February 2023.

I’m not one for customs, apart from the famous ones associated with my own birthday (22 December, make a note), but I quite fancy turning up in Haxey, North Lincs to watch the giant scrum known as the Haxey Hood.

It’s the most famous thing about the “capital of the Isle of Axholme”, bar this odd looking construction I assume is the town urinal. At least, I hope it was.

The Hood is best explained in this informative video, which makes it sound like a giant excuse to avoid Dryanuary. The Whittlesea Straw Bear festival has the same purpose.

The Kings Arms, victors in 2020, had held the hood for 3 years due to Covid but had to relinquish it to the Loco in January.

The jovial landlord, either a Jim or a Kev, didn’t seem too disheartened.

I’ve rarely met a more jovial landlord, or been in a warmer pub.

No notes, but looking back at these photos I need to know what the adidas boot is doing hanging from the ceiling. Perhaps it’s the modern hood.

We shared a love of Doncaster pubs and live music in pubs, and I told him his lone cask beer (a cool, foamy Pheasantry) was superb, which it was.

And that’s all pubs need. A friendly welcome, warm room, comfortable seating, someone to chat to, good beer.

And a big scrum in the streets in the first week of January, I guess.


    1. Dave,
      A Belgian bar in Leek used to take a customer’s shoe as deposit for the authentic glass that the continental beers were served in.


    1. I have to say, that the pre-C20th Smoking Of The Fool does sound rather more Yorkshire than your namby-pamby Dwile Flonking


      1. Yes, too namby-pamby to properly catch on in the ‘sixties.
        It might stand a better chance now.


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