May has been a spectacularly productive month in terms of GBG progress (wait and see), but ultimately my success will stand or fall on making inroads into those counties you can’t do on an overnighter, and which don’t have branches of “Lush” to tempt Mrs RM to drive me there.

Like Cumbria.


Look at all those white gaps.  Shameful really.  And I’ve only dipped into the county in Kendal and Carlisle since I started this blog.  Perhaps Mrs RM can get a job at the Beatrix Potter factory or something.


My main target here was serial award winner the Drovers Rest in tiny Monkhill, a hop out of town along Hadrian’s Wall, which hasn’t lasted well, unlike the pub.


Goodness me, that’s a lot of awards.

Proper sign

This is Cumbria’s version of the Pendleton CAMRA award winner, or the Tom Cobley.  You know, a rural ale house with a healthy food trade.

Like the first of those, it’s a Proper Pub without necessarily making the National Inventory hunter go “Wow“. Suits me fine.


Of course, nothing says “Free House” like a robin perched on a stag.


I applaud the Drovers for having (just) three casks on. Three is plenty, particularly when you’re trying to sell Hardknott on keg as well.


There were a few drinkers, par for the course for a weekday lunchtime a long way from the hills.

You can imagine my delight at seeing Reedley Hallows on the bar. So Foxy Blonde it was, using my special indulgence from Mrs RM to buy beers with suspect names.

No escaping Foxy Blonde

I take a table next to the coat rack, with a perfect view of corduroy jacket and a German metal band sweatshirt. A juxtaposition to suit the pub.  Perhaps they belong to the same human.

Name the band for five points

The Blonde was cool and tasty, a 3.5 rather than a 4 perhaps, but that’s exceptional for midweek lunchtime.  The pub was quiet except for a man with a watering can who wanted something (water ?).  Bowie’s Heroes rumbled in the background, and I succumbed to the homemade aubergine curry, for no obvious reason.

Obligatory shot with local CAMRA magazine

The staff were lovely, but a bit distracted by preparations for their big beer festival on the Bank Holiday.  In my day, six different beers would have been a beer festival.


  1. Can’t you get Mrs RM a job as a welder on nuclear submarines so you get to enjoy regular visits to the delights of Barrow?

    Also, an English county where I’ve surprisingly visited quite a few of those white bits……

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Have had a delightful time catching up on your last few posts. Best of luck “pinking out” the rest of Cumbria. To my eyes it looks like you’ve covered a very impressive amount already.

    Loved the photo of the corduroy jacket & German metal band sweatshirt!


  3. “Goodness me, that’s a lot of awards.”


    “Suits me fine.”

    In the photo right below, was she waiting to fill her watering can with ale? 😉

    “nothing says “Free House” like a robin perched on a stag.”

    Unless it’s a puffer fish of course. 🙂

    “Name the band for five points”

    It appears to be Blind Guardian.

    “except for a man with a watering can who wanted something (water?)”

    Not trying to be funny but from the photo that looks like a woman to me.

    “Obligatory shot with local CAMRA magazine”

    And obligatory play on words (Inn-quirer – snicker).


    Liked by 1 person

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