Yes, I really aim to draw you in a post with a Spandau Ballet pun.  It’s that bad.

Next up was Swanwick’s Elm Tree. in the Neverlands between Southampton and Portsmouth.


Loads going on here just off the M27, with Air Traffic Control, Beacon Bottom and the mysterious “Balancing Pond“.

That Ember Inn (top) that greets me outside the station looks oddly familiar, but I’ve never pubbed in Swanwick before, so go figure.

There’s no way I’d have forgotten the marvellous signage at the Elm Tree.


Elm Tree obscured by tree

It’s a high class example of a suburban pub-diner, with lads and lasses of all ages.

I’m afraid you’re going to have to boycott the Elm Tree though.

Not because of the average beer from Flowerpots, or the solo singer who wasn’t as good as he thinks he is.

Your standard NBSS 2.5 pint

No, because of this disgrace in the Gents. Wonder what’s in the ladies.

Everyday sexism 1950s style

On the walk back to the station I checked my master GBG spreadsheet and discovered the Ember had been ticked, goodness knows when, under a Park Gate heading.  GBG geography always amazes.

Ten minutes to the train, just enough to nip in for a random half.

Always go for the strongest

Hadley Brewing isn’t, sadly, from a Barnet suburb, but is instead another ’80s pop stars indulgence.  Moonstone would be OK if it was a 3.6% pale beer.


In five minutes I hear more about male health problems than on a Beer & Pubs Forum outing, a debate on the easiest IKEA to park in, and hear a lady attempt to describe where Bedale is in a way that makes it sound like it’s in the Dutch Antilles.

Now that was Gold.


  1. That Ember Inn looks…erm…just like every other Ember Inn I’ve been in – even the picture of the ‘mad cow’ is the same! Good to see them thriving miles away from their Midlands heartland!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Tbh, I normally hate chains of anything and I’d only go in an Ember if I was out of other options (same as Wetherspoons), but as I’ve presented my quizzes in Ember Inns for nearly 20 years, I do feel a pang of loyalty/appreciaition!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Surely that “Everyday sexism 1950s style” isn’t genuine 1950s but recent and from a factory on an industrial estate in I forget where which makes it even worse.

    Liked by 1 person

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