We spent Monday night in Newark in our campervan. “This is life, this is living”, as Allo Darlin’ once sang.

I recently suggested that craft was never going to make it as far along the Trent as Newark and Lincoln, never mind Grimsby and Skegness.

I was wrong. This is the sight that greets you in Beer Guide newbie Flying Circus, opposite Newark castle.


Despite the new Greene King craft range, and the BrewDog taps, which often come with “new GK“, I think this is another independent venture in Newark, joining the excellent Vaults and several decent cafes along Castle Gate.



At 1pm on Monday it wasn’t busy, but ticking over. Live entertainment is clearly the big draw, particularly when the dead parrot sings. The local Newark cask was joined by Spitfire, which seemed weird. But Kent’s finest was the only real ale I saw bought, and not in an ironic way either.

I thought this was a quirky and classy place, similar in attitude to the Dog & Doublet in Wolves.  The cask was OK (NBSS 3), the GK keg again Mrs RM’s preference.  They had Chimay Blue on tap, and even offered a decent sized taster of it, but at £5 a half Mrs RM was having the cheap stuff.

We then missed the train, after I looked for street art and underestimated the time it takes an old person in Newark to buy a train ticket at a rural station (9 minutes). Mrs RM had the moral high ground then, and I knew it was in my interest in letting her have that Chimay in the Prince Rupert.

Mrs RM gets her Chimay

That bottle of Blue was a fiver as well, the going rate for craft in Newark, but forgiveness is priceless.

Prince Rupert is a lovely pub, but I scared a few old people and children (who should have been at school) by kneeling on the floor to get the best shots of the Bass signs. Not for the first time.

You’re probably wondering if the bottled Chimay tasted different to the kegged.  It didn’t. The Black Hole Cosmic was excellent though, paired with the Rupert’s giant pizzas.

The Mick Thurlby pub empire is now trading under the name of Knead.  They’re a bit foody, and not cheap, but they’re the closest the east has got to a Brunning & Price/Joule’s hybrid at the moment.

17 thoughts on “ANCIENT & MODERN IN NEWARK

  1. Rupert’s pizzas are big and tasty. Dick and I each ordered one and could only eat about half of each pizza. It felt a little strange since a woman at the next table, who weighed about 120 pounds, ate a whole one on her own.


  2. Ive been to Newark three times this year and also took the wife there this year,we love the town lots of decent pubs,we did the Flying Circus this year and thought it was average,the Prince Rupert really impressed my wife.
    Of note we did both of those pubs under different names many years ago,the Prince Rupert was originally called The Woolpack and the frontage as changed from a typical looking town pub to now what looks like an old pub,all false.
    The Flying Circus was called The Exchange in the 80s and was a free house with real ale on which was of note at the time as the town was dominated by keg John Smiths tied houses.


      1. Yes i do have a decent photo of the original Woolpack,
        The best way to see it is take a look on the Pubs Galore site that i contribute to,i did a recent review of the Prince Rupert and added photos of the pub under both guises,you will not believe the difference between the two photos.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. No i have not done that pub yet Martin,
    Unless it has changed its name since my visit there with Nottingham Camra on the 3rd December 1988,no photos taken in Stamford as all Nottingham Camra pub crawls during the Football season were done after a Forest home game,so too dark when we got there,i only managed 16 pubs on that evening session.


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