You remember that period of our lives when we couldn’t go to pubs ?

When I had to visit Kettering and take pictures of death and decay ?


Well, I went back, didn’t I ? Someone has to.


The town declared its status as a Covid hotspot as you entered the (imaginary) gates, echoing the football team’s classic fanzine.

See the source image

I’m not scared by an infection rate of 21.3 per 100,000, as I don’t get close enough to people to let them read my T-Shirt, let alone exchange body fluids in nightclubs called Fluid.

Only one place to go on a Friday night, the legendary Piper, the closest pub to the sadly deceased Wicksteed Park.

Run by a CAMRA member for 30 years, apparently, which makes its occasional GBG omission surprising.

Your classic two bar 1950s estate pub, serving lads and lasses of all ages, and greeting you with “Somewhere in my heart“. And Pride.

Sure, there’s lots of Potbelly, and Harvest Pale is the ale of choice in the sports room, but it’s my job to tell you the Pride is drinking well.

And it was (NBSS 3.5+), the sort of beer you’d drink a ton of. Especially to wash down the ham, egg and chips delivered by the lady in a pinafore.

If I kept the sort of meticulous records that Duncan does, I’d tell you that the Piper had scored 3.5 on two previous occasions. Actually, by the end it was a 4 and I was sort of in love.

I just wish more people were in love with the Piper. It was barely half full.

Complete the following sentence..

“Use it or …. ..”

11 thoughts on “PIPER AT THE GATES OF DOOM

  1. The Romany in Northampton, a very similar pub to The Piper in many ways, is already scheduled for permanent closure in the name of housing. Hopefully the Piper will fare better.

    I rarely go there though. I walk everywhere in Kettering and by the time you’ve schlepped up through the housing estate for a pint, there’s little else to do up there than schlepp back into town again. I’ll leave it to the locals to save this one…

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Little bit tatty last time I went, but rather that than the full Marston’s-esque pastel and high-chair refurb.

        I’ve had call to visit all of the Kettering estate pubs recently and they’re all very good in their own way, though not usually for the beer it must be said.

        Liked by 1 person

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