Mrs RM is getting into the GBG completion race now, and after a couple of days round the parents in Waterbeach (yes, Chung Hwa), she insisted, INSISTED I tell you, that we complete Essex by adding nearly 3 hours onto our homeward journey.
The Mile & A Third in Westcliffe on the edge of Southend has been nagging me almost as much as Mrs RM for 18 months now.
In late 2020 I was actually a mile away ticking the Peterboat in Leigh and literally forgot to visit the other new entry in GBG21, not bothering to turn the page of my pristine new Guide.
That schoolboy error came back to haunt me as Lockdowns prevented a visit before I left Cambridge and then a year later my visit to Southend was scuppered by the murder of David Amess (met him in my NHS work, really lovely man) a few streets away.
So I was thrilled to join Mrs RM in finally putting Essex to bed. Particularly with parking in Westcliffe side streets rather less traumatic than in central Southend on a Bank Holiday weekend.
There’s a real mix of housing styles,
but rather fewer pubs than in Leigh, so the Mile & A Third (name relates to beer serving measures in craft bars and how far it is to the next GBG entrant, I guess) is a welcome addition to the local drinking scene, as CAMRAs would say.
Mrs RM and I rather fell out over this one. Greeted at the door by the Guvnor (ugh), invited to take a table and await table service (ugh, ugh), given beer menus to peruse (ugh, ugh, ugh), Mrs RM said “I like this” and promptly went to the loo.
In fairness, if you like beer, and you’ll know I don’t, then this is for you;
Mrs RM was in the loo so long (make-up application I guess) that the Guvnor came across and took our beer order without there. Hang on ! Women know more about beer than men ! I panicked and ordered something from someone called Cloudwater. Whoever they are.
It was, and I’m not exaggerating, sensational, the height of cask (NBSS 4.5).
On a Sunday Bank Holiday afternoon there were four customers, and 75% of them were women. So it was only appropriate they got some female-friendly music played on a Rega Planar, which my Hi-Fi geek readers will know is the top budget turntable choice.
Yes, the whole of Quo’s “Just Supposin'” album. Brilliant.
Mrs RM enthused about the loo, so I took a look. Simon will love it.
And in retrospect we loved Mile & A Third, and Westliffe too, with its Proper Beach.
and excellent ice cream from Quo’s Francis Rossi himself (possibly).
I bought Mrs RM a double cone. Let no-one say I don’t treat her right.
Oh, nearly forgot;