CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Company submits plans to cut bar space at The Good Mixer

Iconic Camden Town pub re-opened with new management earlier this year

20 July, 2018 — By Tom Foot

THE future of the famous Good Mixer in Camden Town is uncertain after plans to carve up parts of the iconic pub were lodged with the Town Hall.

The Inverness Street watering hole – a haunt of the Britpop legends of the 1990s and the late singer Amy Winehouse – recently reopened under new management after its long-standing landlords sold up in January for personal reasons.

Now the Max Barney Pub Company Ltd wants to get rid of the staff rooms upstairs and turn the upper floors into “high quality office accommodation”.

The changes would reduce the pub’s floorspace by replacing the back room with a lift and a new entrance to the building. A third floor would also be added to the corner building if the planning application is approved.

Sam Edwards, a regular who has been going to the pub since its 1990s heyday, said yesterday (Wednesday): “I love this place and I think it would be a real shame to carve it up like that. I think you’d lose the soul of the place to be honest. It would become more like a bar, I suppose, than a proper pub.”

He added: “This place is a huge part of our music history. It’s an actual landmark of Camden Town and I think it should be protected.”

The pub was central to the area’s Britpop movement of the 1990s and was a regular hangout for indie band members such as Blur and Elastica. Ms Winehouse could often be found playing pool with the regulars. Hundreds attended its final night in January and there were celebrations when it then reopened with new management in April.

Max Barney run the Containerville complex in Hackney and own other corner pub buildings in London. The company have not responded to requests for comment from the New Journal this week.

Its application says the downstairs would be maintained as a pub but the floorspace would be reduced by around a 20 per cent.

It adds: “The proposal effectively results in a ‘lock up’ style public house, which are increasingly common and have proven to operate successfully, particularly in such accessible town centre locations.”

It continues: “The loss of staff accommodation on the upper floors would not detrimentally impact the operation of a public house on this site. Furthermore, the refurbishment works are considered to improve the appearance, layout and usability of the public house…”

The council has in the past actively resisted applications that reduced pub floorspace, at venues including The Golden Lion in Royal College Street, Camden Town, and The Carpenter’s Arms in King’s Cross.

John Chapman, a blind singer from Kentish Town who performed at the pub’s closing party in January, said: “After playing the closing party and then finding out that the place would stay a pub called The Good Mixer, it was like being chucked a lifeline. Every time I am in Camden I always pop in for a pint of nostalgia. They are doing well, even serving pie and mash. Now, hearing they want to reduce the size of a very small pub, is sad. Someone out there wants the place gone. The pub will always have a special place in mine and all my friends’ hearts.”

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