The Windmill, Brixton

Coordinates: 51°27′14″N 0°07′19″W / 51.45383°N 0.12191°W / 51.45383; -0.12191
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The Windmill
The Windmill
LocationBrixton, London, England
Coordinates51°27′14″N 0°07′19″W / 51.45383°N 0.12191°W / 51.45383; -0.12191

The Windmill is a pub and live music venue in Brixton, London, England, with a reputation for championing new music.[1][2] It was voted the third best music venue in London, in a 2012 poll in Time Out magazine,[2] and #7 by The Guardian in 2008,[3] and has been described as "one of the top-10 music venues in the U.K.".[4]


The pub was built in 1971 for the adjacent Blenheim Gardens housing estate and named after the neighbouring heritage site of the only lasting (and working) windmill (aka Ashby's Mill) in the London area. It went through various phases of being a bar that attracted locals, bikers, and the Irish community; by the end of the 1990s, it was hosting DJs, poets and the occasional live bands.[5] Around 2002, the Windmill shifted focus onto live music. Early gigs included a semi-secret double bill of Calexico and Kurt Wagner (of Lambchop) followed by a gig by The's, just after they had appeared as the house band in Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill: Volume 2.[5] A Rottweiler dog living on the roof of the venue (known as "Roof Dog") became the Windmill's mascot, until its death in August 2015.[6]

Bands to have played gigs at The Windmill include: …And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead,[5] Bloc Party,[3] Caitlin Rose,[5] The Crimea,[3] Damo Suzuki,[7] Guillemots,[3] Hot Chip,[1] Los Campesinos,[3] Scritti Politti,[5] Sorry,[8] Stereolab,[5] and The Vaccines.[5][6] In recent years, the venue has been connected with a resurgence of the South London guitar rock scene, due to frequent shows there by bands such as Black Country, New Road, Squid, the Fat White Family, and Black Midi, the latter being a resident act from 2018 onwards.[9][10]


  1. ^ a b Taylor, Alexis (23 February 2008). "Insider's guide to London". The Guardian. Retrieved 18 July 2008.
  2. ^ a b "The best music venues in London: the full list". Time Out London. 26 March 2012. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d e "10 top live music venues in London". The Guardian. 3 April 2008. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
  4. ^ Frommer's England 2011: with Wales. Darwin Porter. 2011. p. 223. ISBN 9780470641767. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "The Windmill, Brixton". 5 May 2011. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
  6. ^ a b "Indie band The Vaccines lead tributes to 'Roof Dog' who became unlikely mascot for Brixton pub". Evening Standard. 4 August 2015. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
  7. ^ "Damo Suzuki - review". The Guardian. 18 February 2014. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
  8. ^ "Sorry announce new live album to raise money for the Brixton Windmill". NME. 5 February 2021. Retrieved 5 February 2021.
  9. ^ Read, Kieran (23 June 2020). "'There's a complete fearlessness to them': Inside the raucous new south London guitar scene". The Independent. Retrieved 2 July 2022.
  10. ^ lloydbolton52 (1 February 2023). "Lou Smith: "There's something about the unfurling of potential"". Retrieved 29 November 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)

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