My 10 mile walk round Whittlesea (*) in the Fens probably wasn’t what I had in mind for retirement on days as sunny as this, but nowhere is without merit, and the Hub would be my last Cambridgeshire pub in the new Beer Guide -more sports bar than pub, 1 other punter, decentish Woodfordes.
Frankly, it’s a place to be visited in winter, at the Straw Bear festival, which is as close to a Wicker Man with beer experience as you’ll get. Vast quantities of local beers get drunk, meaning you’ll even get decent Elgoods.
Unfortunately it looks like the “working man’s” pubs which make the 45 minute train journey worthwhile have taken a hammering from the Spoons since it opened 5 years ago. Old favourites like the Bricklayers, Hero of Aliwal and the Straw Bear all for sale, others closed for lunch. The Spoons had half the town in it. 20 years ago you’d have had John Smiths on cask but no more.
There aren’t a lot of great buildings in the town apart from St Marys, but the riverside walks and nature reserve are decent, and I did reflect on the size of the houses, most of which would fetch £500k 20 miles south.
(*) I prefer this spelling, used at the train station, to the more recent Whittlesey.
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