CHELTENHAM, BUT NOT AT THE RACES

It’s like deja vu all over again. Scare stories about Brazilians in South Gloucestershire putting my return to pubs at risk, a year after a lot of fuss about Cheltenham Festival taking place just as Covid cases started to spike.

I was in the area a year ago, listening to some over confident Yorkies celebrating Leeds promotion and their inevitable losses in the Gold Cup.

I sensed they wouldn’t be celebrating in The Ivy later. Or the Harry Cook with its promise of Doom Bar.

A year ago I’d kept my blog blissfully free of Covid speculation, but I remember thinking that cramming 250,000 drunks into a racecourse seemed a strange move with rumours of pub Lockdown in the air. But what do I know ?

I was tempted to pop into the Adam & Eve, the archetypal “boozer in posh town”,

but wisely stayed in Gloucester that night enjoying Bass in Cheltenham’s scruffy neighbour.

A decade ago the question “Gloucester or Cheltenham ?” from Dave would have had only one answer, the Regency taking precedence over the run-down.

But Gloucester has upped its game with the Marina development, and even its Brewhouse & Kitchen is a cut above.

And the scruffy neighbour is just more friendly. Cheltenham is the place I was infamously ignored at the bar a few years back.

A nice “name that pub” for someone there. The beer wasn’t better than the welcome.

A day at the races is still on my To Do list, but I reckon Cartmel or Uttoxeter is safer and offers better beer, even if the blog potential may be slightly lower.

Chelt

11 thoughts on “CHELTENHAM, BUT NOT AT THE RACES

  1. “A day at the races is still on my To Do list, but I reckon Cartmel or Uttoxeter is safer and offers better beer”,
    I’ll save you a seat in the Vaults.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’ve only been to Uttoxeter races once, nearly 40 years ago, but I was planning on going when I retired last year – and then all plans were called off 11 months ago. It’s on my to do list after the restart!

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  2. Cartmel is a lovely village but on race days it is an absolute nightmare. I still go occasionally – I used to go all the time* when I was at university in Lancaster – and it’s a good day out, but so, so busy. If you want to do the pubs, go on non-race days.

    *They used to race on only three or four days a year in the 1970s – nowadays it’s about eight days between end of May and end of August.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The attendance over four days at the Cheltenham festival last year was 251,684 (with 68,859 on the fourth day), which is still a helluva lot, but not as crowded as you imply with your “cramming 250,000 drunks into a racecourse” implies!

    I went three times in 1975, 1979 and 1985 – the last time on a coach trip from Leeds. In 1975 it rained so much on Monday that the Tuesday was cancelled; they had eight races (instead of six) on Wednesday; and on Thursday they ran the first five (I think) and then called the whole thing off after the horses in the Gold Cup finished at walking pace because the ground was so heavy. This was in the days when people who were into horse racing used to go, now it’s just an expensive piss up.

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    1. SH,
      You’ve made me realise that I’ve never gone to see horse racing, but I have seen travellers racing their traps on the Birmingham New Road with the regular traffic lights adding to the excitement as barking does come naturally to those horses.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. “Scare stories about Brazilians in South Gloucestershire putting my return to pubs at risk,”

    While you lot are doing the same to Aukland. 😉

    “but I remember thinking that cramming 250,000 drunks into a racecourse seemed a strange move with rumours of pub Lockdown in the air. But what do I know ?”

    Pfft. It’s outside, plenty of fresh air and sunshine. It’s locked up (or down!) that’s the problem!

    “and even its Brewhouse & Kitchen is a cut above.”

    A cut above what? A proper pub? 😉

    “Cheltenham is the place I was infamously ignored at the bar a few years back.”

    You can get that over here when sitting at a bloody table!

    “A nice “name that pub” for someone there. The beer wasn’t better than the welcome.”

    Ok. You’re starting to insert Guess that Pub into every post!

    “A day at the races is still on my To Do list,”

    You’re a braver man than I. 😉

    Cheers

    Like

  5. Can highly recommend Uttoxeter, you know the pubs and the racecourse is a stones throw from the town (so easy it to get back to)

    You’re spoilt for choice now your up in Yorkshire with 9 to choose from. Doncaster and Pontefract stand out.

    Liked by 1 person

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