Wetherspoons is one of the better known national pub companies, which started in London. Unlike the spinoffs of Watneys' empire (which was broken up in the 1980s, as a result of the beer orders), Wetherspoons have no special relationship with a single brewer.
Wetherspoons have always been sympathetic towards the real ale drinker, and have several beer festivals during the year.
They also defined a policy of having quiet bars, with no music or television screens. They have departed from this in one instance, in the downstairs bar of Penderel's Oak. But, the upstairs bar is still music and television free. More recently, Wetherspoons have spun off a separate brand called Lloyds No1. which do have music and television screens. If anybody knows of other Wetherspoon branded pubs that are going against this policy, please add the pub names here.
The beer range available in the pubs is quite variable. Some places, e.g. The Crosse Keys are absolutely superb. Others may have just Theakstons and London Pride. In terms of cellarmanship, many of their pubs have been awarded the Cask Marque, and are proud of it. Others are not as good.
Although Wetherspoons is a standard formula, a pub chain of this size inevitably leads to variable quality and atmosphere. (The exception is the toilets, which seem to be of universally high value). It is best to judge each pub individually, and see the reviews here on the Guide for individual London Wetherspoon pubs. Others have tried to copy the formula with varying degrees of success.