Sunday, January 4, 2015

Mason's Yard

The January sales are here once more and here I am (once more) at the Cheques Tavern pondering my course through the marauding masses and wondering whether the year's excesses have added yet another inch or two to my already full waist line. This year's suit is somewhere out there within a mile of where I am quaffing...but where exactly. Another pint of Shepherd's Neame is required before braving the heaving throng. 

Now the Cheques Tavern is a perfectly reasonable pub - quite friendly though the prices inevitably reflect the neighbourhood but hey-ho. But, of course, the choice of this pub as a starting place for the day is due to the fact that it backs on to Mason's Yard. Yes - the place where Joko came together. And but fifty yards away from The Scotch at St James - where once upon a time the Fabs paid a quid for a drink.

Look at it it still a nightclub ? Who goes there now ? What on earth is that concrete monstrosity in the middle ? What did the yard look like when John L stumbled out of Indica, possibly reflecting on his statement that avant garde was French for bullshit.

The Cheques Tavern

Indica as was - wrapping paper by Macca

Ok - I'll answer my own questions. Having just typed in 'The Scotch at St James's' into the information superhighway I am informed that the place was closed for 20 years but re-opened in 2012. See previous posts on this topic with pics of renovation. The place is clearly still packing in the celebs at what looks like an uber (can't find the umlaut ..hold on, has umlaut got an umlaut ? Let it go !)  trendy place - as the kids almost certainly do not say.
But here is one of Macca in the Scotch back in Feb 1966. I wonder how much he'd have to pay for a Brandy Alexander today ?

Macca at The Scotch

The Indica to The Scotch

Leaving the warmth of the Cheques, I made way towards Jermyn Street and, as in previous years, reflected on why I can't afford a suit even when it has 75% off. But soon I was distracted again as I approached Saville Row. At last the 'renovation' of the place is complete and bratty kids with their bratty parents are encouraged to empty their wallets in exchange for bits of denim at a £100 quid a throw (now hold on there. Who am I to judge these people...didn't I once come perilously close to parting with £100 for a square inch of Kenwood carpet ? Was it only the cries of 'Daddy we're hungry' that prevented me from clicking the 'Buy it now and to hell with the kids' button.)

Should I ? Should I ? I can't resist and feeling like a bit of a freak (not having the kids with me on this occasion) I actually entered No.3. Slightly to my surprise the place was empty. I quickly made my way up two flights of stairs, thought about the camera then thought better of it. It was a very strange feeling look out from the second floor down onto Saville Row. The sweeping staircase I guess is original, some of the fire surrounds look authentic. And just inside the door is this.....

Out into glooming and secret haunts

The flame cries, 'Come!'
Happy New Year to all.