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Admiral Wells, Peterborough - pub details

Address: 41 Station Road, Holme, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, PE7 3PH [map] [gmap]

Tel: 0871 951 1000 (ref 33083) - calls cost 10p per minute plus network extras

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> Current user rating: 6.0/10 (rated by 7 users)
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user reviews of Admiral Wells, Peterborough

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

5 most recent reviews of 7 shown - see all reviews

This is the lowest pub in England. It's sits 9ft. below sea level.
Tuna - 25 Feb 2017 15:59
Not been in the Admiral for several years,which is a bit remiss as its near enough to the office for a lunchtime pint.

Despite its location, its fairly busy of a Friday lunch. A mixture of diners and people having a lunchtime sup.

I had an excellent pint of Digifield Shacklebush. Pubisfriendly with old photos of the village, the old railway station and airbase.

I'll be coming back for sure, and for something more substantial than a bag of peanuts as the food looks and smell delicious.

Handily placed for trainspotters too is you're so inclined being next to the east coastmainline - though not so close as to disturb.
nmckenn - 15 Nov 2013 13:17
Strangely no reviews (other than RedRosterRocker) since the horror story from Angel153 - I have used this pub rarely but over 20 years and tend to believe that the events of July 2009 are now far enough in the past to have been a serious lapse but one from which the pub has moved on. For myself, I tend to look in after work in the Holme or Ramsey St Mary's area and find the beer quality exemplary, if showing a rather limited variety of styles. Big TV screens but helpful bar staff, actually quite friendly locals and a menu that looks pretty unadventurous but also not at all expensive. My overall judgement would be that the Admiral Wells is a good enough pub to have served its sentence after Angel153's horrible evening of July 2009 and deserves a second chance. Certainly if you're visiting the Great Fen, give it a try.
Arctium_lappa - 7 Apr 2013 21:08


RedRoosterRocker - 1 Aug 2010 03:36
I don't know if the other reviewers on this site slipped into a parallel universe where The Admiral Wells really is everything they say, or if the unwarrantedly good reviews can be accounted for in some other way; all I can say is that in more than 5 years of occasional visits there (probably 6 times in total), our experiences have been rather dreadful all round. Tonight's visit just about put the tin lid on it for us.

In 2004, our first visit there, just for afternoon drinks to see what the place was like (we had just moved into the area), was unremarkable. Our first meal there a couple of weeks later was awful. Sub-standard food, sub-standard service, and outright rudeness from some staff members. There was also a mood-breaking, incessantly squeaking squealing door, that comes from the corridor off which the kitchen is situated and into the restaurant. It closes extremely slowly, eeking out the squeak for maximum impact.

We returned a year or so later, prepared to find that we had had an unfortunate one-off experience, but found exactly the same problems again, squeaking door included. This pattern has repeated itself ever since. If you eat in the conservatory, the squeaking squealing door is not a problem, but if you're anywhere near the bar in the restaurant, it really is annoying. Even telephoning them to make a reservation becomes needlessly difficult; tonight the phone rang with no answer until I gave up. I rang again and was on the point of completly giving up when it was finally answered. I have rung on previous occasions to ask if it would be possible to book a table for that evening, only to be screeched at that "You can't expect to book on the same day!" and be hung up on. Given what went on to happen tonight, I rather wish they hadn't answered the phone at all.

But, always preferring to support local businesses wherever possible, we went again tonight, encouraged by the good reveiws on this and other sites. Sadly, yet again we were badly disappointed.

I went to the bar to let them know that we had arrived as arranged for our booking. The owner, who I think I overheard a staff member refer to as Dave, came right up to me, but when I said "Hello, we've got a table booked for 7.30," he looked straight past me, dismissed me with a wave of his hand and said "I'm doing something." Not, "Just a sec and I'll get someone to see to you," not, "Sorry, would you excuse me for a moment, I'm right in the middle of something," nothing remotely interested or polite. Just "I'm doing something." How rude.

So I stood there for a few minutes until another man (younger and generally very polite over the years we've been there) asked if we were being served. Meanwhile, Rude Man stood just to one side of me on his side of the bar, chatting to his friend about that friends' recent unwanted extended holiday. Ah well, perhaps the food would make up for this little bit of customer-dis-service.

