16 Mill Street

Like the Duke of Buckingham, although this pub is not a listed building, it is on CAMRA’s London Regional Inventory and the description is as follows: “There has been a pub on this site since at least the nineteenth century. The area, close to the Hogsmill River, had a number of mills processing coconut fibre into matting and other goods, hence the name. The current building dates from the early 1950s. Plans to demolish the original building and construct a new pub were approved in July 1939, but building was interrupted by the World War II. Charrington’s Brewery (Architect S J Fennell) began a rebuilding in Spring 1940 but it stopped in August 1940 due to a shortage of steel. Work was completed by 1954 – it seems to have been constructed in the popular way of behind the original pub, which was then knocked down leaving parking space at the front of the new pub. The pub is a two-storey building constructed of brick, with a tile roof, and two bow-fronted windows on the ground floor, with original leaded window panes with left-hand door having colourful leaded symbols including a coconut. There are separate entrance lobbies on either side of the building; a third entrance in the centre of the façade, leading to the original off-sales area which has been bricked up. There is a single, U-shaped bar in the centre of the pub, with 1950s panelling in pale wood, although the bar was shortened and new glass panelling installed at the rear after 1987. The back-of-bar shelving may also date from the 1950s and has the wording ‘Wines’, ‘(blank – possibly ‘Charrington’s’ originally)’, ‘Spirits’ along the top on both sides, although modern refrigeration equipment has been installed at ground level. The pub now consists of a single drinking and dining area (the establishment operates a Thai restaurant), although when originally constructed there were three distinct rooms – a saloon bar, a public bar, and a games room – plus and off-sales area. The public and saloon bars were knocked into a single space in the late 1980s, and a food servery constructed in the former games room. This was subsequently removed at an unknown date, when this smaller room seems to have been opened up and joined to the main drinking area. The 1950s configuration of the bars is still apparent from the remains of the partition between the former saloon and public bars, which is interrupted by a U-shaped arch. Similarly, a glazed half-partition also denotes the division between the main pub and the former games room. Former wooden doorways at the rear right-hand side of the pub remain, although the doors themselves have been sealed. The doorways in the two surviving entrance lobbies appear to date from the 1950s rebuild, but the left-hand lobby has been considerably reduced in size. Much original woodwork and glass survive.”

The WhatPub link is here: WhatPub/Cocoanut

The Pubs Heritage Group link is here: PHG/Cocoanut

The Cocoanut featured on the Hostelries Along the Hogsmill: Daytime Pub Tour of Kingston and New Malden in February 2020.