1 – The Spaniards Inn, Hampstead, London
The Spaniards today is the very picture of the middle-class good life amid the million-pound houses of leafy North London. It wasn’t always so though. Back when this part of the capital was very much open country, Dick Turpin took a break from holding up coaches to enjoy a pint at the bar. According to some sources he (or perhaps his father) was the landlord. The toll gate over the road from the pub was certainly as good a place as any to stage a roadside robbery, and some who failed to pull it off were dangled from a nearby tree. Anti-Catholic rioters on the way to torch nearby Kenwood House were stopped here by the landlord’s cunning plan of providing them with free drink. It’s certainly got literary pedigree, having hosted Keats, William Blake, Mary Shelley (of Frankenstein fame) and Bram Stoker – who may have picked up the plot to Dracula – among many other favourite writers. The name is down to two Spanish landlords, the Porero brothers, who like good passionate Latins, duelled over a woman and provided the inn with its first ghost, poor Juan, who lost.