One of the oldest Rotherhithe pubs, the site was first used when the Bermondsey Abbey monks used to brew beer which they sold to pilgrims. It is located at 24 Rotherhithe St, opposite Execution Dock in Wapping. The first documentary evidence of its existence was in 1652. It was possibly known as The Salutation.
It was built on stilts above the Thames marshes. Christopher Jones, captain of the Mayflower, is said to have hired crew here and Captain Cook prepared for his voyage to Australia from here. It enjoyed a large riverside clientele which includedsailors, pirates, smugglers, pressgangs and, in the 18th and 19th centuries, dockers. By the time that Samuel Pepys visited in the 17th century it was already famous. In the same century Judge Jeffreys was said to have watched the pirate hangings on the opposite times of the Thames, victims of his sentences. More surprisingly its riverside views attracted artists including James McNeil Whistler, Augustus John and William Wylie. There's a 1930s drawing in the Maritime Museum's collection of the Thames-facing frontage of The Angel on the Portcities website. In the 1940 and 1950s, The Angel's fame attracted celebrities including Laurel and Hardy. (Main source = Portcities website).
The Clipper (formerly The Ship)
The Ship and Whale
Update: I've now covered The Ship and Whale in much more detail on a dedicated post at
The Moby Dick
The Ship York
The 1958 name celebrates the fact that The Shippe was thought to be the departure point, in 1620, of the Pilgrim Fathers. The Pilgrim Fathers were not local people, but they departed from the Shippe Inn to
The Deal Porters (formerly the Three Compasses)
The earlier name, The Three Compasses was a pub on this site dating back at least to 1767. This stands on the corner of what remains of Beatson Street, which was named after a member of a Rotherhithe ship breaking family. The modern building was also named The Three Compasses and its name was only changed when it became the Deal Porters in 2008.
The Old Salt Quay (formerly Spice Island)
I couldn't find out why it was named in either case. Rotherhithe did not have spice quays. Spices were highly valuable and subject to duty and were unloaded and stored in highly secure premises of the sort never built at Rotherhithe. I suspect that its name was nothing more than some sort of branding gimmick.
The Orange Bull (formerly the Aardvark and before that The Fitchetts)
Stuart Rankin's Maritime Rotherhithe History Walks 1
Stuart Rankin's Maritime Rotherhithe History Walks 2