The Bevvy Almanac

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

Archive for the ‘AWAY’ Category

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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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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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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Port of Crawl

Posted by sm1d on February 3, 2009


The Calvert Court

Stockport is a canny little town with a rich choice of quality pubs, there are ten entries in this years ‘Good Beer Guide’, an excellent place for a good pub crawl. However I was here to visit Edgeley Park, the home of  Stockport County aka ‘The Hatters’, but I did find time to squeeze in a wee pub crawl around the Market Place area of the town.

The town’s Wetherspoons pub is ‘The Calverts Court’ in St.Petersgate, named after the family which occupied this site in the late 19th century. On entry the pub reminded me of the Wetherspoons pub in Hyde, set up in a similar way with the bar to the right, tables to the left and a big floor space in between.

This JDW was nothing special, decked out in the usual red, cream and brown combo, the lass who served me was a right misery guts, she must have just started a double shift and had a face like a slapped arse. I must say that the pint I had was georgeous, I don’t know whether to give a 4 or 5 star rating,  maybe with this being my first pint of the day, it maybe clouded my judgement, nudging it towards a top score, I won’t know until I get to try this pint again elsewhere.

supped – Bath Ales  ‘Barnstomer’ (4.5%)**** +half


Pack Horse

The Pack Horse is a traditional old fashioned pub found in the shadow of St. Mary’s church, making it easy to find, unlike a few of the other pubs in the area, which saw me getting lost a few times. (Were you drunk Sir!…Ed) This is a cosy spot if you fancy a quite pint, the pub has a main bar with two lounges, one with a pool table. They specialise in ales from the Cooper Dragon Brewery brewery in Skipton, North Yorkshire, with a choice of four hand pumps from there suppliers. A very nice pub and one I’d recommened.

supped – Coopers Dragon Best Bitter (3.8%)****



Arden Arms


The Robinson’s Brewery lies in the heart of the town centre, this family run brewery has been producing quality ales since 1838, supplying over 400 pubs, with quite a few in Stockport itself, one of them being the ‘Arden Arms’. The building was a former mortuary and is a Grade II listed building, part of CAMRA’s National Inventory. The pub’s curved bar gives it a cramped feel, but don’t let that put you off, as there is a snug and seating area serving lunch, which seems very popular with the punters. Another one of Stockport’s many hostellries that I’d recommened, but don’t be put off by the fact that this abode once stored dead bodies, as I found the Arden Arms to be dead good!

supped – Robinson’s ‘Unicorn’ (4.2%)****

My Matchday – 200 Edgeley Park

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Revisiting Eric!

Posted by sm1d on January 19, 2009

The Eric Bartholomew

The Eric Bartholomew

  When I was a kid, our family holidays were spent in Morecambe, at the nearby Pontins holiday camp at Middleton Towers.(The home of that legendary fried bread!..Ed) Last summer after a holiday break in North Wales, I came off the M6 to visit Morecambe, it’s been a good 30 years since I was last there, and my main reason for the fleeting call was to see the statue of one of my comedy heroes Eric Morecambe on the seafront.


We spent a couple of hours looking around the town before heading off home, with the most noticable thing about the town was there are stacks of public houses, mentally noted for future reference for when I return to visit Morecambe FC, that return came less than six months later for The Shrimps League Two clash with Gillingham on 17th January.


I started off with my usual visit to the local JD Wetherspoons, whichever town I visit I always stop off at the local JDW (I have to, IT’S LAW!..Ed) The Morecambe branch is named after the great man himself; Eric Bartholomew, and is found at the bottom of Euston Road, between the Arndale Centre and the seafront. I was disappointed to find the pub bearing the comedians name but with no pictures and memorabilia inside, just the usual Wetherspoons fare and layout. There was a copy of the latest ‘Wetherspoons News’ on the pub table, I read that the pub chain have won the Corporate Provider ‘Loo of the Year’ awards, congratulations to them on winning such an prestigious award, so not only am I honoured to drink in their hostelries but proud to piss against the silver aluminium in the country‘s #1 bogs.

Supped – Burton Bridge ‘Golden Delicious’ (3.8%)****

Smugglers Den

Smugglers Den

I then headed off to Morecambe’s oldest pub the ‘Smugglers Den’ which is tucked away in Poulton Road, hidden off the main Euston Road/Lancaster Road and is well worth seeking out. The pub is allegedly haunted and lives up to it’s name, with the décor having artefacts and pictures of a Smugglers theme, with the main focal point being the stain glass windows displaying scenes of shady dealings. The pub is very cosy with a good selection of beers, I decided on a pint of ‘Spitfire’ with Morecambe’s opponents being Gillingham I thought a bit of equality was needed, so I took the Kentish Ale as my bevvy of choice. The ’Smugglers’ is a smashing little pub and I would highly recommend a visit, not unless your shit scared of ghosts of course!

York Hotel

York Hotel

Supped – Kentish Ale ‘Spitfire’(4%)****

The York Hotel is a good five-ten minute walk from Christie Park, further along Lancaster Road. This seems to be the usual pre-match pub for away fans, there’s a pool room at the back of the bar with the walls covered with a large collection of scarves donated by visiting supporters. The pub also has a main bar with a dining area at the front, there’s Sky Sports showing in the bar and pool room and a adjoining (smokers) terrace with seats at the back. The pub stocks Everards real ales and Black Sheep Bitter and seems very friendly, a good pub choice if you’ve only got time for a pre match ‘quicky’

Supped – Everards Beacon (3.8%)****

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Honest Lawyer in Scunny

Posted by sm1d on December 2, 2008

hlawyer-wwwfootballandrealaleguidecouka-streddes-guideI made my first trip to Scunthorpe in North Lincolnshire for United’s home game with Leicester City at the top of Football League One at Glanford Park.

My first port of call, just around the corner from the train station, was the Honest Lawyer (surely that’s a metaphor!…Ed) on Oswald Road, which was formerly the home of a Co-op Society grocery store, when opened in 1935.  Unfortunalty it was just a fleeting visit, as I was meeting up with some of the 100FGC squad at the Wetherspoons ‘Blue Bell’ pub further down the street. However I found the pub to have a great atmosphere and seems very friendly and welcoming, as well as a good beer selection there’s also food to be had, which looks top quality, served on big plates with generous helpings. The Honest Lawyer is handly placed next to the train station, so is a good stop off point while waiting for your train, making it the ideal place to start and finish a visit to Scunthorpe. 

visited 22nd November 2008

supped – Timothy Taylor Landlord (4.3%)*****

My Matchday 194 Glanford Park

(picture source Stedders Guide

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