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BITE user comments - on_the_brightside

Comments by on_the_brightside

Top End Bar, Ashton under Lyne

Very funny indeed Caskales. Nicely done, I'm sure you have hit the nail on the head for all the BITE reviewers who actually go into pubs!

7 Apr 2020 15:49

The Bear, Crickhowell

I stayed here for a few days recently and it wasn't quite as 'good' as I'd hoped. But plenty of plus points.

Imposing building - there's been some form of inn here for the best part of 600 years and current building is clearly a seriously old coaching inn. The main building is across a couple of levels with the usual small flights of stairs between levels that you'd expect in a place of this age. There is a separate restaurant but one can eat in the bar areas too. The bar areas themselves are large so drinkers and eaters are well catered for in terms of space. I stayed in a room in the 'annex' next door - I expect a converted stable block in an attached imposing courtyard. My room was large, clean and comfy but the furnishing seriously out of date. Good bathroom though.

Inside the main building - low ceilings, dark beams and so on, all as expected in a place this old. But it struck me as bit gloomy rather than 'olde worlde' - perhaps some lighter furniture may help. That said - pleasant atmosphere.

Bar service - as mentioned, the drinking area is spacious but the serving area is pretty small and four or five punters at the bar soon overwhelm the rather inefficient staff.

Ale - lacklustre. On one night had a pint of Rev James, sadly undrinkable. Sent it back and got a pint of 6X - that was adequate at best and they didn't turn the Rev James clip around. A pub like this should, in my view, pride itself on its ale; they didn't.

Food - poor experience in the restaurant, too many things to moan about to list. In the bar on another night it was very good - a decent steak from the highly rated butcher which is 100 yards from the pub. Nice :-)

Its still a 'six' overall from me and worth looking in if you are nearby - Crickhowell is lovely and a superb spot to explore the Brecon Beacons.

Last and least, I've been posting on this site for knocking on 14 years I think. There were a few posts in 2012 and 2014 that on reflexion were probably a bit ill advised and "up my own arse". But I think this is probably my penultimate post - sorry its long and rambling, but the intent of BITE was (and still should be) to allow people who actually love pubs and go in them to pass on their experiences to like-minded individuals.

9 Jan 2020 18:54

Bar Txt, Croydon

Just an update on the status of this place.

It had been well and truly closed up for long over a year but happily reopened a few months ago. Its now called 'The Joker' and is an 'off-shoot' of the pub in Brighton of the same name.

I haven't been in yet, but whenever I go by it looks pretty popular.

I'm having a dry-ish January but will go in soon and post a proper review; I can only score it '1' as I haven't been inside. In the meantime, its good to see a long closed pub come back from what appeared to be permanent loss.

9 Jan 2020 12:51

The Hatchet, Mansion House

This is now (and has been for a while) called the Three Cranes and is under different ownership from the times of the previous posts.

Have been in a couple of times, once in the summer (just to eat) and once just before Christmas - enjoyed both occasions.

In December we started off in the bar. They only have one cask handpull - Landord - and this was being changed, so I had a few pints of Tiny Rebel Easy Livin'. These citrus tinged, hazy brews, aren't really my thing but they were very enjoyable on this occasion - better on a hot summer's day I imagine.

Had food upstairs - stupendous proper pies served in large individual enamel pie dishes with pastry top and bottom. Not a bit of stew in the bottom of a china pot with a a pastry lid. They were very hefty (couldn't finish mine) and came with excellent chips! All other food very good too.

Service in bar and restaurant friendly and efficient. All the knocking shop indicators mentioned in previous post have gone and the rooms are now short let service apartments.

I'd go back and give it a seven - though mostly due to the food - which is bound to annoy some of the other posters on BITE, but who cares?

9 Jan 2020 12:43

The Star, Ruthin

So then Croydonpeer, have you been in the Star in Ruthin? If you haven't your complaint at Gog is hypocritical. And I think the point of Scrumpy's original post on this pub was to be cautious of erratic open hours - which is useful information. To have a pop at Scrumpy who is one of the few good posters on this site is just silly.

I know its the season of goodwill to all people but I do wish that nobs like Peer, Traderdick and his/her various other aliases would shut up and stick to what this (nowadays) sad BITE site is supposed to be about. That, or, as the Princess Royal almost said many years ago, just efff orfff.

What a shame that BITE doesn't have a moderator anymore.

24 Dec 2019 19:04

The Glan Aber Hotel, Betws-y-Coed

Keep up the good work'Blue'. Pleasing to have some actual review content on the Bite Site once in a while.

18 Nov 2019 19:05

The Golden Lion, Caterham

Never been in here but in the interests of keeping things up to date and using the capitalisation that some posters seem to like.


Drove past the other day, shut. Windows boarded and 'building site' type hoardings surrounding the big car park area. The latter suggests that its gone for good but who knows. After all, the relatively nearby Whyteleafe Tavern was shut and got resurrected (unfortunately).

31 Oct 2019 21:42

The Paper Mill Inn, Chinley

Strange place this in terms of ambiance and what it wants to be.

Popped in for a couple when staying at the Old Hall which is twenty yards away and owned, I think, by the same bloke.

Like the Old Hall, another old building but nothing like as well 'preserved'. Inside, quite weird lighting and pizza food focus (I didn't eat, having stuffed myself stupid with great food in the Old Hall).

Locals friendly and engaged in chat about the eclectic music they were playing which was rather good.

Had pints of very drinkable Boondoggle. Worth a visit if in the area but perhaps not a special detour. If you are staying in the Old Hall across the road then definitely pop in as its so different.

31 Oct 2019 21:37

The Old Hall Inn, Whitehough

Yet another pub I'm tardy on making a post.

Stayed here for a couple of days in June. Had a room in the main pub building - all low ceilings and creaking timbers - brilliant! Bedroom was quite basic (which is what I'd requested) but clean and comfy and quiet and I slept well.

The building is v old (I like staying in old pubs as my recent-ish posts indicate) and is probably the only pub I've ever been in where the restaurant has both stone mullioned windows AND a timber minstrel's gallery. Fab.

Unfortunately I didn't get to eat in the restaurant despite booking for dinner before I arrived. Instead was pointed to tables in the bar area. Food was very good, as was the accompanying bottles of wine and also quite good value.

Ale was reasonable - had Wainwrights and something called Feckless. Both perfectly acceptable pints. Service from the young female bar staff was perfunctory. For a tourist pub with rooms it had a bit of a locals feel.

I've given this a "7", but it could easily have been a 6 if I'd felt more mean or an 8 if it had been more welcoming, which it wasn't really. Whichever, definitely worth a visit if in the area.

31 Oct 2019 21:24

The Magna Carta, Lincoln

Another pub I visited in June.

The pub is right between the castle and the truly magnificent cathedral. As a result, I expected a somewhat more historic look and feel and vibe about the place. However, inside its quite modern, bright and airy and spread over a few levels.

I'd just walked up the aptly named 'Steep Hill' so was looking forward to a pint. Had a Pedigree which was fine but not exceptional. I was driving so couldn't have more, but if not quite my sort of place it was perfectly fine for a quick pint. Service was friendly and efficient but it was pretty quiet with only half a dozen or so punters in so far as I could see. Gents were clean and decent size which is always welcome!

