Only fair that I continue my journey to Manchester via a quick stop in Todmorden, the sane older brother of Hebden.
Where HB assaults you with weird smells and key keg seats, in Tod you get kindness.
Plenty to admire on the OS extract, particularly for folk with minds as puerile as Russ.
Despite the contours, it’s not quite as bucolic as Hebden, but compared to my own Fenland village it’s a little bit of heaven.
The view of Calderdale as I whizz across the M62 to Manchester is my favourite view, anywhere.
Tod is Top, as my free tagline for the TIC has it. It’s a proper town with discount stores,
boiled sweets for a quid,
top shop names,
and that ultimate Mudgie essential, a cat café.
There’s even a Spoons, which I know will now get in the Guide as I gave it a miss this time.
The pub is called “The Pub” and thus joins a long line of non-traditional pub names including (I kid you not) Polished Knob, Jack’s House, Alehouse, Barearts, and Shannon & Chesapeake.
The most you can hope from a micro called “Pub” is that it has those characteristics we want from a public house.
Proper seating and beer mats – check.
little jam jars showing you the colour of beer,
A clear beer board with prices.
And of course traditional pub games.
But stuff all that. I felt like a local in here, so great was the welcome.
The barmaid said folk arrange their visits for when she’s on, and I can vouch for the quality of the chat. We conspiratorially compared notes on the “Hempsters of Hebden” and I suddenly decides that Tod is Terrific (that one’s free too).
A chap came in as I left, asked for “a whisky drink” and then started singing “Tubthumping”.
Just mind the steps down, eh ?