The Old Ship

The Old Ship

Traditional style pub in the East End of London

Average Reviews

About

If you're cruising the East End for a pub with more sass than a drag queen on karaoke night, The Old Ship in Limehouse is your new boozy BFF. This Grade II listed stunner oozes nautical charm with exposed beams, creaky floorboards, and enough porthole windows to make you feel like you're sailing the Thames on gin fumes. But don't be fooled by the historic digs; this ain't your grandpa's dusty alehouse.

The Ship's crew is as diverse and welcoming as a Soho Pride parade. Bar staff sling glitter-infused cocktails with knowing winks, and the clientele is a glorious mishmash of East End locals, arty types, and fabulous LGBTQ+ peeps from all corners of London. Think leather chaps clinking with vintage teacups, and Bowie singalongs blending with conversations in a dozen different languages. It's the kind of place where everyone feels like they belong, even if you just stumbled in for a solo Sunday roast (which, FYI, is legendary, with Yorkshire puds the size of your head).

Speaking of food, The Ship's menu is a gastropub dream come true. Think elevated pub classics with a modern twist – think chorizo scotch eggs with sriracha mayo, or fish and chips with tempura batter and mushy peas spiked with mint. And let's not forget the bottomless brunches that fuel Limehouse gossip sessions every Saturday. Think bottomless Bloody Marys, avocado toast piled high enough to block the Shard, and enough bacon to make even the most devout vegan reconsider their life choices.

But ultimately, The Old Ship is more than just a great pub (although, let's be real, that's reason enough to visit). It's a vibe, a sanctuary, a place where you can be whoever you damn well please and raise a glass to the glorious technicolor tapestry of life. So next time you're in the East End, skip the overpriced rooftop bars and dive into the boozy embrace of The Old Ship. You might just find your new favorite port in this LGBTQ+ storm. Just remember, darlings, it's always happy hour at The Ship, so let your freak flag fly and prepare to be swept away by the tide of good times. Cheers!

