Union Chapel, Islington (London)
- Address: Union Chapel,Compton Avenue, Islington N1 2XD
- Music Type : Various + Comedy
- Owners: Union Chapel
- Capacity: 800 Seated (Upper Balconies and Stalls)
- Nearest station: Highbury & Islington
- For hire: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.unionchapel.org.uk/
Just a short walk from Highbury and Islington station, the iconic Gothic style Union Chapel is one of our favourite London venues. It was the winner of 'Time Out's' favourite London music venue of the year for two consecutive years and for good reason. It is a beautiful music venue. The Union Chapel hosts a variety of music and comedy nights and has a variety of rooms to hire including the church itself.
The Union Chapel is one of London's most characterful venues. A typical gig here involves sitting on a church pew (bring a jacket or jumper for a cushion), drinking tea from a mug whilst enjoying great music in one of London's most beautiful churches. For atmosphere it cannot be beaten.
As you enter the Union Chapel you can literally grab a pew and wait for the gig (seating here is unreserved) or you can head back to the back of the church where there is a full licensed bar on the first floor. The bar also serves home cooked hot food, with proceeds going to help the Chapel's 'The Margins Project'. No alcoholic drinks are allowed in the chapel, but you can buy hot drinks, soft drinks, ice cream and snacks from the kiosk in the chapel foyer.
The interior of the church is beautiful, with the ground floor being a large octagonal shape with a balcony wrapped around above, all stone arches, stained glass windows and the like. The domed ceiling and stone walls mean the acoustics are superb, and every act I have seen here sounded fantastic. I would recommend getting here early enough to get a seat downstairs, as you feel a little bit further away from it all upstairs.
Top tip (1) Seating is unreserved so arrive in good time before doors open (2) They have lovely hot chocolate too....with marshmallows and cream...yum! Very important for winter gigs (3) Bring a cushion as the pews can be a little hard or of course you can join the Union Chapel and they will lend you one.