Arthur Beale, London

Arthur Beale is a place not many sailors know about. Incongruously located on Shaftesbury Avenue, in the heart of London’s theatre land, for the past 400 years or so, is quite possibly the world’s best chandlery. Behind the desk is invariably a man sporting a beard, espousing rigging screw wisdom to sailors and tourists alike.

Upstairs you will find sailing yarns aplenty. Shelves stacked with beautiful copies of Arthur Ransome, Erskine Childers, and Robert Louis Stevenson. When Carruthers goes shopping for nails and screws before setting off from London for The Baltic in The Riddle Of The Sands, this is the shop I imagine he went to.

Clothing for sailing in cold places occupies the other side of the room. Brands you haven’t heard of from Norway and France, with a firm nod to durability and longevity over cutting edge design. I wish I had been here before I sailed to Sweden.

Downstairs is central London’s only real chandlers. Throughout the year talks are held on everything from splicing to varnishing.

Outside you’ll find the tides for the day on a board, just in case you were thinking of going for an evening sail after the matinee.

In short, Arthur Beale is a bastion of English sailing tradition, delivered with a reassuring lack of affectation, in the most surprising place.

194, Shaftesbury Avenue, London, WC2H 8JP



Email this to someonePin on PinterestShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Tumblr

Related Content

Yachting. Distilled. If, like the gathering that appears around lunch time at the stern of the yacht I am running, you are intrigued by the reality of yachting; let me paint a picture for you. This is my version of yachting. A bit rusty some might say, but still wonderful. After four years in this alien world to most, on both sides of the Atlantic, I am about to ...
Just Sea and Sky. Just Sea and Sky is as rich as adventurous sailing yarns come; a tonic for the modern day sailor surrounded by electronics. Set aboard Tern II, a purposeful Victorian gentleman's yacht, Just Sea and Sky is the story of a young naval officer granted leave to sail from England to New Zealand in the 1950's. Ben Pester encapsulates elements of a ...
Dreamers and vagabonds One of the things I enjoy most about sailing is the people it attracts. A glance over the ocean hitching adverts at the sailors bar never fails to bring a smile to my face, wherever I happen to be. I think this must have gone on for millennia...    
Yachting Monthly Article I have a short article published in next months Yachting Monthly magazine on a trip I crewed on to Sweden. A title that's been printed since 1906, it's a real privilege to be featured on its pages.      

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *