"County Kilburn" Top 5 Page for this destination London Off The Beaten Path Tip by sourbugger

London Off The Beaten Path: 1,701 reviews and 3,049 photos


There are some who consider this North London Surburb to be an integral part of the emerald isle, County Kilburn is it's name.

Although smaller than it was, the Irish Population of Kilburn continue to give the place a very distinctive feel. Shopping on the high street you will find many Irish owned stores from multiples like Primark that have spread all over the UK, to Irish banks, bookmakers and tiny local shops. There are places you can buy a ticket for the Irish Lottery, eat authentic soda bread and, of course, sink some of the black stuff.

The area, whilst not 'dodgy', still has a less than savoury reputation. Some pubs such as "Father Ted's" or the upmarket gastro-pub "The Black Lion" will be a pleasure to visit. Powers bar is authentic - none of that 'oirish' shamrock crap about the place. At the other end of the scale the "The Cock" * and the "Sir Colin Campbell" should only be entered if a) you really are Irish, and hard as nails b) You do it for a macho bet or c) have a deathwish.

Still, if you havn't got time for a side trip to Ireland, Kilburn feels very much like working class area of North Dublin - probably more Irish than Ireland itself these days.

* 'The Cock' was described on one website as such : "It's not the worst pub we've ever seen, but it is one of the most depressing. Ill-kept premises and drink and a good number of shambolic and melancholic drunks all drained our will to enjoy life, let alone a pint. As you would expect in Kilburn there is a large Irish contingent, in fact the pub celebrates its famous Irish links, but really they all speak the international language of hopelessness.

clientele: Locals, Irish expats, drunks (and yes, many fulfil all three criteria)."

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Apr 3, 2006
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