Everybody’s doing the Isle of Man these days; it’s the new Bermondsey Beer Mile. Except it’s for PubMen and Women, not beery folk.
BRAPA did the 27 pint GBG set in February (and survived), Pubmeister has just summed up his record-breaking achievements (completed a whole GBG there), and of course Kirsty is there now, looking for a bit of Douglas that is forever Runcorn;
Duncan and fellow (nearly) GBG completist and all-round goodfellow Martin (aka Maltmeister) had kindly offered to let me hitch a ride on their trip round the island.
Duncan had just a handful of targets, Martin (2) had a frankly scary number to tick, some from Beer Guides from before the abolition of birching onward. Assuming they hadn’t been reclaimed by the sea. Oh, sorry, that’s Norfolk.
Sadly, the Ben-my-Chree ferry had neither WiFi or pre-emptive micropub, so we spent 3 hours discussing
ticking tactics county cricket. Pub tickers often have weird perversions.
Man, like Wight, or Guernsey, or Louth, is one of those places that tickers love and loathe in equal measure.
It takes a day to get there, costs a week’s beer budget, and you can bank on there being a new pub or two every year. On the other hand, it’s a really great place.
This was only my fourth trip in two decades of ticking (one of them the Icelandic ash cloud affected CAMRA AGM), so I reckoned I’d done quite well to have just four pubs on my list.
I knew there’d be a lot of this;
We started, inauspiciously, with two estate pubs from Martin (2)’s list, shown here on this lovely aerial view. The cloud is a tax dodge device.
Some very dull exteriors, two pubs surrounded by identical shops, two modernish dining pubs of the type Holts do well/badly in Cheadle Hulme.
The Horse & Plough, notionally on the Business Park, was heaving with family diners, which rather limited my snapping.
The Two Martins, a possible future comedy duo for Hen Nights (keep reading), necked halves of the Bitter, which was cool and tasty (NBSS 3).
In and out in 3 minutes, appropriately, while Duncan was conducting a long telephone conversation about cricket, or possibly crickets.
Due to duff directions we took more than the estimated 7 minutes to get to the Cat, so if there really were only Seven Minutes to Midnight we’d have missed our last pint. Which could have been an exciting “Guest Beer” !!!
My notes say;
“Okells better. NBSS 3.5. More pubby. Pool.”
craig. One. Minute. Bulgarian.
What can it all mean ?
And I reckon this bit of art is from the 1976 League Cup Final, Dennis Tueart and all that.
But it could equally be Union Mills (A) v Laxey Reserves.
Talking of Laxey…