North London's Cultural Guide

Seen the shiny new Camden Rock Map yet?

One one side of the Draft House pub us a “massive celebration of pub, beer and rock ‘n’ roll history”

Charting the area’s seminal musical history from the 1960s to now. Photo: PR

The tired old Grand Union pub has just been revived as Draft House Camden Road, what purports to be a “massive celebration of pub, beer and rock ‘n’ roll history”.

Commissioned especially for the site is the Camden Rock Map (see above), a collaborative process overseen by artist James Lambert, which charts the area’s seminal musical history from the 1960s to now.

It takes up an entire wall of the pub to highlight key pop-culture milestones from Pink Floyd’s 1960s proto-raves at the Roundhouse via acid house, Britpop in the 1990s, and the noughties emergence of Amy Winehouse and Arctic Monkeys.

Influential (now lost) venues such as The Laurel Tree, The Music Machine and Camden Palace also feature, as does the 2007 fire at the Hawley Arms and the once-wonderful (and highly debauched) Marathon Kebab House on Chalk Farm Road. The map ends with Prince’s now-legendary trio of shows at the Electric Ballroom.


Worth a gawp at over a craft beer or two, eh? And if you’re something of a longstanding local you can always compare notes as to what’s inevitably been left out.

Look out for a full review of Draft House in our new print issue, out 20th Oct. 102-4 Camden Rd, NW1. More info here.

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The award-winning print and online title Kentishtowner was founded in 2010 and is part of London Belongs To Me, a citywide network of travel guides for locals. For more info on what we write about and why, see our About section.