The Magdala Tavern

Under Ken Wood

Neil Titley has kindly written a history of the Magdala for the Friends of the Magdala. Full of humour and ribald tales, it will be serialised here over the next few days and weeks.

We sincerely hope you enjoy it!
Click on the menu above, or start here:


[If you would like to read more of Neil Titley’s writings, why not try his travel-blog ‘Cider with Bosie’ about his world travels with his one-man about Oscar Wilde.]


Many thanks to everyone who responded. Here are just a selection.

 The Camden New Journal: ‘This brilliant recounting of the people who made it what it is shows just what an important institution the Magdala has been for NW3 and beyond.’

 From Paul Styles: ‘Many thanks for the Magdala essay, it brings back so much. I keep re-reading it for the nostalgia.’

From David and Nikki Harris: ‘I have been searching for three years to find a home like the Magdala. Summed it up perfectly here. It was more than a place, more than the history, more than a lovingly cantankerous staff, more than the assortment of oddly unique characters and dogs that frequented her doors. Much like the convergence of perfectly random elements leading to life on the planet, all of these elements created a place that was often misunderstood, always provided what was needed, and possibly never to be duplicated. I feel very fortunate that my journey afforded me the time and memories in the Magdala that I will carry with me to the end.’ [From Coral Braniff (staff member): ‘Cantankerous staff???’]  / 

‘Loved the series. We will always cherish the memories we have of the Magdala and all the great friendships she provided.’

 From George Vass: ‘Thanks. I read it with great interest and had a good old giggle too – so very sad the pub has gone, still very much miss all the old characters.’

 From Carmela Centro: ‘Compulsive, extremely interesting reading.  My expectations fully rewarded.’

 From Dave McKay: ‘The blog is terrific.’

From Elaine Jacobs: ‘A good read, thanks.’

From Richard Fitzwilliams: ‘I much enjoyed reading the well-illustrated piece on Hampstead and its well-known inhabitants and colourful history.’

From Jim Boylan: ‘I’ve had a look at the blog – it’s great!’

From Emma Goldman: ‘I absolutely love it!!! It is so well written and entertaining and alive. It is lovely, funny, sad and moving. A wonderful piece.’

From Bob Bruce: ‘Thanks for posting this.’ / ‘I’ve enjoyed the series so much. Many thanks for the memories.’

From Kate Bradbury: ‘I am keeping up with your blog and finding it very entertaining.’

From Frank Connor: ‘”I don’t mind doing any job as long as it doesn’t require sobriety.” Are you putting this all together into a book? I hope so.’ / ‘Great stuff!’

 From Joost Jounker: ‘Greatly enjoying the Magdala chronicles. How come a pub like that can disappear?’

From Johnny Mohun: ‘Just wanted to say that I’m really enjoying the history of the Magdala. I didn’t drink in there for long, but I met some characters in there that I still talk about to this day!’

From John Dowie: ‘Great work.’

From Elizabeth Blanchet: ‘I met wonderful people there and spent hilarious nights! The Magdala will stay in my memory for ever!’

From Ken Avis and Annie Scott: ‘Great articles and fond memories!!’ / ‘Great police stories. Love the one the about the drug dealer throwing his stash from the window that was blown back!!!’ / ‘Great reading with laughs and memories that will always last!! Thank you to all concerned and named in this great blog!!’

From Dave Bookless: ‘These writings about the demise of a great Hampstead pub deserve to shared and read worldwide.’

From Jenny Trapp: ‘Wonderful memories. Thank you for bringing so many characters back to life, making us laugh and for dedicating it to Brendan, the big chief or great big mincer depending on the mood!’

The Facebook Blogs have been viewed in Great Britain, the USA, Ireland, Cyprus, Spain, France, Armenia, Greece, Laos, Australia, Austria, Serbia, Germany, the UAE and Russia.