Now reduced to a concrete shell, the former George pub on the corner of Effra Parade and Railton Road, Brixton has been known under various names in the past thirty years, including the Harmony Bar and Mingles.
Located at 99-105 Effra Parade, the former Victorian pub has been rebuilt, burnt down, rebuilt and is now about to be turned into upmarket apartments and shop units.
This view from 1921 shows the original solid Victorian pub – note the motorcycle and side car pootling down Railton Road.
The pub was rebuilt in the 1930s, but was destroyed during the 1981 Brixton riots with the South London Press reporting that, ‘The burning of the George pub in Railton Road was undoubtedly an act of revenge for years of racial discrimination.”
Public bar, 1975.
The pub already had a racist reputation by the 1960s, with the landlord attracting further anger from the local community when he banned gays in 1975 (Railton Road was home to the The Brixton Fairies and the South London Gay Community Centre in the mid-1970s).
Games Room of The George. No blacks or gays allowed.
The pub was again rebuilt in the 1980s, changing its name to Mingles.
After various planning applications were turned down, work is now underway to create this four story residential building with shop units on the ground floor. There is no provision for licensed premises.
A poster on urban75 adds more detail to the artist’s impression:
That’s the Railton Road elevation. Retail unit on the corner, which also has access to the whole basement. Second retail unit on the right, with residential entrance between the two. Four 1-bed, two-2 bed and one 3-bed flats but they’re far from what I’d call “luxury”. “Pokey” is more accurate.
Read more about the history of this pub and discuss the current development here.