31 Oct 2019 17:53

The Britannia Inn, Crickhowell

Came in here in June (2019) so as always, I'm late with my posts.

I really liked the place. Quite a bright and cheery interior and staff and locals friendly. Seemed well set up for both drinkers and eaters. The food menu looked fine but I didn't eat. On one visit during my stay in the town, the Cricket World Cup was on TV - England were playing and getting well beaten by Australia and it was pleasing to see the Welsh locals supping the English team.

I had a few pints of Butty Bach and Wye Valley's HPA - both very good indeed.

Of the two pubs I visited in Crickhowell, I liked this one the most and would happily go back.

31 Oct 2019 17:44

The Groes Inn, Conwy

I stayed here for a few days back in June and really enjoyed it:

Location - excellent; beautiful spot and very handy for exploring North Wales.
Accom - had a lovely, comfy, quiet, clean room. No aircon but most of the year that doesn't matter!
Building - very old place but I doubt its really Wales's oldest pub.
Food - hefty portions and very enjoyable.
Service - very friendly.

Its a JW Lees pub. I'd not come across them before - a small family owned chain apparently. I should have tried their place in Chester (see my reviews on two places I visited in that city!) I tried three of the Lees ales (one dressed up 'Dragon' or something like that) and enjoyed them all - well kept and varying styles too.


31 Oct 2019 13:21

The Boot Inn, Chester

Very old pub in Chester's main historic street. The place is easy to miss and can be only got at from the first floor row.

I was in on an early evening on a Thursday in June. Pub very quiet with a few blokes spread out one on each table around the place and I think a couple at one table. No one behind the bar. An off duty barman told me that someone would be there soon as the barman had nipped off to the gents. After a while, the off duty chap served me. A bit later the barman arrived explaining to his mate that he'd been on the phone about doing some work somewhere else.

Atmosphere was very odd with the old blokes shouting at each other comparing their memories of very early Dr Who villains and who was who in Captain Scarlet!! I suspect the effect of cheap beer and lonely old chaps.

Its another Sam's pub with all the 'don't do this signs'.

I had a cider - had about a third of it and quietly left. This could be a great place but certainly wasn't on my visit.

I'm sure there are some good pubs in Chester City centre but the two I went in definitely weren't good!

31 Oct 2019 13:12

The Falcon, Chester

As others have noted this is a fine and very old building. Apparently, it was almost derelict but was restored and turned into a pub a few decades ago, so as a pub its relatively 'new'.

Its a Sam's place so everything on sale is a Sam's product - fine if you like Sam's stuff, not so good if you don't.

About the first thing I saw when I found my way from the outside to the bar were all the tatty, A4 size, laser printed notes on the walls saying, "no smoking" (fair enough and obvious), "no swearing", "no electronic devices", etc. It seems so po-faced and kill joy.

The atmosphere not helped by it having a very 'locals feel' to it. Not exactly unfriending but not warm and welcoming either; it was mid afternoon - perhaps its better later in the evening.

On my visit in June 2019, I had a pint of OBB - not bad at all. I only stayed for the one though, place wasn't my cup of tea.

31 Oct 2019 13:03

Essendine Hotel, Stamford

Caskales just beat me to it and is spot on.

Randolf and Crodonpeer - two in the same. Boring pointless posts, zzzzzz. Best ignored and as Pete Townsend wrote, he'll, "...just f f f fade away..."

The Spoons poster came in a number of guises, starting with ArsenalFan I think.

7 Oct 2019 17:31

Whyte Harte Hotel, Bletchingley

It is indeed closed and closed very abruptly a couple of weeks ago. Apparently someone with reservations turned up to check into their room and it was shut with a steel door in place!

It has signs outside saying lease for sale so there is hope. Its a big place and seriously old so I think it will need someone with very deep pockets to take it on.

21 Sep 2019 14:02

The Railway, Kew Gardens

I meant to say - the photos of this pub don't do it justice. Especially the outside which now has a gazebo type structure with many plants and vines growing through the wooden frame. Sitting outside in the sun (as I did), its hard to believe that you are only twenty yards or so from the Tube line.

17 Jul 2019 18:33

The Railway, Kew Gardens

Came in here for the first time a few days ago - I liked it. Nicely 'restored' building (the old Underground station ticket hall I assume) with a pleasant outside area that catches the sun nicely.

Service was friendly and efficient and my pints of Hop Head were excellent. It is quite pricey (twelve quid for a pint and a large white wine spritzer) but one only has to look at the very large double fronted Victorian villas that line the street leading to the pub to see why!

I'd go back if in the area again and notwithstanding the prices, would recommend it.

16 Jul 2019 12:41

The Lulworth Beach Hotel, West Lulworth

A hot and sunny day and needed some refreshment.

Only a fairly quick visit but had some very acceptable Badger.

Looked like a decent pub - outside seating area in full sun. Bright and airy inside with efficient service. Also nearest/only pub to the beach/cove.

13 Jul 2019 20:22

The Greyhound, Corfe Castle

Made a mistake in my post from a few hours ago. I was drinking Jurassic Knob not Badger. First pint very good, on the next visit the pint much less so.

13 Jul 2019 20:19

Bankes Arms Hotel, Corfe Castle

Stayed in this pub on a recent visit to Corfe Castle and would recommend it. It has a pleasant sun trap garden that sides on to the steam railway - a nice spot to sit and relax.

Inside, it has a reasonable size bar area with four ales on hand-pull. I had something called 'Local' but can't for the life of me remember the name of the brewery, it was was something like Tisbury but I think that they are defunct. Anyway, a very good pint indeed - a view supported by a couple of friends. Bar seemed very popular with both locals and visitors and the staff were very welcoming and friendly.

Food was good - not exceptional but very tasty and good sized portions (including the breakfasts!)

Bedrooms, clean and comfy but like many old old pubs no air con so can get stuffy (but that's part and parcel of staying in old pubs) and those at the front can be a bit noisy but there is very little road traffic at night.

Enjoyed it - give it a try if you are in the area. Oh, and the village is charming.

13 Jul 2019 18:27

The Greyhound, Corfe Castle

Popped in here a couple of times on a recent stay in Corfe Castle.

A very old pub with a garden that effectively backs right on the castle. From the outside, the pub looks quite large but the bar area itself is a bit 'cramped'.

On first visit, had a very good pint of Badger. Second visit the barrel must have been heading toward the end and not so good!

Food looked okay but didn't try any. Staff friendly and efficient.

Perfectly fine place but nothing really exceptional - also saw the licensee being rather abrupt with his staff which I never like to see.

13 Jul 2019 18:16

The Fox, Corfe Castle

So, one post on 9th July, one post on 10th July and none at all on either 11th or 12th. And this is "Officially the busiest pub site..."?

Anyway, more importantly, the Fox in Corfe Castle was definitely open when I walked past on 7th July. Didn't get a chance to visit though, but did get into a couple of other Corfe pubs so more reviews from me over the weekend.

13 Jul 2019 13:11

The Whyteleafe Tavern, Whyteleafe

An update. Now surrounded by scaffolding and work underway - one of the vans outside last week had a name on the side something like "the pub refurbishment company". So a bit of 'Googling' reveals that it will indeed be coming back as a pub.

Apparently, its been bought up by the Craft Union Pub Company, not an outfit with which I'm familiar but their website (although low on detail) seems to to indicate that they are into sports and music bars. The immediate area has lacked a decent pub for decades and it would be great to see a proper, friendly, local pub open up. A sports and music focus may not do it, but fingers crossed and let's see...