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Reviews

The Old Ship
3.9
Based on 657 reviews
D CC
16:39 26 May 24
Brilliant showsThe best - Snow White trash - Dave Lynn - Mrs Moore - update 2024 went to see snow white trash again never failsTo entertain, to us she’s the best act around today - she looked great and sounded fantastic usual, stylish and sexy looking great voice and great tunes
Justin Harris
22:52 25 May 24
The app showed happy hour pints. The rude barmaid claimed this was for older people. The owner said the offer should’ve been removed. Oddly the cabaret acts were updated on the app so why not other information? Didn’t like the attitude or misinformation. Prefer to avoid this place.
Rafif K
00:45 18 May 24
Walked into the bar on a Thursday afternoon for drinks before a show nearby. There were 4 of us and only two ordered and I guess that was enough for the bar lady to very publicly tell us and other visitors to leave if not all people in a group ordered. Pretty weird considering if the three groups she said that too actually left, there will only be one table with customers remaining.The way she talked to us and looked at us was also weird and rude, you can tell she didn’t want us there in the first place.Our friends finished their drinks within 5-10 minutes after being told to leave if we don’t order more drinks. Whole visit was more or less 20 minutes long, but we’re absolutely, most definitely never returning to this pub again.
seth bradley
08:11 07 May 24
Fantastic traditional pub located within a stones throw from Limehouse station. I had a very well kept pint of Timothy Taylors Landlord ale at a reasonable price. A diverse crowd at my time of visit. Lots of history to take in . Comfortable and authentic. A must visit if you're in the area
John Adam Breslin
19:36 11 Apr 24
Arrived at 3pm on a sunny Sunday with my sleeping daughter in a buggy. Was having a look for the group I was meeting there but was promptly asked to leave because of the buggy. Then sat outside for a while and had a couple of expensive pints of bubbly Guinness.
Henry Spurgeon
23:08 05 Apr 24
Great little pub. It is a fascinating mix of folk here, but a very welcoming atmosphere. The Guinness is good and the music was great. It seems they have a few events on here, including a quiz night and drag events, which look fun.Gents toilets needed a decent clean, but this pub does exactly what you need it to!
Alex T Lucian (Alex T Lucian)
19:02 21 Feb 24
Excellent. Very nice pub. I recommend 👌😊
Clive Dove-Dixon
20:26 18 Feb 24
I really enjoyed the atmosphere in this pub. Fun and friendly. My only issue is the cleanliness - the carpet is so disgusting that your feet stick to it. The chairs have equally disgusting worn out cushions. Why can’t they see this and sort it out?
Kevin Rye
18:47 19 Jan 24
I like this place. It's not fancy, amazing beer, superb snacks or a menu to die for. It's just a nice old fashioned, warm and cosy boozer with some beer and crisps, cheese rolls, nice people in it and good people running it. Oh, and if you leave your bag there like I did, they keep it safe until you turn up like an idiot to collect it. Great place. Thanks!
James Rowan
23:29 05 Jan 24
Walked into this bar with no expectation. And very randomly. Have never felt so welcomed in my life.Caroline and carley are incredible, again, the most welcomed I have ever felt.Could not recommend here enough.A rare, beautiful gem
Elli Thomas
10:46 03 Oct 23
One of the best proper boozers in East london. Very busy during drag nights!! They also hire out the very cosy back room for events for no extra charge
D CC
16:49 30 Sep 23
Brilliant showsThe best - Snow White trash - Dave Lynn - Mrs Moore
Jonathan A
00:21 24 Sep 23
Gold!! Whatever time of day you visit this incredible establishment you will be received with a smile, warm welcome and an incredible choice of beverages, never mind the atmosphere inside or out. The evolving beautiful crowd that call it home are the ultimate watch and company. It’s a shining light of E14. The show we saw tonight will stay in memoriam -thank you. Will return soon. X
Louis Wilkinson
12:54 15 Sep 23
Lovely and proper east end boozer. Recommend this healthy option of a guiness with a cheese roll, filled with scratchings.Magic.
London Pub Map
19:16 04 Sep 23
🚇Limehouse🍺 £5.70 Pravha❤️ A welcoming East End local that knows how to put on a show..The Old Ship is located on the corner of a picturesque Georgian square in Limehouse. The nearest Tube is Limehouse DLR..This pub was built in 1851 and has a beautiful stock brick and green tiled exterior. If you look above the pubs hanging sign you will see the original Watney Combe Reid roundel. Above the pubs entrance is a rainbow flag as this pub is popular with the LGBTQ community..This pub is divided in to three sections. At the front is the main bar, then a smaller secondary room offers a more intimate setting. Finally, at the back, there's a games room complete with a pool table. The decor here is modern and functional. The walls are papered in a deep red patterned wallpaper with T&G cashmere coloured panels below. Around the walls are lots of pictures of loyal locals and previous events put on by the pub. The servery is a good size and is clad in varnished brickwork. To the right is a DJ booth and small stage for hosting entertainment..The beer selection was straightforward and included two cask ales. We decided on pints of Pravha, an excellent pint which cost just south of six quid. The food offering here is