The Grapes


Exterior of The Grapes public house.
View full size imageThe Grapes public house. © NMM

Built in 1720, on the site of an earlier pub, the Grapes Tavern served the maritime community around Limehouse Basin.

The pub was immortalised as the Six Jolly Fellowship Porters pub in Charles Dickens's 'Our Mutual Friend'.

Inside of the Grapes public house.
View full size imageInside of the Grapes. © NMM

In his novel, Dickens mentions the preparation of 'hot purl', a hot, sweetened porter.

It was popular in Thames-side public houses with customers engaged in cold outdoor work and was also sold from boats on the river.

An Evening at the Grapes.
View full size imageAn evening at the Grapes. © NMM

The Grapes was popular for many years with lightermen and held a licence to sell alcohol from 6am to cater to local work patterns.

Today, the pub houses a fine restaurant and a covered balcony overlooking the Thames. 


 Find out more:
Fact file The Grapes
Games Match historical pictures of pubs with modern day photographs