Our regular pub social on the 4th Thursday every month. Great for new members; come say hi, and get a feel for the group. Very friendly, happy, relaxed atmosphere, definitely social, fun, and happy; not meat-market.
This is our biggest regular event with 50 of you or more, always a good mix of regulars and first-timers (roughly half and half), guys and girls (not far off 50/50). Always a lot of new faces every time, nearly all of whom came on their own (just a few couples/+1s) which keeps it fresh and friendly to all - regulars chat to new folk. You won't be the only new person (by a long way).
We meet downstairs (in the basement) of the O Bar in Soho - not upstairs anymore as we outgrew it! The stairs down are at the back corner of the ground floor. We usually have the room to ourselves until later on. Look for myself, John (the organiser) - 6' tall, long hair, I match my profile picture; and I usually have a meetup.com logo somewhere on a table/wall to confirm you're in the right place (though I occasionally forget).
Shy? Or what to expect...
I can introduce you to new/regular people from the group and get the conversation started - just ask! Come find me when you get here, I always look out for new members to introduce myself. Expect a normal bar sort of mood, atmosphere, and chat levels - sometimes bi-related, often not, in a club-like sparkly white room with a couple of seated booths. Music is mixed, generally disco/club-oriented and slightly quieter early evening (though we have limited control) but louder later. Cocktails/lagers not ales, of course soft drinks are also available, and there's a happy hour (or two) of cheap drinks if you're there on time. To get a better idea, read some past-event comments or the group reviews.
A little warning: if you turn up later (maybe 9pm-ish onwards) and the pub happens to be busy, it might be hard to get in or to our group with a wait for someone else to leave (from another group, not usually ours) before you can enter. Tell them you're there for John G's meetup group as I reserve space for us, and that should ease getting in. The stairs down are at the back corner of the bar. Bring photo ID if you've been asked for it at all recently anywhere (they have been known to be picky).
We have a twitter presence ( londonbi), and a facebook page, but the meetup site and sometimes twitter are where the info/news/activity is.
Finding O Bar
The O Bar is at 83-85 Wardour St, right on the corner of Brewer St and Wardour Street, near Leicester Square / Piccadilly Circus, or more of a walk from Trafalgar Square or Charing Cross. Its opposite the end of Old Compton St. furthest away from Charing Cross Rd and Leicester Square tube. I am easily recognisable from my profile photo (6' tall, slim, even longer hair). Don't be afraid to ask groups if they're the meetup group or call me to check where we are, though sometimes a text might be better - mobile signal is not always great and in the hours up to it my work's signal is terrible. Hang around a bit if you're early. By later on we've usually taken over most of the space in the room (except on holiday weekends). We have reserved tables from 7.30pm and are there til at least 10.30pm, sometimes til 3am when the club closes (or clubbing elsewhere if enough of us fancy it).