As Summer drags on, a PubMan’s thoughts turns to Gloucestershire, one of the counties I’ve never completed. Despite it being virtually on my doorstep (compared to Shetland, anyway).

The A14/M6/M42/M5 takes you past some of our most picturesque roadworks, en route to a dismal collection of budget hotels and “aparthotels” (hovels) that I’ll spare you.


Tewkes“, as it’s known by no-one at all, has had a quiet time of it in the Beer Guide lately, relying on some pubs run by (whisper it) family brewers (top), a free house and a Spoons hotel.

The arrival of a British Legion in the Guide is a bit of a surprise, in the same way that a Brunning & Price in central Oldham would raise eyebrows. I guess it’s their turn.

I turned up on some sort of “Medieval day”, with loads of families in overheated cars subjecting their children to archery, peregrine falcon chess and overpriced cheese. You’ll be horrified to know that many visitors were carrying umbrellas. To keep the sun out.

The town looked rather splendid, from the Abbey,

Abbey. Not a micropub

to the flags outside houses indicating allegiance to particular craft brewers,

Brass Castle, Cloudwater and Marston’s
Wiper & True

to the new micro pub on stilts by the Severn.


“The Severn Bores”

Somewhere in my mancave I have a little booklet (20p) showing all the little alleys off the main streets. You never know what you’ll find down them, or who you’ll annoy by noseying around. I recommend them.


The new Guide entry may be the poshest British Legion you’ll ever see.


Perhaps they’ve got Brunning & Price in to run it?

Er, no.

Proper food

Y’allright bud ?”

“Half of Holdens. And a cheese and onion bap, please” “Er, I mean a cob”.

The total cost of this feast is £2.50, which will buy you two olives in the Farmers’ Market.

I enjoy it (a bit) in front of Her Majesty, who seems less impressed by the banging R’n’B soundtrack. She’d have scored the Golden Glow as 2.5 as well.


You waiting for Steve, then ?”

I denied it, but somehow the damage was already done.


      1. Spoons haven’t done a ploughman’s for years. It was OK, but it had more pork pie than cheese, which wouldn’t suit everyone. This is the source of Cookie’s gibes about inappropriate ploughman’s ingredients.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It’s a question that’s often bugged me.
        Where did those original ploughmen keep the Brandon Pickle ?


      3. They actually invented those little plastic and foil containers in 1481, but kept quiet as patent law was embryonic then.

        As you highlight, Brandon in Norfolk was the original source before the name was corrupted to Branston for trademark reasons.


  1. “Brass Castle, Cloudwater and Marston’s”

    Not sure about the yellow and black one but that first is obviously Three Ravens brewery in Thornbury while the middle one is most likely that little known brewery famous for cake and bread tasting beers… Lyons. 😉

    “to the new micro pub on stilts by the Severn.”

    I like how the outside seating area is shaded.

    “And a cheese and onion bap, please” “Er, I mean a cob”.”

    Is there an imaginary line to demarcate where it’s called a cob or a bap?

    “She’d have scored the Golden Glow as 2.5 as well.”

    £2.50 for a score of 2.5; makes sense. 🙂


    Liked by 1 person

    1. “It’s Shetland,not “the Shetlands””

      Well, Wiki says they are also known as The Shetland Islands. 😉

      Interesting point though. For most places in the English language we proceed it with a ‘the’ if it’s pluralised.

      (i.e. Holland but The Netherlands; America but The United States; England but The United Kingdom; The Phillippines; The Bahamas) 🙂


      Liked by 2 people

      1. The jury’s out on the Faroe Islands although Shetland people call them “Faroe”. “The Orkneys” is right out though.


      1. And Riding Bitter is the beer Mansfield brewed for the former Hull Brewery estate after they took it over and closed the brewery done.


      2. And Riding Bitter ?
        Over here getting a ride means,well ….you know … how can I put it … what Mr Cholmondely-Warner used to call frightful unpleasantness.


    1. No, Riding Bitter was Hull Brewery’s first unfiltered beer for half a century.
      XXXX, renamed Old Baily, was Mansfield’s first real ale for a long while.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I didnt know they used cob so far down south 😀 I had great pleasure recently in a pub in Leicester that sold proper cobs, calling them cobs quite a lot much to the chagrin of my barm loving husband

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I thought the argument had been settled elsewhere? It’s a soft bread cake and you call it what you wish, roughly dependant on the locality where you were a) brought up or b) another locality where you reside, if you have lived there significantly longer than (a). It can of course be a crusty bread cake in which you insert ‘crusty’ before your chosen noun.


      1. It’s a bit like the guy who ordered a Denver Omelette for his friend who took a phone call, at the next table to me, in Las Vegas. The waitress asked what he would like in the omelette, to which he rudely replied, ‘Whatever they have in their omelettes in Denver.’

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Ignoring most of the comments about Mansfield Riding Bitter above I reckon you missed a classic beer there with its unassuming home made pump clip – must have been a 4.5 at least…we’ll never know🙄

    Liked by 1 person

  5. So after the best part of 30 years walking past it, here I am, Friday night in the last stronghold of Salopian beer in Tewk’ now the White Bear has closed. I like it, though the inner sanctum for ‘members’ seems better, by which I mean ‘better’ because it’s so tantalisingly out of reach.

    The Oracle is sadly a bit syrupy, NBSS 7.5 I think. Doing the clubs this week, the YMCA tomorrow for the rugby. No real ales but a real skittle alley, so NBSS 8.3 I think 🤷‍♂️


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