The Bevvy Almanac

A personal record of hostelleries visited in the pursuit of consuming Real Ale.

Welcome to my Bevvy Almanac

Posted by sm1d on November 25, 2008

[countable] plural bevvies
British English informal
a drink, especially an alcoholic drink
n.   A usually annual reference book composed of various lists, tables, and often brief articles relating to a particular field or many general fields.
[Middle English almenak, from Medieval Latin almanach, perhaps from Late Greek almenikhiaka, ephemeris, perhaps of Coptic origin.]
This website is a record of the various public houses I’ve visited at home on my travels away, usually watching football and groundhopping.
The real ale beverages have been recorded and each giving a 5 star ratings, together with links to the pubs visited.
The website also includes blog posts with pictures of some of my favourite pubs visited both home and away.

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Tamworth visit

Posted by sm1d on December 12, 2010

I visited the Staffordshire town of Tamworth for Gateshead’s Blue Sq. Premier clash at The Lamb Ground on 13th November 2010.

My Bevvy Almanac for an enjoyable day in this quaint town was –

The Silk Kite and The Bole Bridge which are both JDW pubs with Wetherspoons having its autumn beer festival, so plenty of good choice, enjoying

JW Lees ‘Chocoholic’ (3.6%)****

Freeminer ‘ Hairway To Steaven’ (5%)****

Flying Dutchman ‘Juniper’ (4.3%)***

White Horse ‘Snivellers Corner’ (4.7%)***

Woods ‘Purple Haze’ (4.4%)***

I thought the best pub with great beer and quality juke box was the Sir Robert Peel where I supped Church End’ Have Two Brute’ (4.2%)****

Before the match I visited the White Lion – Adnams Bitter(3.7%)*** and afterwards I was disapointed to find The Albert open – but without any beer! So my visit ended with a pint of Bass Premium Ale (4.4%)*** at the Tweeddale Arms.

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Hadrians Wall Whistle Stop Tour

Posted by sm1d on December 2, 2010

Whistle Stops is a joint promotion between the Tyne Valley Line Rail Users Group and CAMRA.  The Hadrian’s Wall County Line between Newcastle and Carlisle has a great selection of real ale pubs, where you can hop on and off the regular train service and explore the many boozers on offer.
Our route began at Newcastle in Central Station, with the platform pub Centurion, supping Black Sheep Best Bitter (3.8%)**** 
Once we arrived in Carlisle, the first port of call was The Griffin which is just outside the station which gave a 50p discount off a pint to CAMRA card carriers, sampled Ennerdale Bitter (3.6%)***
Our time in Carlisle was split, nipping over the border to watch Gretna v Whitby at Raydale Park. The four other pubs visited included both JD Wetherspoon pubs; William Rufus Cumberland Corby Ale(3.8%)**** and Woodrow Wilson which offers 35p off a pint for CAMRA members – Hawkshead Brodies Pride (4.9%)****
There was a 5* pint of  Theakstans Best Bitter at the Howard Arms and again top marks at the Kings HeadYates Cumbrian Ale(4.2%)*****

From Carlisle we headed back east to Hexham, calling at the Tap & Spile – Caledonian Nectar (4.3%) and The Forum (JDW) – Allendale Best Bitter (3.8%)****

Before heading back to the Toon we had one last stop, keeping the best ’til last visiting the legendary The Boathouse in Wylam., where I was spoilt for choice amongst the 15 hand pumps, eventually plumping for Castle Rock Elsie Mo (4.7%) and Consett Steeltown (3.6%)
 The Whistle Stop tour also has optional pubs in Corbridge, Haydon Bridge, Haltwhistle, Brampton and Great Corby, which hopefully we’ll keep for our next little train tour.

