I had a great evening at Ham Yard last weekend – what a wonderful oasis of pleasant calm amidst the hustle and bustle of Piccadilly and Soho it is … and brilliantly wheelchair accessible too.
My über-in-the-know hair colourist told me about it a month to two back – she’s based off Old Bond Street and, whilst not into wildly trendy, does keep abreast of what’s new about town. She enthused about how accessible and convenient it was should I need to hook up with friends in the area and, lo, I did. Eerie pre-cognisance, no!
Our friends were off to a late night ‘thing’ so we met up for early supper and drinks at 6pm-ish last Saturday in a mutually convenient location – on the borders of Piccadilly/Soho.
Despite the access assurances, I was nervous. Saturday evenings around Piccadilly and Soho are generally a nightmare for wheelchair users and parking but I kept the faith.
And she was right. Brilliant access.
We were helped by low traffic volumes (start of the school summer holidays empties London roads – so fab) and our early (pre-theatre) start time so we drove up Piccadilly, no problem. Turned left onto Shaftesbury Ave then left again onto Great Windmill Street. First left again took us into the slip road, Ham Yard, that you see below. Totally level – looks like cobbles but isn’t. I got out and wheeled across to our friends at a table near the trees – see picture above for how it looks close up.
D took the car to park and found a disabled space, just to the right as he turned out of Great Windmill Street, opposite a huge NCP that he would otherwise have used. A few minutes and he was back with us. Fantastic.
The night was very warm, the drinks were cold and the food was reasonable – about £35 for 2 courses. We spent about £70 a head for food, lots of drinks, coffee, water – all in.
The restaurant was air-conditioned. The whole area was wheelie-friendly. We started outside, ate inside, came back out for drinks. Dusk fell and we were still having a great time.
Eventually, we left. D brought the car back in, we loaded up and the teeming hordes of Soho were almost a surprise to us. The contrast between young Soho-crazies and Ham Yard cool was kinda weird but fun too.
If you need an accessible place to hook up in Central London – near theatre land, restaurants, shopping etc. – Ham Yard is a great place to go.
Ham Yard Hotel. Check it out.