15 MARCH 2020 – MY LAST “PROPER” PUB

A year ago I had my last pint in a Proper Pub, without check-in, sit down, follow arrows and the horror of table service.

Days before I’d been in Milton Keynes Spoons at 10pm, where I sensed we were at the end of “normality”, if normality and Milton Keynes can ever really be used in the same sentence.

Makes you nostalgic for the days of blokes in suits and girls in Nike jackets drinking vertically together, huh ?

Sunday the 15th saw a night in Bewdley that allowed me to complete Worcestershire and use my pink marker for the last time in four months.

There’s not much reference to Covid on my blog to that point, but the photos reveal a descent into madness;

“Cheers mate. Nice to have you” said the barman in the Bewdley Tap, and I knew he meant it.

My heart wasn’t in it though, and I felt a bit sad about what Bewdley Brewery and the rest of the town’s fine pubs were almost inevitably about to face.

The final pub was a new Black Country pub that was typically lovely and untypically quiet.

Here the barman politely pursued me for an underpayment of 5p (my mental maths) that cheered me immensely.

On the way home I stopped for coffee in a deserted Worcester, and now wished I’d stopped here;

And then, a week before the official Lockdown, I packed it all in.

15 thoughts on “15 MARCH 2020 – MY LAST “PROPER” PUB

  1. My last normal walk-in pints were in a Tewkesbury that had barely recovered from the latest round of flooding. That so many of the pubs I would have liked to visit were closed awaiting a proper mop-up/redecorating anticipated how things would be everywhere within a few weeks. The genuine shock of seeing a note on the door of the White Bear saying they’d had enough and were selling-up almost seems like an over reaction now. How many more will have had enough, and sell-up after this nightmare…

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    1. Just down the road from Bewdley. Yes, Tewkesbury hasn’t had much luck. Did you ever go in the British Legion Club that made the GBG a couple of years back ? Your sort of place.

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      1. Was considering joining the RBL, the Tewkesbury branch bring one of the places I thought it would be useful for. But Legion clubs have closing at an alarming rate recently so I started to question the value of it. That and they don’t seem to fo the desert army thing anymore!…

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      2. Mark,
        Stafford’s British Legion Club was really good after it was taken on by the couple who previously had Codsall Station.
        They brought Holdens beers with them and gave a very warm welcome even to non-military types such as myself.
        They offered the back room for free knowing they’d take a fair bit over the bar from us but after they retired the greedy new Bar Steward wanted £60 from us !

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  2. I was in Bewdley seven months before you – for Banks’s Original on metered pumps – but three pints of Pedigree in my nearest Marstons pub on Friday 13th March marked the end of life as I knew it.

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      1. Yes, and it would have been a few more than three pints of Pedigree if I’d realised it’d carry on for more than a year.

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  3. That last Friday! A pint of Harvey’s Old Ale in the George Bethersden. Should have had a couple. Last Old Ale until minicask came to the rescue.

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  4. Robinson’s Trooper in Wetherspoon’s Calvert’s Court in Stockport on Wednesday 18 March. Mind you, the atmosphere was rather like Paris in the gap between the government departing to Tours and the Wehrmacht arriving. It was in that brief interregnum when Johnson had told people not to go to pubs, but a good number of them were defiantly carrying on. I’d actually made tentative plans for the weekend. Had I known, I would have gone out and had a skinful on the Friday.

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  5. “Makes you nostalgic for the days of blokes in suits and girls in Nike jackets drinking vertically together, huh ?”

    Does the one in the Nike jacket have an actual, you know, head?

    “but the photos reveal a descent into madness;”

    What the bloody hell is that? Did you volunteer to pick up all the dog droppings on the street?

    “The final pub was a new Black Country pub that was typically lovely and untypically quiet.”

    Sigh. A sign of things to come.

    “Here the barman politely pursued me for an underpayment of 5p (my mental maths)”

    LOL. I keep sharp by adding up bill up in my head for both groceries and beer purchases. *

    * – Came in handy last week for beer when the fellow ran through one of my purchases twice! I instantly knew something was off.

    “and now wished I’d stopped here;”

    Lovely tiling and windows!

    “And then, a week before the official Lockdown, I packed it all in.”

    Sigh. Can’t really blame you.

    Cheers

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For a few days in March 2020 there was lots of stuff about gloves, as well as handwashing. It was all very stressful before we realised we’d be better off indoors than wearing gloves to go to pubs.

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