2 Jun 2019 17:45

The Albion, Barnet

I am really rather bored now with this petty, juvenile sniping.

Randolph - give it a rest. And as I think you steered me some while ago just post something about pubs rather than having a pop at reviewers who do actually provide frequent useful content.

BITE is poor enough without this.

I'll not post anything else on here until one or two of you grow up. That, in itself, should please most people.

Less handbag waving, more pubs now please ladies.

23 May 2019 19:29

The Grouse Inn, Oldham

Recent posts (the past year or thereabouts) indicate that no/very few requests to add new pubs get actioned). In reality, its doubtful that there are any 'moderators'. The website doesn't even use SSL (denoted by httpS) meaning that passwords going up and down the line are relatively easy to discover.

Sadly, the BITE site is - I think - dying a slow death.

22 May 2019 18:51

Whitelocks, Leeds

Came in here after a visit to the Pack Horse which is just around the corner. Couldn't have been more different. The place was busy without being packed, decent atmosphere and a good traditional feel. I liked all the polished brass and copper and the relatively high bar that allows the staff to look down on the punters :-)

Quite a wide ale selection but unfortunately I was working the next day so restricted myself to a couple. Had the Kirkstall Black Band Porter which I enjoyed, even though I'm not always a porter fan. And then a Kirkstall Yorkshire Pale Ale - excellent pint. Two good pints from a really local brewer and friendly efficient service.


18 May 2019 12:06

The Pack Horse, Leeds

Paid this place a visit earlier in the week on a very short visit to Leeds.

Pub was almost empty when I was in late afternoon/early evening and was a bit lacking in atmosphere. Apparently it had just reopened after a two day "refurb" and it smelled a bit of cleaning fluids. Considering its such an old pub, I found the large flat screen TV that dominated one of the bar areas a bit out of keeping and didn't contribute to the feel of the place.

Ales on were Hobgoblin Gold, Old Peculiar and Doombar. Went for the Hobgoblin which was clear and well kept and while it was perfectly fine, it wasn't really to my taste.

Probably a better bet when there are more customers in but I just had the one and went off to Whitelocks.

18 May 2019 11:58

The Unicorn Inn, Newton Solney

None of my business I suppose, but I have to say I agree with the Mallard here. Its something I've seen Mappiman do too and its pretty useful and not confusing so long as the wording is clear.

It is a shame that the owner/adminstrator of the BITE site seem to have given up on it. Among other things, the top ten pub list is now very suspect in terms of accuracy and the various 'accolades' at the top of the home page are way, way out of date. But while people still post about their experiences inside of the pubs they visit BITE still has its uses.

12 May 2019 17:05

The Counting House, Bank

As others have said - an impressive interior which is in keeping with a number of other Fuller's bank conversions (gents also in good order which isn't the case for many of the small, older, 'real' pubs in the area). Unfortunately the high ceilings and mostly hard surfaces make it very "echoey", happily though it wasn't busy when I was in yesterday so could have a conversation with my friends without bellowing at each other. I can imagine that when crowded its hard to hear yourself think.

Started off with a Hop Head that was excellent but they promptly ran out (whether they had another barrel but couldn't be bothered to change it would be anyone's guess). Moved on to Seafarer which I really didn't enjoy so settled on Tribute which was certainly drinkable but not the best pint I've ever had. A couple of my friends were on the Frontier Lager at a truly staggering £6.05 a pint!

Service was polite and friendly but a bit haphazard in terms of knowing who to serve in the right order, or indeed spotting that someone needed serving at all. Didn't see any short measures though which was good.

All in all - as a bank turned into a pub, its fine and I'd happily go back.

30 Apr 2019 17:11

The Grasshopper Inn, Moorhouse

Drove past earlier today for the first time in a few years and was intending to grab a swifty - plan derailed. Closed.

A good few steel constructor's cabins in the car park which is all fenced off.

Happily, a sign outside said, "...back open again later in the year..." Having checked the website, this is indeed the case and will reopen at the backend of the year. Given the ancient age of the place I expect its more of a sympathetic restoration rather than mad refurb; the place is over seven hundred years old in parts so I'd be amazed if it wasn't listed.

Its privately owned so I wish them lots of luck. I will pay a visit when it reopens. In the meantime have scored it 'one', purely on the basis that its shut!

2 Apr 2019 17:29

The Elephant and Castle, Amwell

Rooty toot, indeed.

People are indeed interested in movies. They probably use a film review site though.

The most "recent" review of this pub is two years ago, so please do the BITE website a favour and concentrate on saying something useful about a pub that you have been inside, or have a trading update (closed, open, etc.) to provide. Take a look at exemplary contributors such as Mappi, Blue, Snarling, Boehm and small group of others and you'll get the idea.

Toodle-pip, must dash.

30 Mar 2019 19:07

The Elephant and Castle, Amwell

Content free from Hulot Shat.

I wonder what the pub and beer are like.

30 Mar 2019 18:04

The Whyteleafe Tavern, Whyteleafe

Looks very much like its closed.

Went past today and all boarded up with steel security panels over all the downstairs windows and doors and the pub name removed from the front of the building. It was open a few days ago so seems to shut down pretty fast.

Never been a particularly enjoyable place to visit in my view - the news link below says it all really...

The place occupies quite a big plot and it would be fab to see it taken over and rejuvenated as there are so few good pubs nearby. I suspect its destined to be knocked down and flats will appear though.

30 Mar 2019 17:56

The Southwark Tavern, London Bridge

Another pub that I've been coming to for a long while but this was the first visit in ages. Place was very packed and very noisey - next to impossible to hold a conversation with my mates. No one minds the hubbub of conversation but playing loud piped music in a pub that is all hard surfaces is a basic mistake.

Had a pint of Holy Grail (named after the Monty Python film and a Black Sheep ale). First pint was fine. Second pint was cloudy - the barman himself held it up to the light but still served it to me!! It was just about drinkable and I couldn't be bothered to send it back but he did turn the clip around after serving me. As for pint three - the bar was so busy it was hard to see what was on so just went for a pint of Meantime; not really my cup of tea but it was okay.

Too noisey and too packed to be enjoyable and beer not great. Won't rush back.

30 Mar 2019 17:50

The Anchor, Southwark

I have never been much of a fan of this pub but was talked into a revisit by some friends recently. It was a fairly quiet midweek early evening and they had security staff which I never really like but given its very tourist oriented I expect they have their share of pickpockets and the like.

I had a couple of pints of GK IPA - a friend asked what on earth I was drinking 'that' for. He had a good point - it was really tasteless which is a shame as it was an enjoyable pint years ago. The Abbot was off as were a couple of other ales. They had a few over-hopped craft beers on tap but not my cup of tea so moved on to draft keg cider - Aspalls, which was fine I suppose.

Had some food - truly ordinary. None of us commented either positively or negatively on the grub so 'mediocre' would be the verdict.

Won't rush back - far better pubs nearby.

Ho hum.

15 Jan 2019 14:35

The Lamb Tavern, Leadenhall Market

Have been coming to this pub off and on for over twenty years and like some of the posters below, I remember well the days when it sold huge, rare, roast beef baguettes carved straight from a massive rib. That's long gone but many other things remain very familiar.

