I stopped at Tadcaster on the way to my gig in York, to see how they’re getting on with replacing the bridge that’s cut off east from west.
Slowly is the answer.
If you remember what market towns were like in the 1870s, before motor cars and wifi, you’ll find Tadcaster familar.
On Saturday afternoon, it is completely deserted.
That’s not unpleasant as a nosey tourist, but can’t be much fun for the businesses, including a good dozen pubs.
WhatPub lists them all without comment, with the exception of Sam Smith’s brewery tap.
The Angel and White Horse is also the only pub I can remember gracing the Beer Guide (though not this year). It’s a lovely place, and presumably the end point for brewery tours, as a smart couple pop in from an extended session of horse petting.
It’s a gorgeous, but proper pub. Over a pint of their Organic wheat beer, which could well be Paulaner in disguise, I enjoyed some proper pub bants about Pauline, village cricket and “do ya want one” in a bizarre accent closer to Peter Kay than York.
All the pubs seemed to be attractive Sam’s locals. Fortunately the good folk of Tadcaster west aren’t entirely cut off from the ale joys of the east (Black Sheep), with a makeshift pedestrian footbridge the town’s saviour.
But there were a lot of boarded up pubs in town, the floods seemingly the last straw. You’d struggle to believe this place was posher than Goole.