Days 2-3 of the Great Sussex Saunter take us to Newhaven (pop. 12,232).

Mrs RM needed somewhere to work from which would have irritatingly inconsistent WiFi coverage so I picked Premier Inn. As cheap as they’ve been for years at the moment (£35) AND the Newhaven one had a Doom Bar pump visible in the adjacent Brewer’s Fayre. Less of that later.

Newhaven is the Gorleston of the South, I assumed, a working port, a gritty place with characterful pubs and some good walking on a clear day.

Well, in part. Barring the Hope, a recent GBG entry by the fort, the town is a Guide desert.

And a scruffy place that brought to mind Shipley, too.

But I always see the good in places, and I warmed to the simple street art.

and the wonderful wraps and tiramisu in Tunde’s Cake, a classic cafe where a Pashmina Phyllis expressed outrage that no Earl Grey was available.

Elsewhere the town has a touch of coastal Essex about it.

Jaywick, not Maldon. The boats are on stilts,

and the people wear upside down kilts.

I like a council that treasures its toilets, the last before France.

Enough of the tourist pitch, let’s drag Mrs RM kicking and screaming into the Prince of Wales (top)

If the tiling says Portsmouth, inside it’s reminiscent of a boozer in a small Scottish town.

We entered to the sound of Xanadu (again, is it the southern Red Light Spells Danger ?) and left to another classic (see bottom of post) and in the 25 minutes in between it was a all bit wordless.

Four regulars chatted about nothing much, the Landlord was wordless, ringing the till and holding a hand out for the cash, and I wasn’t sure if Mrs RM was a novelty or an irritant, particularly when she needed directions to the outside Ladies loo.

But my second Old Man of the week was good, if a little sharp, though the pub felt like the Sussex HQ of the 1664 Appreciation Society (it’s probably closer to the 1664 brewery than Long Man on hovercraft).

The chat turned to Donny Osmond’s new album, the locals amazed he was still about, but the musical highlight was the wondrous humming along to A-ha.

Great pub.


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