PHYSICIAN, HEAL THYSELF – EDGBASTON EXCESS

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A rare outing for Luke 4:23 on the blog as I return to the UK for those pubs you all love.

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All your favourites

High tables, foliage, irrelevant tat on the walls.

Yes, I’m sure you’ve identified Brunning & Price disease already.

Edgbaston

A miserable drizzled walk out from confusing New Street Station, but at least I remembered my umbrella, so I was only mildly drenched when I reached Boston Tea Party where I had half an hour to dry off before the Physician opened.

I still stopped to take a few shots to capture the essence of “Edgbaston Village“, which is basically a Morrison’s and some offices and creches.

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Micropubs marked with skull and crossbones

The campaign against independent (read:lukewarm) coffee shops is run from this blog, unless Boston Tea Party (22 outlets) consider themselves an indie.

The Edgbaston branch is wonderful.

Staff singing along to “Come On Eileen“, a discussion about whether you can call tea “full-bodied” (“If you can call a coffee robust, I guess you can“), and “Is that OK for you, Darling ?“. Top, top service.

You could have been in a Titanic pub in Stoke.  Great breakfast, too.

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Yum

I only left when they started playing The Strokes.

Let’s be honest, no-one really believes a pub (bar you-know-who) is going to be open at 10am, do they ?

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Heal thyself.  Oh, done that one
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Nice clear signage

But it was. Right on the dot. I can slag them off for being identikit dining rooms for poshos, but you can’t say a word about their efficiency or foliage.

Or their commitment to cask obsession with a long line of handpumps.

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T** M*** H********
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Sadly Plum Porter too early, even for me

NEVER go for a beer resurrecting a name from the past, folks. “It’s famous” apparently, it’s also made with special diacetyl flavourings. Apart from that, it was great (NBSS 2).

I made immediate plans to ditch it and continue my journey to more reliable parts of the West Midlands.

What you looking for ?”  said a bloke as I wandered round aimlessly looking for the Gents.

MIND THE PAINT !!!” said the bloke as I followed directions that involved three changes of direction.

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Are Gents called Chums now

Giving up on finding the loos, I gave my half a spell in front of the fire to see if it improved, but it was switched off so that didn’t work this time.

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Sad sight

So I took it in search of a pot plant. A big one.

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Ideal

When I returned, an amazing thing had happened.

The Physician had started to fill up. A group of Polish lads planning their weekend over pints of lager, an interview for an IT job in one of the 17 different rooms, and a few gentlefolk popping in for coffees and braving the piped Radio 1.

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Pub Man

It was all very jolly, and a reminder that in Edgbaston, you have to use these dining places for boozing or you’d be stuffed.

Hi-Vis jackets in a Brunning & Price.  Wouldn’t see that in Ascot.

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28 thoughts on “PHYSICIAN, HEAL THYSELF – EDGBASTON EXCESS

    1. I well remember that bar staff having the audacity to put on their choice of music, something modern, was something that really annoyed our old friend in Partridge Green, who would have preferred Glenn Miller.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I find the revitalised New Street station much better than how it had been since the 1960s mainly in that, for the city centre, it’s up one escalator and out rather than up two, through a shopping centre and down a ramp.
    It is “confusing New Street Station” if you enter by the widened East entrance ( from Corporation Street ), the “A” end of the twelve platforms, as it can be uncertain which escalator from the shopping centre to use for your platform but it is not “confusing New Street Station” if you enter by the new North entrance entrance ( from the Post Office Vaults via Pinfold Street ), the “B” end of the twelve platforms, as you are right by escalators for ALL twelve platforms.
    I hope that helps.

    A “Great breakfast” but what is it ?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Sty,
        New Street station will never regain the loftiness of say Paddington or York but for me the ‘turd’ was that shopping centre between the station’s upper escalators and the ramp towards Corporation street and thankfully it’s now been demolished.
        The only thing wrong with Nottingham is having to walk through the Broadmarsh Shopping Centre between the railway station and town centre – except now you can get a tram running to the east of it – that, and the loss of the Shipstones, Home and Hardy Hansons pubs.

