I have to say that I do miss The Gloucester in Greenwich. It wasn’t one of my favourites places in London to go for a drink , but it was, perhaps, the proximity with the park and the area in which was placed that I always found it interesting to pop in for just a quick one.

Things have changed since those years and the Gloucester is not longer a gay pub. On the other hand, a new one opened not long ago and kind of replaced the gap left by the loss of the latter. Still, there was something not quite the same the last time I was around.

I don’t know whether it was the bang bang from the music in a not quite full ground floor room or if it was the feeling that I couldn’t quite enjoy there, even if I was in company of good friends. In any case, we didn’t stay but moved to the nearby THE ROSE AND CROWN.

I was surprised to learn from my friend that he didn’t know it was a gay bar, especially since he lives in the area. Obviously, the bar has some low profile in the competitive gay world in which a Vauxhall empty area in terms of proper bars and coffee shops is called a gay village, then we have a small bar in a non-so-gay village.

The good news for me was to see that The Rose offered a good ambience and it was pleasant night to enjoy outdoors in one of the tables. The service was good and the price reasonable. The excuse to be out and about was to show around to an Italian friend the burnt remaining of the Cutty Sack -yes, somehow it ‘s now as popular as it was before – and having a drink in this place was the perfect way to finish a good day out.

1 Crooms Hill, Greenwich, London, SE10 8ER


I have set up profiles in many gay websites and I still do in many others. There is not a real need for me to be on all of them and honestly, some of them I haven’t used them for long. But, I always feel the curiosity to know what they are like and since I am already in so many, I thought to have a Tried and Tested section on them 🙂

So, my first choice is

Who is it for?
As you could expect from the website name, anyone who describe themselves as bear in the more strict meaning of the word within the gay community. Of course, admirers are welcomed and the not-so-clear definition of Cubs are also using it.

How much would it cost you?
Free as long as you are happy not to use it when it’s “priority access only”. Still, you should get messages sent to you.

What’s the style like?
Not the best lay-out ever seen. Easy to use, basic profile information and users can put several photos. Very popular with Bear events around the world -one of the features allows members to join a kind of “guestlist” of who is going.
Though, messages received can sometimes freezes momentarily your web browser if not open immediately.

Do I recommend it?
Well, BEARWWW and EUROWOOF are linked, so your profile goes long way if bear are your kind of men. So, big, hairy and chunky, then you’re in. But remember not everything is about labels.

Sex factor: Depends on what you are into. Bear wise, well, sexy guys indeed.

Devil Bear’s friend talk

Sometimes I feel that going out is like having a coffee nowadays, there is too much of offer of the same. I remember the times when going to XXL or Crash was just what it said on the tin. You could say that it was clear what to expect on those premises.

I can’t say the same these days, I feel like when I order a coffee in which I am questioned abruptly about what kind of coffee do I want, Capuccino, Mochaccino, Late, Extra strong Latter, Machiatto and then with flavouring or not. So much for just a simple coffee.

Then, we could take as an example XXL. It used to be on Saturdays only and anyone going there knew what to expect; the kind of crowd, the music, the sex. Then, they started an extra day on Wednesdays and now they extended it again with a variations of the same thing, XXL this or that.

The question is if we are taking in the amount of changes and offers that we get in the London gay scene. I have the feeling sometimes, that rather that making the experience of going out an exciting one, it does it make feel harder. Which club to go? Would it be busy? Which of the same kind of theme place should I go?

In order words, a bit like the stress I do go through when having to decide which coffee to choose.

I might be very dramatic, sure! But, since there is so much to choose from but pretty much the same people with the same tastes, maybe there is a little of crisis going on.

I heard and seen people that go into a place just to leave it fifteen minutes later, and it’s not just one or two people doing it.

Like any other change, it’ll settle down after a while. At the moment, though, be patient when deciding where to go out.


Ok. Do they want to be like Chueca? If so, they aren’t doing a good job. I can’t help having a tittering face about it.

If any, Vauxhall is more likely to be the Clubbing London Village than anything else. I have been in Madrid and Paris, even Amsterdam. Then, let’s not forget we have also SoHo. So, why exactly do they mean by calling it a Village? Where are the gay or gay-friendly coffee shops? [I won’t say Starbucks qualify as such], what about the hairdressers, cafés, restaurants and just-for-a-drink-not-a-dance bars? [well, ok, we have BarCode]

I won’t even engage in a discussion whether Vauxhall can even be a proper place to allocate such a “dreamed” gay spot, but if that is to be, they will need to offer more than Sauna, Clubs and Drugs.

Non smoking

How wonderful is the new “no smoking” situation. Sorry, I might be quite devilish bear but I am not for a “ciggie”

But it was funny to see how empty bars can be nowadays and how many gay men can they jam-pack in such a small smoking areas sometimes.

Of course, there’s also the irony that the busier area to be is the smoking zone -mini compressed in some cases or a whole street as the outside of Comptons shows-. I wonder how long would it take for councils to come out with the idea of limiting the areas available to smokers or whether would they be accused of causing public disturbances?

In any case, the idea of going out seems to me more appealing. Maybe a group of smokers may feel that their personal freedom have taken away, but I also believe that the non-smokers group feel they regain theirs.


Bar code Vauxhall. What a lovely place!!

If you ever think of what new t-shirt you might want to get, you should come to this bar. Here the guys ensure they have worked out hard enough to be able to put on a tight Tee, similar to those we see on plastic mannequins.

I guess I was just jealous, after all, I am just a fat red devilish bear. But I couldn’t see the point about what people called Vauxhall Village.

Was Barcode the example of what the Village has to offer? If so, well, perhaps I’ll stick to the scene in Soho.

A man dressed with a Pilot uniform -which in many other bars would have attracted much attention, especially from girls in straight bars- was in despair for the lack of interest that the young pretty -or not so- men in their nice tight t shirts showed.

But it’s not that bad. After all, we make it happen if we want to…so if you ever go to Barcode Vauxhall, sit, relax and show off your new tight Tee!!