So, paid a visit a couple of weeks ago for the first time in about a year - packed outside as always but some standing space inside was quickly found. I and a friend had a few pints of Youngs Bitter and it went down very nicely, a couple of other mates were on the lager and said it was good!

Perennial problem is the upstairs gents - tiny and often smelly. On this visit the pong was so bad I actually gagged when walking in. Its hard to see what they can do given the age and shape of the building and the fact that the place has far more customers than the bogs can cope with.

Nonetheless, an enjoyable visit to a vertical drinking pub, where despite the 'crowd' service is good!

15 Jan 2019 14:26

The Earl of Eldon, South Croydon

This place had been keeping erratic opening hours for ages then closed down in summer of 2018. Its now boarded up and the upper parts look to be empty too. It has an 'all enquiries' board outside so could potentially come back but from what I can see, this closure will unfortunately not be much of a loss.

Hey ho.

15 Jan 2019 14:15

The Roundhouse, Covent Garden

On Wednesday just gone, I paid what I think is my first visit to this pub, having walked past it many times over the years.

It was packed and noisy and the music only added to making it hard to talk to my friends. It was Halloween so don't know if that made it busier than usual but they didn't seem to be running any sort of special event.

I had couple of pints of Oliver's Island which were very good indeed and others reckoned the Pride to be in good shape too.

Not much more to say really, good beer but too busy to be really enjoyable. That said, service was quick.

4 Nov 2018 18:08

The Princess Louise, Holborn

Came in here a couple of weeks ago with a few friends. I think its the first time I've visited for over twenty years and while I remembered the gents' toilets, and the masses of cut and etched glass in the bar I had forgotten some of its architectural features. For example the great mosaics in the floor, the wall tiling and the (I think) unique little 'rooms' that encircle most of the main bar. Its a great place to visit and admire.

As other reviewers have noted, its a Sam Smith's pub so if you like Sam's stuff, great, but less so if you don't! I had a few pints of Old Brewery (as did another of the group) and it was well kept and tasty but its not a favourite, so after a few I had a bottle of Porter which was very good and it looked like the pub stocks most of the Sam's bottled range. Others were on the Organic Lager which I also tried and it was surprisingly enjoyable - refreshing but still with some flavour.

Service was fast, efficient and friendly - even though the 'rooms' make it tricky for the bar staff to see who is waiting.

An enjoyable visit - would recommend it to anyone, whether or not they like Sam's ales.

4 Nov 2018 17:59

The Blue Pig Inn, Lower Fagley

Well, well, well. I've been using this site for 11 years and didn't know you could do that!

Shame its only 30 posts but given that some days there is often only one or zero posts, its certainly useful.

Thanks Ed.

4 Sep 2018 14:16

The Blue Pig Inn, Lower Fagley

Hello Nosher, sorry up front if my comments may offend - apologies if they do.

You have been posting on 'beerintheevening' for eight years and have said nothing about any pub; just 'closed', 'name changed' and so on.

The poor design of the beerintheevening website means that it isn't possible (so far as I can see) to scroll chronologically through recent/old posts (it also doesn't have httpS which is amazing these days). So when you make a load of 'content free' posts, it means that other interesting and useful posts (blue scrumpy just before you for example) 'disappear'.

So. Why not go into a pub, drink something and then post a review?

Once again, apologies if I offend you.


4 Sep 2018 00:58

The Horatio Todds, Belfast

Apologies, this isn't a pub review but I wanted to record thanks to snarling mallard, blue scrumpy, mappiman and boehm (and a few others, sorry not to name you) for the volume and quality of your posts that keep this site going. Where do you find the time and money to visit so many places?!

I also liked it that it seems 'blue' and 'snarling' may have been in the same pub at the same time :-)

Keep up the good work.


6 Aug 2018 22:56

The Lamb and Flag, Oxford

Also came in here on 24th July.

Just across the road from the Eagle and Child but much brighter, bigger and open inside but still an old pub from the 1600s. Owned by St John's College (as apparently is the Eagle and Child although that looks like its managed by Nicholsons).

Some tourists but locals and regulars too, chatting happily with the bar staff.

Had a good pint of Butts Barbus Barbus. Not tried this before but have heard of the brewery as its one of the few true organic brewers in the country. Very enjoyable pint but possibly too much body for such a warm day; should have looked more closely at the other three or four real ales that were on! They had two real ciders on, one at around 5% and the other nudging 8% - unfortunately can't remember what they were.

Liked the place and would go back. As others have noted, its cash only.


31 Jul 2018 19:00

The Eagle and Child, Oxford

Came in here on 24th July.

Undoubtedly an historic pub and the place has good feel about it. Small serving area and only one staff member appeared on duty so service was a bit slow at times - mostly though as many of the punters didn't know what they wanted to eat or drink and groups ordering individually rather than rounds. Somewhat an inevitable consequence of being an international tourist destination. Indeed, while I was a tourist, so far as I could see almost all the visitors were overseas. Nothing at all wrong with that but doesn't make for much atmosphere.

Had two very nice pints of Old Hooky and served in a jug which I've not seen in years - probably an anachronism for the tourists :-)

Anyway, fascinating old pub, beer was good but not much atmosphere.


31 Jul 2018 18:48

The Bear, Oxford

On my short visit to Oxford, also came here on 23rd and 24th.

A very old pub - reportedly an inn of some sort or another for more then 750 years. Serving areas are pretty tiny and interior drinking area not much bigger! There is an outside area a bit down the lane which was well used in the warm weather and had some cool jazz playing on evening of 24th - not too loud and very enjoyable.

Service was smiling and efficient and I had pints of Shotover Prospect and Olivers Island - both very good indeed.

Some tourists obviously (me included) but also a good number of locals and regulars happy engage in a chat.

Enjoyed it very much.

What ho!

31 Jul 2018 18:38

The Head of the River, Oxford

Popped in hear on 23rd and 24th July - very warm outside so a shady spot outside by the river was very pleasant.

Service at the bar was friendly and efficient and I had a pint of Olivers Island (both visits) and it went down a treat.

Didn't try the food but looked okay so far as I could say.

Amusing moment on my second late afternoon visit a group of around 30 young Japanese tourists arrived with their equally young British guides. Didn't look like the party hard warned the pub in advance and the staff looked a bit flummoxed as the party started to head to the bar one by one to get their drinks. I left at this point!

Good pub, enjoyed my brief visits.


31 Jul 2018 18:32

Grofield Inn, Abergavenny

Hulot Shat, 'turbanned ruffian'? Really? Really? At least this one of your 'reviews' did mention the beer.

25 Jul 2018 18:00

The Jamaica Wine House, Bank

Came in early lunchtime a couple of months ago with a small group of friends. As it was early, it was fairly quiet so service excellent and easy to get a good standing spot.

As its a while ago, I can't remember what I had but between us we had all of the Sheps beers that they stock and some Guiness. All were in good condition and went down very well - an excellent start to the afternoon!

We like the Jam Pot - solid pub, no pretensions and usually a good pint and for those who son't know it, worth a visit just to explore the nooks and crannies.


25 Jul 2018 17:52

The Jolly Farmers, Purley

This post is from a visit a few weeks ago - have spent a month or so trying to get my BITE password reset and had no response from the site admin at all. Finally remembered password today so this is the first of a couple of 'old' posts which I'll then follow up with some from earlier this week.

