Monday, July 27, 2015
Catford Constitutional Club
I finally made it down last week to the Catford Constitutional Club, the pub in what was once the Conservative Club. The decor has a shabby period charm, rather like it was an abandoned outpost of a once powerful political party (OK they still run the country, but they have little presence in Lewisham). A good place to eat, drink and put the world to rights, and the pub also hosts various comedy, quiz , film and music nights.
Last Wednesday I was pleased to stumble across a room upstairs full of people playing the ukulele - Catford Charity Strummers seemingly surfing the South London uke wave that also includes Brockley Ukulele Group, Dulwich Ukulele Club, PLUC (People of Lewisham Ukulele Club) and Goldsmiths Ukulele Society.
The pub is run by Antic, who for a while ran the nearby Catford Bridge Tavern ( (formerly the Copperfield/Railway Tavern) that was seriously damaged in a fire earlier this year. I gather the wooden bar in the Constitutional may have made its way from the CBT.
Unfortunately the current pub tenancy only runs until October 2016, with the building itself (one of Catford's oldest) threatened by redevelopment plans for the area. With a question mark hanging over whether the Catford Bridge Tavern will ever reopen, the area can ill afford to lose another popular pub. There is a petition calling on Lewisham Council/Catford Regeneration Partnership to extend the tenancy. It says: 'The CCC building is part of planned re-development of the Catford Centre/Thomas Lane. The CCC strongly supports efforts to regenerate the heart of Catford however we feel this should not come at the expense of one of its most historic buildings or a pub that is fast becoming considered a community asset as was its predecessor the Catford Bridge Tavern'.