Borough, London, Greater London, Southwark
One of the last remaining pubs of the ‘stews’ of London (an area of brothels and bawdy houses) the Anchor was originally built at the time of Elizabeth 1 and Samuel Pepys reportedly watched the Great Fire of London from here. It is near Clink Street and ‘clink’ is an old word for the prison where men, women and children were imprisoned for a wide variety of offences, including debt. At the time of the press gangs, armed naval men would suddenly descend on such pubs to fill their ships with crews. In one of their raids on this pub, they chose a man who had a dog with him that attacked the press gang. One of them slammed a door on it, cutting off the dog’s tail. The man was dragged away to serve in His Majesty’s Navy and the dog escaped. Since then there have been sightings of the mutilated beast, lurching around the pub, with howling. The Anchor is further haunted by several child urchins, , locals knew, as ‘mudlarks’ who had drowned in the River Thames during the late 18th and early 19th century.