New Beehive, Bradford

Not a new pub, but a photographic opportunity too good to miss as I spent an evening in one of Bradford’s iconic pubs. Even with a £5.40 train fare to Leeds, staying in Bradford was still the cheapest option.

With the Milton Keynes Dons massif in town ahead of their crucial fixture at Valley Parade, I feared a lively atmosphere in the town’s pubs. Luckily, they’re saving themselves for their friendly in Kingstonian in 11 days time.


Plenty of real ale loving Bantams in the New Beehive, always a favoured pre-match pub.  I’d forgotten how gorgeous this place is, particularly the room below, though there’s gas lights in all rooms. On a par with Fanny’s, easier to get a seat, and with a refreshingly tight but interesting beer range these days.  No idea what they were talking about.


The bedrooms are clean and very well-priced, though as you’ll have seen there’s a lot of budget competition.  The Ibis and Premier Inn don’t have the Beehive’s views from the back door though.  It’s an experience, and you should have experiences when you’re alive, rather than when you’re dead (I read that on an Aussie’s T-Shirt once, probably).

And in the morning, after Eggs Benedict and a Flat White in Fork, I was even closer to the city’s other gem.  The Bargain Den sells big bag of sweets at prices to make Mr Simms look like a crook.  No signage, no indication of weight, just £1 for a vast bag of mints, candy and “stuff”.We are here to Treat You, not to Cheat You“.  A motto for life there.


This is a cheap city, and scruffy in patches.  In fact, the new shopping centre to the east and Sunbridge Wells  in the centre  only highlight just how scruffy the west side is.

But when the sun shines on it (and it was snowing on Manchester) the Alhambra looks splendid as ever, even if you’re not heading for a breakfast curry.


And can there be any better place to work a hangover than feeding 10ps into one of these games machines in the National Media Museum while groups of schoolchildren look on enviously.

No, there can’t.




6 thoughts on “A NIGHT IN THE BEEHIVE

  1. Martin, I agree with you about the finances of Bradford. When I was a student. I worked out it was cheaper to get a train to Bradford and have a curry in the Kash than have a curry in Leeds. You got a better curry as well, better even than the converted toilet block in Hyde Park.

    The Milton Keynes Dons do not exist. There are only 91 teams in the Football League.

    Mappiman, Bradford is beautiful, wonderful and shite all at the same time. I look forward to our 3-0 defeat at Valley Parade next season. Ground tick required.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My wife went to university in Bradford. I always enjoyed visiting and thought it a much underrated town. Was terrifying to drive around though! Glad the big hole in the ground is finally the much-fabled shopping centre.

    Last time we went to the Beehive there were 3 delightful kittens running about. Are they proper grown up pub cats now?


  3. After a bit of digging I realised that the New Beehive had spent a spell as the Bradfordian, under which name I had visited it in the 1980s. Lovely pub, but I wonder if it ever gets the level of custom it deserves. No pub cats in evidence yesterday, sadly.

    Agreed on how Bradford is a juxtaposition of handsome and tatty.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. We were in there before noon, but even then there were groups of drinkers at more than half the tables. Given the typical age and gender profile of Sam’s customers, we fitted in very well 😉

        The New Beehive was actually shut when we turned up, but we spotted the landlord round the back and persuaded him to open up specially for us.

        Liked by 1 person

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