UK-based pub company JD Wetherspoon is set to expand its presence in London with the opening of a new pub near Waterloo station in the centre of the city, following an investment of £2.5m.

The establishment, named the Lion and Unicorn, will create 120 jobs and will launch in summer 2024.

The Lion and Unicorn will occupy part of the upper ground floor of the Sidings, a redevelopment of the former Eurostar Terminal.

The area, which opened in 2022, already hosts businesses including Black Sheep Coffee, Nando’s and the world’s largest BrewDog bar.

The pub will feature floor-to-ceiling windows, providing open views of the station concourse.

Wetherspoon’s choice of name, the Lion and Unicorn, pays homage to the Festival of Britain, which took place in 1951 near the location.

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The new pub marks the second multimillion-pound investment by the company in a major central London station in 2024, following the £2.3m Captain Flinders near Euston in January.

With 800 sites across the UK, Wetherspoon reported a surge in sales in its recent half-year results.

The company sees potential to grow to 1,000 pubs and expand existing sites by adding gardens or extending into adjacent buildings.

Wetherspoon chairman and founder Tim Martin said: “We are looking forward to opening our new pub. We are confident it will appeal to a wide range of people and be a great asset to the station itself.”

In October 2023, the Irish Times reported that JD Wetherspoon was planning to sell its pub portfolio in Ireland for €10m ($10.05m).

Having entered the Irish market nearly ten years ago, the company was looking to divest its properties in Cork, Waterford, Galway and Carlow.