PRIVATE PUBLIC HOUSES – THE WRATH OF WROTHAM

 

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If you’re feeling a sense of deja vu all over again, it’s because the Pubmeister beat me to this one ((here).  But if a story’s worth telling…

The last month has seen good progress on visiting all the Beer Guide entries within an hour or so i.e. the ones you can do by train or with the expert driving of Mrs RM. It all gets harder now.

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The George & Dragon in Wrotham is one of the last pubs I can sell to Mrs RM as close by, and it’s on the route to the in-laws ! Win-Win.

What do you call the area bounded by the M25/M20/M26 ? “Weatherboarden” ?  It feels like it belongs to posh Sevenoaks but actually falls under Gravesend and Darenth CAMRA.

Years ago I applied for a job in the Darenth Valley, hoping to impress the Trust Board at Brands Hatch with my knowledge of local pubs like the Rising Sun and obscure NHS terminology.  Despite an afternoon of psychometric testing, an evening of “ordeal by sherry” and a lengthy interview on 3 different days, they weren’t impressed.

Apart from Brands Hatch it’s a little known area with good walking and a fair few idiosyncratic pubs.

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Oast House Cat

You’ll know you’re in Kent.  Note the cat.

Not a great deal for the tourist bar walks, pubs and this ancient letter box that will no doubt be repainted from red to blue in 2019 (just joking !)

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No paper money or GBG voting slips

But you’re also in dormitory land, as much for Maidstone as the City, and the village is quiet as a mouse hiding from the cat.

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Three pubs though, and a fourth diner just down the road (a rare Badger house), which seems fair enough. They’ve all been in the Beer Guide over the years, which is some feat.

But I have mixed feelings about the owners of the Three Post Boys taunting us that they’ve closed a pub.  Presumably a “popular pub” too.

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They’ve even left the Greene King livery on the walls and windows.

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Rare GK livery
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GK etchings

Yes, I did knock on the door and run away shouting “Pub killers“, but they didn’t know if I was talking about them or Greene King.

So Wrotham lost a Greene King pub, but retains a robust looking Sheps house,

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Rose & Crown

plus some Hophead at the Bull, and Harvey’s at this years lucky GBG entrant;

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George & Dragon
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BBB heaven

The George & Dragon commits a small crime by having large writing on the wall, but in most other respects is a Mudgie-approved “Proper Pub” (there’d be no space on the pavement to park your mobility scooter).

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So for the price of your half pint you get;

  • acknowledgement by locals who were discussing a trip to the O2 to see the Queen, or perhaps Queen (which hasn’t been Queen since 1991, if you know what I mean)
  • a cheery welcome by the landlady who gave me rather too much detail on the workings of a dodgy diaphragm pump spitting out Harvey’s
  • brown wood  and a nicotine-stained ceiling
  • bench seating for the ages
  • a cool tasty Sussex in a proper glass (NBSS 3.5)
  • a seat by the fire
  • good internet access
  • weird music, specifically this (thanks Shazam);

 

The music didn’t match the clientele, who were busy discussing Dartford’s chances at Hungerford (they lost 1-0) when I left.

Really, what more do you want from a pub ?  Shame there’s no Chinese takeaway in the village, mind.

 

 

27 thoughts on “PRIVATE PUBLIC HOUSES – THE WRATH OF WROTHAM

      1. Fortunately RM won’t have to fake any mobility scooter photos on this trip.
        The obesity is so bad that when a buffet opens it’s like the start of the 24 hour Le Mans race but without the running.
        And forget about spindly little NHS scooters – Yankee scooters are built like fairground dodgem cars

        Liked by 3 people

  1. I’ve driven past the turning to Wrotham so many times, on trips to Gravesend where my wife’s brother now abodes, but there never seems time to turn off and sample the delights of this “hidden” village.

    I have been in both the Bull and the Rose & Crown, but that was in a previous existence. Must re-visit after reading your post.

    Enjoy the US. Eileen has been to Vegas a couple of times, but then she likes the occasional flutter. It’s not my cup of tea; gambling or Vegas!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great read as ever and I am intrigued to note the NHS thought THREE days of interviews were OK!!! 😵😵😵 I don’t think I’ve ever had a pint of Harvey’s… Greene King premiumisation pop ups keep appearing on my twitter feed..I can sense a Mudgie style post coming on

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Harveys certainly comes with the Mudgie seal of approval – arguably the classic BBB. We encountered some in Crewe last month, so it does get out of its home territory. “Famous beers I have never drunk”, maybe?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. “and it’s on the route to the in-laws ! Win-Win.”

    LOL – good one! (thumbs up)

    “a cheery welcome by the landlady who gave me rather too much detail on the workings of a dodgy diaphragm”

    I’m sooo glad you added the extra bits after ‘diaphragm’. 🙂

    As for the owners of the Three Post Boys… nope, it’s Christmas so I shall be nice. 😉

    Cheers

    Liked by 1 person

  4. “one of the last pubs I can sell to Mrs RM as close by” –I’m imagining the conversation: “Close by? Compared to what, the moon?!”
    I join your other readers in looking forward to the Las Vegas posts. Oh and I really liked that Mark Joseph song, thanks for posting the video!

    Liked by 1 person

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