Last night we stayed in Maryport, and I was reminded how thrilling it is to visit a town for the first time (except THAT one).

So imagine my deep joy on arriving in Ashington, home of a new GBG micro, mining heritage and birthplace of several sporting legends (including my hard-but fair tackling namesake).

So exciting you get this bumper sized posts, but sadly the town’s famed mobile micropub doesn’t feature.

I want a number plate like that one.

The micro did open on time, with a shocked owner of Hop 77 surprised to see me queuing outside at 14:00 with loose change in hand. Why are publicans always so shocked to see people queueing for pubs; people queue for petrol in this country.

The North-East does micros better than most. Cosy, not just targeted at Untppd tickers and mates of the owner, and happy to serve anything that sells.

Hop 77 has the sort of sofa Mrs RM likes as her little (but hard-working) legs touch the floor. Remember folks, high tables are sexist.

Lovely handpumps,

though the jam jars looked like they’d been in situ since the first Lockdown, and since 98% of beer looks the same it hardly matters.

I skipped the cask in favour of something called Clever Girl, which I knew Mrs RM would appreciate.

Look ! Murk !

Unfortunately Mr Hop 77 didn’t have a dedicated takeaway container to hand, and my Panda Pops bottle was too small, but we improvised.

Lovely place; just add more customers.

Ashington itseld looked lively enough on a Sunday, and with a great combination of ghost writing,

and strange art (or is it BRAPA ?).

As I nipped in the Rohan Kanhai (almost as celebrated in Ashington as Martin Taylor) for the obligatory Spoons pre-emptive tick, I debated whether Ashington was the Wishaw of the North, or the Scunthorpe.

Certainly this is a more civilised Spoons than the Scunny effort,

and so I side with the Wishaw comparison.

But do please visit all 3 in a 24 hour period and decide for yourselves.

5 thoughts on “A HOP (77) INTO ASHINGTON

  1. I was captivated by Rohan Kanhai’s batting as seen on TV in the 1960s, and was lucky enough to see him play at Lancaster Cricket Club in the 1980s – I can’t remember which team he was playing for, but I’m pretty sure Lancaster never played against Ashington. He’d have been in his late 40s at the time.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, I wasn’t saying he didn’t play for Ashington, just that it wasn’t them he was playing for when I saw him at Lancaster. I know he also played for Blackpool, but that was even earlier in his career, and for St Annes later on.

    Liked by 1 person

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