Le Macabre Coffee House, Soho, London


le macabre postcard

Le Macabre was a coffee house on Meard Street in London’s Soho area in the 1960s and 1970s. Coffee houses had been popular places for Britain’s youth to congregate in since the mid-fifties but Le Macabre had the distinction of being the only horror-themed cafe.

Being located just off Wardour Street – home to the Hammer house of horrors – was a bonus too. The coffee house had coffins as tables and bakelite skulls for ashtrays, plus a ghoulish jukebox selection of deathly records. Regulars included legendary local characters such as Iron Foot Jack, who had a genuine iron foot…


George Skeggs, cousin of Hammer’s Roy Skeggs, recalls the 60s Soho scene on this blog. Future Sex Pistol Glen Matlock also visited Le Macabre in the 70s:

“When I started working as the Saturday boy at Let It Rock (in 1973), Malcolm McLaren used to take me around these strange places which played a part in early rock & roll. One time we went to Le Macabre. I don’t know how he knew about it, but it was the real thing. The tables were coffin lids and the jukebox only had songs to do with death.”

Glen Matlock, interview transcript for The Look, 2000 (via Paul Gorman blog).

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Image credits: The screenshots above from Look at Life are copyright Rank Organisation and are reproduced here in the interests of education and research into horror culture. No copyright infringement is intended or implied.

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