12th December 2022.

A day after our return from Hull the snow came.

If you’d followed the UK news you’d have thought we were fair set for the worst snowfall since 2010 1963, but although the local children managed to put up a snowman that morning,

“just like that” !, it didn’t last the week.

The snow scuppered my immediate travel plans, but by 3pm on Monday I needed a pub.

And there weren’t open within sliding distance. But the Raven was.

Six minutes walk up an icy hill, I thought proper brave venturing out to save pubs.

Sadly, just one family group (mum, dad, baby) to justify Loxley Brewery’s commendable approach to opening hours.

I bought a pint of the Triple Hop Pale, a smooth and rich NBSS 3.5+ and a packet of those disappointing Q crackling.

If you learn nothing from this post, remember kids, scratchings NOT crackling.

Never mind, a nice seat within view of Kasper and the new parents, with an epic soundtrack that lurched between The Cure, Black Sabbath, Carole King and Michelle Shocked.

I’ve noted before how the Raven promotes diversity and seems genuinely welcoming to all, the sort of place a lone woman would visit. At least until Foreigner starts up and scares them off.

It still lacks the lived-in feel a bit, and unexpectedly missed out on a GBG place to my own Blind Monkey, but I sense it would be Pub of the Year in Stafford or Stoke.

I had the dark one, and then the Azvex Distant Civilisations, which would have been my Pub of the Year if I wasn’t contractually obliged to award that to Doom Bar.

Unexpectedly, I’d been there an hour, unheard of for me. Time to wobble back and cook Mrs RM’s tea.

The Raven is the sort of place you take for granted in Sheffield, which is the price of being a good pub in Sheffield.

And it needs our custom in January, as do all your (nearly) locals.

So, ignore all those articles telling you which bottles and cans to see you through Tryanuary, and get down the pub and get them to play weird music. But order the scratchings, NOT the crackling (or the crunch).

12 thoughts on “USE THEM OR LOSE THEM

  1. You’re quite right about the scratchings but the little that remains of my poor old teeth can’t handle them any more so it’s crunch for me. Sigh.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Prompted by your post, I have just checked when I was last in the Raven. Turns out it was 22 December 2021 – a date which seemed familiar, almost as though someone had been mentioning it quite a bit, trying to get it etched into my brain. Oh well, never mind, it’ll come back to me if I stop thinking about it.

    “Use them or lose them”, eh? Perhaps it’s about time I called in for a pint. Maybe tomorrow.


    1. 1962 – ’63 was definitely a proper winter, Stafford Paul, in fact my wife and I were talking about it, just the other day. The snow hit the country on Boxing Day, and lasted right through into March.

      Schools remained open throughout, and we walked there and back every day. Short trousers for the boys, and skirts with just socks, for the girls – no tights in those days. Our school playground was like an ice-rink – great for sliding on, and the only concession to safety was the odd bucket of ash and cinders from the coal-fired boiler, strewn across the ice, by the caretaker.

      I know this sounds like the famous 3 Yorkshire men from Monty Python, but it’s true. It didn’t bother us as kids, and it seemed like fun, at the time. When the thaw eventually came, we all mucked in with brooms and shovels, to help the caretaker clear the playground.


      1. T’other Paul,
        Yes, that’s exactly as I remember it except that tights were about further north with a girl in my class, AH, definitely having a green woollen pair of them then. I’d forgotten about the ash and cinders, from the classroom stove like in Pardoes, being put on the ice. In the playground we built a barricade taller than ourselves and had slides. A couple of winters later with a properly sloping playground across the road a teacher gave us buckets of cold water as it was still freezing to make the slide better, the opposite of a concession to safety.
        I spent a day digging the caretaker’s garden for £1.50 when I was sixteen.

        We used to dream of having jumpers !

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow -i love the look of this old pub -really harking back to days of yore -the pub we managed to slither down to was a Beefeater


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