Stroud is an OK town surrounded by superlative countryside.  Most folk will know “Cider with Rosie” land to the north, but I’ve always preferred the more industrialised (i.e.the tractors there still work) area to the south. The Forest Green Rovers FC ground is one of my favourites, veggie burgers notwithstanding.

Minchinhampton and Rodborough Common are easy walking territory which looks great on the OS Map. You can get lost here.

When Greenalls (remember them) started their Premier Lodge chain in the early ’90s, Stroud was the first place we visited, and a £29 bargain it was too.

It’s still an attractive town, but what you always feel should be a Hebden or Totnes actually seems closer to a Trowbridge now.  Fairtrade town status suggests independents, but it’s chock-full of the usual chains.

A plug for Black Book cafe, tucked into the old Co-op building and managing to serve a hot Flat White (as in hot) in surroundings my teenage son would appreciate.

Can’t go wrong with Saxon LP covers

QUIZTIME – How many of those LPs were released after 1985 ?

The Ale House has a fair bit of quirk too, even if the art feels a bit lost in an empty pub (it was 3pm).  Mrs RM would have appreciated its airy feel and tasteful furnishings. A good contrast to the Crown and Sceptre which is altogether more “boozer”.

I feared a bit for the beer from an ambitious range, and bravely chose the local Stroud “Hazy Vermont”, which was pleasingly good (NBSS 3.5).

The other Guide newbie was a 15 minute stride from the station to Rodborough Hill. This is one of the many pubs in the area that could be stuck under several geographic headings in the Beer Guide to confuse GBG tickers. If (South) Woodchester deserves its own heading, so does Rodborough.

The classic edge-of-Cotswold stone exterior disguises an extraordinary interior straight out of Bedminster (or Lower Godney). The blue plaque sets the tone.

Harder to photograph than you might think, and with some of the toilet “art” saved for a future blog, I can only recommend a visit for best effect.

All pointless without good beer, of course, and besides my positive view on the Stroud (NBSS 3.5). I have Louise to vouch for the quality of the Landlord.

If only all pubs with beer ranges as wide and interesting as these two could be relied on for quality, heh ?


  1. I thought it may have been the one in the bottom right hand corner,lots of those album covers bring back memories from looking round record shops in the mid to late 70s,all slightly to heavy for me,i do like the Led Zep 4 album but then who does’nt,i was more into Pink Floyd,Genesis,Hawkwind and got most Tangerine Dream albums,i could not listen to them now though,saw all live apart from Pink Floyd which was a shame.


      1. I am glad i got them when they were only a couple of pounds,i still have all of my old LPs but a player for them,
        I did see most heavy rock type groups when they were not too much older than me,i really liked watching thse types of groups but would never buy an album by them,the Def Leppard tickets at the Assembly rooms cost £3.00,i saw Whitsnake for a pound more and had a great time with mates watching Moterhead on a couple of their tours,the Ace of Spades one was good.
        Talking about this brings back so many good memories.
        I think i will pass on paying £15-£20 quid for an album.


  2. I think “Rock the Night” by Europe is 1986. That must be a 12″ single as they never had a studio album of that name. By the way, a couple of the pics are failing to display – both on PC and phone.


  3. ‘If (South) Woodchester deserves its own heading, so does Rodborough.’

    Rodborough is indeed a separate parish and suburb of Stroud, and the pub was originally listed under Rodborough.

    However, the landlord of The Prince Albert wanted the pub listed under Stroud so that punters looking to visit pubs in the town would see it as an option alongside other Stroud pubs in the Good Beer Guide. This seemed a reasonable request.

    I know this because I am responsible for compiling—though not selecting—the Good Beer Guide entries for Stroud.

    PS. Your photo of ‘the “garden”‘ at The Prince Albert is of the covered yard. There is a proper garden with grass and tables and a view across Stroud up a set of steps from the yard.


    1. Thanks Tim. It’s good to see landlords getting involved in the Beer Guide and that logic is very sensible. I was really commenting on the geographical fluidity of the Guide entries, appearing under different headings from year to year and confusing Beer Guide completists (all 5 of us !)

      Some pubs appear under what seem to be little more than street names, other the closest village, others as a suburb of the main town. All make life interesting 😉


      1. “The landlord of The Prince Albert wanted the pub listed under Stroud so that punters looking to visit pubs in the town would ….” so that’s a put like a landlord of a Slough pub wanting it listed in the GBG under the nearby more popular Windsor.


  4. The Stafford Mudgie says: ‘that’s a [bit] like a landlord of a Slough pub wanting it listed in the GBG under the nearby more popular Windsor’.

    A ridiculous comparison. Slough is a 48-minute walk from Windsor!

    For comparison, according to Google Maps, The Prince Albert is a 17-minute walk from Stroud (retiredmartin reports ‘a 15-minute stride from the station’). The Crown & Sceptre—which is definitely in Stroud—is a 17-minute walk. It is therefore entirely reasonable to list The Prince Albert under Stroud.

    The nearest Good Beer Guide pub to Stroud is The Woolpack at Slad. That’s a 47-minute walk. It would be ridiculous to list it under Stroud—not that the landlord would be likely to want to downplay the Slad/Cider with Rosie cachet anyway!

    It would be interesting to know if retiredmartin would have sought out The Prince Albert if it had been listed under Rodborough instead of Stroud.


    1. Hi Tim. Think that comment was tongue-in-cheek. I’ve visited all the Beer Guide pubs in your patch (and 11,000 overall) , some real crackers, and the location conventions are intriguing rather than irritating.

      It’s your patch, your Guide, and we pub visitors do really appreciate all the effort in getting the Guide out each year. Great work.


  5. Hi Martin,

    I’ve posted a link to your blog post on the Facebook page for Stroud CAMRA, together with your three photographs of The Prince Albert. It is a closed group, so I don’t know if the link will allow you to see the post in situ. Are you on Facebook? If so I can admit you to the group. If not, your ëmail address will do.

    Let me know if I’ve got anything wrong and I will correct my post.

    An interesting blog post about Stroud featuring two pubs—The Ale House and The Prince Albert—with a passing mention of The Crown & Sceptre. It’s from 19 August 2016 by Martin Taylor, a retired NHS employee ‘doing long walks around UK and the world to record the great bits, navigating by Good Beer Guide pubs and stopping for the odd gig. Chinese takeaway tips welcome’.

    On Twitter he gives his location as ‘Cambridge and the North’, so I think Bedminster must refer to the décor, style and ambience at the Albert that he features in three photographs (I do miss that blue wall in the yard). I’ve searched his blogs for a post about Bedminster to confirm this, but the only post that fits the bill is about The Oxford in Totterdown—which he locates in Bedminster.

    His most interesting observation about Stroud is:
    ‘It’s still an attractive town, but what you always feel should be a Hebden or Totnes actually seems closer to a Trowbridge now. Fairtrade town status suggests independents, but it’s chock-full of the usual chains.’


    1. Hi Tim.

      I’m on Facebook, though to be honest only because that allows me to see Opening Times for pubs that use Facebook but not Twitter.

      By the way, that Stroud post is 2 years old, hopefully there’ll be a new pub or two in the Beer Guide for me to visit in the Autumn ! Have just reviewed Wotton and Charfield in your area (not sure where Stroud CAMRA starts and stops).



  6. I’ve applied to be your friend on Facebook. If you accept me, I can add you to the Stroud CAMRA Facebook group. You may find some of the posts relevant to future expeditions.

    Alternatively, you can ask to join the Stroud CAMRA group without befriending me and I will approve your membership.



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