Full details –

My Matchday – Gretna 2008

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‘Spoons Tour Plymouth

Posted by sm1d on July 19, 2010

The Union Rooms

The Mannamead
The Britannia Inn


I attended the Plymouth Argyle v Newcastle United FA Cup tie on the first weekend of 2010.There are four Wetherspoons pubs in Plymouth. So after we negotiated a 400+ mile journey we arrived at Home Park at 1030am, giving us plenty of time to complete the Plymouth ‘Spoon set.  😦 

The Gog & Magog

The Mannamead  –   DARTMOOR  ‘Jail Ale’ (4.8%)**** 

The Gog & Magog   –  SHARPS  ‘Doom Bar’ (4%)**** 
The Union Rooms  –  COTLEIGH  ‘Snowy Winter Ale’ (4%)*** The Mannamead

The Britannia Inn is the closest pub to Home Park and so we made this pub our last stop off before the match. Unfortunatly the place was choco-block and there was a queue around the block to get in, so the chance to complete the Plymouth ‘Spoons set was denied. I won’t be making the 810 mile round trip to complete the set, i’ll just settle for ticking three out of four.      

My Matchday – 239 Home Park      






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A Lad in Macc

Posted by sm1d on July 19, 2010

Market Green Tavern

Society Rooms

The Nags Head

The Railway View

Market Green Tavern

Excellent GBG listed pub just a short walk for the train station. Good selection of beers on offer, my personal choice was;

DARK STAR  ‘American Pale Ale’ (4.7%)****

PHOENIX ‘ St Georges Flag Bitter’ (4.3%)

Society Rooms

The Macc branch of Wetherspoons with the usual good choice of food and real ales, i settled for;

BLAKEMERE  ‘Bronze Bitter’ (4.4%)****  THORNBRIDGE  ‘ Ashford’ (4.2%)

The Railway View

The view is one of the nearest pubs to Moss Rose. I called in after the game andis usually frequented by away fans who are made most welcome. However the bar was very busy so I didn’t have time for a pint so I decided to head off to a pub closer to the train station and ended up in..

..The Nags Head

This Robinson pub faces the rail station and is quite a cosy set up with SkySports showing in the beer garden. The Robbo beers i chose were  ‘Dragon Fire’ (3.9%)****  and Dizzy Blonde(3.8%)

My Matchday – 251 Moss Rose

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Shrewsbury revisited

Posted by sm1d on March 15, 2010

The Three Fishes
The Salopian Bar
Montgomery’s Tower
The Shrewsbury Hotel
The Bulls Head


I visited Shrewsbury on 13th March 2010 for Town’s League Two clash with Rochdale at the Prostar Stadium. 

I started off my visit by ticking off the two Wetherspoon pubs in the town. Firstly I called into ‘The Shrewsbury Hotel’ which has been a public house since the 17th century. The pub was previously known as the ‘Welsh Harp’ and later ‘ The Brittania’ before becoming the Shrewsbury Hotel in the 1960’s and became part of the ‘spoons chain in 1998. The bar has a spacious outdoor seating area and car park which looks out towards the River Severn.

Supped – WOODS Shropshire Lad (4.5%) ***

Montgomery’s Tower is a short walk from the Shrewsbury Hotel around by The Quarry public park. This is part of the Lloyds no.1 chain and is nicely decked out with a large dining area and I imagine would get quite busy in the evening.

Supped – SALOPIN Shropshire Gold (3.8%)***

The Salopian Bar has been the winner of the local CAMRA pub of the year over the last two years. The pub is quite cosy with large leather settees and two TV screens beaming live football, on my visit there was two simultaneous matches taking place so there was a choice of which game you wished to view. There’s a good selection of ales on offer as well as a large section of  Belgian beers if that’s what wets your whistle.

Supped – STONEHOUSE Station Bitter (3.9%)***

The Three Fishes is off the main High Street hidden through a passageway in the medieval end of town. This 15th century building stands in the shadow of  St Alkmond’s and St Julian’s churches. The pub offers a choice of six ales brewed both locally and nationally and is a proper local with friendly staff and atmosphere.

Supped – BRAINS The Rev. James (4.5%)***

The Bulls Head is the closest pub to Shrewsbury Rail station. The pub is owned by the Marston Brewery but includes guest ales, one of which was the winner of   – “my best pint of the day”

Supped  –  WYCHWOOD – Paddy’s Stout (4.3%)****

My Matchday – 244 Prostar Stadium

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Decent Beer and No Bull.

Posted by sm1d on October 11, 2009

(click on images to enlarge)

I visited Hereford’s Edgar Street ground for their League Two fixture with Dagenham & Redbridge on 3rd October 2009.

