Monday, April 25, 2016

The Puff Inn

My first visit to St Kilda's Puff Inn was in the spring of 1999. We arrived late in the evening, went ashore in the twilight, and made our way to the pub. The joint was jumpin' - loud music playing, air thick with cigarette smoke, and most of the tables occupied by a mix of sailors, base workers, NTS folks, yotties, naturalists, seasoned skippers, and first-timers like me.

After paying the one-pound membership fee (which, I believe, went to the RNLI), I had a few beers before going out back to pitch my tent in the camping enclosure. I was also able to phone home with the help of an MOD operator using one of the two radio-telephone booths in the hallway. The pub was known for its cheap drinks. They were not allowed to make a profit, and so the booze was sold at cost - you could get a double Scotch for 50p (they did not sell singles).

My next visit to the Puff Inn was in 2004. Inflation had hit St Kilda, and the price of a large Scotch had risen to 94p. I did not know at the time, but it would be my last time in the pub, as they closed it to the public after the events of July, 2005. (See this page for the official statement on why the Puff-Inn is no longer open to visitors.) Oh how I wish I'd taken more photos inside the Puff Inn, as it was well decorated (including the ceiling). Unfortunately, the only photo I took is this one of the sign that hangs in the hallway leading to the rest rooms.


  1. Saddened to learn that The Puffinn no longer welcomes visitors. Spent 3 very enjoyable evenings there in 2003. A visit to St Kilda stays long in the memory.

  2. Spent 6 months 1981 - 83 on St Kilda as part of the Kilda Generating Board KGB I did my stint in the bar when off duty great place with lots of good night's.