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Tuesday, 20 November 2018

#249 Sandbrook Vaults, Market Drayton, Shropshire : 1987 to 2018

I was all ready to produce a tale of our visits to the Sandbrook Vaults starting in 1999 when, in a pique of thoroughness, I rechecked our log books and photo albums to discover that we made our first visit way back in 1987.
This was taken on the evening of Thursday 9th July 1987 and that's all I can add to the recollection (and that's why I take the photos because I would not have remembered visiting here.) Interestingly, it was run by McEwan's Scotch Ales and the large hanging sign to the top right of the picture is for the Elephant and Castle, which I assume was next door.

We didn't visit Market Drayton again until 1996, but we didn't venture back into the Sandbrook Vaults until the evening of Monday 6th September 1999.
The basic appearance of the pub was unchanged but the signage was completely different and, if you look closely, it had gained an 'S' now being called Sandbrooks Vaults.
We returned almost exactly a year later on Tuesday 5th September 2000 and the pub had gained some vegetation, but all else was the same.
Lo and behold! We were back again on the evening of Tuesday 10th September 2002 - amazing; no visit for twelve years and then three times in four years. The external signage had changed and the name reverted back to the original. Judging from the lighting (and the 'soft' focus) I think that these last visits were after our curry just across the road and represented out final chance for a drink each night. My recollections are that it was a basic town boozer inside that catered for a more music minded crowd. That probably explains why, despite visiting Market Drayton on numerous occasions it was another sixteen years before we ventured back inside.
Again, we left it to the last stop of the night on Tuesday 4th September 2018 (again after our curry...different restaurant, though).

Now it is a Joule's pub and hasn't been given quite as severe a makeover as most Joule's pubs as it still felt like a live music pub. Amazingly, the pub next door is stilll open as well and called the Clive and Coffyne (haven't been in for many years!)

So, although the Sandbrook Vaults looks to be completely unchanged over the passing years this belies many subtle changes that have taken place in 31 years - not least the change from McEwan's to Joule's.


  1. It's a gorgeous pub, isn't it ? The Clive & Coffyne was in the Guide on our visit but very much on its downers;

    1. Not entirely sure when we last visited the Clive & Coffyne - there's so much choice in Market Drayton.