Mr Wu, 28 Wardour Street, City of Westminster, London W1, 2002, 2015, 2016 (top to bottom) • Ever-present fixture in Soho’s Chinatown – even the writing on their window been […]
Lucky Fish Bar, 338 Kennington Lane, Borough of Lambeth, London SE11, 2015 • Superb old school frontage and name. In 2017 it was updated, but is still very traditional looking […]
Silver Sea House, 62 Exeter Road, Exmouth, Devon, 2009 • Lovely name and sign on frontage obscured by red van (possibly owned by bloke waiting inside). It was unchanged by […]
Happy Swan, 39 Chipstead Valley Road, Coulsdon, Borough of Croydon, London, 2001 • Classic plastic sign and festive plant hierarchy in window. Still exactly the same in 2017 (minus Christmas […]
Woks Wong, The Mikado Buildings, 79 Elm Grove, Southsea, City of Portsmouth, 2016 • Punning Chinese takeaway in the aptly oriental Mikado Buildings, named after the Gilbert & Sullivan opera. The […]
The Imperial Pearl Co, 24 Hatton Garden, Borough of Camden, London EC1, 2004 and 2012 • Neon sign in London’s faded jewellery quarter. Presumably it’s named after Imperial China, as […]
New Star, 8a Holmesdale Road, Reigate, Surrey, 2002 • Unusual ‘evening lunch’ offer meets impressive 1960s door handle at a matching angle. New Star’s DIY branding remained completely unchanged until 2014, and though the […]
Wok Inn, 88 High Street, Reigate, Surrey, 2002 • Always nice to see a pun on Wok. Later became Mexicode Fresh Mexican Kitchen, leaving the nearest wok outlet as Gourmet Wok, […]
Golden Horse, Weekes, 178 Fawcett Road, Southsea, City of Portsmouth, 2016 • Fantastical handcrafted takeaway next to unit with 1950s-looking ghost sign. There was a garage elsewhere in Southsea called Weekes […]
Holy, 540 Holloway Road, Borough of Islington, London N7, 2016 • Unusual name for a Chinese takeaway – perhaps they meant divine. But it seemed a good option for Christmas day…
Chung’s, 1012 Govan Road, Govan, Glasgow G51, Scotland, 2010 • Special dishes in long trays – what more could you want? Still there in 2015.
Ying Ho, London Shoe Rebuilder J. Poole, 232 Upper Richmond Road, Putney, Borough of Wandsworth, London SW15, 1981 • Now for a few really ancient shots I took from a bus […]
Woo Lot, 592 Lea Bridge Road, Leyton, Borough of WalthamForest, London E10, 2016 • Great name, great (literally) sign.
Kam Garden, 14 Bouverie Road West, Folkestone, Kent, 2008 • Sweet green Chinese-style rooflet which stayed even after it went Indian as Copper and Spices.
New Happy Swan, 120 Fortis Green Road, Muswell Hill, Borough of Haringey, London N10, 2016 • Old happy paint job in Muswell Hill’s distinctive St James’s Parade, by Edwardian developer James […]
Vivian Patisserie, 62 Goldhawk Road, Shepherd’s Bush, Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, London W12, 2016 • Its patisserie identity seems to predate the Chinese cafe within. Back in 2008 it was […]
Olympic Bar Sandwich Restaurant, 130 Lower Marsh, Waterloo, Borough of Lambeth, London SE1, 2003 (top), 2010 (middle), 2011 (bottom) • Chinese take-away boasting various wonky title hierarchies over the years: Olympic Bar Sandwich Restaurant (or […]
Clifford Shirt M’f’g. Co. Ltd., 37-43 Berry Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • ‘Royal’, what an evocative area code! This is my last Liverpool shopfront for now, in the red and green […]
Sans’ Cafe, 2 Lightbody Street, Liverpool 3, 2008 • A famous greasy spoon for 40 years, albeit sans apostrophe knowledge. Owner Tseng Chikhao died in 2014; there’s a great article here. The […]
San-San, 59 Lime Street, Liverpool, 2003 • My last example of neon from Liverpool Chinatown’s traditional restaurants – a breed that are slipping away, as they have done in London. This one […]
China City, 48 Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Austere by Chinatown standards, but I like the plasticky faux marble. These days it has no neon, looks even more functional, […]
Chow’s House, 26 Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Traditional neon welcome that was still the same in 2014, but there are no reviews on Tripadvisor so the restaurant has presumably closed down.
