Advantages Reasonably priced, usually trouble free, serves food
Disadvantages Not great quality food
|Value for Money|
|Standard of Service|
The Old Maypole is what I would call a 'local' pub situated in an area that has lost most of its public houses. I don't frequent pubs very often but I do sometimes like a pub lunch (and seem to be having more of these lately rather than cooking at home). I also miss the option of having a good choice of pubs that are within walking distance to my home. And, although The Old Maypole isn't the best pub I have been in, I think, because I've been going in here occasionally for about twenty-five years it must be one of the pubs that I've most visited. One thing I do like about this pub is that, although food is served all day and the eating area is more than adequate, it still is essentially a pub. It looks like a traditional pub and feels like one too. One can go in here for a drink without feeling as if you're taking up valuable dining space and shouldn't be here if you're not eating. I would say at any time in this pub there are a fair number of customers here to dine and not that many less who visit just to have a drink; many locals come in here to enjoy a quiet read of a newspaper while supping a pint or two.When I first went in here about, twenty-six years ago, it was very different; there have certainly been some changes over the years. At this time there were more public houses in the area. The Old Maypole was pretty ordinary but had the benefit of a very large room where children were allowed in with their parents. In this room there was a huge blackboard and chalks, large plastic construction blocks and bar football. The room was very basic but young children had a great time in here, especially on rainy afternoons in the school holidays.
But before going any further I must say that I don't think this pub is going to suit those that are choosy over their food. I consider it to be a 'local' serving cheap food and reasonably priced drinks. It is a place to have an average meal, either for lunch or dinner, in a comfortable but not remarkable setting. I'm not running it down as I feel it serves the area well, being a place for young singles to meet before they go on elsewhere and a place where it is possible for all ages providing somewhere for couples and families to the lone pensioner, to go and to know that there isn't likely to be any trouble in this pub.
This bar also has fruit machines and television screens.
The actual bar itself is large and easy to access.
This bar seems to be more often frequented by younger clientele and these seem to be mainly male. In this area can be found: a quiz machine, fruit machine, two pool tables, darts, a juke box and television screens showing sky sports.
If you find a decent table which isn't usually difficult, even on a Sunday lunchtime, then you can be fairly comfortable in this area of the pub.The Old Maypole seems to do a good trade. There are so few pubs in the area yet it still doesn't get too crowded in the daytime and weekday evenings.
This area has a quiz machine.
I think as well as food prices being cheap in this pub, so are the drinks. Although I expect, as with other pubs, the profit on wine is large, I think their prices for wine is reasonable, as far as pubs go.A glass of white wine starts from £2.15 or £7.29 for a bottle (Morano Airen Chardonnay) or,
Sparkling wines and champagne are also stocked here, as well as some cocktails, soft drinks and tea and coffee.Magic Mondays
Magic Mondays is when on a (reasonably!) Monday a selection of beer, lager, cider, wine and spirits at The Old Maypole are priced extra cheaply and pints of several beers and lagers will cost just £1.85 and a selected soft drink option will cost only 99 pence.
This pub offers a weekly quiz with prizes (Wednesday)Live Sky Sports
Every so often , I've seen a psychic night advertised (or it may have just entered my head!) but I haven't, as yet, been to one.Other entertainment is offered such as a live music but this doesn't seem to occur on a regular basis.
Mon to Wed: 12.00 - 23.00Thu to Sat: 12.00 - 00.00
Sun: 12.00 - 23.00
The pub offers several very reasonably priced starters as well as desserts.The 'classic mains' consist of items such as a 'Tipsy Steak Pie' priced £4.79. This pie is served with peas, seasoned chips and extra gravy, or mashed potatoes as an alternative to chips. I don't eat meat and therefore haven't sampled this but my husband has and said that the pie was quite nice but the chips are oven chips and nothing special.
Vegetable Korma Curry' priced at £5.19. This is something I've sampled many times and I find it one of the better choices on the menu. It consists of chickpeas, cauliflower and spinach in a mild korma sauce and comes with pilau rice and naan bread.'Freshly Battered Fish and Chips' comes in a choice of sizes, either a small for £3.69 or regular for the price of £4.69. This choice is served with garden or mushy peas. The fish isn't cod. I like the batter but haven't been impressed with this meal on the last couple of times I've eaten it. I always feel that the fish should be cooked a little more and the chips not cooked for so long. The garden peas are usually dried up. But I would say it's as good as in most pubs where you may pay a little more.
'New Quorn and three Bean Chilli' at £4.69 is a good choice in my opinion. The minced Quorn, along with kidney, borlotti, and black eyed beans makes this a nice veggie chilli meal. It is served with served with spicy Mexican rice, tortilla chips and sour cream.'New all Day Breakfast' is priced at £5.99. This consists of two Cumberland sausages, two rashers of bacon, fried eggs, button mushrooms, seasoned chips, baked beans and half of a grilled tomato. I haven't sampled this (it being meat) but have seen it's a popular choice and have been told it's a tasty and good value option.
The pub also serves mixed grills, steaks, chicken, fish, salads, pasta, baguettes and jacket potatoes with various fillings.I don't think anything on the menu is expensive.
