London’s oldest restaurant: Rules, Covent Garden

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

We visit London’s first restaurant, Rules in Covent Garden, where King Edward VII once wooed his mistress Lillie Langtry.

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Tucked away on Maiden Lane in London’s Covent Garden, Rules, which was established in 1798, is the oldest surviving restaurant in London and a beacon of English refinement.

Over the years the great and good of British society have entertained here – from the Royal Family and politicians to stars of stage and screen. Buster Keaton, Stan Laurel, Charlie Chaplin and Laurence Olivier have all dined at Rules, as well as literary heavyweights, such as Charles Dickens, HG Wells and Graham Greene.

Scroll down for more photos of Rules, to see what led British Poet Laureate John Betjeman to campaign for the salvation of its historic and “irreplacable” interior.

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

Rules Restaurant, London's Covent Garden. Credit: Tony Murray Photography

All photos by Tony Murray Photography.

For the full feature see the Jan/Feb 2016 (March 2016) issue of BRITAIN.

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