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Tuesday, 9 July 2019

A Slow 'Race' Around Uttoxeter

I've somewhat fallen behind in reporting on our Proper Pubs Day Out in Uttoxeter, mostly because my holiday jaunts got in the way. The trip has been extensively covered here and here by Pub Curmudgeon. So, I'll try and race through it with a few of observations.

We were a select band of just four (Paul, Peter, John and me) that met up at Stoke Station for the short journey to Uttoxeter on board this train.
The Staffordshire countryside looked lovely, if a little sodden, as we made our way to our destination (although I must say that it was the only time on a train that you could hear overhanging tree branches slapping against the carriage!)

It was a short(ish) stroll from the station to our first pub.
The Old Swan is the town's Wetherspoon's and, at just after 11am it was ticking over nicely.

Next up was a short walk away, which would be something of the theme of the day as most these great boozers are within 1- 2 minutes walk of each other!
Ye Olde Talbot was the scene of my first ever pint of Bass!
I found it to be reasonably palatable and would down a few more before the end of the day!

Next up was our lunch stop.
The Bank House Hotel is slightly away from the centre of Uttoxeter (a whole 5 minutes walk!) and this was where I had my first ever pint of Pedigree. I didn't like it as much as the Bass, but my companions rated it as one of the beers of the day. Lunch was good, both in value and content, especially as we had the personal attention of the chef!

Then we moved on to (probably) the most well-known pub in Uttoxeter.
The Vaults is a tremendous little pub with at least four Bass hand pumps. I partook of the Bass once more! I'd taken this picture a little earlier and it shows the landlady/barmaid just arriving for work as it doesn't open until midday.

Then it was time to move on, but the next pub on our itinerary was about a mile out of town and, as fully paid up members of the Old Codgers Society, none of us were particularly looking forward to the walk. This is where Paul's wife Jackie came to the rescue. By some strange coincidence she was in the neighbourhood in her car and free to take us to The Plough.
It is a pleasant enough little inn that fulfils the criteria of being a 'Proper Pub', but I'm not sure that it would have been worth the walk there and back.

Soon, we were heading back into town for the next stop of the day. 
Thanks to Jackie and Paul for arranging our little 'excursion'.
Next up was The Old Star which was just off the Market Square. By this time my memory was starting to fade. It was another lovely little boozer in a town of lovely little boozers!

Then it was on to our only micro of the day.
The Horse & Dove was a pleasant, airy micro with a good layout and beer. I'm not sure what the building was before and I've been trying to decipher the ghost sign on the upper floor. I've managed this much "Wilks Favourite ***uouse Millinery Dresses", but that only helps a bit.

While we were in the pub I took this photo which gives a good idea as to how close the pubs are.
Ye Olde Talbot being our second pub of the day.

The next pub was a bit further away but still no more than 5 minutes!
The Smithfield Hotel was another proper pub that was fairly busy, it now being 6pm on a Friday evening. Paul had with him a photo of the pub he'd taken in the mid 1980's and in comparison to today's shot there were few apparent differences.

We were on the final leg of our day out heading for what should have been the last pub of the day.
All I remember about the Black Swan is that this is where I finally succumbed and reverted to a half of Carling!

As we had a little bit of time to spare, we ventured back into The Vaults for a final half before the journey home...Carling for me again!

The trains were on time...and so ended another fine Proper Pubs Day Out. Not as many attendees as on other occasions, but we all had a good time so, as ever, its quality, not quantity that matters!

1 comment:

  1. Excellent photos and a good recall after so much Bass/Carling!! It's not big at all so you can meander round it in to time at all but The Vaults and The Olde Talbot are absolute classic boozers.
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