From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki
< Meetup‎ | London
Wikimedia Meetups +/-
Upcoming (calendar)
London 203 14 April
Oxford 99 21 April
Edinburgh 15 27 April
Leeds 6 4 May
Oxford 98 17 March
London 202 10 March
Edinburgh 14 24 February
Brighton 2 3 February
South Africa 34 27 January
UK virtual 20 6 December
Waray 10 23 September
Bristol 4 16 September
Bangkok 3 26 August
Wikimania 2023 Singapore 16-19 August
List of regular meetups
London · Hong Kong

London Wikimedia Meetup Number 135[edit]

Date and time: Sunday 14 October 2018 — 13:00 onwards[edit]

Location: Penderel's Oak Pub, Holborn, London WC1[edit]


People of all ages and all Wikimedia projects are welcome. Complete newbies also welcome!

Please also invite any London Wikimedia people you know (or have had wiki dealings with) – spread the word!

Add your name to the list by adding a hash and four tildes like this: # ~~~~

May be attending[edit]

Interested but not attending[edit]

  • I'm in France. Joseph2302 (talk) 09:00, 21 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • It's a Wetherspoons, owned by Tim Martin, famous for lobbying and funding a no-deal Brexit and paying staff some of the worst wages in London, hence the strike. I do not want wikimeets to promote drinking, nor do I want to make Tim Martin, who promotes right-wing anti-foreign politics that can actually damage my life, richer through our events. Maybe folks attending should have a serious discussion about finding somewhere else for their patronage. Thanks -- (talk) 12:25, 4 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    @: we had a conversation a couple of months back (circa June?) about an alternative venue. From what I remember we agreed a rough list of requirements (spacious, relatively quiet on a Sunday, serves food, relatively cheap, don't object to people moving tables if necessary, child friendly, alcohol consumption not required, central(ish) London, easily accessible by public transport, disabled access) but nobody proposed a non-Weatherspoons pub that meets these. That's not to say they don't exist, just that nobody presented any in that discussion. Thryduulf (talk: meta · en.wp · wikidata) 01:52, 5 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    Attendees could brainstorm, there are loads of options. Several museums and libraries with cafés (e.g. Wellcome, BM) would host or MozLondon is probably still available. -- (talk) 12:26, 6 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    @Thryduulf: It was in May.
    @Redrose64 and : I'd say May qualifies as "circa June", although reading that I seem to have conflated it with a different discussion. That other discussion turns out to be from July 2017 where the option of alcohol (specifically real ale) was cited as a requirement. In that discussion the Duke of Cambridge was suggested as an alternative, but looking at their website today it fails the cheap and reservable space in the bar requirements. The other venues suggested were too far out of town for practicality. A museum café would be a very different atmosphere to a pub - also the BM Café is noisy, very busy, not cheap and not reservable (the Wellcome Trust's website contains insufficient information about their café and restaurant to know if it is suitable or not, but it does close at 6pm which is earlier than we often finish). The MozLondon space doesn't serve meals or alcohol ("drinks and snacks" can be arranged at extra cost) and requires a Mozilla employee to volunteer to host for the duration of the event. Thryduulf (talk: meta · en.wp · wikidata) 21:59, 6 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    @Thryduulf: What about The Rocket at Euston? Richard Nevell (talk) 17:56, 11 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    @Richard Nevell: Not a venue I've been to, but looking online its worth considering. The reviews are very mixed (everything from "outstanding" to "pretty dismal") and it makes a big thing about being busy so if our meet coincided with football or live music then space may be at a premium, but it may not. Thryduulf (talk: meta · en.wp · wikidata) 21:03, 13 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    @Richard Nevell: Not much of a drinker myself these days, but there does not appear to be any real ale, just six "craft" bottled beers. And to their banner ad at the top, "All the games all the atmosphere", one could probably add "all the noise". See Rocket drinks menu Edwardx (talk) 22:57, 13 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    Six "craft" bottled beers, indeed. Interesting that those are unpriced, whereas many other drinks are priced (£45 for a "bucket" of lager, anyone?). --Redrose64 (talk; at English Wikipedia) 20:08, 14 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    Nothing says Wikipedia meetup more than a few buckets of lager on a Sunday afternoon. I'm sure the Chapter will pay for those. Amakuru (talk) 21:24, 14 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    There used to be an East London Meetup which was in a cafe rather than a pub, but perhaps that fizzled out. I like Wetherspoons pubs and the Penderel Oak myself though, for the reasons given above, and the fact that I like to drink a good English ale. I guess I also don't agree with the politics of the owner, but not enough to stop going. Amakuru (talk) 21:36, 8 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    @Amakuru and : That was in the cafe at Waitrose in Canary Wharf, and organised by Fabian, who is a regular at the Penderel's Oak. The Oak has a similar self-service coffee machine to those in Waitrose, and coffee/tea is £1.15 with unlimited refills. With a bit of effort, you could almost cost Tim Martin money. Edwardx (talk) 23:14, 13 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • I am working this Sunday - again. --Redrose64 (talk; at English Wikipedia) 21:17, 9 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah, the BM Cafe is full of tourists and people milling about. Somewhere like Pendrel's is about as good as you can get for a "local pub for local people" in the City of London. Although I've been going there for various events for longer than Wikipedia has existed, I'm not particularly attached to the place. Ritchie333 (talk) 20:17, 10 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • I just moved to London from NZ today, so I missed this one (got in on a transatlantic flight about the time you guys met up), but keen to meet up some other time. Insertcleverphrasehere (talk) 16:20, 14 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • @: I was not aware of this discussion till I was told about it at the meeting- why would I, I am a regular, sign up early and don't watch this page. London is big enough for more that one event a month- this one works for a body of people. If it ain't broke don't try to fix it. It requires zero office resources, zero management time and is financially neutral. True the owner is political obnoxious, and is personally responsible for the closure of many pubs, but we have to live with the constraint the WP is political neutral and we all must make personal decision about whether to buy his beer or to bring a flask. We discussed additional activities that WMUK should be offering- you weren't there, so can I ask you know- What additional monthly activities would you like to organise, and where and what is the cost implication (I think the budget is zero). I'll gladly help out, provided it is after 10.30 on a weekday, or anytime at weekends within walking distance of St Pancras. I think we are far too timid, and could do a lot, lot more to a wider age range etc --ClemRutter (talk) 10:00, 15 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Dear Fae, we considered this issue again yesterday, as I hope you know this isn't the first time that the topic has come up, and like you, several of us have organised and or attended alternative events in London. But this remains the one that reliably gets a crowd of Wikimedians. If the chapter were to offer to put some money into it we could move into a different sort of venue, but I'm given to understand that isn't likely in the current climate. I come to Wikimedia events to get away from politics, and think it would be inappropriate for Wikimedia to boycott a venue because some of us disagree with the politics of one of the owners, at least not unless the patron imposes their views on the venue. I didn't spot anything yesterday at the Oak which implied the venue was taking a stance on Brexit. Very unusually for the first hour or two the place was near full and while we could get seats we weren't able to spread out over several tables until we actually needed to, but it remains an advantage of the Oak that one can rearrange the furniture and expand to seating for twenty at the busiest part of the meeting. Equally unusually, for the first time that I can remember, we had someone attend who could only attend because the venue was disabled friendly. I have been coming to meetups at the Oak for long enough to remember when you used to attend, and I would be glad to see you at events again, either at the meetup or at the skillshare events that the chapter is considering reviving. If you or anyone else wants to suggest an equally central venue with all the advantages of the Oak: good value, quiet enough to hear conversations, furniture that can be moved around, a disabled accessible loo, good beer then please do the research of checking it out on a Sunday before suggesting it here. There are lots of good pubs in London, but most are much smaller and more expensive than the Oak, and many are in or near tourist areas and have Sunday afternoons as a peak time rather than the off peak of a pub in a non touristy part of central London. WereSpielChequers (talk) 13:56, 15 October 2018 (UTC)[reply]

