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Saturday, 24 January 2015

#157 Bridge End Hotel, Llangollen : 1996 to 2014

Our first ever canal visit to Llangollen was  in 1996. Since beginning canal boating in 1980 I'd been eager to go along the Llangollen Canal to experience the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct. This Thomas Telford designed masterpiece is also a World Heritage Site and well worth a visit even if you're not boating. (See Here)
Pontcysyllte Aqueduct © Photo Digital Art 2014
The town of Llangollen is about 5 miles away (by canal) and a beautiful journey it is as the canal hugs the side of the Dee Valley which it has just passed over on the aqueduct.
This picture was taken at lunchtime on Tuesday 27th August 1996 and shows a somewhat typically decorated (for the time) Robinson's pub. I've no recollection of the interior, but I do recall that next door was a taxidermist's shop.

Although we've been back to Llangollen in the intervening years we didn't venture into the Bridge End until our last visit.
This was on the evening of Saturday 19th April 2014 and it had become the Bridge End Hotel with a complete external makeover. Inside it was reasonably well appointed, but nothing was particularly memorable about it. (And the Taxidermist was still next door!)

Friday, 9 January 2015

#156 Gosta Green, Aston, Birmingham : 1986 to 2014

I realise that I've neglected this blog somewhat over the past few months, but I'm back now with a new batch of pubs to add to the list.

First we'll start with a pub that I've not visited too often, but it makes an interesting case study. The first time I visited as part of a canal trip was at lunchtime on Thursday 31st July 1986 (although I'm fairly sure that I'd drunk there before!).
The Pot of Beer
Back then it was called The Pot of Beer and, beyond the fact that it is almost on the Aston University campus I don't recall too much about it.

Our next visit wasn't until lunchtime on Wednesday 6th September 1995 which was plenty of time to have the pub rebranded as the Faculty & Firkin.
Faculty & Firkin
Apart from the new signs, the exterior of the pub remained largely the same as before. Being part of the Firkin chain made it a slightly more appealing prospect, but again I don't remember too much about the interior.

Finally we move on to 2014 and another new name for the pub, the Gosta Green.
On this occasion - the afternoon of Friday 6th June 2014 - I didn't go in as I was only in the area on another matter. The Gosta Green is now part of the 'Scream' pub brand which is specifically aimed at students. The added hanging baskets make for a more attractive look to the place.

And finally, here's a Photo Digital Art view of the pub from the other end.
© Photo Digital Art 2014