“Why didn’t you have something decent like Butcombe or 6X ?” said Pub Curmudgeon of my trip to the reservation-friendly Fosse Bridge. Good question, though the choice of Windrush Ale (the day before that word burnt into the national consciousness) seems oddly appropriate now.
Still, I didn’t make the same mistake in Swindon.
Or Blunsdon, if we’re being pedantic. In fact, no new pubs in Swindon itself since 2014, fact fans. That must mean that not only are there no new Embers and Spoons opening, but no micros and Taps either. Which is odd.
I like Swindon. Not only because of the Magic Roundabout and Art Gallery and cheap travelodge, but also because of this;
Actually, that’s the Canadian Arkells, a bunch of Canadian heartland rockers I saw supporting Frank Turner at Cambridge Corn Exchange tonight. No doubt Russ knows them personally.
There’s an information board, too; everyone loves a village information board.
A muddy footpath provides a surprisingly steep descent to the Lower Village, with its grain farm and sewage works to entice you.
I arrived at 1.58pm, feeling rather hungry.
Life has taught me many things, including not to expect to get fed at 1.58pm in an English pub.
And so it was here. But the Landlady seemed as disappointed as I was, and anyone who says “There you go, my lovely” when handing over a pint is OK with me. My senses were working overtime, and I dithered before settling on a packet of scratchings.
A much easier choice of beer, though no doubt someone will berate me for not having the Ramsbury.
Compared to Cambridge or the Cotswolds, the interior is plain and a bit 1980-ish, if that’s a word.
Fresh flowers on the tables suited a “mature” dining clientele and an informal business meeting about photocopiers taken place over lager by the window.
The Butcombe had a bit of depth to it (NBSS 3+), too, though I didn’t see much cask poured. An odd but welcome addition to the GBG.
But never mind that; we’re back to Sooty for the charity box, so all is well.