About the meetup[edit]

The Penderel's Oak in Holborn
Location of The Penderel's Oak

London meetups are generally casual social events where we...

  • Drink coffee, beer, tea and some of us have Sunday brunch. Sunday roasts are no longer offered but they do a reasonable pizza now and have a range of other snacks and dishes.
  • Welcome guests from around the world and other groups which meet there
  • Chat about Wikimedia or any other topics
  • Experienced Wikimedians help out new editors and share experiences about anything from copyright to editing tools.

You can expect to meet some very keen Wikimedians; however, this is also an open invite for anyone interested in finding out more about Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects such as Wikimedia Commons, Wikidata, and Wikisource.

New and prospective editors are also very welcome.

The pub is quite quiet and family-friendly on a Sunday lunchtime, so younger Wikimedians will also feel welcome and safe. Alcohol consumption is not compulsory!

Disabled access[edit]

The pub has an accessible loo on the ground floor. There are some sections of the pub that are only accessible by steps, but we always meet in the main step free section, usually opposite the main doors.

Location: Penderel's Oak[edit]

The Penderel's Oak is a Wetherspoons pub in Holborn.
Address: 283-288 High Holborn, London, WC1V 7HP (OpenStreetMap) (Google Maps)

It's easy to find us – we're usually the crowd with several laptops on the large tables straight ahead of you when you enter the pub. If not, then look for a tabletop Wikimedia/Wikipedia poster and laptops with Wikipedia stickers on them. Wikimania t-shirts can also be a good clue.

Getting there[edit]

Central line
Chancery Lane 0.2 miles

(350 m)

Central line
Piccadilly line
Circle line
Hammersmith & City line
Metropolitan line

Elizabeth line

Farringdon 0.5 miles

(800 m)

Circle line

District line


The Penderel's Oak is between Holborn tube station and Chancery Lane tube station. Farringdon station and Temple tube station are not too far. The pub is also within walking distance of Waterloo railway station (1.3 miles; 2 km), St Pancras railway station (1.2 miles; 1.9 km) and Kings Cross.

Several bus routes also go directly to Holborn station; if travelling from Waterloo, it is quicker to travel by bus than by tube.

Bike hire (TfL scheme) is in Red Lion Street, just opposite the pub.

Visit the TfL Journey Planner for more information about your fastest route.

Back-up plan[edit]

In the rare event of a kitchen closure or another problem at the Penderel's Oak, the meetup will be relocated to the Shakespeare's Head – another Wetherspoons pub located nearby. To get there from the Penderel's Oak, when exiting onto the street turn left, then when walking past Holborn tube station turn left again down Kingsway, and after a short walk the pub will be found on the left-hand side.