If there is one thing worse than the closing and makeover of a once beloved boozer, it is the slow lingering death of a pub – which still looks like the pub you used to love, but has gone bad. This happened to the Rising Sun on Tottenham Court Road five years ago. What was a relativly solid pub with pleasant idiosyncrasies (good range of Grman & Blgian beers, Oatmeal stout) slowly morphed into a Scottish & Newcastle clone. I still go there due to the fact it is handy and everyone knows where it is, but less and less out of choice. Now the same is happening to another favourite.

The Blue Posts Rupert Street has had a steady decline over the last six months, constantly closing its upstairs room and having a more than dictatorial line on the jukebox. You could happily score a straight seven line of pop only for the staff to turn it off at the vague whiff of Pink. But now it is all over. The jukebox has been removed. And with its removal the downstairs has turned into an oddly soulless room. The best of the multi-ethnic staff seem demoralised, and a pub landlord – cut directly from the Al Murray cloth – was seen lurking around. I am no pub doctor but I fear it will take but one more visit for me to declare the whole joint dead.