After Bolton, just enough time before City’s late kick off v Newcastle (20/1/18) for a detour to Swinton, and who can resist Swinton ?


I’d forgotten how long the walk was from station to the clutch of “improved” pubs along Worsley Road, which compare sharply with the more basic (and interesting) fare to the north.  I suspect the really scary Sam Smiths pub has long gone*.

White Swan

New (and sadly lone) Swinton GBG pub Cock & Swine faces this imperious redbrick house across the road, some of the best Holts I’d had in Gtr Manchester.  The Holts pubs in Salford (not Manchester) still have a bit of swagger about them.

In contrast, the Cock looks a bit plain, a bit “Wigan suburb” if you like.

Cock & Swine

AtWill** have done a similar job here to Stockport’s cheery and unpretentious Cocked Hat.  It’s not Sam Smiths, but it’s a proper pub nonetheless.


Two sizeable rooms full of proper seating, a bit dominated by TV football that no-one was watching. Mind, there were only three young folk in there drinking San Miguel on a Saturday afternoon, which either suggests this is an evening venue or that North Manchester takes Dryanuary more seriously than Northumberland.

Name the match

Three drinkers on the posh lager doesn’t suggest the cask is going to be great, and the range is on the high side of ambitious.

Oracle, or course

But it was superb, cool and sherberty (NBSS 4). You never can tell.  With a soundtrack that could have been “Unknown Pleasures” but wasn’t, and some robust banter,

Whatever you do, Keith,stay f*****g sober

it was better than I suspect it looks here. But once that trio left, it was also very quiet, and I had a train to catch.


*It was the Windmill in Pendlebury. Still going, now keg. Thanks to Pub Curmudgeon for research.

**AtWill’s pub estate was up for sale before Christmas but I’ve no idea of the current state of affairs.






45 thoughts on “SWINTON SWAGGER

  1. This is one of my posts where,due to how much I’ve drank,I don’t have a clue what you’re writing about.
    It reminds of the night where,subbing on the FT,I had to ring up a columnist feller called Peter Jay who used to be a telly star and then became a diplomat who was highly regarded in the bedwetter circles but I didn’t have a clue what he was writing about.
    So I rang him up in his Islington eyrie and said Peter this is bollocks and I don’t have a clue about what you’re writing about.
    And he said ” Prof dear boy the only people in this country who are meant to understand my article are me and the Chancellor of the Exchequer so be a good fellow and don’t worry your silly little head about it.”
    I stuck to my guns and he changed the intro but it was all still meaningless bollocks and above my pay grade so I sent it down virtually unchanged.
    I hate it when my stupidity shows me up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is the only post I’ve done this week that I’ve understood so you must be well-oiled, Prof.

      You are a bit obsessed with things making sense, aren’t you ? Peter Jay comes from the era when newspapers were written by folk who could write, rather than cut and paste off Twitter.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Actually in the cold light of day without beer goggles on it reads perfectly sensibly.
        Fortunately I was drunk enough to avoid Trump/Morgan.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Dave’s already jumped in on the guess the game thingy so I don’t have to go search the Net for that. 🙂

    It’s pissing down cats and dogs here (not literally of course, we only get rainfalls of salmon and sometimes moose here if the winds are strong enough), so it’s a Netflix afternoon with the better half. That being said I’ll just ask a quick question:

    Where the heck do you park for all of these pubs if you’re not taking the train/bus/taxi etc.?

    Most of these places seem to abut the street with very little parking. For example, my ‘local’ (which I should visit more often) looks like this:


    All of that parking is for the restaurant/pub on the left, plus the liquor store dead centre.

    Ok, have to run and go watch some Grace and Frankie on Netflix now that season 4 is out. 😉


    Liked by 1 person

  3. Not sure what the current position on Atwill is, it always felt like someone at the centre cared about pubs, but they were badly let down by the staff and the spread-out nature of the estate meant they couldn’t manage those staff as tightly as they needed to be in the absence of a strong corporate culture.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My tattooist is in Swinton, however my next one will be on my drinking arm. What to do, what to do?

    While I’m on, I’m sure Mrs RM has plans for you but I’m going to spend Valentine’s Day daytime testing the pubs of Stafford as all young ladies do so if you’re in the vicinity let me know. Though that would be serendipity of the highest order.


    1. Yes, I think a nice tattoo of a Holt’s pub would go well with the pictures of Runcorn petrochemical plants. But I don’t give tattoo advice since the Leighton Buzzard incident.

      Mrs RM and I don’t recognise the existence of any commemorative days except Today. You really ought to auction off a daytime drinking session with Kirsty for charity e,g. the Niall Horan Benevolent Fund.

      I’ll be in Malta on the 14th Feb; I believe that’s not walking distance from Halton. If your jolly Runcorn folks do another crawl I’d be up for joining you though.

      Incidentally, at Manc Beer (and evil stuff) Fest I managed to get some folk from Runcorn to talk to me. One of them used to play in a band with you. All Man City fans, oddly. If I remember more I’ll stick it in my post. I gave them details of your blog,anyway.


  5. My friend in Macclesfield is a life long Swinton Lions fan, so this post had special significance to me. “I could actually visit this place someday,” I thought. Though, based on your description, I’m not sure I should go too much out of my way to do so! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  6. As someone who lived in this area for over 10 years and married to local, I can confirm that Swinton is in Salford, not North Manchester.


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