North Garden Restaurant, 30 Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Liverpool’s Chinatown used to have decorative frontages with nice neon, but signage has got more functional over the years. This restaurant is still there, but the neon […]
Ma Bo, 16 Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Legendary old-school restaurant in Liverpool’s Chinatown, which has been going over 40 years and still looks the same. It gets generally excellent reviews for […]
Oriental Food Wholesale & Retail, 31 Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • I can’t find a 31 Nelson Street now, so maybe it got knocked down.
The Lux Company, 50 Berry Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Name redolent of a 1980s new romantic pop group and design redolent of a 1980s Time Out travel ad. The internet means […]
98p Chinese Shop, Pallasades, above New Street Station, New Street, Birmingham, 2005 • Talk about a race to the bottom. 98p Shop’s erstwhile home, the horrible 1970s Pallasades (sic) shopping arcade, […]
Hong Kong Garden, 199 Mile End Road, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E1, 2015 • Nice tiles! Pity about the ubiquitous superimposed shutters, though.
Golden Dragon, 228 Mile End Road, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E1, 2015 • Chinese takeaways are one of the last redoubts of old-school grunge on this increasingly gentrified east end […]
Wok This Way, 48 High Street, Oakham, Rutland, 2015 • Nice bushes! Less traditional than it looks – specials include Quorn and gluten-free dishes.
Yuk Chuen, 36 Clapham Road, Borough of Lambeth, London SW8, 2005 • With a name like ‘Yuk’, they needed to try a bit harder. Later morphed into Lontosa, a Chinese-Malaysian-Thai restaurant.
Sun Hong, 36 High Street, Caterham, Surrey CR3, 2001 • Pathetic tinsel, festive colours – it could only be a Chinese take away in the dog days of Christmas. The pointless […]
East & West Supermarket, 489 New Cross Road, Borough of Lewisham, London SE14, 2002 • Typically blasted shopfront from New Cross, where continents collide in a bus stop scrum. Now Penny’s […]
Wok U Like, 31 Baylis Road, Waterloo, Borough of Lambeth, London SE1, 2002 • What a superb name. And it really does look like it serves exquisite cuisine! Has since gone […]
Wing Wah Fish Bar, 174 High Street, Herne Bay, Kent, 2004 • I always like a name that rhymes. In a decisive change of national identity, this later became the Britannia […]
Internet Cafe, 163 Charing Cross Road, Borough of Camden, London WC2, 2005 • Somehow the faux-computer font doesn’t manage to make this place look high tech. It was later razed to […]
Burma Fish Bar, 6 Hackney Road, Borough of Hackney, London E2, 2002 • More old-style Hoxton – note yummy £1 menu. Now reinvented as internet caff Burma@Access.
Hotel de Boulogne (London Chinatown), 27 Gerrard Street, City of Westminster, London W1, 2002 • Belle epoque mosaic step now adding an incongruous continental flavour to Soho restaurant London Chinatown.
Hing Loong, 59 Tower Bridge Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2002 • Faded takeaway with semi re-inked letters; it’s still there, with new sign.
Drury Lane Diner, 176 Drury Lane, Covent Garden, Borough of Camden, London WC2, 2002 • Cheerfully ramshackle takeaway in an eclectic corner of theatreland; it’s now the less colourful East Thai.
Tienda Tropical, Green Jade, 217-219 Holloway Road, Borough of Islington, London N7, 2005 • Fanciful interlude on a pretty grim thoroughfare – I love it when whole buildings get divided up […]
Hop Kweng, 1 Majestic Parade, Sandgate Road, Folkestone, Kent, 2008 • Superb decorative facade more redolent of a 1960s New Town such as Crawley than a genteel seaside shopping parade. I […]
Sun Sun, 45 High Street, Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, 2001 • Sunny by name, sunny by nature. Now the very dark and doomy-looking Oriental Chef.
Chung Wah Supermarket, circa 48 Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Picturesque slice of Liverpool ruination swept away by ugly new flats.
The China China, 13 Massets Road, Horley, Surrey, 2002 • A repetitive name matching the elegant symmetrical facade. By 2012 called New China, with paint peeling, and to let.
Chinatown Quality Foods, 2 Knight Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Quality never lets you down…
Good Man Chinese Food, 193 New Kent Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2001 • Still there, despite bearing the unusually frank food message of jumbo, junk and horse.
Hong Kong Garden, 22 Woolwich Road, Borough of Greenwich, London SE10, 2002 • Now says New Hong Kong Garden on a garish magenta sign, but the yellow stripes beneath remain.
Brothers Garden, 3 Pier Road, North Woolwich, Borough of Newham, London E16, 2005 • A magnificently tumbledown corner now occupied by Harvest Chinese Takeaway. A DLR connection has led to a lot of […]