The Crown at Cricklewood was completed in 1900. It was built on the site of a small pub sold in 1898, with planning permission, for a staggering £86,000. Why? The area was a fast expanding London suburb, but licenses were restricted by the magistrates, so it was the only pub in the area.
The architect, Henry Rising, had built churches and many pubs; the Crown is a mixture of both. Upright and sturdy, its red sandstone facade extends over three floors, with wonderful carved detail at each level.
The Crown has been incorporated with the modern Crown Moran Hotel and its interior has been grafted into the new hotel, or is it the other way round? Most of the original Crown has survived and there is much to admire, including the entrance lobby and staircase, lit by a stained glass window, exceptional moulded ceilings and original etched and cut glass. Venture upstairs to see the full glory.
In a way it's a pity that the pub has been merged, but it could have been demolished like so many of its contemporaries. The Crown continues as it was intended; a striking pub, a grand hotel (albeit a modern one) and a place of entertainment and relaxation for locals and visitors alike. On Friday evenings (7pm-10pm) and Sunday afternoons (3pm-5pm) live traditional Irish music is performed.
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