The George Inn, Southwark

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The George Inn
The George Inn 1.jpg
Former names
  • Gorge
  • George and Dragon
Alternative namesThe George
General information
TypePublic house
AddressBorough High Street
London, SE1
United Kingdom
Coordinates51°30′15″N 0°05′24″W / 51.504182°N 0.090021°W / 51.504182; -0.090021Coordinates: 51°30′15″N 0°05′24″W / 51.504182°N 0.090021°W / 51.504182; -0.090021
Current tenantsTenanted by brewery
OwnerNational Trust
Technical details
Structural systempartly timber framed

The George or George Inn is a public house established in the medieval period on Borough High Street in Southwark, London, owned and leased by the National Trust. It is located about 250 metres (820 ft) from the south side of the River Thames near London Bridge and is the only surviving galleried London coaching inn.[1]


It was formerly known as the George and Dragon, named after the legend of Saint George and the Dragon. There were many such inns in this part of London. Probably the most famous was The Tabard where, in 1388, Chaucer began The Canterbury Tales. In 1677 the George was rebuilt after a serious fire that destroyed most of medieval Southwark.[2] The Tabard was also rebuilt after the same fire, but was demolished in the late nineteenth century.

It is known that galleried inns were used for Elizabethan theatrical productions (Inn-yard theatre).

Later, the Great Northern Railway used the George as a depot and pulled down two of its fronts to build warehousing. Now just the south face remains.

The George was one of the many famous coaching inns in the days of Charles Dickens. Dickens in fact visited the George and referred to it in both Little Dorrit and Our Mutual Friend.


The building is partly timber framed.[3] The ground floor is divided into a number of connected bars. The Parliament Bar used to be a waiting room for passengers on coaches. The Middle Bar was the Coffee Room, which was frequented by Charles Dickens. The bedrooms, now a restaurant, were upstairs in the galleried part of the building.

It is the only surviving galleried coaching inn in London. The White Hart was immediately to the north but was demolished in the nineteenth century, as was The Tabard immediately to the south (now Talbot Yard). The building is listed Grade I on the National Heritage List for England, and is listed in CAMRA's National Inventory of Historic Pub Interiors.[4]

Contemporary Literature[edit]

The beer writer Pete Brown explores the history of the pub in his book Shakespeare's Local, providing information about the pub and the surrounding area.



  1. ^ "George Inn". Archived from the original on 24 September 2014. Retrieved 6 December 2016.
  2. ^ "Tales from a London Barstool: A Review of Pete Brown's".
  3. ^ Historic England, "The George Inn (1378357)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 2 March 2020
  4. ^ Brandwood & Jephcote, Geoff & Jane (July 2008). London Heritage Pubs – An Inside Story. CAMRA (Campaign For Real Ale) Books. ISBN 978-1-85249-247-2.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]