The Ship Tavern

The Ship Tavern is a pub in Gate Street, Holborn, in which Strike speaks to Bijou Watkins (chapter 44).

As she is not replying to his messages asking her to call him, Strike asks Ilsa where Bijou might be found, and Ilsa directs him to Lavington Court Chambers, where Bijou works. He takes the Central Line to Holborn and heads for Lincoln’s Inn.

Lincoln’s Inn is one of the four Inns of Court, and the Inn to which Bijou’s fictional barrister’s chambers, Lavington Court, belongs.  

‘He then took up a position behind a tree in the gardens from which he could watch the neo-classical façade of Lavington Court Chambers, and waited’ (chapter 44).

When Bijou leaves, Strike follows her for a short while to make sure they are away from her chambers before he approaches her. Bijou then enters Gate Street.

Strike catches up with Bijou and asks her for a word, pointing toward the Ship, ‘which was tucked away in a pedestrian-only alleyway visible between two buildings’ (chapter 44).

Bijou reluctantly agrees to accompany Strike into the pub. Bijou states she’d rather sit upstairs.

Strike goes to the bar and buys a glass of red wine for her and a double whisky for himself.

‘Five minutes later he joined her upstairs in the low-ceilinged, dimly lit Oak Room. She’d taken off her coat to reveal a tight red dress, and was sitting in a corner with her back to the room’ (chapter 44).

Strike sits down and they have a tense discussion about the article that has appeared in Private Eye and the situation with Bijou’s lover, Andrew Honbold.

A furious Strike then leaves the pub and heads back toward Holborn Tube station.

The Ship is located here: