Saturday, 31 March 2018

Slim Pickings in Speke

I took a bus ride to Speke, and started at the former Fox, now a social club called Dunnies:
Arriving at the front door I discovered one had to buzz for entry.  I decided that meant it wasn't a pub, and turned away, but as I crossed the car park a member of staff called after me and invited me in.

I had to sign in as a visitor so this is definitely a members club, but I was made welcome so I had a pint of Guinness and sat in the comfortable lounge area where there were plenty of members who were watching Liverpool on the TV or just chatting.

There was a children's party in the function room but pleasingly the loud music there was hardly audible in the lounge.

I can't recall much about the Fox, which I visited on a Sunday back in 1999 when everyone seemed to be eating Sunday dinner, so I'm not sure how much this has changed inside.  Nowadays it has very well done plain decor, typical of a social club.

I moved on to see the current status of the other pubs on this large estate.  The Dove and Olive Branch and the Pegasus were closed and demolished some years ago.  A brief search of the internet failed to find a picture of the Dove, which I seem to remember was a rather fine building.  Here's my shot of the imposing Pegasus in 2003:
Noah's Ark Social Club is now a baptist church!  Here it is in 2003:
and in 2018:
The Mill House, still displaying its name, is now a nursery:
And finally, on to the Orient:
This also appeared to be closed, although perhaps I should have pulled on the slightly scary red metal door?

Slim Pickens (1919 - 1983) was a film actor who appeared in many cowboy films but perhaps his most famous role was as Major T.J. "King" Kong riding a nuclear missile to certain death in Dr. Strangelove.


  1. It’s a shame reallly. Many of these pubs closed when I was young so never really had a chance to go in them. I have been in the orient and mill house though and on a good Friday night they were great. Sadly over time though they all suffered the fate, bunch of idiots coming in doing drugs, starting fights and attacking each other and eventually the locals just left.

    Once this happened the criminals had their way and the places just became places you don’t want to go in for love or money.

    The mill house was closed after a knife attack that the owner tried to cover up and as far as I’m aware the orient won’t be opening up as the owner defied lockdown by allowing punters in, this after a similar instant involving knife crime and the owner trying to cover it up.

    So tldr is certain individuals made the pubs places you didn’t want to enter and the land lords didn’t care as long as they were making money.

    1. It's very sad. Speke seems to have suffered more than most areas from this sort of problem, and I really regret now failing to try the door on the Orient.

    2. Yeah it is a shame, community being ripped out of the place. The door being in place isn’t a good sign.

  2. Being an old geezer I remember the dove and Olive very fondly, it was a great pub in the mid 70’s. public bar,lounge Bar, concert room and ladies bar (no single men) perfect pub!

    1. I only went there once, in 1999, I seem to recall it was a pretty impressive building, although a little threadbare in places by then.