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    1. Having used New Street station three times in the last fifteen months for BAPF days out, after not having done so for probably a couple of decades, I have to say I’m with Martin here – the new layout is very confusing, and it’s difficult to get to grips with the geography of it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Use the escalators at the “B” end of the twelve platforms and the new North entrance on Stephenson Street, the Pinfold Street end for the Post Office Vaults, and you shouldn’t be confused again.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Paul is absolutely right…the ‘B’ platforms and their exits are pretty much unchanged from before. However, if you get out at the ‘A’ end (or middle) of the platforms you come up into Grand Central in the Red, Blue or Yellow lounges and, as someone who uses it infrequently (but more often than casual visitors like yourselves) I still have to take a few moments to get my bearings and find my way out (and this is while I’m still sober!)

        Overall, it is a much better place than it used to be…but it can be confusing (and not just for the easily befuddled!).

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I actually downloaded a map of it last year. Agreed if you use the westernmost access to the “B” platforms it is comprehensible, but the eastern side where there is separate access to two different sets of platforms is disorientating. The original design, while no doubt a touch “soulless”, did have the benefit of simplicity – one long space running across the station giving access in both directions to all 12 platforms.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Pete,
        Thanks for confirming, with your local knowledge, that there’s confusion to or from the ‘A’ platforms but not to or from the ‘B’ platforms.
        Yes, “overall, it is a much better place than it used to” and also much better with a tram stop immediately outside. I was told last week that usage of the Midland Metro had increased 40% from the very long overdue extension between Snow Hill and New Street and I’m not the least bit surprised – so many more pubs now easily accessible.

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  2. Edgbaston is a ‘funny’ place with no real centre. ‘Edgbason Village’ is almost in Ladywood, the Cricket Ground is almost in Moseley, the marking on the map is almost in Harborne and the University of Birmingham (which has an Edgbaston address) is almost in Selly Oak. So, I suppose that the ‘village local’ is a Brunning & Price monstrosity fits the vibe quite well. I’ve only been once and it was pleasant enough, but I’d never have picked it as a GBG place.

    When I discovered that Davenports beer was returning I had a feeling of joy that an old Birmingham brand was making a comeback after being unceremoniously ditched by Greenall Whitley. But….and now that I’ve taken a bit more interest in ‘proper’ beer…are their beers anything out of the ordinary? So far, I think not.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pete,
      I must admit to not really knowing Edgbaston although I have been to the Cricket Ground and the University.
      Beers never really properly return.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Plassey Brewery in Wrexham bought the rights to Border Mild a few years ago and made a pretty good fist of it. I also remember drinking a session bitter based on a State Brewery recipe in a Spoons in Carlisle several years ago. Not old enough to have drunk anything from the State Brewery and can’t recall who did the re-make but it was a decent pint.

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      2. Yes,
        Occasionally a proper attempt to reproduce a beer can work well but all too often now a new brewer buys or steals an old name and just attaches it to one of their beers that bears no resemblance to the original.
        A year or two ago I had “Springfield Bitter” which was stronger, hoppier and with citrusy hops and a far paler colour – nothing at all like the proper M&B Springfield Bitter.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. First the good news…this is a relatively recent change of use to a pub. Er, that’s it. I’m all for GBG giving boozers 15 minutes of fame but I can reel off pubs without even thinking about it who< I suspect have a better kept and more often drunk range of ales…Old Joint Stock, Old Contemptibles, Bacchus Bar, The Trocadero, Head of Steam, Gunmakers Arms, Bartons Arms, Lamp Tavern, Anchor, Subside, Waggon and Horses…need I go on…Oh Ok then, Wellington, Pint Shop, Figure of Eight, Square Peg, Soloman and Cutler, Post Office Vaults, Woodman and even the Bulls Head.

    Liked by 1 person

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