Located just 1 block from Kits beach on Laburnum and Cornwall, the Billy Bishop Legion is akin to a secret English pub right in the middle of a residential neighbourhood. With a wonderful assortment of 60+ citizens (who have fought for the freedoms we take for granted) it is also filled with activist young folks who want to share a pint of wisdom with their elders. The mix makes for a guaranteed good time and great conversations by the fire.
The Billy pub is open to everyone over 19 years old and as locals know, it is also home to renters who provide afterschool care, yoga, dancing classes etc. My favourite events at the Billy are the Friday night roast beef dinner (just $10.) and the Shrove Tuesday Morris dancersâ€¦you just have to be there.
It’s been a few years now since I started going to the Billy and here’s what I’ve learned:
- Always greet the members with a smile
- Take off your caps when you enter the building
- Tip the bartenders wellâ€¦especially because the price of alcohol is so low compared to the rest of Kitsilano
- Respect others
- Take time to make friendsâ€¦ this is a community of choice
- Become a member. The Billy cannot exist without new members and the cost of membership ($60. Per year) gives you membership to every corresponding legion in the world from Fiji to London
- Volunteer. This is Kitsilanoâ€¦ volunteerism is part of our blood (Greenpeace and David Suzuki Foundation started here). Just a few hours a month makes a huge difference and you can drink guilt free for the rest of the month.
The Billy Bishop has been the best-kept secret of Kits beach for many decades. Its time you discovered why. Everyone is welcome, membership is highly encouraged, for facility rentals, ask within.
The Billy Bishop can be found at 1407 Laburnum Street.
Last modified: May 7, 2009