The North Star
Building From 1850
Purpose built as a pub, as can be seen from the handsome exterior, which boasts attractive embossed stars at the tops of the main pillar supports. Originally above this, at roof level, was an elaborate stone balustrade and arch, but these became unsafe, and were eventually removed. However, at first floor level there remains a magnificent cast-iron Victorian balcony. The pub was once the terminus for short-haul trams out of London in the 1920's, but far closer ties with London Transport was to come in the 1930's. A decision was made to extend the Bakerloo Line (now the Jubilee line) to relieve the overcrowded Metropolitan line. In order for the new line to come to the surface between Swiss Cottage and Finchley Road stations, the Metropolitan had to be diverted, and opened in November 1939 with the southbound line in a tunnel that lies a mere three feet below the cellar floor. The rumblings of the trains can easily be heard, and felt, in the bar.