Heard in Europe

The Brussels press pack was crying into its beer late last night after one of their favourite watering holes was shut down.

Le Franklin was just a short stagger from the Justus Lipsius building where European Council summits often drag late into the night.

In fact, it was often the only bar still serving at around 3AM, which made it quite frankly a lifesaver.

But it wasn’t just the fact it was open that made Le Frankin such a favourite. It was its total lack of pretence about what it was and why it was there.

It was there for drinking and smoking and drinking some more. A refuge from the Brussels Bubble, peopled by regulars who didn’t go in for anything too fancy.

No be-suited bureaucrats darkened this door. A refreshing fact reflected in its very reasonable prices.

It was a marvellous antidote to the sanitised, over-priced, pretentious, soulless dens that rob Schuman of the little atmosphere it has.

Last night was the first EUCO since Le Franklin closed its doors. It was a proper spit and sawdust pub. It will be sadly missed.

Photo by James Crisp.

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