This blog is guilty of inverse snobbery and proud of it.  However, Mrs RM is a fine lady with great appreciation of the real ale, but will always prefer the shiny craft bar to the scruffy “old men’s pub”, which is why I’ve never taken her in the Olde Vic (her loss).  But then she is Tunbridge Wells royalty.

Brunning & Price pubs might have been designed for Mrs RM.  Elegant buildings, three Quinoa (“Quinn-oah“) options, well-spoken punters, clean toilets. Ugh.

But then, some people prefer seating areas for drinkers that look like this;


to faded red bench seating along the walls.  Takes all sorts.

Those glorious Woking suburbs

Back in the Woking suburbs (sort of), Chobham is as posh as it sounds.  Where Knaphill has a modern military firing range to keep craft beer out, Chobham has more traditional armoury.


There’s some pleasant, well sign-posted walks, and the sort of gardens Mrs RM believes I should aspire to. I’d pave our garden over with tarmac if I could.  The main shops sold riding equipment, stoves and haute couture (no idea).

The highlight by some way is St Lawrence Church, which has been built in the attractive location of the garden of B&P’s White Hart (top).


Ain’t that just lil’ ol’ England !” as an American tourist once said to me. And it is.

Chobham is a small two-pub village, but obviously Brunning & Price see this as a destination dining pub, in the way that a Spoons probably wouldn’t be.

As the old bloke popping in for a half of their cheapest ale (£1.90 !), I’m clearly not their target audience, and the number of pints of real ale (from an impressive list) that I see poured is often scarily low.

Perhaps if the pump clip proudly proclaimed their house bitter as from Rochdale (well, Heywood) it would have folk switching from Prosecco.

I’d scored it NBSS 2.5 and was feeling a bit grumpy about the low back Chesterfield being the only seat not obviously set for diners (apart from the seats at the bar, which don’t count), but then another chap had a pint of it and mine seemed to perk up a bit in empathy. Here’s the proof of cask being ordered in a Brunning & Price;


And to be fair, there was a bit of pub banter as well, not all of it from chaps in polo shirts with jumpers round their shoulders

Not as bad as I’d hoped feared.

NB I don’t know if Mrs RM gets the “benefit” of the soft porn that us Gents get in Brunning & Price pubs; if so she’s never mentioned it.


  1. in the dim and distant past, I used to keep a card index of worthwhile pubs, which featured the White Hart at Chobham. Here’s what I wrote in 1982:

    Courage Best Bitter, Directors Bitter (H)
    Hot and cold bar snacks. Not Sundays. Recommended Mushroom Bistingo.

    Large old village pub next to church, modernised inside but not spoilt. Very popular at weekends – young people in “public” side, no shortage of money in lounge. Car park too small, so be careful!


  2. Couldn’t you just put something back into the industry and dig up your garden and plant it full of experimental hop varieties? There are allegedly shortages every year, so some money could, presumably, be made out of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ah, Wild Weather Ales.

    Because nothing says “Serendipity” more than a shades-wearing rainbow-riding space cat sandwiched between two Pop-Tarts.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I went to Tunbridge Wells once. I daren’t enter the J. Sainsbury’s shop next to the railway station.

    In case I ever visit, are there any village byelaws which result in people being shot using that cannon? If so, I could do with a heads up else I may be doomed. I probably am anyway mind,

    I’m surprised at you making the soft porn comment on a website that your Mother might read. I make no further comment on that subject at this time.


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