“Oh deep joy, another Bedfordshire pub” said no-one ever.
But this was my last one (see lovely pinked page 36 above) from a meagre four newbies, none of which will have BRAPA wishing he’d returned to Beds this year.
But Pavenham has it’s merits. A few miles north of the county town, in the posh bit, there appear to be undulations, Dick’s (and Tucker’s) Islands, and a Bunyan trail.
EVERY village in Bedfordshire has a Bunyan trail.
I had 40 minutes before opening to find things to tell you about Pavenham, and to find the mythical (if not mystical) Osier Beds.
Our endless British summer did its best to make it look bucolic.
In most villages like this I’m met with deep suspicion at 3.30pm, and not because I’m hovering outside a school.
Here, Old Folk said “Fare thee well stranger” and “Nice weather for it“, just as they would have to Bunyan.
Pavenham smells of bonfire night and affluence, with decomposing apples and rotting hay adding to the excitement of my stroll. Fans of thatching and ornate windows will be in their element.
The only activity was at the Golf Club, which I now see has a bar that’s bound to be in the next Guide with its unconventional opening times.
I was glad to see the Cock open promptly at 4pm.
And not just because I was desperate for a “comfort break“. No, the last GBG tick in a county is always a test of nerve. Will it be closed for winter/staff party/to go shopping at Bedford Primark ?
The Cock is the only apparent facility in the village, so just as well it’s a Proper Pub. Discrete dining area, proper seating, huge bar.
And what would be a sensible beer range to most sensible people.
The Irish landlord knows how to run a pub, and pull a pint. If he’s disappointed I go for IPA rather than his exciting guest he doesn’t show it. I do wonder if “Most Improved Pub” is simply a term for “Most Likely To Get A Beer You Haven’t Heard Of“.
A cool foamy IPA somewhere between NBSS 3 and 3.5 is very GBG worthy, but the Landlord is a Wizard, a True Star (today’s obscure ’70s rock reference for you).
I hope it gets the custom it deserves, and that no-one has actually nicked the cheeses from the skittles table.