filled rolls, check behind the counter to see the variety of choices available..The atmosphere and ambiance around this place is great, there is a warm and friendly feel here which made settling in easy. We got talking to a couple of lovely local ladies who were sisters and have lived in the area all their lives. They were telling us about the area and how this pocket of the East End has changed. This pub offers loads of entertainment, there are regular DJ and Drag Cabaret nights put on throughout the month. If you fancy testing your general knowledge, then come on down to the Quiz Night on a Wednesday. The service here was efficient and gracious..The @oldshipe14 was a pleasant visit and we loved listening to the local ladies about times gone by. This pub welcomes one and all and is a great place to spend time in. This is another one of Limehouse’s hidden gems..ℹ️ Info correct on visiting 28.05.23
Jon Forster
13:03 12 Aug 23
Went in for a few pints and an excellent beef sandwich after a walk about after Mile End parkrun. Lovely proper pub.
Lauren Hutchinson
19:08 11 Aug 23
The Old Ship is always a great night out. I would definitely recommend going on a night when there is an act. The bar staff are attentive and the locals are great. You will leave with friends.
Paul Hansell
21:16 01 Jul 23
I absolutely love this place and happy to travel from Norfolk to visit. John and his Staff are lovely every time and they have such great drag acts at the weekend.Such a mixed crowd who accept and welcome everyone.Just wish I could visit more often
Elizabeth Steele
23:54 19 Jun 23
Lovely little pub, I love popping in here on a Friday or Saturday night. Never had an issue, bar staff have always been lovely, same goes for the door staff. Atmosphere is always fantastic, I find the other patrons are decent, never had or seen an issue, everyones friendly on my experience. Happy, relaxed. Music is good. Prices are average.Only problem is that it gets rammed on the weekend haha.Only 1 female toilet, but it's always been clean whenever I've been there.
M k
23:17 07 Jun 23
Nice pub- does what it says on tin. However watched the owner make someone cry because she wanted to leave early. Genuinely seems to have attitude with alot of people. Plus my ex likes here so defo star dropped
marianafeijo
19:00 05 Jun 23
Was there today with a friend. We got a couple of drinks and some crisps and sat outside. It got too cold to sit outside so we decided to go inside, while he finished his drink and kept chatting even after he finished his drink, until the owner who was behind the bar shouted at us that we had to leave if we weren’t getting another drink. We might have gotten another drink but the way he shouted at us, meant that we just left and won’t be coming back, even though we have enjoyed time there many times before. The place wasn’t even busy, which would have meant our table could be used by someone else, but even if it were this was no way to treat paying costumers (and would be no way to treat anyone even if they hadn’t spent money). We’ve come to expect more from queer spaces, and this does mean we will not be returning, even though it is one of my friend’s locals.
Gareth Rhys
08:41 04 May 23
Honestly the best gay pub in East London. Full of all flavours of queer. Totally unpretentious vibe and is an unreconstructed gay pub in the best way possible. The back room is great for a chill and a sit down but they play bangers in the front bar if you fancy a wee dance. I wish I had found this place earlier, can't recommend more highly.
Robert Grosvenor
19:28 15 Apr 23
The best British pub going in east London, the bar staff are very welcoming and friendly, the staff are so nice! They make your day with their smile and a chat, definitely recommend 😀
Adrian Kilshaw
22:22 29 Mar 23
Great pub, LGBT+ at heart yet this doesn't define it's hospitality as all welcome and some very varied characters to meet. The drag shows or out of this world funny and entertaining.
Jorge Garcia Rodriguez
15:31 14 Mar 23
This is a mythical heartwarming cozy LGBTQI+ pub and we should look after it. Performers and staff contribute to a great, chilled and familiar community driven atmosphere.
Kaye Ratia
16:47 07 Mar 23
Old fashioned gay bar with a very relaxed atmosphere.
Abbie Solly
14:39 24 Feb 23
If i could give this place no stars, I would! Absolutely disgusting behaviour from both the male and female bar staff who were definitely on drugs throughout their shift. Me and friends who are a mixed group of boys and girls and are all obviously LGBTQ+ thought we would head to the ship as it’s meant to be “LGBTQ+ Friendly” well not at all was they friendly and for no apparent reason. We weren’t drunk because we had just come from bingo. The governor was an awful man who told one of the boys we was with that all us girls had to leave the pub, with no real reason and his tone was so aggressive, he shouldn’t be running a pub. I’m actually embarrassed to think we are part of the same community as them three workers. Hopefully they can learn some manners and maybe lay off the D**Gs, it may better them as people.
Derek H
18:40 23 Feb 23
Real old fashioned, friendly, local corner pub with pleasantly surprising and idiosyncratic additional decor by the landlord who has a taste for brightly coloured helium party balloons in many different shapes of animals etc. Daytime is quiet and mainly locals having a quiet drink. Evening is busier with a more mixed clientele, locals and a few of the gay weekend clientele when the Old Ship is transformed amidst multi coloured glitter curtains into a Glam Drag Show venue.
