Mile End Station first opened on 2nd June 1902 as part of the ‘Whitechapel and Bow’ railway. This line served as a link between the Metropolitan District Line services which had previously terminated at Whitechapel, and overground rail services that operated from Bromley, now known as Bromley By Bow. These tracks are now used by the District and Hammersmith and City Line services from the station.
The station itself was rebuilt when the Central Line arrived immediately after the Second World War. The building itself has quite a 1930s feel and reminds me of some of the suburban ones at the western ends of the District and Piccadilly Lines.
The Pub: The Victoria, 110 Grove Road, E3 5TH
I was originally intending to visit the Palm Tree, following Twitter recommendations. When I arrived there, it felt like I had accidentally crashed a private party. I was waiting for a friend so decided to leave, as it felt a little awkward. That’s when things got really surreal as one of said large group of people came out of the pub and started calling over at me to come back as I was walking off! That was all a bit too much for me on a Sunday afternoon. I instead went to The Victoria, on Grove Road, which is off Mile End Road and just under 10mins from the tube station.
The Victoria has a rather standard 1950s exterior, looking similar to small housing blocks you see throughout inner London suburbs. It has a spacious interior, including a small raised stage are where bands play, with stage lights and a disco ball. There are quite a few comfy sofas dotted around the place, which was where we gravitated towards.
The pub has table football and in their outside seating area, there is a table tennis table too. I’d say the interior veers between traditional decoration, in terms of the wooden bar, wall paper and wood panelling and ‘modern eclectic’. Interesting items on display include a boars head behind where we were sat, as well as a mannequin hula girl in a straw skirt..
On the ale front, there was only Bombardier available on tap but I think others are usually available and it was just the end of a biusy week! As we visited on a Sunday, it was only really roasts available on the menu, which I didn’t really have the appetite for. They looked pretty hearty mind you. During the week it looks like a solid burger type place. Given its proximity to Queen Mary, a good few of the clientele when we popped in were students.
Apart from a slight misunderstanding when I first arrived over me taking photos for this site, I liked The Victoria. The sofas are comfy and it has a decent laid back vibe. I would certainly go back!