So popped in the Jollies a little while back and its had a redecorate since I was last in - very bright and airy and much improved on its scruffy old self.

Had a pint of Wadworths 6X (a favourite of mine from the 80s) - it wasn't bad at all but could have been a bit colder for my taste.

Food looked good but didn't try any - its done by Big Mike's Calypso Kitchen which I think is the chap who used to run a now defunct bar and restaurant around the corner.

There's an outside seating area but it fronts up to the street and a very busy traffic junction so its noisy and the air polluted.

Downside for me was the 'piped' music - played a fair bit to loud. Friends tell me that the live music nights can be quite good.


25 Jul 2018 17:44

The Old Bank of England, Fleet Street

Popped in here a couple of time before Christmas 2017 - just got round to the post; whoops!

As others have said, this building is quite something and I'd forgotten the spectacular lighting since my last visit years ago.

On the first visit, it was fairly quiet early evening and service was good. Most of us were drinking Pride and apart from one end of barrel iffy pint, it was good.

Second visit was nearer Christmas and the lighting was augmented by a staggering Christmas tree. It was quite busy though and the service went a bit haywire - no idea who to serve next apart from the person directly in line of sight. Very common and very irritating; so easy to just as 'who's next' - most punters are polite. Beer good again and nice atmosphere.

Very happy to use this pub more often.


4 May 2018 15:03

The Fox, Caterham

Have been in a few times since the refurb in mid-February 2018. Am pleased to say that the new decor is pretty sympathetic and hasn't screwed the place up which seems the mission of may 'pubcos'. There are now two doors inside the building - one for bar and one for restaurant and also a partition dividing the two. The bar counter itself has been shortened by a few yards. All of which is fine, but the bar area seems to feel much smaller and gets crowded more easily; it would be wrong to call it claustrophobic but it is a bit more confined.

Other changes - some of the long time staff have moved on but have been replaced by people who mostly seem to know their stuff. As mentioned previously, the assistant manager Nuno is very likeable and is excellent front of house. I've revised my opinion of the manager, Adrian, who seems on reflection to lack people skills and is a man of petty rules. He also needs to learn that its very poor to admonish staff in front of their colleagues - let alone in front of customers which I've seen happen.

The three real fires remain and have been very welcome during the past few cold months.

Beer doesn't change much - usually Doombar, Harveys Sussex Best and London Pride. I don't normally like Pride, buts its pretty good in here, and the Harveys very drinkable as well - pricey though at more than £4.40 a pop which is high for a suburban pub. Even the fizzy keg cider (Cornish Orchard) is apparently £4.20. Real cider is Old Rosie.

Not tried the food, but apparently the menu is now the pubco's 'premium'. Shame that when the kitchen staff come into the bar area, their chef's whites are always grey and look dirty.

Having said all that, I do like place and its still - in my view - the best pub in area and most of the staff and punters are very likeable.

Not half.

28 Apr 2018 17:48

The Bell, Cannon Street

As others have said, this is something of a love it or hate it pub. I fall into the category of liking it but not what I'd call a top pub, six out of ten seems fair to me.

It is an amazing place though - old building, small bar (and tiny bogs that aren't what you'd call state of the art) and a generally cosy feel. It can get a bit packed though - not least because its small!

Service is pretty good, manager is a Peruvian lady I believe which is unusual for a City of London pub, other staff seem to come and go quite regularly.

One of the unusual things that strikes me for a City of London pub (especially right next to a rail station) is that it is something of a regulars haunt with some punters in there 'all the time'.

Beer is usually in good shape and have had some drinkable Tribute and excellent Harvey's in here - not cheap though.

Long may the place continue.


28 Apr 2018 17:26

The Lamb and Flag, Covent Garden

Went here a couple of weeks ago with a couple of mates - first time we'd been in for a while and we were pleased to note that the pong from the bogs/drains was gone!

Another good pub - properly old and tucked away up a small street/alley but still sought out by tourists. They don't tend to stop too long though so far as I can see.

Inside, its suitably dark and unreconstructed - especially the back bar which has a great cosy ambiance - long may the brewery/pubco leave it alone.

Beer is good - I had the Seafarers (I think that's what its called) it was in good condition and well poured by the first bar person who served me. Indeed he spotted a slightly short measure and topped it up before I asked. Unfortunately, generally the service is a bit lacking - no idea which order to serve people in and get awkward if you point out that they are ignoring you. Also short measures from one of the female servers who got quite shirty when I asked for a top up - "pay for it first and I'll top it up". Not good.

So, good beer and good pub - but only a six because of the service.


27 Apr 2018 23:11

The Baum, Rochdale

Blimey. Reads like Hulot needs a holiday. Take your hat Jacques.

25 Apr 2018 23:55

The Fox, Caterham

At last, seems to be working again (for how long, who knows). So I can at last make this post about the Fox.

I've popped in here a few times the past couple of months and it seems much improved. The current manager (Adrian I think) is doing a decent job - he isn't necessarily hugely charismatic but seems to know what he's doing and is professional: qualities that have been missing in others over the recent years. But he still rosters too few staff from time to time. The newish assistant manager Nuno comes across as gregarious and likeable but since his arrival the manager has largely gone invisible.

Anyway, its far less of a push-chair park than it was (which I personally appreciate). This is perhaps because it much more dog friendly! There are pluses and negatives there. As with the children - parents who make them behave bring a pleasant atmosphere. Dog owners who don't take them outside when they start a barking frenzy don't do anyone any favours. Mostly though, dogs and owners are good. Its a bit surprising though too see them allowed everywhere in the restaurant - nut my cup of tea. Also some of the female stuff make a big petting fuss of them and then go back to serving. Seen lots of examples of this recently - the other day a muddy dog is getting a serious stroke and jumping up on the staff member who then heads into the kitchen right after. This is not a one-off and I won't be eating there anytime soon as a result. WASH YOUR HANDS!

Many of the staff are good too but a couple of the younger female cohort (Hannah and Katherine I think) are best at talking to each other and not knowing who is next to serve.

A test could be in February when word is its closing for a refurb - let's see what the pubco does. Hopefully it won't end up totally focussed on the food trade... And they could use the close down time for some basic staff training!

So, all in all, I'm happy popping in there - the pubside punters are a good and mixed bunch. So the Fox should focus on quality of bar service (after all these years...) and also avoiding the food screw ups which still seem to arise from time to time. In the meantime, I'd give it a six.


13 Jan 2018 19:24

Ye Grapes, Mayfair

Well, well, well.

This couldn't be more different to the Fox in Coulsdon that I just popped a post on.

I used to work near here and first used it 35 years or so ago. I come back quite regularly. In many ways, it hasn't changed a bit - and is all the finer for it in my view.

For sure, it gets packed in the evenings and if you stand near one of the doors then expect to be jostled.

A throwback and not everyone's cup of tea but good fun.

Pippity pop

1 Apr 2015 22:46

The Fox, Caterham

Hey ho,

popped in a few times the past month or so. The pub doesn't deserve its silly low score that's for sure.

But its not really a pub - walk in during the mid-afternoon in the week and there are no pub customers and frequently no staff behind the bar. When there are staff they are very polite and some (especially Carol) very efficient.

