I always enjoy the trips into the sliver of south Staffs between the Black Country and Bridgnorth.  Please don’t bore me with the county history in comments; I know Wolves is really Staffs and the West Midlands is a fictitious construct.

The South Staffs Sliver

Tiny lanes, posh golf courses, the Kinver hills and place names designed especially for the entertainment of our Canadian readership.

Bobbington, Giggety, My Lady’s Farm

Trysull is the must-see village, but down the road Hinksford offers this redbrick marvel.


Mere mention of Waterworks necessitates a comfort break in Hinksford’s eponymous pub, which has a rather less impressive exterior totally obscured by Volkswagens*.

But never mind the aesthetics.  This is a corker.

As so often, three photos tell you all you need to know about the Hinksford.

Ladies who lunch
Old Boys
Cob life

Yes, an effortless combination of destination dining for gentlefolk with proper boozer for Old Boys in caps.  A winning combination.the Gi

Destination” in the sense that everyone has driven here from Stourbridge or the Gornals, but the bargain lunch specials at £4.50 mark this down as “not a gastropub“.

My most recent similar experience was in that classic all-rounder in Consett.

Beers you’ve heard of

All the beers had clearly been pulled in the lunch session, so I went for the one from up the road.


Enville Ale is an unsung survivor, tipping up on bars in unexpected places, never varying its distinctive pump clip, or its pleasant honey taste. A cool NBSS 3.5 from me.

Enough ale sold to get in the Guide, but you’ll guess the best seller here;

“Flake in the Carling ?”

Nearly all the best banter was about the racing from Wincanton, with regular shouts of He’s a goner !”, “F***** hell” and “That’s me done“.

Brilliant, though you can see why some reviewers expecting a Marston’s dining experience would be a bit confused (see here). The review that calls pubgoers “clients” tells you all you need to know about modern Britain.

“Clients”, apparently


*At this point Mrs RM would say “You can’t tell a Volkswagen from a Ford Ka”.



  1. “and place names designed especially for the entertainment of our Canadian readership.”

    I especially like the Wolverhampton Halfpenny Green airport. Having an airport worth a halfpenny is about as green as you can get! 🙂

    “with proper boozer for Old Boys in caps. ”

    I was going to mention that.

    ““Clients”, apparently”

    F***** hell indeed.

    But it does look a treat.


    PS – “A winning combination.the Gi”

    Personally I don’t think ‘the Gi’ is a winning combination at all. 😉


    1. Must admit I thought the inclusion of Highgate there was to try and confuse itinerant Communist tourists into visiting. Lots of pubs around that part of the world where the proletariat would feel at home.


  2. I am truly gobsmacked! We’ve stopped in Swindon and we’ve stopped in Greensforge, but in all the years I’ve been canalling we’ve never stopped at Hinksford! Looks like my sort of place!

    Also, I’ve laboured, for many years, under the impression that Enville Ale is a replica of Simpkiss Bitter as the former head brewer of Simpkiss helped to set up Enville Brewery – is that true or a myth?

    When I was a student, Simpkiss Bitter was one of the very few real ales that I liked and was very disappointed when it was bought out by Greenhall Whitley. When Enville first appeared someone (no idea who) told me that it was the same recipe as Simpkiss as the head brewer had moved there. Anyway, I believed them!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pete,
      My disappointment wasn’t so much with Greenall Whitley as with Johnathon Simpkiss who on inheriting the family brewery decided to sell up, pocket £1 million and retire early to Jersey.
      As the proper Simpkiss brews weren’t the most consistent of beers it’s difficult to be sure whether or not the Enville version is a replica, and it’s not as if our memories have retained clear memories of all the beers we were drinking over thirty years ago.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thanks for that – these details do tend to get lost in the ‘mists of time’ but nowadays, I sometimes struggle to remember what I drank last week, never mind thirty years ago!


    2. Enville Ale is brewed with honey, so not a direct attempt to recreate Simpkiss Bitter. However, as ToM has suggested, Enville do also brew a version of Simpkiss Bitter, although I’ve never tried it.

      I quite like honey beers (when done well) but some people find them a bit yucky.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m not sure why more breweries don’t use nucleat glasses to enliven their keg beer.
    There’s a craft brewery near me which produces a wonderful ale/lager drink that is great with a foamy head from their nucleat glass and absolute rubbish in a standard glass.
    And on the cob front my local had to give up putting rolls on the bar last year after Health and Safety insisted they have a separate HACCP-controlled food prep area other than their own kitchen.
    Bonkers crazy.

    Liked by 1 person

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