Tuesday 12 August 2014

BRAPA - Blackpool and two punk rock pub ticks

Whilst the past few days has been spent at the Rebellion Punk Festival in Blackpool, I always had half an eye on achieving the final three pub ticks required in one of the UK's scariest towns, and my overall result of two was a satisfactory conclusion.

Blackpool's the kind of place where you type in "Blackpool" and "Real Ale" into Google and achieve a googlewhack ... but that's unfair, the Pump & Truncheon has always been great (not sure if beer quality is what it was 5 years ago), Gillespies is a good new addition, the Rammy has heritage but never been convinced by it, Churchills is errm characterful, the Saddle gets good reviews though was poor on my visit 5 years ago, so what I'm trying to say is that at least options exist.

Rocking the Casbah at the Punk Fest.

One of these days, the Winter Gardens venue itself may provide ale of note (I have to think back to the Morecambe days when we did at least get some handpulled Tetley's).

At present, they've at least started selling bottles of Deuchers IPA, Flying Scotsmen and Brains Reverend James but at £4.20 a go, it makes me bitter enough to stay with the Murphy's for the time being.

So here's where I hadn't been before this weekend .....

504 - Layton Rakes, Blackpool - My 10th tick for the month was probably the 'find' of the festival.  A multi-levelled Wetherspoons with a roof terrace with a view of the Tower, and a quieter first floor room.  The theme celebrates Blackpool's circus history and an illuminated clown (Charlie Carioli - an adopted son) is the focal point of the pub on entry.  The beer was better and they changed frequently and the atmos was mostly good, no reason to go back to the Albert and the Lion 'Spoons next year - phew!

The girls having fun in Layton Rakes.
505 - Blackpool Cricket Club - Not as I expected, with quite a family orientated atmosphere but it was a light happier place rather than the dingy stereotype Northern club I had etched in my mind.  My pint of Beachcomber was as good quality as anything I had all weekend, and considering it was from the Fuller's stable, I was even more impressed.  I (inadvertently) told the barmaid I was a club member so £2.50 a pint was good too, I just had to cover up my punk wristband for the remainder of my time there.  It was raised in the pavilion area so had great views out onto the cricket pitch, imagine people come here on cricket days and just sit in here.  It was a mile out of town though so not easy to return to for future festivals.

So all that leaves is one more Wetherspoons in Blackpool (Auctioneer) to tick off but of course, the guide will have changed by next year.  Less than a month now to be precise!  Not so much having a BRAPA break now as a total detox from beer and shit food, but you know me, I'll be in touch with more pub ticks soon as I get back on the West Yorkshire trail.  QPR first on Saturday though.

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