Only one long, long, week in The North to catch up on now. Hurrah!
Sadly, even in Bradford there’s no escape from Ed Sheeran and his legion of fans (“Eddies”)
Matt had a hardcore gig at Leeds Temple of Boom (capacity c. 200) on the Friday, but unfortunately Ed’s intimate gig in a field the same night meant all beds in the city were taken, just like in the Christmas story.
So, just like in the Christmas story, I booked a £40 twin room at the New Beehive and prayed Matt would catch the last train from Leeds.
First things first, the longstanding owner was a chatty gem, and the rooms are simple but clean. I never quite found out how he ended up in Bradford from Chinnor.
You may know the New Beehive, a venerable old gaslit pub that’s lost its way beer wise recently but is still an essential visit.
And not just because it’s bang next door to the Sheesh Mahal.
I had an evening of worrying whether Matt would be OK in a city full of rabid Sheeran fans queueing for a bus. Too long on my own, really.
I thought I’d give the Beehive another chance.
Half a dozen in the public, a cheery barman, Janice Joplin singing Ed Sheeran covers and robust handpumps.
Titanic Steerage too, and vigorously pulled through. Not bad at all, and superb lacings.
Quite a few B & B guests had travelled from Scandinavia where Ed’s music makes more sense, and I wondered what they’d make of a Proper Pub that didn’t serve Mikkeller in test tubes.
I never found out.
The barman lit the gaslamps, the banter was distinctly local, it felt like a winner again.
I should have called it at one, in retrospect, and gone straight for the dhansak.
But I never learn.