We were due a bit of luck, and we got it, as our new friends in the Fisherman's Arms on the Headland told us that this next pub would actually be closed right now if Hartlepool Utd had a home game today.
|Don't worry, this was taken at 10am|
|Does this mean Accrington fans are nice?|
'Twas pitch black by the time we arrived in Billingham and without going into the usual amount of BRAPA oversharing data, when I realised our two pubs were over a mile from the station, i felt like my entire bottom half was going to drop out!
On a less unsavoury note, a return to Billingham was a notable moment for Dad, for if you ask him what his favourite pint in 72 years has been, he will tell you it was a pint of Newcastle Exhibition in a club in Billingham. Our first port of call, a club. Sadly, not the same one.
The darkness meant the outdoor photography was an amusing game of pot-luck ......
|"Oi Dad, bit to the left ..... that is a hedge!"|
|"That's better (I s'pose)"|
|Dad clutches nose like it is his rosary beads|
|I'm only photographing the framed GBG covers mate, honest.|
We carried on walking along the same road until we came to what they call 'Old Billingham', and isn't it annoying when the pub address is Station Road and it is miles from the station?
|No hedge to thwart us here!|
Crafty Cock, Billingham (1637 / 2854) then to end the night, and a debutant micropub by all accounts enjoying what by now was quite a jumping Saturday evening atmosphere. Bad start as my 'Dark Side of the Moose' immediately went off but never mind, the Elland was a good replacement and the barmaid / lady business owner of much repute, was fantastic. Can't remember why, just remember us commenting on how good she was! We perched into a rare free seat by some krazy kraft kids (no, I don't mean they were on the cheese slices). Dad is always cautious of 'man-hugging' when he sees groups like this, and although we weren't in Surbiton or Streatham, the threat became very real about half an hour later. A Welsh dresser by the bogs encouraged people to be 'quirky' with a bunch of over elaborate props, and soon the lads had commandeered the sombreros. Pure banter. With the train times just a bit 'off' (or so we thought), we HAD to stay for another, oh dear what a shame, and it could be my imagination but I think Plum Porter had gone on, my mind was going but this was a lively, happy positive way to end what by all accounts, had been a cracker of a day out.
I've actually got a few December pubs to visit now so I'll be back on Sunday to tell you about a very peculiar place in County Durham, and then I'll desperately try and remember any details from my day in Rugby, Warwickshire.
Have a good weekend.