The ciggy Nigel Farage was puffing at the time must have dropped from his jowls, upon hearing the news that one of his favourite boozers — The Westminster Arms, in Storey's Gate — may close.
A planning application has been put forward for nine flats to be built next door to the pub. The application also proposes that the pub's basement wine bar (also containing the ladies' toilets) be transformed into another flat. Although the developments don't explicitly state the pub would close altogether, it's thought the increased residential population would make it difficult to run a busy pub, including pavement seating, without getting complaints.
Farage has frequently been photographed supping a pint in and outside the pub. His call to preserve the Shepherd Neame boozer — built in 1913, and containing a division bell, used to warn MPs to leg it back to the commons to vote — seems a level-headed one.
A campaign is under way, urging Westminster Council to save The Westminster Arms, while Farage — presumably concerned about where he'll get all those photos of him slurping a Master Brew — has been in talks with the landlord over their options to save the pub.