There’s a real possibility that BRAPA will complete Berkshire before me, and that won’t do at all.

Regular readers will know that Maidenhead isn’t high on my list of great towns, though it’s worth a trip to the Conservative Club if you’re an American tourist with too positive a view of our fair isle.

I’m looking forward to a return overnighter in Reading though, if only to get Christmas shopping out of the way in February.


My latest lone tick is bang in the middle of those two towns, in what looks a tiny village with three pubs.

The Cricketers is clearly the Littlewick Green local, and if western Maidenhead ever got any visitors they’d presumably spend their time watching their heroes take on the might of Chalfont St Giles XI, pint of Peroni in hand.  I’ve no idea what happens if the ball hits the tree here.

This is a typical Bucks pub, somehow in Berks, and feels a million miles from the gastro efforts along the A4.  The landlord is nearly old-school (a top retiredmartin compliment); the room lay-out isn’t.  That table in front of mine was virtually touching the bar. Go to the back of the class if you didn’t spot that instantly.


It’s the sort of unfussy dining pub with proper fires you still find in rural Kent (burger under a tenner !), and like Shep Neame the Badger beers are a bit so-so. I think they always have been.

The thin glasses don’t help, I don’t understand the branding (what is First Call ?) and ale sales here take a back seat to coffee and coloured ciders. That said, the beer was cool, clear and clean-tasting on a Monday lunch time (NBSS 3).

I would love to have brought you some of the septuagenarian gossip drifting in from the dining room, but I wasn’t joining the ladies for lunch, and instead had the public to myself. Well, shared with the finest hits of Annie Lennox and Cliff Richard, anyway.

Five points for explaining todays post title. It’s nothing to do with Midsomer Murders.


  1. Keep the home fires burning almost sounds like a Churchill quote. Therefore my answer is a connection to Dixon of Dock Green.

    That bench pointing away from the bar is bizarre. I can only presume that there is something to hide underneath.


      1. Technically I left Simon to fend for himself on a Saturday night in Brixton, with instructions on how to get to Croydon. I do admit to feeling a little guilty over the lack of travel advice provided to Simon on Sunday.


  2. Not a George Michael connection, but this made me smile:

    Novello fulfilled a long held ambition to appear in the Temple scene, dressed in what may be described as an Aztec-look halter, Wellington boots, Automobile Association gauntlets and an oversized black nappy.

    The effect was striking rather than fetching.

    Photographs of this event suggest that his legs were not in the same class as his profile, and after some performances his ballet debut was cut from the production.
    This was regrettable, as it can only have added to the gaiety of the occasion.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m no fan of Hall and Woodhouse beer, (having grown up in a village close to the brewery it was often a case of drinking their beer or switching to Panda Pops) but I’ve always thought their branding was quite clear.
    They pitch themselves as a rural brewery, using the Badger logo on all of their output and, with the notable exception of Tanglefoot, invoking images of other rural creatures to name their individual beers – Firkin Fox, Hopping Hare, Fursty Ferret, Pickled Partridge etc… First Call refers to the first call of the rooster each morning – a rather romanticised rural image – and is an amendment to the beer’s original name, First Gold, which references the hops used in the beer.
    Good branding or not, the beer is still mediocre at best!


    1. I wasn’t very clear in the post. I like beers to be called Mild, Bitter, Pale or Tanglefoot, and to know what the stock beer is. I’ve no idea what First Call means in terms of style, but im no hops expert. The beer always strikes me as competent but dull.


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