Thing that gets me though is that it so often feels like a crèche. Prams everywhere, toddlers balanced on the bar or in front of fruit machines. I know that the licencing laws allow this but I'm old and miserable :-) aren't pubs mostly for adults?

I expect its me!


1 Apr 2015 22:40

Blue Lion, Leyburn

I stayed in this "pub" in the summer and fail to see why it gets so many good reviews in so many places.
To be sure, it is in a fabulous location and the building is pleasing and the staff very courteous and friendly.

But. It doesn't know what it wants to be...

Is it a pub - no, the bar is part of the restaurant. Two or three stools taking second place to the food trade. Theakstons I had on first evening was sour.

Is is a restaurant - no, the menu is extensive but its too extensive and there is nothing that notably takes pride in using local produce. Also when the piping hot first course arrives within minutes of ordering one has to wonder if its a microwave experience.

Is it a hotel, well... The breakfasts are first rate but the room in which its served is depressingly dark. And, after having dinner, because there is no bar or lounge area there is no where for residents to to sit and chill in the evening. So its - eat dinner fast, grab quick drink and up to room.

Could be a brilliant place, needs to work on its priorities.


23 Dec 2014 22:44

The Queens Head Hotel, Troutbeck

I have been meaning to make this post for a few months.
I was saddened to hear of the fire - I stayed at this pub in the middle of winter a few years ago and it was superb. The location, the food (fab lang shanks I recall), the service and the beer were top notch.
I do hope it can rise phoenix-like.


23 Dec 2014 22:32

The Whyteleafe Tavern, Whyteleafe

Not been in here in a while. It looks like its turning into the local 'community centre' - or actually 'centre of the community'. That isn't intended to sound like a criticism or churlish. The sea food stall, regular events and so on (albeit on a piece of concrete near a busy roundabout don't make it rural village bliss) are a nice touch. Will visit indoors and report.


15 Jul 2014 23:57

The Kenley Hotel, Kenley

Walked past the other day. Looked okay - will give it another try next week and will report back. I try and avoid the 'closed mind' so will give it a whirl.

Pip, let's see...

15 Jul 2014 23:46

Star of Bethnal Green, Bethnal Green

I popped in here about a year ago (so not the most timely of posts) and a couple of the posts below do chime. Certainly aiming to be hip but the evening I visited was a Saturday and I was there for an evening of boxing down the road at the York Hall. The pub soon had a good contingent of more traditional East End pub customers - hipsters seemed to vanish. Ho ho. The ale I tried wasn't good - a Truman brew, can't remember its name.

Biff boff ;-)

15 Jul 2014 23:20

The Surrey Oaks, Newdigate

Good grief.

Posters like anotherpintplease and who_am_i can ruin a publican's trade.

Read your own reviews - so what if its hoppy versus brown and malty. Its about personal taste.

Get a grip, grow up and stop trying to ruin someone's business. Which you are probably doing inadvertently.

16 Jun 2014 23:12

The Fox, Caterham

Popped in a few times the past few months. Most of of those times (especially during day at weekends) there are way too many kinds, running round, being noisy. Its fine that pubs now allow kids but parents please take control of them. Service also continues to be poor - frequently no one behind the bar. All in all, doesn't feel like a pub any more.


29 Sep 2013 19:55

The Watch House, Lewisham

Hello, first visit to this site in a while and I have to say that MrRight's post made me chuckle enormously - useless as a pub review but very funny. Poignant in parts.

My pipppp pipp is restoring

15 Aug 2013 22:50

The Fox, Caterham

Just potsing this as a test post as nothing seems to be new on the home page for almost a week. Is the site still alive? The 'contact us' doesn't seem to work.

13 Nov 2012 21:16

The Harp, Covent Garden

Stanza is spot on. If you want to stand in a tiny packed pub being pushed back and fore then this is the place for you. In summary, beer good but (as I said a few years back) that is only one reason to choose a pub and this place is just way too packed to be relaxing and enjoyable.

Sorry pippp

15 Oct 2012 04:22

The Jolly Farmer, Weybridge

Well, well, well. Would this be one of three pubs you run in Surrey then? What a t++t.

3 Oct 2012 22:17

The Inn At Kew, Kew

I have opined on the subject of children in pubs on a number of times as a search of my grumpy git posts will show. Certainly the publican makes the rules but many are poor at so doing.

Hoping not to find myself in any of 'oaktreedog's' places anytime soon.

No pip.

3 Oct 2012 22:14

The Kenley Hotel, Kenley

Its shut.
It is having a refurb.
Outside and inn.
Let's hope that unlike the Norweigan blue that.
It emerges from its chrysallis and.
Is alive and is new in decor, demeanour and custom.

Pippp for a brighter future

1 Oct 2012 22:39

The Bell Hotel, Ticehurst

I haven't been to this pub.
My loss I think.
Mark55 seems to like it.
Describing fine pub attributes but.
Denigrating in summary.
Mark55 I hesitate to question.
Your view, but don't undetstnd the picture.
You are trying to paint.

Poetry I am trying pip

20 Sep 2012 23:41

The New Inn at Coln, Coln St Aldwyns

First came here almost thirty years ago when the manager/owner was Penny and the bloke whose name I cant remember but used to knock her about judging by the various facial bruises. Ah social history and alleged conjecture. Been here many times since and stayed equally as many. Its a lovely village - pub and food always very good. Back in the day they used to have a mock grockle cull - now the whole area is grockles. There, didn't take long to find something to moan about ;-) Seriously though, if you are in the area, visit this pub and try the walk to and from Bibury and stop off there at the Catherine Wheel - top pub.

Pip pip

13 Sep 2012 22:24

The Craft Beer Co, City of London

Good. Enjoyed it. I'm no beer/ale expert (as my posts probably show). But the stuff here was enjoyable and different. What I had was good - I didn't 'sample' it I drank it - what a pretentious load of gobshite so many people use on this site - "I sampled this and that". Good god man, drink it! Titter at the beardy CAMRAS. Just kidding - good beer, well served, nice spot and very good service and mix of customers. Good work.

Poppity pipp

13 Sep 2012 22:13

The Oast House, London Bridge Station

It can no longer be ignored - its gone. Gloried in being the centre of London Bridge Station Olympics and Paralympics and after that blaze of stardom has waned and gone. To be razed. No pubs in the station now.

Pipp popp

13 Sep 2012 22:07

The Fox, Caterham

Hmmm. I've been coming here off and on for many years and despite my sometimes negative posts I do have (for various reasons) a soft spot for this pub. But my past few recent visits have left me dispirited. A couple of the staff are good, but many aren't (the waitress in the low cut tops and push up bras needs to look in the mirror before going to work!) Some of the more 'historic' regulars are good but one sees fewer of them these days. Many though of the newer regulars are at the D/E end of the market - putting their small children on the bar, getting them to press the gambling machine buttons for them and so on. It just feels like a joyless place to grab a pint. Time to move on and find somewhere new to moan about.

Pippity pip pipp

13 Sep 2012 22:03

The Fox, Caterham

It really is the service that lets this place down. Countless managers have run this place in the time I've been coming here and they can't all be be rubbish or wilfull so it must be the owners. The number of people I see walking out having got fed up waiting to be served is only increasing. The times I hear the staff tell punters that there is an hour (or whatever) to wait for food is only increasing. I don't know - I don't run pubs - but its a big place and it seems to me that its understaffed at peak times. The restaurant sits a load of people - is the kitchen staffed to deal with that capacity, does the menu have too many choices. Dunno. Would be very interesting to know how the owners view the endless stream of negative comment, perhaps their facebook page should link to Beerintheevening!