Beer & Burger Night
There is a 'SOMETHING SPECIAL' section on the menu which offers several items which are a little different and slightly more expensive such as 'New Orleans Jambalaya' at £7.49, 'Timothy Taylor Steak Pie' at £6.19 and 'New fish & Parsley Sauce' at £6.69.
The fish and parsley sauce is a baked fish fillet with parsley sauce and also served with mashed potato, peas and carrots. I've eaten this, I think, three times. The first time it was very nice, the second time okay but on the third occasions the temperature wasn't hot enough and the carrots were hard and the peas dry.
There are a few choices such as the veggie chili and the curry already mentioned, as well as Quorn fillets, a pasta choice and a Quorn fajita wrap option and this is a popular choice with my future daughter-in-law.There are salads, baguettes and jacket potato options too. BUT if you are strict vegetarian or pescetarian then beware as my meal of fish in parsley sauce had pieces of my daughter's meal on it-not the actual meat but gravy and onion and I think her burger meal and my meal must have been placed upon the same skillet for a while.
Children are allowed in the dining area if dining with their family.
Highchairs are available.
A children's menu is available with meals costing only £2.99. Main meals include a potato and vegetable choice and there are also meals which don't contain added salt, artificial colours or flavours.Activity/colouring sets and crayons are available.
A child's meal deal costs £4.50 and this price is for a main meal, dessert and drink.Baby changing facilities are available in the toilets.
The Old Maypole is on one level and if accessing from the front of the pub there aren't any stairs to ascend. The ground outside and floor within is quite level. Wheelchair users often frequent this pub and a special needs centre enjoys lunch here one day per week.One of the cubicles within the ladies toilets is large and would be more accessible to those with mobility difficulties. I'm pretty sure that there aren't separate disabled toilets.
The clientele of The Old Maypole appears to change throughout the day, somewhat. Daytime and early evening sees mainly couples, families and some local workers enjoying their lunch here. The evening draws in more youngsters but, for the pub area this is strictly over eighteen and ID will be requested. I would say this is still a pub for all ages but Friday and Saturday nights will find many eighteen to thirties. I will say that this pub is strict and from what I've seen doesn't allow underage drinkers. ID is often asked for and my thirty year old daughter has often been asked to supply ID. This doesn't mean that the bar staff are crazy as she does have to supply ID (much to her annoyance) on a regular basis.
There are two sets of both male and female lavatories in this pub serving the main bar and the public bar. I find that they are well kept. I will say though that the ladies toilets in the main bar have so many cubicles fitted in that some of these are incredibly small; I don't think so many cubicles are necessary for the amount of people who visit the pub. Fewer cubicles could mean a dedicated baby changing area as well as a specially designed disabled toilet.There are plenty of basins, soap dispensers and a hand drying machine.
There are a few wooden benches and tables out here and a raised grassy area. I think more could be made of this garden to ensure it is a pleasant area which can be enjoyed by more of the pub's customers.
Nothing spectacular here but staff are pleasant and polite. Most are young and are from the locality. One thing I will say is that the pub is not often rowdy although it can draw in a young crowd at times. This pub definitely comes up way ahead of probably its main competitor, 'The Fairlop Oak' in terms of being trouble free.There was a serious incident involving this pub about a year or so ago which concerned an (inebriated I believe) individual being asked to leave. The police were called and the incident escalated with policemen being attacked. I don't think the pub could really be blamed for this happening as the man was asked to leave and I think he took exception to this. I feel that there aren't many incidents to blacken the name of the pub. Customers have to behave or are asked to leave the premises or be barred.
I feel that most people regularly using this pub will know others in here and it has become a local to many living close to the pub.
The Old Maypole is situated in a residential area although close to a small parade of shops.There's a bus stop directly outside the front of the Old Maypole and buses 150, 247, 167 and 462 stop here. This means that the pub can be accessed from quite a wide area. Two of these buses pass the local central line underground station or, alternatively the station is about a ten minute walk away.
Address:105-107 Fencepiece Road,
Tel: 0871 951 1000
Also, The Old Maypole provides employment; its staff are taken from the local area or thereabouts, mainly employing those in their late teens and twenties in the bar and kitchen. This must be a good thing.I like family pubs which welcome all age groups and which serve food and so I would hope that The Old Maypole stays in business.
One big advantage of The Old Maypole, in my opinion, over many similar type of public houses is the fact that although Sky Sports are shown there aren't screens in the dining area, meaning that even when a big match is on one can eat in relative peace and quiet. I don't mind watching football but much prefer to dine without seeing it and would rather chat to my companions than cheer for scored goals or swear at the referee! It can be difficult to find somewhere to eat without being surrounded by large screens and lots of noise.And so all in all I would say that The Old Maypole is a good facility to have in the area but it could be improved mainly in respect of the food being of a better quality and not so hit and miss depending on when you eat even down to which chef is on duty. Yes. In my opinion it's a decent pub for locals but I wouldn't recommend anyone travelling far to dine or drink here. I don't think it's worth singing and dancing around this maypole.
Summary: A needed facility in an area where its pubs have 'disappeared' in recent years.
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