Baby Reindeer: Is The Heart a Real Pub in London?

Image Credit: Ed Miller/Netflix

Netflix’s ‘Baby Reindeer’ begins with a cup of tea. When a struggling stand-up comedian, Donny Dunn, first lays eyes on Martha Scott, he is so overwhelmed with empathy mixed with pity towards her that he offers her a cup of tea on the house. He talks to her, lightens her mood, and brightens her day a little bit. He thinks that this would be a one-time thing, but then Martha starts showing up at the pub every single day. From here, things only get much more complicated between the two as Martha starts to actively stalk Donny, for whom the encounter digs up a lot of trauma he’d buried in the past. And all of this begins and unfolds at his place of employment: The Heart. SPOILERS AHEAD

The Heart is a Fictionalised Version of a Real North London Pub

‘Baby Reindeer’ is a somewhat fictionalized version of the real events that took place in writer-actor Richard Gadd’s life. Much like in the Netflix series, he was stalked by a woman he first met at the pub he was working at, where he offered her a cup of tea.

Much like in the show, the woman became a regular at the pub, and from there, things escalated to the point that for three years, he was hounded by the woman from every channel possible. To protect the identity of the stalker and due to other legal reasons, Gadd didn’t use the stalker’s real name. For the same reason, he also used a fictional name for the pub where he used to work.

In the show, The Heart is situated in Camden, and in real life as well, Richard Gadd was employed at a pub in North London, which is where he first met “Martha.” At that time, he was a struggling comedian, trying to make a mark through his fringe art and comedy acts that pushed the envelope of the art form. It took a while for him to break through, and by the time the affair of the stalking came to a legal end, Gadd had left behind his job at the pub and had produced award-winning and cathartic acts that not only established him as a promising comedian but also helped him process a lot of suppressed feelings.

In between this, he continued to work at the pub, where his light flirtations with Martha escalated into something much worse and more life-altering than he’d initially imagined. He brought over the events as they happened to the Netflix series, which used to be a one-man show before the streaming giant found it, and made the pub, which he called The Heart, a central location for Donny and Martha’s story.

Read More: Baby Reindeer: Is Martha Scott Based on Richard Gadd’s Real Stalker?