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The eponymous railway in the name of the Railway Tavern, doesn't exist any more. Instead it's become one of north London's hidden treasures, the Parkland Walk. The abandoned railway is overgrown with nature and clocks in at just over five miles between Finsbury Park and Alexandra Palace. And all good walks need somewhere to pause and hydrate en-route. That's where the Railway Tavern comes in.
The pub is situated next to one of the walk's highlights, the abandoned Crouch End railway station, where you can walk along the old platforms. From there, the bar is just a couple minutes away. Step inside and the trains theme is carried over with plenty of vintage paraphernalia lining the walls, although the overgrown aesthetic is traded for something rather more cosy and tamed.
The pub is at its best in the winter, thanks to the epic real fire at the back of the pub, but it does have a small beer garden to enjoy in the summer. Combine that with a serviceable selection of ales and beers and a solid Sunday roast, and you can quickly find your walk's short break becoming a prolonged one.
One of the bar's best features is the vintage Bar Skittles board. The game seems simple enough. Swing a ball and try to knock down as many pins as possible. We found ourselves quickly addicted and frustrated in equal measure — never managing more than three pins in one go, despite being relatively sober. If anyone's got any tips on how to do better, please, get in touch!