Saturday 13 May 2023


In lovely sunshine I headed on the bus to Picton. I intended to start at the Coffee House, but unfortunately it wasn't open at one on a Saturday:

It certainly looks like an operational pub, perhaps a two o'clock opener?

Round the corner and my next objective was a picture of the closed Clock, but my database is wrong and it's open:

This plain clean and tidy one room boozer was certainly a welcome sight after the disappointment of the Coffee House.  Inside one group of regulars/staff were keeping the chatter level up, the other sounds being racing commentary.  

Two or three other customers came in as I enjoyed my refreshing Carling, and then a pool game started.  Everyone knew everyone else and all were greeted as they came in (One got "F-ing hell, here comes trouble", his response was to laugh.)  "Where everyone knows your name" indeed.

Literally three doors along the road is the Barley Mow:

Oh dear, the picture is rather on the huh[1], and I've only had one pint!

Another pleasantly done "ordinary" boozer, again with a small group of regulars, all male this time so the chatter sound level was a bit quieter but no less cheerful or friendly.

Someone has put some effort into the pictures, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis, the Beatles, and a little too much LFC.  Very pleasant, anyway.  I sat alone in the back area.

Just across the road is the Cock and Bottle:

A third ordinary pub, this one much bigger than the previous two, and with sightly odd very well done decor.

Rather busier than the other boozers with at least two dozen customers in, and the cheerful chatter, mostly about the racing, filled the rooms.  A steady stream of people carrying betting slips went in and out of the door.

The back room, which was reserved for a private function last time I was here, was open for anyone today.  I seem to recollect that last time I was here an important Liverpool match was on the telly but only for people with tickets for the back room.

It always seems to be lively in here, I remember on a previous visit a very drunk woman was being firmly but carefully ejected by the barman.  Nothing like that today, but constant movement in and out and excited chatter brought back memories of proper pubs twenty-five years ago.

There seemed to be at least three different channels shown on the TVs, causing many of the racing fans to move around the room to watch the next race.  The ones enjoying the sunshine outside were peering in through the windows at the critical moments.

Now, another one I thought was closed, just next door to the Cock and Bottle is the Town Hall:

In contrast to the previous ticks, this is a beautifully decorated up market looking place.  I assume it's aimed at diners but at half three on a Saturday it was pretty empty and I was welcome to come in for a drink, carefully poured by a friendly waitress.

The decor here is really well done, not historical but very good; the bar room where I sat had deep red walls enlivened with multiple gold framed mirrors.  I can't quite put my finger on it, but something about this place is really pleasant.  On the down side, my Guinness was over a fiver.

A group came in, they had a booking for ten people.  As I enjoyed my drink, various foods came out, from my distance they looked like nibbles rather than meals, but the two or three groups in the other rooms seemed to be well fed.  They were certainly keeping the two serving staff busy, I would guess there was another person in the kitchen.

So, one pub unexpectedly shut, and two unexpectedly open, I think that's a good result, let's head for home.

[1] On the huh is East Anglian for askew or crooked.

Pub of the day: Cock and Bottle
Beer of the day: Carling
Miles walked: About a half.
Maybe coming soon: Picton again, Birkenhead Park, Everton

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