Unofficial HQ of the Free French

Rédigé par Alan dans la rubrique Le coin du collectionneur

This three page article appeared in the magazine 'Picture Post' in October 1941. The photos were taken in the pub York Minster (since 1984 The French House) situated in Dean Street in Soho in the heart of London.

During the war it was the unofficial HQ of the Free French and it is said that de Gaulle wrote his A tous les français speech in a room above the pub. The pub was always referred to by its regulars as The French Pub, The French House or simply The French. 
The proprietor at the time the photos were taken was Victor Berlemont a Frenchman with Belgian parantage. If there were ever any trouble makers he would say to them "One of us is going to leave, and it isn't me!".
His son Gaston, who was born on the premises in 1914, succeeded his father and ran the pub until Bastille Day 1989 when he retired.

Below is the article and then some close ups of each of the fantastic photos.

Related post :
  • Gaston Berlemont (link)
  • The french house (link)