Back into That Cheshire next, for a pub I completely overlooked, having accidentally pinked it in on the GBG map.
Seen it on the map, but it’s a pub wasteland down there between Penny Lane and Halton, isn’t it ?
Come to think of it, Widnes is a wasteland, but at least Simon and Garfunkel wrote a song about it.
Hang on, the Queen has been here.
Yes ! The Queen had been to a place I haven’t been to ! This must be rectified.
It feels a bit like one of those pretty Essex villages in gritty, industrial, south Essex.
I realise, with a start, I have been anywhere near here before. What joy, at 56.
My heart races when I discover the Childe of Hale is owned by a proper pub company.
From the outside, quite tasteful.
Inside, the worst excesses of Greene King’s bland refurb job.
But they’ve kept one room, the drinkers bar, intact.
At the other bar, a giant family (appropriately for the Hale giant) is waiting to collect their giant plates of chicken nuggets and chips to eat outside. Don’t they have table service ?
“MINE’S WITH MASH. MINE’S WITH MASH” shouts Little Jimmy, except he’s 8 and hasn’t learnt to use apostrophes yet.
So I have 3 minutes to make my choice of ale.
It’s a toughie.
Who needs choice? Not me, though I would have like to have been at the GBG selection meeting for this one
While the rest of a busy pub enjoys the sun I’ve kindly brought over from Manchester, I sit alone in the Public bar, which looks better by the minute.
Served in the finest Carling thin glass, it starts as a thin 2.5 but acquires some body after I wander off to search for life, and ends a creditable 3. A modest victory for CAMRA, spreading the love
Then I go in search of mud.