Better start doing some posts on this Scottish trip or my blog views will fall off a cliff.

The start of a great adventure into the largely unticked west of Scotland began with a Greggs bacon roll at Carlisle services and continued with a closed pub at Haugh of Urr, which is easy for you to say.

The best trips are the ones where you discover a place for the first time, and are both dismayed and overjoyed at it.

Castle Douglas, the stopping post between Dumfries and Stranraer, does a good job of merging the rundown (Queen St) and the remarkable.

My tick is a Tap. Sulwath hides it’s GBG entry in an entry, I guess.

The sort of spit and sawdust affair you know Mrs RM, and since I’m driving she tries the cask and the keg while I try and make out what Radio Free Galloway are playing. Probably Runrig.

It’s……OK. Brewery taps are rarely great. This at least looks lived in.

Better than my attempt to capture the solitary Old Boy (notably NOT drinking the cask, mind).

But frankly, it’s worth coming just for the air pressure fonts. The two Pauls can tell you ALL about those.


  1. I hope the chips, cheese & korma sauce is better than it looks! 😉

    Give that it’s a brewery tap, that place looks very pubby indeed. And I do like those pump clips (reproductions of the bottle labels, I’m guessing). The style of modern labels has diverged so far from this sort of thing I’m almost astonished to see such old-school designs still in use!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I expect Stafford Paul knows more about air pressure fonts than I do, but they were popular north of the border, back in the mid to late 70’s and, from the evidence of your photo, have survived long after that.

    They were also inadvertently responsible for causing a major rift within CAMRA, following the introduction, by Truman’s (remember them?) of an air-pressure pump, used to dispense the brewery’s new, Tap Bitter.

    Truman’s used this system because Tap Bitter represented their return to cask-ale, following a decade or more of being keg only. As they had no casks, they used this air pressure system to dispense real ale from kegs. The London branches didn’t like this system and claimed that beer dispensed in this manner could not be considered as “real ale.” This, understandably upset the Scottish branches and a major row ensued, that threatened to split the campaign.

    The issue was resolved following an Extraordinary General Meeting, held at the Central Library in Manchester. I know, because I was there, even though the meeting room was so crowded, I couldn’t actually get inside. I believe the good old British compromise settled the issue, which looking back was more of a storm in a teacup, than anything too serious.

    I’m sure Paul will be able to elaborate, but those fonts do look rather attractive in your photo.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Last year’s planned visit to Hamburg, was scuppered by the pandemic and I’m not certain us Brits are particularly welcome in the fatherland, at the moment.

        We will re-schedule our trip, at some stage, as Eileen has a friend who lives in northern Germany, and she’s keen to meet up with her.


    1. Yes, that’s very much as I remember it and I was there in Manchester during 1978 at what was one of only two EGMs ever.
      “The good old British compromise” was pragmatically accepting national preferences, that air pressure was acceptable in Scotland because without it there would be precious little resembling real ale and not acceptable in England as by then we had plenty of beer served through proper handpumps.

      Liked by 1 person

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