Windsor Castle pub

Recent pub writings

We have been busy with the launch of Club Soda Guide, our listings site for the best licensed venues for mindful drinkers. A post at NudgingPubs tells the story in terms of innovation for and behaviour change with pubs.

Windsor Castle pubOver at the Guide website, I put together suggestions for pub crawls in the City and Hackney in three blog posts: Shoreditch and Old Street pub crawl routes, Dalston and Stoke Newington pub crawl routes, and City of London pub crawl routes. There is still a couple of these to follow in the next few weeks.



Nudging Pubs

Nudging Pubs is the final title to a little project that Club Soda completed last year (it was called “the Dalston Burst” at the start). The final report (pdf) from the project is now out, along with a brand new website.

The aim of the project was to answer this question:

How can we encourage pubs and bars to be more welcoming to customers who want to drink less alcohol or none at all?

The report has the findings from our research and experiments, along with recommendations and key messages. And the great news is that Hackney council are funding a second year of this project, for which Club Soda has partnered with Blenheim CDP. We’ll use the Nudging Pubs website for regular updates on the project, but I’ll probably do something occasionally on this blog as well.

How many financial districts does one city need?

We talk about “The City” in London like we do about “The Wall Street” in New York when we mean the financial districts of each place. But it’s a bit more complicated than that in London.

Yes, the City is the old and traditional centre of banking and insurance in the UK. And it’s still a major location for financial firms (interestingly, even within “the square mile” there are clear subdivisions: banks on this side, insurers on that side). Canary Wharf in the old docklands, since the 1980’s, has lots of banks too, especially American investment banks.

But if you want to find hedge funds and other boutique outfits, you best head west: Mayfair and other posh bits of the West End is where they have been congregating since the noughties or so. And finally, there’s the “Silicon Roundabout”, just north of the city, where the latest breed of “fintech” start-ups live.

So – all in all we have four separate financial. districts in one city. It could be considered just a bit excessive, couldn’t it?