Soho’s lost post-war living room of badly behaved bohemians

The Colony Room in Dean Street W1 was a living-room-sized drinking club for members only, above an Italian restaurant up a long dirty staircase. It was at the heart of a post-war Soho packed with pubs, clubs and restaurants full of people wanting to get off their heads on drink or drugs, debate, argue, and …

Residents and business asked to say ‘no’ to Oxford Street plans

Buses and taxis on Oxford Street.

Better Oxford Street, the campaign formed by the amenity societies in Fitzrovia, Marylebone, Mayfair and Soho (and backed by Fitzrovia News) is asking residents and local business to say “no” in the current consultation on plans for the "transformation" of Oxford Street. The mayor of London and Westminster Council want to push ahead with pedestrianising …

A poem to Dylan Thomas among readings at Covent Garden literary haunt

Watercolour painting.

Artist Fiona Green, a former long-time resident of Tottenham Street in Fitzrovia, will be reading from her book of poems at a literary event in Covent Garden this Wednesday 1 July. The Poetry Cafe is a regular haunt on London's literary trail and features many reading events. "As the theme of the evening is Soho, I have …

Patients group meet to discuss future of Soho doctors’ surgery

Front of medical centre.

Patients and their carers are invited to a meeting to discuss the future of the Soho Square General Practice at the surgery next week. Last year the doctors' surgery was threatened with closure but despite a temporary reprieve the future of the service remains uncertain. The practice is particularly important for the Chinese community and …

NHS England says services at Soho Square General Practice will continue and be re-procured

Front of medical centre.

Soho Square General Practice which was threatened with closure at the end of September will now remain open. NHS England has written to patients saying the surgery will continue to operate with existing GPs and staff, but that the service will be re-procured and a new provider will take over in the future. The reprieve for the surgery comes …

Art shop at the heart of the swinging 60s will be priced out of Soho

Pioneering Soho art suppliers Cowling & Wilcox looks set to close around Easter 2014 after trading in Broadwick Street since 1961. Landlords Great Portland Estates (GPE) have applied for planning permission from Westminster Council to demolish and redevelop St Lawrence House at 26-34 Broadwick Street. GPE who own £2.5bn of real estate – most of …

Westminster Council to create “partnership” to manage the West End

By News Reporters Westminster City Council is to create a new partnership to manage the West End following recommendations by the West End Commission which published its report last Tuesday. Westminster Council has now made an inital response to the Commission's findings and have published a timetable to implement the recommendations made in the report.  The West End Commission …

Paul Willetts and the making of The Look of Love

By Clive Jennings Many local residents and workers were surprised last year to spot Steve Coogan sporting an extravagant blond bouffant “combover” hairstyle as he strutted round the streets of Soho with Anna Friel on his arm. They were portraying Paul Raymond and his wife Jean for the filming of “The Look of Love” the …

The doors of Sohemia

If you are in the vicinity of Rathbone Place in the early evening, you will occasionally see a bunch of disparate types, myself included, disappear into the upstairs room of The Wheatsheaf pub to attend a talk at The Sohemian Society - but be advised, Sohemia is more than a club, it is a state of mind.