That said, its score should be higher - the truly horrible Kenley Hotel has a higher score which is clearly wrong.


14 Feb 2012 21:34

The Oast House, London Bridge Station

Popped in here the other day for quite a while. Its much improved - staff are pretty efficient and know the words, "please" and "thank you" and all the beer seemed to be on. Only criticism - foul mouthed bloke is the corner; Italian or Spanish by descent I'd say (not being racist, just want to identify you) - short of height but high on swearing. Will be interesting to see what the station has to offer when the redevelopment is done.

Pipp pippp

14 Feb 2012 21:23

The Sloe Bar, Victoria Station

Popped in here the other day for the first time in ages. Been redecorated and has new name, same manager and just as polite and efficient as he has been in the past. Staff seem to struggle a bit with the language but still charming and efficient. Still one of the best incarnations of its type.

So, I can - and do - post positive comments!

One thing though and its nothing to do with this bar but the site in general and I can't seem to find a 'give us your comments link' anywhere so am putting it here. The site has gone right down hill. The random pub of the day looks to repeat around three pubs. The top twenty pubs are outscored by other pubs in the site so why are they in the top twenty. I'd say, use this site at your peril unless you already know the pub you are going to. Disappointing.

Dip dip - how the site has gone.

Pip - pipp - how I remain.

31 Jan 2012 22:22

The Kenley Hotel, Kenley

If, "...jewel..", equals, "crap", then, yes, this pub is a jewel. Otherwise, its a dump. Sadly.

1 Aug 2011 23:46

The Jolly Farmers, Purley

Just to add a coda to my recent-ish post. Foud it less-nice late on (10pm or so) a couple of weeks back. Only a few punters in, apart from some clearly l-o-n-g term sad alcohol abusers from the store over the road. Not agressive or dangerous just foul-mouthed sad specimens with no where else to go and made me feel uncomfortable that I was intruding on their space.

1 Aug 2011 23:38

Silent Woman, Coldharbour

Right. This post is nothing about the pub but a rant about what people expect from pubs and what pubs are. The posts below are - it seems to me - divided (mostly) along the lines of I've children with me and I've not got children with me.

This is the rant - you make your choice; if the pub is clearly not child amenable then don't go, don't moan about it, just don't go there, go somewhere that suits your needs. If it purports to be child/dog/whatever friendly and isn't then do moan.

I'm not old fashioned and don't hanker after smokey, nasty boozers, BUT all adults hanker after somewhere where there aren't kids running around - pubs are for grown ups, they are not MacDonalds. And ignoring the law, it is a public house and the publican (who is in charge of the public house) can choose who they serve - within the bounds of discrimination law obviously.

For me, I don't like to see children running round in the pub - go to the beer garden, if there isn't one then go somewhere else. I don't like seeing two year olds propped on the bar while the parents buy their Stella - parents, learn your parenting skills. I don't like children buying soft drinks at the bar. And - especially - I don't like parents exposing their children to foul-mouthed drunks and semi-drunks who will be found in many pubs.

There you go, a pub isn't a kreshhh, kreshhhh.

1 Aug 2011 23:27

The Jolly Farmers, Purley

Its okay in here. Have been an 'on-off' visitor for twenty five years when Damian (sp) was THE regular and Noel ran the Dog and Duck round the corner by the cinema - both pub and pictures sadly now gone. Anyway, I quite like this place, a good mix of proper people in an a decent pub. Credit to the landlord and staff - well done! Get some better pictures of the place though ;-)

Pip pi..........

17 Jun 2011 21:50

The Fox, Caterham

Ah, "aceface". No need to apologise for suggesting that I'm an idiot. Just because someone doesn't share your view doesn't make them an idiot. Anyway, we now seem to have the same view so does that make you an idiot too? I'm sorry, I'm laughing at your expense, "Too easy", as an Australian might say. I wonder if the West Ham owner is still a fan. And, please, don't abuse the.....

Pippity pipp pipp :-)

17 Jun 2011 21:41

The Oast House, London Bridge Station

Gosh. I have to assume that the three immediately preceeding posts are having a chuckle? This place is a dump. To describe it as a 'local' is particularly funny. If it gets rebuilt then let's hope it has proper facilities (toilets) and that all the staff are acquainted with the words "please" and "thank you" these are alien to one of the women behind the bar. Manners cost nothing and have such value.


28 Aug 2010 20:35

The Fox, Caterham

Well. Cheerio Dan, a very witty chap who I'm sure will be missed when he moves on today - one of the few bar staff at this joint who is any good at all. Good luck in the new pub. That said, the Fox is worth more than its current 2.7 score, even with the Tudor dross who have now moved in. I'm sure it would go up overnight if it got a decent manager. Val would be better than the current chap.


28 Aug 2010 20:27

The Harp, Covent Garden

Can't fault the beer (sorry 'ale'). But there is so much more involved in a good night out and this place is just way too small and way, way, too packed to be even vaguely enjoyable.


5 Apr 2010 20:23

The Oast House, London Bridge Station

Popped in here the other day for the first time in ages - no draught beer (lager or ale) at all. Chiller broken apparently. Went back the next day - chiller still broken. Blimey!


5 Apr 2010 20:18

The Airfield, Hatfield


I need to think about this one. Initial impression is that it falls into the 'truly horrible' category. Loud, drunk, sweary people still being served when clearly already pie-eyed. Feels threatening. Great quote from one punter recently - "I'm going to get as drunk as I can". Nice.

Will mull over some more and then decide if it falls into the slot of worst pub I've been in for x years.

24 Mar 2009 21:43

Widmore, Bickley

Just drove past - looks like it has new name. Makeover or new managers/owners? From earlier reviews I'm nervous to pop in and try the waters. Someone more intrepid needs to take a look. Its a very well heeled area so if its any good then it should do well.

16 Feb 2009 21:34

The Jamaica Wine House, Bank

You know where you are with the Jam Pot. You can never guess when its going to be busy. It does get busy. When its busy the staff do get a bit hopeless. But we like it - proper pub and a decent pint of the black.

P - p

16 Feb 2009 21:27

The Kenley Hotel, Kenley

Remains truly horrible. The previous reviewer's comments are really depressing. If people are sleeping in the bar then the place's insurance will be invalid - a fire, no cover, a frightening prospect. Brewery/owners/police need to take a look.

16 Feb 2009 21:21

The Sloe Bar, Victoria Station

Just awful? Not at all - its a railway station bar, its not aiming to be CAMRA - or even a sensible - pub of the year. Its clean, its bright, its never too crowded. The staff are polite (if a bit lacking in English) and if you pop in reasonably regularly (i.e. waiting for buggered trains or simply unwinding after the office) then they tend to remember your tipple which isn't bad as it wll never be anyone's local.

One of the better incarnations of its type.


16 Feb 2009 21:16

The Fox, Caterham

Oh no. Oh no. Brewery butchery - redecoration balls up. The new colour scheme is poor - not actually bad - but the new lights!!! I'm no interior designer but you don't need to be Linley or Conran to realise that the new light system is totally out of keeping with the age and overall design of the building, Vandelism! Why do these people do it. I despair.