As is usually the case when visiting a new town, I headed to the local branch of Wetherspoons. The Hereford branch  is ‘The Kings Fee’ a short five minute walk from the train station on Commercial Road.

This ‘Spoons’  award winner  was converted from its former life as old supermarket and is decorated with old fashioned oil paintings with the likes of Nell Gwynn and has a spacious courtyard if your nipping out for a tab at the rear.

The bar staff proudly wore their Hereford United shirts,  the club has a deal with the pub, giving 20% off food when presenting your season ticket.

As you would expect in this part of the world, the pub has a large selection of ciders and the usual guest ales, my personal selection was  Thwaies Golden Wunder (4.5%)****


The Victory on St Owen Street is also home to the Spinning Dog Brewery.  The pub is modeled like a galleon, wooden decor with portholes and canons. The bar itself is long and narrow with a pool table and skittle alley next to the brewery at the rear.

The bar had a good selection of music playing, especially if  like myself, your in to ’90’s indie music, there’s also regular live bands playing at the weekends. My pint selection was one of the Spinning Dog ales Top Dog(4.2%)***


A multiple CAMRA award winner, the excellent Barrels is also on St Owen Street. The pub is split into four seperate rooms, including one with a pool table and another with a TV showing live sport.

There’s a large selection of books on show if you fancy a quite read. The Barrel Book Swap Club allows you to take away a book for free  – as long as you replace it with another!

The building once housed the Wye Valley Brewery, so there’s a complete set of hand pumps. I tried Dorothy Goodbodys Golden Ale (4.2%)*** and Butty Bach(4.5%)***

Over all an excellent pub and it comes under the “I wish this was my local” bracket, which is the biggest complement I can give it.


Before I boarded my train home I had time to pop into The Commercial which is the nearest boozer to the station. I don’t know if it was just bad timing or not but the pub was full of crackerjacks in the main bar. However there’s a quiter and less intimidating lounge so I could enjoy my Wye Valley Bitter (3.7%)**** and watch a bit of football on the big screen.

An excellent day out in Hereford with a great selection of pubs. – Great ale and no bull!  My Matchday 229 Edgar Street

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Dundee weekend

Posted by sm1d on September 18, 2009

Dundee double weekend 032Dundee double weekend 034Dundee double weekend 033

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Hucknall Town

Posted by sm1d on September 18, 2009

patter to follow –

Hucknall 002Hucknall 003

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Corner kicks and sips!

Posted by sm1d on May 7, 2009

Brentford’s Griffin Park stadium is famous for being the only ground in the country to have a pub in each corner. Whilst there I naturally visited all four, here’s pics and a brief rundown of each venue.

Royal Oak

Royal Oak

 My first port of call was The Royal Oak, which is more of a traditional local. The bar staff are very friendly and I was made very welcome. If I was ever to revisit Brentford then I think the Oak would probably be my chosen boozer out of the four options available.

supped – John Smiths


The Griffin

 The Griffin is a traditional style pub which has played a major part in the history of Brentford FC. The pub is owned by Fullers and serves a lovely pint of London Pride. The pub has a few seats on the main street as well as a nice beer garden at the side. My only one complained about The Griffin would be the bloke(landlord?)behind the bar who short changed me, taking advantage of a stranger in town.

supped Fullers London Pride ****



The Princess Royal

The Princess Royal is quite a spacious pub which caters for home fans only and has plenty of  TV screens showing live football. The pub has a strange system to gain entry, you have to produce your match ticket then in return your giving a dayglo green wristband, allowing you to return to the pub later on if you wish.

supped– Fullers London Pride 


The New Inn

The New Inn is where away supporters are welcome. The pub has a standing area at the front and a picturesque beer garden at the rear. The walls are decorated with Celtic FC memorabilia, especially tributes to the legendary Lisbon Lions. There’s also a library with a selection of football books, where I read an old Tropical Times annual from 1978. Overall a great pub for away fans.

supped – John Smiths

My Matchday 213 Griffin Park

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Kings X-XX

Posted by sm1d on May 7, 2009

This the pub in Kings Cross that I titled “The pub with no name” as mentioned in the report on the 100FGC blog. You can read more about my experience of this pub at My Matchday trip to Brentford. 

Since then I’ve learned from a couple of readers that the bar does have a name and is actually called the ‘Flying Scotsman’


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