Tallulah Grace
23:11 14 Feb 23
I’m well aware of the old ship’s penchant for a great queer night, but it’s suitability as a haunt for a pint can’t be overlooked. Local and classic london, you’ll find regulars and outsiders here - but fair warning, it was theirs first and you should remember you’re a visiting party. What works so well and keeps it going is understanding who created those spaces!
Gabriel Soto
22:28 07 Feb 23
Really nice place for a beer on a Sunday night. Cool drag performances also.
Michelle Maher King
12:24 30 Jan 23
such an eccentric pub, we were visiting from Ireland but felt like regulars by the end of the night. Great spot 😊
Mark T
01:16 13 Jan 23
Cool little old pub down a side street.
Pager
23:08 05 Jan 23
I loved this place. It’s a very cosy and small local LGBTQ+ friendly bar. I feel so safe being there.
Roy Tan
17:54 18 Dec 22
A local gay bar in Limehouse. We went there during snowfalls in London. The bar is small and cozy but there is no atmosphere that night. There were only 10 customers including us. We will go back to check it out again.
Tara Wilkinson
22:19 01 Nov 22
Great pub, fab beer and atmosphere. Very friendly and good fun!
Susan Goodwin
07:48 29 Oct 22
Please remember how you won equality and freedom of expression. Through protest. We are intersectional people of all kinds. Including protesters.
Claire Brook
21:51 28 Oct 22
Sad to hear a friend of mine was asked to leave for taking part in a peaceful protest to save our future! Protest is essential to a democratic society and we currently have so much that needs to change. I hope you will reconsider how you treat people who are working hard to safeguard your future!
Sean Irish
21:26 28 Oct 22
Lovely little pub great staff friendly venue.Sadly let down by a sad and angry owner who forgets his buissness and rights were won though direct action. He aggressively grab my drink and put it behind the bar. And grab my belonging and starts aggressively encouraging me out the door. His staff were shocked the bouncer was shocked.Been in their two nights in a row. No issue yesterday. Lovely chats people noticed my hi vis and mega phone (drop in on my way back to were I'm staying) asking about the protests showing support and solidarity buying me drinks some even left wearing badges.Of coarse there are negatives that come along with protesting and I'm happy to converse on this but sadly that's how things change as long as you have a blue light policy so you move for emergency vehicles and stick to non violent principles.Its really disappointing when a LGBTQIA+ venue with a protest flag outside the pride flag forgets its history queer existence is resistance.
Edward Venni
06:24 17 Sep 22
Great little pub and very friendly. Was made to feel very welcome. Had a great night and will be back again
Noel McGarrell
08:00 02 Sep 22
My new favorite gay bar in East London! Great community feel and a drag show to tip it off.
Steven Gurney
15:40 16 Jul 22
Good pub with some nice beer selections
chris Simpson
13:17 02 Jul 22
Great little pub. Nice and friendly welcoming. Good choice of beers. Definitely be back
Bhadya Dias
12:51 26 Jun 22
Nice little pub with good atmosphere. Dronks were reasonably priced. Good customer service.
Robert Grosvenor
07:52 25 Jun 22
Great little pub in a nice area close to Limehouse station. Great service and great atmosphere:)
Kenneth Bartle
14:45 26 May 22
A comfortable and welcoming east end pub with a twist...when you enter this pub it will give you the feeling Ron and Reg Kray could have drunk is this pub many years ago.The twist is the weekend entertainment, you have a host of real live and in ya face drag queens. Yes that's right, drag queens and you really should go and visit...I'm sure it will be as surprising and entertaining night.
Brian Crowley
22:39 15 May 22
What a great gay bar tucked into London’s East End. We were here on a Sunday night and there was a fantastic drag show with a friendly, local crowd. It reminded me of my home gay bar. Check this place out, it’s a gem!
Stephen House
07:57 14 May 22
Great little pub LGBT+ and drag shows. Amazing night out.Only problem is it is a small pub so can be a bit crowded so if your claustrophobic might not be for you.
Anthony Harrison
08:19 13 Mar 22
Fantastic night, great pub lovely staff and everyone so friendly. Live singer tonight great night.
Eastend Swede
18:20 08 Mar 22
Had a long walk around town and then one of my friends said we should try it out. This is now one of my favourite pubs in London. ❤️
Theboyz London
08:28 21 Feb 22
Great traditional pub with regular cabaret. Very busy, could do with an extra pair of hands, but the staff did their best. Great night out
Alex Scannapieco
09:07 18 Feb 22
Nice and cozy place, we've had couple of beers, Guinness and Camden hells and we were paying less then 10 quid.... They have got some snacks and roolls that you can get.Not sure if they do kitchen, defenetly on Sunday.
Christopher Mills
10:05 24 Jan 22
No frills old style pub. Welcoming staff. LGBTQIA friendly.
Chris Ford
13:46 15 Jan 22
Always enjoyed the pub over the years but the owner is a miserable old man who honestly doesn't deserve the custom started shouting at me over nothing as we were leaving performing to his audience. Bar staff always polite but we won't be back not that he cares I'm sure! Meant to be LGBT friendly how about trying to be friendly in general !
Josh L
17:09 09 Jan 22
