Well, we got some nice photos, anyway.  And a decent title.  It’s a start.

I’ve always wondered why the Staffordshire Moorlands between Stoke, Uttoxeter and Ashbourne is so poorly represented in the Beer Guide, bar the Yew Tree of course.

There’s plenty of pubs, 5 in Alton alone, so I guess it all comes down to GBG branch allocations.

Alton WhatPub.PNG

One thing for sure; Alton Towers itself is never getting in the Guide with perhaps the worst beer selection anywhere in the UK.  Visit Copenhagen’s Bakken for a demonstration in how to run a bar at a theme park.

The village itself is a gem, a little Switzerland without the overpriced hot chocolate. Look at the OS contours;


Based on the state of my stomach after I rode on Oblivion last year, I’d have been better off sitting it out at the Alton Bridge, which looks a picture postcard of a pub.

Alton Bridge

And mysteriously, seems to have its own pub in the grounds.

The Talbot

Now, I can find nothing about the Talbot at all on the internet, so it’s over to you.

It looks more pubby than the Bridge, which is your archetypal “country pub and restaurant“. Or “Dining with rooms“, the sort of place that appears in “Staffordshire Life” rather than “Stoke Staggers” or whatever.

“Just Breathe”

So early evening you get a handful of pashmina-wearing gentlefolk drinking coffee, and a lady looking for rope (don’t ask). Staff bustled around delivering lattes while I stood forlornly at the bar with a handful of change.

The Doom Bar looked tempting, but I guessed the Wincle Rambler (the beer, not the person) might have been pulled more recently.  That’s the advantage of being able to peer over the bar at the drip tray.

Three beers is more than enough

As you’ll see, not a pub for the trad pub fan, as I made do with a corner of a lone table set for dining.  Not a great Wincle either (NBSS 1.5), but however sour I wouldn’t have taken it back.

But interesting loos (stop now, Russ).

I have no idea what this is

And some tat beloved of the country house hotel.  Who remembers chicory ?  Who remembers chicory with affection ?




20 thoughts on “ALTON SOURS

  1. Blimey that’s an open air pub shed. Not sure it counts as a pub shed though without any walls so it won’t be challenging mine for the ‘Smallest Pub Shed in the UK’ title.

    Most unnerving presence in the toilets – I think I might be tempted to hold on until I got home. What is she holding?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I certainly remember Chicory Tip 😛

    I have been in the Talbot many years ago and ate a Wiener schnitzel in there. When did you last see one of those on a pub menu?

    Don’t forget that Leek (and Blythe Bridge) are in Staffordshire Moorlands and probably snaffle up most of its GBG allocation.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “But interesting loos (stop now, Russ).”

    I was the embodiment of decorum and good taste… above. 🙂

    “which looks a picture postcard of a pub.”

    Agreed. Too bad the beer wasn’t at least as half as good as that view. 😦

    “(the beer, not the pesron)”

    Pesron? You’re going all Welsh again aren’t you? 😉

    “Now, I can find nothing about the Talbot at all on the internet, so it’s over to you.”

    Not a sausage unfortunately, and that’s a rarity in this day and age.



  4. I stayed near Alton the first December weekend through the 1980s and ’90s and the Talbot was a Proper Pub with excellent DBA and a couple of other Allied beers, a Buntings (Uttoxeter) Brewery jug behind the bar and proper primitive toilets across the track.
    What is now the Alton Bridge Hotel was a most unnoticeable guest house.


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