These Folks In Nunhead Took Control Of Their Local Pub. See What Happened Next

The Ivy House was saved by local residents and became London's first co-op pub
Phot by Ewan Munro (

The Ivy House is a little pub with a big story to tell. This is a place that has been right at the heart of the Nunhead community in South-East London since its opening in the 1930s. A boozer with an impressive music heritage, its modest stage has hosted the likes of Joe Strummer, Jeff Beck and Elvis Costello.

Elvis Costello by Brett Jordan / CC BY

It even managed to survive the bombs of World War II – taking in local homeless families who had lost their houses in the blitz.

But then things went sour. In 2012 the pub was sold to local property developers and the tenant landlords were given all of 5 days notice to quit before the places was closed for good. That was when a group of local residents decided that they weren’t going to let their beloved boozer close without a fight.

They managed to raise £1million to buy the place back from the developers, refurbish it and bring it into community ownership for the first time.

The pub is now thriving again – and definitely worth your visit. A wonderful, cosy place for a pint or two… there’s a reason why it gets almost 5 star ratings in pretty much every guide and review site going. It’s also back to hosting regular live music, there’s a great selection of locally-sourced drinks and food available every evening and weekend.

The prices are pretty reasonable too – and every penny you spend at the Ivy House is reinvested for the benefit of the local community.


Photo credits: Photo by Ewan Munro / CC BY

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