April 2023.

I’d got my two Canterbury ticks in the bag by lunchtime (a lamb samosa); perhaps I’d stop and explore an unsung Kent town like Ashford Chartham on the way back to Rye.

The train left Sturry from Platform 1 at 13:32. It was now 12:27. I spotted Platform 1 across the line and watched with horror as the barriers came down five minutes before the train and stayed down (the train too long for the platform) for the next seven minutes leaving me stranded on Platform 2, and in Sturry for another hour. Patronised readers get a little diagram of the railway lines.

Sturry isn’t really a place you want to hang around for an hour, with only some faded pubs, a mile long tailback at the railway line, and the odd spring floral display to distract you.

This is the sort of thing that we laugh about when it happens to BRAPA who then misses his connection to a micropub in Strood and ends up drinking 3 pints of ESB at the Parcel Yard.

I wasn’t happy, but at least it mean I could revisit the UK’s smallest town (average age 72).

381 souls, a 9% population increase in a decade. At this rate it’ll be bigger than Hastings by 2525, as predicted in the Zager and Evans hit.

381 people, two pubs, one with a Michelin star and the other a Brunning & Price. It’s not cheap pubbing in Fordwich.

The George & Dragon, visited just before this blog was born, didn’t seem to have an entry from the road; you had to get in a car, drive to the car park and enter from the rear. Difficult if you’re not driving.

In their way, a Brunning & Price pub is as generic as a Spoons;

But I’m in a positive mood. Four cask beers you’ve heard of seems just about OK, a nice mix in fact.

Of course, the pumps are largely decorative; this is a Peroni stronghold. But the Gadds was a solid if unspectacular NBSS 3 and they had a board with “nibbles” like houmous and crispy squid, alebit at a price that would buy a meal for four in Accrington.

The bench seating opposite the bar accommodates old codgers like me mainly in for a beer, where I can luxuriate in the joy of a fellow in culinary heaven.

“What are the little red things ?”

“They’re…” (checks with chef) “Roquito peppers, Sir”

Well, they’re absolutely gorgeous“.

So I feigned interest and found myself bonding over Roquito peppers, as one does in Kent. Just ask Pauline.

That’s the lacings. These are the “nibbles”, the humous better than the squid.

and here’s the soundtrack.

But you guessed that.

“Noah. NOAH. Check on chips for Table 7 please”.


  1. Never had a roquito pepper -I have however eaten in the Michelin starred “pub ” Have to clarify,we had a voucher (our lad is great at gift giving ) for about £100 & it didn’t go far.With pre meal drinks in Canterbury,taxis each way,cocktails & digestifs back in Canterbury the whole day cost a fortune.It was lovely food however & Instagram ready -don’t go hungry either -not Yorkshire portions !

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s