Next stop, Devon, with ninety-two (92) Guide pubs to do. Simon is going to push me around the county in a wheelbarrow, just like in the song. He owes me.

First up, a taxi for Matthew.


Here’s Matt and mate taking in one tent and four kg of crisps into 2000 Trees Festival near Cheltenham.

3 hours practice putting up that tent in our garden paid off

Don’t forget to walk to the Mill Inn in Withington, a rare Sam Smiths outlet in the Cotswolds” I shouted, to a sneer of contempt.

Four nights away from home for Matt listening to hardcore (without a shower), four nights away for me ticking pubs (with shower and luxury body wash). I win.

First stop Taunton,high on my list of dull county towns.

Looked quite pleasing this Wednesday night though.

Modelled on the Notts County ground
St Mary Magdalene
One of those is a BRAPA meerkat

Taunton lost the contest not to be the county town and thus have its historic heart ripped out by 1960s developers.

But the streets behind the cricket ground are charming, and therein lies the new GBG entry.



The sun was so bright I couldn’t actually see the sign for The Bank.

Could be….
….ah, that’s better

For a solid but plain town Taunton has retained a fair few basic boozers in its rotating GBG cohort over the years (Racehorse and Ring of Bells spring to mind).

So The Bank comes as a bit of a surprise, and a mild disappointment.

There’s a trad pub in here somewhere, but it’s been turned into a modern place welcoming to all, free of those nasty beer mats and proper seats.


BUT. Goodness me it was friendly.

“HELLO ! WELCOME. Hot enough for you !”

“Half of Wild Beer. Oh, good choice”

Genuinely cheery, welcoming service. Makes all the difference.

Someone will say “Short measure”, I bet you

The grapefruit murk (she’d warned me) was very lovely, the benefit of sticking to two beers on cask, and I forgave the Bank for a diet of Ed Sheeran and Rhianna. It is Taunton, after all.


A mixed crowd of locals, shoppers and single female murk drinkers liked it, and so did I. If I ever do visit Taunton for a day of county cricket I’ll pop in again.

Alexa, tell me the meaning of 42” said a bloke in a suit from Norton Fitzwarren.

Oooh, spooky, time to get to Devon.

Murk lacings not as good as BBB lacings

11 thoughts on “TAUNTON TAMED

    1. If it had been Comic Sans MS, then you might have mistaken it for a day nursery. As it is, they might get bewildered types looking for the local mosque?


  1. Walked past the Bank several times last year, even popped in to check the food offering. Promised without a hint of a fib to return, mainly for the good local craft-esque beer range, but didn’t, mainly because of the Pizza Express-esque interior. I bet the food was a ‘lot’ better than in the cafe we eventually ended up.

    Went to the Plough for cider and fizzy Arbor instead, which was not a bad choice.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. There used to be an excellent little free house in Taunton called the Mason’s Arms,on a back street running parallel to the main shopping street, but I think it’s been closed for some years now 😦

    I agree it’s a disappointingly dull town.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Had a good laugh at your line on shouting to your son about the “rare Sam Smiths outlet.” I imagine that you paused, furrowed your brow, and then added, “THEY’VE GOT BELL PUSHES!”

    Must agree with what the others have said about the signage outside the pub. Just goes to show the choice of lettering really does affect a prospective customer’s impression of a place prior to entering. Glad to hear they were friendly though.


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