Back to extolling the virtues of the English pub today, and the wonders of Wiltshire. A certain local brewery completes the alliteration but you’ll have to guess that.
Wilts is a tricky county to complete. Many of the entries are in villages with temperamental bus services and “modern” opening hours.
On the other hand, the Vale of Pewsey contains one of England’s great underrated stretch of villages, seemingly overlooked by tourists whizzing past the pointless Stonehenge on the A303.
Pewsey itself is particularly gorgeous, and devoid of visitors on an overcast Wednesday lunchtime. I apparently have a cousin living here. I’m sure she’s delighted I didn’t tip up unannounced on her doorstep and scare her children.
For the purposes of this post I’ll imagine she lives here;
This is the sort of Olde England our American guests rave about,
though the lone Beer Guide entry is, from hazy recollection, what we call “down-to-earth“, and a bit of a classic boozer in a smart village.
I couldn’t be bothered to walk up the hill to the White Horse itself, so instead you get photos of closed pubs, mermaid outfits, and a nice piece of industrial machinery for our American readers to identify.
I’d have Pewsey down as a dormitory village for Swindon and Devizes, but it was fair bustling with gentlefolk keeping a string of fishmongers, cycle shops, £9.95 Indian buffets and lardy cake makers in business, alongside the mermaid outfitter.
In my quest for quiche from Marshalls Bakery (recommended), I walked straight past a new micro;
Obviously, it wasn’t open, and since it’s not in the Beer Guide I didn’t need to go in anyway. I can come back in September to tick it and have some more lardy cake.
Shut village pubs on weekday lunchtimes are the norm now, of course, so it was left to the obligatory Wadworths 18th century coaching inn to be serving coffees to the blue rinse brigade.
Of course, a plain Wadworths pub can never get in the Beer Guide, any more than a Palmers, Arkells or Badgers house could, now that the GBG demands a dozen beers you’ve never heard of.
Onto Urchfont, which is as gorgeous as anywhere in the Vale, and the Lamb.
Oh ! A Waddies pub (and community shop). Clearly an error.
It just goes to show, the GBG gets it right most of the time.
Despite nearly getting run over by a tractor pulling into the car park, this is a faultless village pub for the purist.
The 6X was magnificent, cool and chewy, as the scummy head will attest (NBSS 4).
Pub Curmudgeon would appreciate the bench seating, BRAPA will be thrilled by the Old Boy popping in for “A remedial pint“.
I enjoyed his tales of gardening woes and “aggressive leylandii”, and the sound from the back of his throat like a concrete mixer. The Landlord seemed reticent to comment on his problems. I like the silent Landlord.
Mrs RM would have commented negatively on our gardener’s shorts and white socks combo; she’s mean like that.