The Victoria in Highgate closed for ‘failing to pay rent’

The Victoria pub has closed Pic credit: Polly Hancock

The Victoria pub has closed Pic credit: Polly Hancock - Credit: Archant

The company responsible for calling bailiffs on a once thriving Highgate pub claims the leaseholder’s ‘repeated failure to pay the rent’ has led to its closure.

The Victoria pub, once popular, has now bailiffs orders over its windows

The Victoria pub, once popular, has now bailiffs orders over its windows - Credit: Archant

Robert Wilson, director of HB Surveyors and Valuers LTD (hbsv), said they were instructed to call bailiffs by MJP Properties, the freehold owners of The Victoria, on North Hill.

The 180-year-old pub, leased by Icon Bars, closed last week following a turbulent year which saw its kitchen closed and trading hours reduced to three days a week.

Mr Wilson said: “MJP have - for over three years - been very patient in expectation that Icon would find a successful formula so as to render the Victoria profitable. “However following Icon’s repeated failure over the past year to pay rent, MJP instructed hbsv to appoint a bailiff to forfeit the lease agreement.”

The company director said MJP, who had “high hopes for the property” bought the pub from Enterprise Inns in August 2013, agreeing a lease with Icon Bars shortly afterwards.

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Icon Bars reopened the Victoria the following month after MJP “fully refurbished the building and customer facilities.”

The pub, which dates back to 1836, originated as a grocers and beer shop.

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In recent years it has been a popular live music venue and in 2009 won the Ham & High’s Gastro Pub of the Year.

Barry Gill, who ran The Victoria for Icon Bars previously told the Ham & High he had no idea the pub was closing.

Mr Wilson said hbsv continues to act as property manager for MJP. He added: “MJP will be considering a number of options going forward. However expert industry advice is that the Victoria is too small to operate as a sustainable business, not the least because that there is too much competition from other established pubs elsewhere in close proximity offering the same product.”

Icon Bars has not responded to our requests for a comment.

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