is good area. We didn't agree with this but with this pub shutting and no signs of it reopening I am getting nervous that this is not a good sign about this little area of FH. Just last minute buying nerves really but any news about what's happening to the pub and any positive comments about this little area much appreciated!! Thanks

Brockley Jon said...

You are on what is traditionally the slightly cheaper side of FH - that's not necessarily a bad thing. Anyone who calls it the 'wrong' side is just being snobby. The walk to FH is a bit less desirable - either along the south circular, or past the estates - but on that side you're also within striking distance of Sydenham and Catford, so can take advantage of any good stuff that happens there. I know a couple of people who are very happy living round that area.

HOP6 said...

These suggestions are all in FH, bar (no pun!) BH Tavern which is half way to Catford. Any suggestions for good pubs that serve the HOP end?

Brockley Jon said...

@HOP6, not exactly pubs, but Hopscotch has some decent beers (and bands), as does Tapatiserie, which has a bar 'side' of the restaurant. Or walk up to Crofton Park and you get yourself Mr Laurence & soon to be Late Knights!! Exciting stuff indeed. I went to their Gipsy Hill popup the other day and it was explosively good.

gougherK said...

Just caught up with this story now as I live on St Germans Road and there are now huge looming metal shutters over the windows. Punch Taverns had indeed promised new tenants would be coming in but it doesnt look like happening soon.
Also in April this year my girlfriend paid a £100 deposit for a birthday party there, she then received a phone call from Punch taverns to say the guys had upped and left, stripping assets they had brought into the place. Despite repeated efforts she has still not received back the £100 cash deposit she paid. we would be grateful if we could be put in touch with the previous occupiers as Punch Taverns dont want to know.

E said...

I live on St Germans Road and on my way home tonight noticed a sign on the door. I don't think it's going to be opened for a while as squatters have moved in and have said as its a non residential building there is nothing anyone can do to remove them. So well done to the security company who put up the so called security and to the brewery who have left it too late. So we're stuck with a boarded up pub at the end of our road. Great!

FH Kid said...

I grew up in FH and have seen so many changes the area has gone down hill year after year for what you pay for a house in FH you could easily find a nicer part of SE London. Brockley/Honor Oak are a lot nicer than FH. I have relatives on Cranston Road in FH and it is prob now one of the worst roads in FH, it's busy, you had the guy that got shot outside his house on Cranston Road a couple of years back, people park outside your driveway. I was brought up in FH and believe it or not do hold it dearly to my heart but that's only because I can remember what it used to be like. Unless you have completely fallen in love with the area I wouldn't buy here money is best spent elsewhere.....don't get me started on the schools and the area of Catford!....mind you I am now in Beckenham which has it's good & bad parts but there is a lot more places to go & schools are nicer.

FH Kid said...

sorry I meant the guy who was stabbed on Cranston Road not shot.

Matt said...

Anyone know what's going on with this now with recent talk about Punch Taverns in the news?

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