Part of our Best Pubs in London microsite. Is your local listed?
Often touted as the hardest pub in London to find, the Mitre can only be reached via a near invisible passage. This is a pub with some history. Its origins lay in the 16th century, when Queen Elizabeth I is said to have danced around a tree in its garden (which belonged to her favoured subject, Sir Christopher Hatton). The stump can still be seen just inside the first doorway (below), though a dash of scepticism might be in order.
This is a pub of two halves. Two equally cosy drinking rooms are separated by the central bar. You'll find a small upstairs room, too, and wraparound drinking space outside the building. So a pub of four halves, or something.
Until the late 20th century, the pub and surrounding land belonged to the Bishops of Ely. Technically, it was part of Cambridgeshire and subject to different bylaws to the adjacent streets. Urban myths arose that criminals could evade arrest by seeking sanctuary from the Metropolitan or City Police, who would be out of jurisdiction. Perhaps that's why dodgy diamond dealer Doug the Head uses it as his local in the Guy Ritchie film Snatch.
Criminals or law-abiding types will find few better places to linger over a pint of Fuller's beer.