Quite possibly one of the best LGBT+ venues around. There’s a brilliant selection of reasonably priced drinks and the staff are all incredibly friendly a welcome.
nino rocha
00:25 05 Jan 22
I absolutely ❤️ The Old Ship! I've been a kind of regular punter since the summer of 2007! That's over 14 years, folks! And I live about 3 miles away! It's got an air of a good, old, local boozer with the added benefit of being LGBTQI+ more than friendly. There are midweek quiz nights and cabaret over the weekends. There's a small beer garden-cum-smoking area, the staff are lovely, the atmosphere welcoming and drinks fairly priced. Wish them longevity and joy for us all for years to come.
William Delaney
07:33 24 Dec 21
Great atmosphere! A unique pub which is very well run with a friendly mix of customers.
Jason uptfitness
11:22 11 Dec 21
Fantastic local pub, friendly staff and nice atmosphere.definitely going back again.
Daisy Hughes
01:30 28 Nov 21
Best pub in London. Everyone so friendly. The owner John has created a real vibe. From a chilled pint with your mates to your best Saturday night out this is your place to go. You won’t regret.
Stina Jonsson
10:45 11 Oct 21
A real local pub where everybody knows everybody. Great for after-playing-football hangs.
wayne horridge
16:07 08 Oct 21
Always a fun night at The Old Ship on a Saturday and Sunday night for Drag shows! Reasonable priced drinks and friendly staff! Keep up the good work John and Team ❤️
Soraia Turé
22:37 02 Oct 21
Ruby was amazing really zing drag acts. Strongly recommend
Rickie McDonagh
17:57 25 Sep 21
The bartender with the shaven head is really nice and will treat you very well
Zoe Hallsworth
20:05 11 Sep 21
Best pub in East London! It's a proper pub, with decently priced drinks and fabulous staff. Sometimes you'll find hilarious drag shows on, or just fun and slightly cheesy music 😊 absolute hidden gem of an establishment
Nick Allcock
07:29 10 Sep 21
Brilliant local corner House pub in Stepney. Small, welcoming, great beer and a fantastic bar person. If staying in Limehouse, look this pub up and visit.
Lewis (JinsLive)
22:46 06 Sep 21
Family run pub. Lovely staff and great atmosphere.
Jason Roberts
21:28 03 Aug 21
Really nice staff good service and great beer at reasonable prices
Julie Taylor
19:59 03 Aug 21
A lovely old style British pub where the staff are friendly and provide an excellent service. Love this traditional British pub, set in a lovely east end square
steve wards
00:14 21 Jul 21
All ways a nice and friendly pub with 😎
Lou Collects Coins
15:18 01 Jul 21
Puka a nice and friendly boozer
Paul A
18:56 20 Jun 21
First time there on a Saturday, and what a great place to go, chill and have a laugh. Bar staff were brilliant and there was a really friendly atmosphere!
Harrison Wena
12:57 05 Jun 21
Awesome prices! Really nice staff. Definitely coming back
Niall Gavigan
17:22 22 May 21
Like a box of chocolates.... You never know what you're gonna get.
Schaefer Christman
19:27 13 Feb 21
WHat can i say about the place ... its our local pub and we love it. The reasons for that oyu might ask? Simply its like havinga beer at your place , people are so nice , prices are reasonable and they havea drag show once a week ( I believe on the weekends) Everything was great.
The H.
16:17 12 Dec 20
If you are not worried about catching Covid 19, this is the pub for you! They have not created a safe environment for their customers.A brief and...
David Turner
12:49 30 Oct 20
Always love coming here with my girlfriend. Brilliant staff, friendly atmosphere and good beer. Going tonight first time in about 7 months
Sophie Howarth
17:05 16 Sep 20
Lovely little local institution of a pub. A few real ales as well as lots of other options. Cabaret stage is proper and authentic and great fun, with lots of touring acts, and the people are nice, and mostly locals it seems
Jeremy Gordon
18:50 14 Sep 20
Great pub and very welcoming to LGBT people! Great job on that! The drinks were fairly priced, they have a good selection of drinks and great bar games also. I recommend this place if you want to have a fun and chill night.
Adam Steinbeck
09:17 05 Sep 20
Charming old school bar catering for the lovely LGBT crowd. Friendly, attentive staff and laid back crowd. Outdoor seating dominated by smokers generally.
Curly Hair
06:10 05 Jul 19
Perfect little pub, never any trouble. The owner is a very well organized man. The acts are out standing! Great atmosphere especially a weekend and a sunday! If you want a right giggle with your mates this is the place to come!!
Dovid T.
04:47 30 Nov 18
Went to this pub as they allow dogs and we have a brand new pup so did not want to leave the new pup at home. We were meeting two very good friends and...
John L.
08:12 25 Jan 16
WHat can i say about the place ... its our local pub and we love it. The reasons for that oyu might ask?????Simply its like havinga beer at your place ,...
Dennis M.
07:43 22 Jan 16
The Old ShipThere is a poem by James Elroy Flecker that I find appropriate in summarizing my feeling of this hidden Old Ship which sails on the corner of...

The Old Ship reviews from Google Maps, Yelp and WhereIs.Gay

Last Updated

28 January 2024

Map

Today Open now UTC+1

12:00 PM - 10:00 PM
  • Monday
    12:00 PM - 10:00 PM
  • Tuesday
    12:00 PM - 11:00 PM
  • Wednesday
    12:00 PM - 12:00 AM
  • Thursday
    12:00 PM - 11:00 PM
  • Friday
    12:00 PM - 12:00 AM
  • Saturday
    12:00 PM - 12:00 AM
  • Sunday
    12:00 PM - 12:00 AM

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