Where to find a cheap place for lunch near Westminster Abbey, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. Our pick of the best cafes, takeaways, cheap restaurants and street food within easy walking distance from Parliament Square.
Coronavirus/Covid: London is in Lockdown. Restaurants and cafes are only open for takeaways or deliveries. Pubs are closed. Supermarkets and food markets are open. From 12 April, hospitality venues are allowed to serve people outside.
Wash House Cafe
This cafe is one of the best-value places to eat in the area. It’s part of The Abbey Centre, a community & conference centre. It’s not fancy but it’s close to the Abbey and a good choice for soup, light meals, salads or jacket potato. Daily specials.
Address: 34 Great Smith St, London SW1P 3BU
Open: Monday–Friday 8.30am-6pm, Saturday–Sunday 9am–4pm (Lunch is from 12–2pm)
Tesco Express (Westminster Express)
There’s a small Tesco Express outside Westminster tube station. You can buy a meal deal – a sandwich, soft drink and packet of crisps or fruit for around £3.
Address: Portcullis House, Bridge St, SW1A 2JR
Open: Daily 7am–11pm
For a more varied choice, take a five-minute walk to a pedestrianised street called Strutton Ground. The street is lined with a cheap chain food shops like Crush, EAT, Abokado, Pret a Manger, Greggs and plenty of independent takeaways, cafes and sandwich shops. During the week, there’s a market with stalls selling street food.
The benches behind Christchurch Gardens, on the other side of Victoria St, are a good place to eat your takeaway.
If you want to eat before sightseeing, Strutton Ground is closer to St James’ Park tube station.
Strutton Ground Market
There’s a wide variety of food from around the world at this weekday market – Mexican burritos, Indian wraps, falafel, rotisserie chicken and European classics. The street food stalls are popular with local office workers, so go between 12–1pm to avoid the queues. Expect to pay around £5–£6.
Open: Monday–Friday 12–2.30pm
Blanche Eatery is one of the most pleasant places to eat on Strutton Ground. They have a good choice of quiches, salads, cakes and a daily special to eat in or takeaway.
Address: 29 Strutton Ground, London SW1P 2HY
Open: Monday–Friday 7am–7pm, Saturday 7.30am–5pm
The Laughing Halibut
A traditional chippie with pretty decent fish & chips. Expect to pay around £8 for Cod & Chips to takeaway. If you’re on a tighter budget, go for a fishcake and chips. Prices are higher if you eat in.
Address: 38 Strutton Ground, London SW1P 2HR
Open: Monday–Friday 11.15am–8pm, Saturday 11.15am–4pm
For tea or coffee and a slice of cake, there’s a canteen in the Central Methodist Hall opposite Westminster Abbey. It’s cheaper than Westminster Abbey’s cafe.
Address: Central Westminster Hall, Storey’s Gate, SW1H 2NH
Open: Monday–Friday 8am–4pm, Saturday–Sunday 9am–4pm