I guess there’s a sort of inverse relationship between beauty and Bitter in the Cotswolds; the greater the tourist honeypot factor, the lower your chance of a good pub.

Chipping Campden

Chipping Campden is gorgeous, the Lavenham of the Cotswolds, and yet I’ve never been to a pub here before. What can it mean ?


Quite a few ticks in the neighbouring areas like Bretforton, Ebrington and even little Broad Campden, but like Burford it feels a town of upmarket hotels rather than Gloucester boozers.

There’s not much to distinguish it from the welter of other small market towns, except the excessive politeness of folk who I walk past along the High Street.  “I’m so terribly sorry.  I believe I may have come within 5 yards of your personal space just then“.

As I said, spectacularly impressive, if not a lot to actually do.  Unless you need to buy a gun or a Barbour jacket.

Golden stone
Future micro pub

The Eight Bells, befitting a place boasting “Pub. Eating. Accommodation” has one of the worst pub signs outside the modern Greene King estate.

Nice pub…
…Nasty sign

They’re very proud of their awards, only one of which means anything to me.


A room to the left laid out for formal dining,

2No thanks, I won’t be dining with you”

and a room to the right laid out for informal munching; you already have a picture in your mind, I’m sure.  “Mr & Mrs Jones(oh yeah) confirming their reservation to distract the member of staff who should be serving me beer.

Everything about it screams “Hate me retiredmartin, hate me“. Even the fireplace.

Fires with writing on them !

There’s one bloke at the bar with a San Miguel, the new national drink about to be confirmed as a “quality” beer by the sub-committee. He says hello.


And four beers on the bar, about two too many I guess.  No jam jars or tasters (hoorah), just labels with helpful information about the beers.  It’ll never catch on.

The only choice

I’m having a good run with Hooky at the moment.  Once again, this was cool, with plenty of taste and a tight head.  Well beyond “Good” on the scale (NBSS 3.5). I ought to revisit the timewarp Peyton Arms for you; it might be a Top 100 pub.

I didn’t make many notes on my phone, unnerved a bit by the subtle warning in the Gents;

Posh pub humour

But to be honest, I’m not sure much happened.

Sometimes, an exceptional beer in a smart pub with Baylis & Harding toiletries is enough.






  1. I have to admit I’ve never been in a more beautiful place than Chipping Camden. No real need to go back and I don’t fit in, but it is spectacularly pretty. You picked a good time of year to visit I think.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I regularly used the Red Lion when that was a free house with Smiles on at £1 a pint.
    The Eight Bells had several framed photos of Norman wisdom who had used that pub.
    I didn’t bother much with the Lygon Arms or Volunteer but the Bakers Arms just out at Broad Camden was good for beer and food.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “except the excessive politeness of folk who I walk past along the High Street. ”

    A bit like your average Canadian then. 🙂

    “boasting “Pub. Eating. Accommodation””

    The sign says Dining dear boy.

    “only one of which means anything to me.”

    It was the Yelp one wasn’t it? 😉

    “unnerved a bit by the subtle warning in the Gents;

    “unnerved a bit by the subtle warning in the Gents;

    “unnerved a bit by the subtle warning in the Gents;”

    And I can see why you’d be leery of using your phone after that gentle reminder. Wouldn’t want to make an ‘arse’ of yourself. (LOL)



      1. I was comparing notes with Si and Duncan yesterday. The boost from a centrespread in BEER (I’m the staple, by the way) is being followed by two new porn stars (not Nick) and a bloke whose latest post is “Show me yours”. I’m concentrating on my regular customers.


  4. Chipping Camden, not blighted by Wetherspoons or MuckDonalds, gets its share of visitors but many of the small villages are absolutely dead during the week as the cottages have been bought up for weekend retreats by wealthy London and Cambridge residents,

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Just to let you know I’m keeping my powder dry until RM does Chipping Sodbury.
    The fun you can have with a place that has sod in its name.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s