Oh yes, has anyone seen the manager recently? The real manager, not the chap who seems to stand-in (when not being overly affectionate with his girl friend who also works behind the bar)?

I wish there was a decent pub vaguely nearby but I'm not going back to this one - makes you wish Watneys still exised and ran pubs - okay that's an exaggeration. No one wants Watneys and the infamous Red Barrel but you know what I mean. You do know don't you - even postmen know.


16 Feb 2009 21:09

The Fox, Caterham

As much as I find it a real shame that this pub has gone so downhill and dislike the demeanour, language, behaviour, etc of some of its customers I do have to take issue with some of capet_burnss comments. Yes, some of the customers are working class and some do have manual jobs so what? This is a pub for goodness sake it should be able to welcome anyone not based on their class or job those factors shouldnt come into it and carpet_burns should regret his or her snobbery. What matters is how people are, how they behave and act and too many of the customers are at the daggy end of the market. As for the people in the corner they have been regulars for many years (would have been there three years ago thats for sure) and they are fine in my experience.

That said, there arent many pubs where you can watch one of the regulars who is wheelchair bound and suffers (I guess) from severe cerebral palsy drinking pints of Stella through a straw.

I find it a depressing shame this place is a great size, has good architecture and is in a nice spot it could easily be a tremendous place to visit with some investment and most importantly the right owners and managers and staff.


25 Oct 2008 14:31

The Fox, Caterham

Oh well, all things come to an end. I really can't bring myself to go back to this pub. Great building, nice spot but the customer base of regulars has gone down the pan. It is a depressing place to visit these days. Customers whose loud humour is extraordinarily vulgar and those who think its fine to eff and cee all the time at full volume. As for the staff, they don't seem to care.

No wonder the place tends to be near empty most of the time. Its sad that so many pubs close so regularly but in the case of some its easy to see why no one wants to go there.

A great shame.

Pipp pippp

1 Oct 2008 20:14

EllIOTTS, Purley

They say - "Never go back" - April or whenever last year was okay, but have gone back a couple of times since. Oh dear, not nice. Full of Purley's most articulate philosophers and scientists. With one of thee CR8 nnn postcodes reportedly one of the best heeled in the country, I'd like to know where they drink!

Pip. Pippp.

4 Jun 2008 23:13

The Fox, Caterham

Well, another new manager installed. Hard to tell what happened to the last one but I've heard the words, "...under a cloud...", used a few times.

At least the new chap makes an effort to throw out the Chinese chap who is regularly in glogging bootleg DVDs - he was welcomed by the previous encumbant.

Sadly, the customer base seems to be changing. Weekend luchtimes its the usual family and badly behaved kids but other times the old regulars seem to be getting outnumbered by what are best described as wannabe hardmen.

Oh well, society and all that.

Pippp. Pipp.

4 Jun 2008 22:54

The Fox, Caterham

Went in here the other day. Glad to see the reliable regulars still in place but seems a new landlord has been installed. Jury out I'd say, but doesn't look like Mr Charisma.

Yet more kids in the bar - why do some parents think its okay to sit their three year old on the bar while they are ordering their Stella and why don't the bar staff tell them not to?

A bit disconcertingly though, it seems to be turning a bit chavvy - would be a shame.


18 Jun 2007 22:13

Lord Homesdale, Bromley

I drive past this pub - windows up, doors locked. If I was an alcholic, places like this would beat the 11 steps.

22 Apr 2007 22:46

The Bridge Bar, London Bridge Station

This is the only pub I know (that said, I don't know much) that operates a Post Office style queue. When you enter, you are faced with a single file line of people waiting their turn to be served when they reach the head of the line, rather than the traditional approach of fanning out at the bar and attentive, professional staff making an effort to spot and serve people in the right order. They just don't try!


22 Apr 2007 22:42

The Oast House, London Bridge Station

On 1st July when no smoking starts, this bar will have both no lavs and no fag smoke!


22 Apr 2007 22:38

EllIOTTS, Purley

Went in here the other day for the first time in more than fifteen years (I remember the uniforms worn by the female staff on opening day and for a while after - couldn't do it nowadays!)

It was okay, charming lady working behind the bar on her first evening. Will make another visit, without the 15 year gap.


22 Apr 2007 22:34

The Well House Inn, Mugswell

So far I've only had beer in here - enjoyed a very decent pint of Adnams. The menu looks sensible, the location is splendid, the garden charming and the pub buildings represent the best of a fast disappearing establishment. Best pub for miles, by miles.

Will be heading back soon - previous visit gap being circa 35 years...


22 Apr 2007 22:23

The Spotted Dog, Penshurst

I don't know why, this is the third time I've tried to make a posting about this pub and they never seem to appear.

Here's the essence of my previous two attempts -

Don't know what anon should be complaining about on 14th April 07

Good location

Decent landlord

Tasty beer

Excellent fish and chips - besy I've had in a few years.


22 Apr 2007 22:19

The Plough Inn, Prestbury

Went here recently. A band were palying fiddles. Beer was gravity from the barrels. Liked the place.


22 Apr 2007 22:07

The White Lion, Warlingham

The interior of this pub has hopefully just been covered over and equally hopefully the ancient timbers and smoke stained plaster work can be revealed if and when such a building as this falls back into the right hands. Formula food menu, too brightly lit but fewer of the clique customers of the past. The last part possibly due to the Good Companions shot-gun incident a few summers back.

That said, not bad - just disappointing, and given its age amazingly lacking in character. So few really decent pubs nearby.


4 Feb 2007 20:26

The Fox, Caterham

This a curious anomaly in the area. Its a fine building - has impressive open fires and good (if the suburban equivalent) walking territory on its door step. But. I've never seen the manager (the large lady mentioned by others) pull a beer behind the bar - altough often seen drinking tea/coffee with the ten or so regulars in their corner. The staff are always understaffed and mostly have a curious disdain for smiling, curteous service: not rude, just eye-contact-avoiding with the dim, "are you alright there" approach (when they eventually look at you) rather than the welcoming, "Hello, what can I get you". All the management's fault. That said, the two Polish (I think) barmaids can be charming and the barman Tom (again I think) is okay. The English barmaids are appalling and more interested in talking among themselves and the waitresses. The other barmen are charmless.

As I say, curious. Could be a gem. The customers are okay (apart from screaming and wheely wearing kids and a few very very odd blokes) and it clearly makes a mint on the formula food it serves. Better than many other's nearby though.


4 Feb 2007 20:11

The Kenley Hotel, Kenley

This place is foul. A great big Victorian pub that could easily be excellent but the management don't care and for a (reasonably) well-heeled area the clientele are at the tatoos, UB40, power drinker, D-E end of the scale. Its odd - Kenley clearly has money but the pub is bad and the restaurants nearby equally poor. Surely there's an opportunity to exploit here?


4 Feb 2007 19:53

The Abbaye, Bromley

This place is okay but its not a pub - including it should mean that places like the Hop Cellar in Southwark Street should be included. However, that's not the point of the post. The place is okay, the service is okay (reasonably quick when not busy, but if you want fast well get a Big Mac!), the wine is okay. But don't have the sausages - always over cooked - or the fish and chips which will be dry and meagre (the fish) and horrible and plentiful (the chips).


4 Feb 2007 19:43

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