Greetings from riot-torn Hamburg, the new centre of the unintentional street art world.


I had a car that looked like that once. Perfectly driveable.

I can’t wait to write up this Scandi-German trip, but still a few proper pubs to tell you about first.

Into Wales, almost as foreign a trip as BRAPA flying into Cornwall for 25 GBG ticks. Well done, Simon.

Connahs Quay.PNG

Connah’s Quay is a challenging start to Wales, particularly if you’ve just had a day in Chester. It must seem like you’re entering a different country.

I’d love to know how many tourists it gets. This was our fourth visit, which should mean “Freedom of Flint” status. Back in ’94, I escaped a conference at the University of Chester to explore the exotic sounding Flintshire coast, only for my Popular Plus to conk out on the B5126.

The RAC arrived while I was in Delicious getting my chips and sweet & sour sauce. I was classy, even back then. I offered the RAC man, who’d come from the Quay, a chip.


Glad to see it’s still there, unchanged, much like the rest of a High Street made up of discount stores and a burnt out building that I’m sure used to be a basic Oakwell pub.  Someone will know; it’s worth 7.5 points.


I took a stroll along the Wales Coast Path alongside the Dee, with views across to Tata Steel, just like other tourists would.


At Dock Road Industrial Estate, I came across this strikingly lifelike sculpture;


Guarding the craft

and then civilisation.


Yes, suddenly, I was in Shotton, which I remembered had a brand new(ish) Spoons.  Which can mean only one thing;

Shotton Spoons



Now, I love Wales, but that really is the poorest looking crushed avocado bagel I’ve seen since Spoons invented them last year. How can Flintshire expect tourists with a food offer like that ?

Back in Quay proper, The Ship is the sort of pub I most look forward to in a Guide full of Chime, Kash, Font and Squirrels.


A proper locals pub, with the handful of middle-aged blokes still allowed to sneak a couple of pints before Sunday lunch.  The decline in Sunday lunch boozing has been chronicled over the last decade on Pub Curmudgeon’s blog, but hangs on here and in the Wirral.

Went to a wedding with a £1 bar last night.  My head hurts

£1 !  The world’s yer lobster

Gin Gan Gu !”   What does that mean ?

You could have been in Wallasey, until the conversation inevitably veered onto “77 stone” Neville Southall and his starring role in Wales win over Germany in the ’90s.

Mrs RM would call it “Basic basic“, and I couldn’t disagree with her.

And now the confession. It wasn’t really Courage in that glass, but the sole real ale from Mr Grundy,  Derby’s finest.  It had clearly been vigorously pulled through, though I only actually saw Carlsberg being drunk.  And why not ?



Look at the head on the beer.


Well below £3 a pint (my notes say £1.60,but that can’t be right, can it ?), and in spotless condition (NBSS 3.5), it more than justified a Beer Guide place for a pub that I fear wouldn’t get visited by CAMRA members in some parts of the country.

Well done Chester & South Clwyd CAMRA.

NB  As so often, some proper toilet art sealed the deal.

Art Piece No. 1 – Hole
Art Piece No. 2 – “John”








    1. It is the done thing for some people who have anger management problems in the UK to punch holes in toilet walls,i have seen it loads of times while on my pub crawls and also in local pubs.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. A quick story coming up.

    The punching of holes in toilet walls reminded me of one of my very local pubs that i played pool for.
    The Red Lion in Sandiacre as always had a rough reputation which it still has to this day,but it was one of my locals and i liked it in there,outsiders were made very unwelcome.
    When it was pool night on a Thursday when it was the break we usually had pie and mushy peas,one of my mates eat his pie but did not want the mushy peas,so he flipped his plate and the mushy peas stuck to the ceiling in the back corner of the bar room.
    They soon got harder and were firmly stuck to the ceiling,a year or so later the Red Lion was to be repainted by the Landlord of it,they could not afford proper painters,the dried mushy peas were painted over,so when you looked at the ceiling in the back corner of the bar room there were bobbles under the paint on the ceiling,we always laughed when we looked at the ceiling.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Question on this one. I am curious if the landlords viewed the attitude towards outsiders as a good thing? It would seem to hurt trade, but I may be missing something they gain from this.


      1. Back in the early 80s most landlords and landladies had their pubs full most evenings and even at dinner time they were busy with locals.
        It was not the landlords who had an attitude towards outsiders it was the locals like me.

        I have also felt uncomfortable in some pub due to this attitude especially on Sunday dinner sessions when most pubs were very territorial,the day i always thought the most dangerous to go in locals pubs as you stuck out like a sore thumb.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Really interesting that, Alan. It’s not just basic pubs, I’ve also found some really posh pubs in Cotswolds that treated the pub as their private dining room, particularly after Sunday lunch. Children on scooters, adults moving furniture round to block entrances. One was a “community” owned pub !


    2. “when it was the break we usually had pie and mushy peas,”

      Really? I would have hit the cue ball with my, um, cue. (slight attempt at pool humour there). 🙂



      Liked by 1 person

  2. Did you find the Gap?

    Was the car like that when you bought it or after you had driven it?

    The main problem with the avocado dish is the combination of poached egg and chips. It should be a fried egg every day of the week.


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