But no. The salad stuff that accompanied both of our starters tasted of earth. My Halloumi was so rubbery that it squeaked as it contacted my teeth. My "mini rolled shoulder of lamb" arrived as chunks of almost inedibly dry meat that required copious amounts of gravy and drinking water to facilitate chewing and swallowing. It could have come from anywhere on a lamb. The roast potatoes were dry, solid, and tasted too unpleasant to eat. The Yorshire Pudding was rock hard and tasted likewise.

Meanwhile, on a nearby table, there was a complaint about the Yorkshire Puds. The Polite Man explained that there were none left. They were later offered a whole 1 by way of recompense.

We decided to forego dessert and/or coffee and were about to pay when the Yorkshire Pudding table got to the bar before us. The usual question when you pay at the bar at The Admiral Wells is, "Was everything ok with your meal?" This time, it was answered with, "Actually, no, it wasn't. We've already explained to that man there [the Polite one]." To my amazement, the publican, instead of apologising and oferring to wipe off the desserts or drinks or something, blamed the customers for their not liking the food. "Look, we've served 120 meals today, 80 of them roasts, and NO-ONE has had a problem with them except YOU." The older man of these three customers (one of whom was a young and heavily pregnant female) protested mildly that quite frankly he wouldn't give food like that to his dog. The publican grew increasingly aggressive with every exchange. Apparently the quality of the Yorkshire Puddings was not their fault since they don't cook them themselves. The younger man of the group explained quite reasonably that they were too hard to eat. The publican grew more and more irritated and dismissive of these poor people, and it was then that he said,

"Look, I'll give you a pound off for the Yorkys but that's it and there's the bill. Sorry you didn't enjoy it, but there's the bill. You are the ONLY people to not enjoy the food, and no-one else has ever complained."

"Well," said the older man, "We'll pay the bill, but we won't be coming back here ever again, and here's someone else whose Yorkshire Pudding was hard, too," and pointed to me, by then standing behind them at the bar waiting to pay.

I told him that not only had our meals been disappointing, but that we, like these people in front of us, had tried The Admiral Wells several different times over the past 5 years and that each time there had either been a problem with the food, the service, or sheer rudeness from the staff. I told him what problems we'd had with the food on this occasion, and he kept pretending he couldn't hear what I was saying - an unsuccessful tactic to make me embarrassed about daring to complain.

Then, firmly putting the blame for the poor food on me, he demanded to know why I hadn't complained at the time (I was complaining now), who I had compained to (didn't we just establish that I hadn't complained the second I had a problem with the food?), why didn't I complain earlier.......I then said that in his position he shouldn't be arguing with customers - even if he disagreed with them, he should be adopting the old The Customer Is Always Right attitude and trying to make amends to ensure future business. He didn't seem to agree! I pointed out that, as locals, we would have liked to use this place regularly, but that given the rudeness and the poor quality of the food, we also would not ever be coming back here again.

At which point I left, closing my ears to whatever else this incredibly rude publican was saying to me, and leaving my partner to pay the bill. The other three followed me out to the car park, and while we waited for my partner to emerge (which was rather a long time because "Dave" kept disappearing on him) we discussed what had taken place. We then became aware that we were being collectively glared at from (presumably) the kitchen, where we could see the publican pointing to us and talking to other staff (that'll be where he kept disappering to, then!).

We were graced with several different people's glares over the next 5 or 10 minutes, all from the kitchen doorway, some individual, some as a pair or more, then a women appeared next to the doorway of the glass-fronted corridor that runs outside the kitchen doorway and stood with arms crossed, also glaring energetically, thus providing us with glares in stereo, as it were. We almost felt that we should maybe do a little tap dance to further entertain them - very bad manners not to perform for such a captive audience, after all.

At length, my partner finally arrived in the car park and we were able to leave. Possibly we had been pointed out by the publican so that the rest of the staff would recognise us in future. All I can say is they'll have a very long wait to see any of us there again.
Angel153 - 13 Jul 2009 00:08

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