Jack Straw's Castle, Hampstead

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Jack Straw's Castle, Hampstead

Jack Straw's Castle is a Grade II listed building[1] and former public house in Hampstead, north-west London, England.


The site is named after the rebel leader Jack Straw, who led the Peasants' Revolt in 1381 and who is said to have taken refuge on the site until he was caught and executed.[2] A pub has existed here since at at least the early 18th century. The building was altered in the early 19th century.[1]

Charles Dickens was known to visit the pub, describing it as a place where he could get "a red-hot chop for dinner, and a glass of good wine".[3] William Makepeace Thackeray and Wilkie Collins.[2] It was the final residence of the music hall singer Alec Hurley, who died there in 1913.[4] The building was badly damaged in The Blitz during World War II.[5]

The current building was designed by the architect Raymond Erith and dates to 1964;[2] Speaking at Erith's memorial service in 1974, the poet laureate Sir John Betjeman called the building "true Middlesex" and "a delight".[6]

The current building now contains a number of luxury apartments and gymnasium.[6]

In fiction[edit]

In 1897, Bram Stoker's epistolary novel, Dracula, Dr. Abraham Van Helsing invited Dr. John Seward to eat at Jack Straw's Castle before spending the night at Church of Saint Marys graveyard to explore if Lucy Westenra became or not a vampire.



  1. ^ a b Historic England, "Jack Straw's Castle (1113189)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 27 June 2017
  2. ^ a b c Weinreb et al. 2008, p. 440.
  3. ^ Bard 2015, p. 12.
  4. ^ "Alec Hurley Dead". Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser. 8 December 1913. p. 10.
  5. ^ Macksey, Serena (2 June 1995). "Where shall we meet? Jack Straw's Castle, NW3". The Independent. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  6. ^ a b "A neglected architect who shunned concrete". Camden New Journal. 11 November 2004.


  • Bard, Robert (2015). Hampstead & Highgate Through Time. Amberley Publishing Limited. ISBN 978-1-445-63741-9.
  • Weinreb, Ben; Hibbert, Christopher; Keay, Julia; Keay, John (2008). The London Encyclopedia. Macmillan. ISBN 978-1-4050-4924-5.

Coordinates: 51°33′46″N 0°10′48″W / 51.56266°N 0.18004°W / 51.56266; -0.18004