Two instant bits of feedback on the Ilkeston post have revealed that

a) The Prince of Wales used to be The Poacher, which I’d already been to.

b) Ilkeston Station is so new (April 2017) I may have been the first paying customer to use it !

Thanks to Mark and Anonymous, my new favourite commentator.

I had 15 minutes before the train, having finally found the footbridge over the A6007.

Frantic A6007 action
Note how OS still show The Poacher rather than the PoW

15 minutes isn’t long to savour a beer, let alone a pub.  And if I missed this train I was faced with three Flat Whites in the Spoons or else joining the joggers.

But how could you pass the Dewdrop, beautifully tucked away in the industrial quarter, or whatever the hipsters call it.

Nice Bass sign

Looks even better from the other side (top). You can see the fug I mentioned last time.

Fifteen years ago the Dewdrop had a formidable reputation for its Bass, and would have been in my Top 100 if computers (or pens and paper in the case of Ilkeston) had been invented back in 2003.

A rollercoaster ride in the Guide

In and out of the GBG since then, and dropping the Draught Bass, but my revisit will be hard to top in March (unless Aberdeen has thrown up a Brunning and Price, of course).

The pub lighting makes it look like 1953, a more enlightened time before knocking-through of pub rooms and Ed Sheeran.

Yep.  Old Rosie £3.50

Bar, lounge, snug, lobby.  How do you choose ?


Go for the one with the jukebox (the Public in this case).  And the weird picture of an unidentifiable star.  Either Dylan or Terry Hall, I thought.

Calm down, calm down
Pool table reserved for calamitous BRAPA visit

If anything it was more wonderous than I remembered.

Which is apt, as the jukebox spluttered out “Wonderous Stories“.  Jon Anderson never sounded so tinny, but Mudgie would not have minded one jot.

With a superb half of Abbeydale Moonshine (NBSS 3.5/4) almost making up for the absence of Bass and “Get ya hands in our baps* the bap-based banter of the week, it was pub heaven, it really was. Perhaps a dozen in, mainly in the snug.

Excusable use of Woke Derby CAMRA festival glass

I felt terrible having to neck it and race for the train.  Simon will do it justice.  They might be playing “Freebird” by then.


“Thanks Darling” someone shouted. What’s wrong with M’duck ?

4 minutes till the train

Oh, the train was late after all that.  I could have stayed for a pint.

*Black pudding filling


27 thoughts on “TOP 100 PUBS – DEWDROP, ILKESTON

  1. The top 100 has extended, by my reckoning, to over 3,090 but this deserves inclusion. Didn’t know that about the Prince of Wales – must check records – or the station. Great stuff.


    1. If your spreadsheet says 3.090 I’ll round it up to 4.

      I didn’t know PoW = Poacher, though I did think I’d been to a pub that side of the street. WhatPub says formerly Poacher, the GBG App implies it’s new. Shambles, we need a formal review.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Interesting that the Dewdrop doesn’t appear at all in my 1980s CAMRA guides to “Derbyshire Ale”. I wonder who the original pub owners were. In those days, the go-to pub in Ilkeston was Wards’ Durham Ox.


    1. That’s the problem with a selective guide.
      The earlier edition, red cover, with 15 Ilkeston pubs notes that “only a half of Ilkeston’s pubs are described below, due to limited space …” so that suggests 30 in all.
      The later edition, green cover, lists 19.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. A treat of a pub, the cheese’n’onion hold the current record for most ridiculously filled midlands cob. Did you see the skittle alley?… no, of course you didn’t, it was dark. Still liveried as the Middleton Hotel if you look carefully. In the daytime…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes. It’s odd how some pubs like this (Beacon, Great Western) get lauded while others are largely unknown.

      You’re the famous Mark Shirley of pub games fame, I guess? I have lots of famous Marks on here, you know 😉


      1. The word you’re looking for is infamy of course.

        My only problem(s) with the Dewdrop, the opening hours, which mean I use it for a last one before home and always make the mistake of finishing with the pokey Oakham Ales house blend, which has too much Green Devil in it for safety.


      2. But with the Beacon and the Great Western it’s the beer as much as the baps that got them known.


    2. It’s also likely that prior to the station opening the Dewdrop was less likely to be on the ex-BR tickers’n’scoopers itinerary. If you like the Dewdrop, you’ll love the nearby Gate Inn, Awsworth which is very similar in layout and all-round greatness.

      Liked by 1 person

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