The Only Running Footman

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The Only Running Footman

The Only Running Footman is a public house in Charles Street, Mayfair which is long famous for its sign, which used to read, in full, I am the only Running Footman. At 24 characters, this was the longest pub name in London until modern pubs were created with fanciful names such as The Ferret and Firkin in the Balloon up the Creek.[1]

Footmen were originally employed to run ahead of a carriage to ensure the way was clear. As roads got better and clearer the demand for their services fell away and many were re-employed as household servants. However one more enterprising footman bought the tavern, then called the Running Horse, and renamed it after himself.[2]


  1. ^ Russell Ash (2009), "British pubs with the longest names", Top 10 of Britain, Hachette, ISBN 9780600622512
  2. ^ "The story behind one London pub – The Only Running Footman". Metro. Retrieved 29 March 2018.