Sunday 26 July 2015

BRAPA - Hollym and Hedon

The excitement is building (for me at least) as, after yesterday, I only have two more East Yorkshire pubs to tick off in the 2015 GBG.  And to think, back at Christmas, I only had 12 ticks to today's 40!

A novel slant on day care in the Shakespeare, Hedon
It was hard to imagine there is an "east of Hull", but it seemed to stretch on from village to village as we finally made it to Hollym using the annoying SatNav woman, who won't be in my year end BRAPA thank you list!  

Arriving before 12 noon, we had chance for Dad to take a trip down memory lane at the Golden Sands Holiday Park near Withernsea, where his family had a wooden holiday home (still there!) when he was a boy.  He was shocked though at the level of erosion, half the park he remembers is now missing.  Quite scary really.  

712. Plough Inn, Hollym

I don't suppose I've been in many wattle & daub pubs on my BRAPA trips so that was a nice quirk.  The friendly southern couple who ran the pub offered me a CAMRA discount without needing to see my card (Dad reckons I have an "authentic look" hmm, I think more CAMRA geek) and the landlady displayed the least surprised reaction EVER when I explained BRAPA, as though it is a commonplace challenge.  She was soon chatting erosion to Dad.  Landlord Steve meanwhile was half way through a 365 day "dry-a-thon" but revealed last night he dreamt he was drinking two pints of Morland Bitter!  Full credit to him.  Despite the pubs seeming tie to Greene King, it had two great guests on in Great Heck Voodoo Mild and Half Moon Bitter, both superb and the pub had a light and clean feel, but the wood panelling and beams made it feel old and authentic (like me allegedly!)   The dogs which had accosted us on the way in were friendly, but then retreated to an acceptable distance, but we didn't risk our cheese & onion rolls in case it stirred their nostrils.  A young bar lad was being trained up (maybe a bit too heavy handedly as he seemed capable) but luckily, he didn't seem to realise the pub operated a "lined glass" policy, so we got extra.  Take that Seabirds in Brid!  

Me at the Plough - Dad took this before his drink in case you were wondering!
And that was that, another absolute corker from East Yorkshire's rural pub portfolio.  I keep telling Dad how lucky he's been, the pub standard when he's been with me this year has been superb, but as occassional chauffeur, he deserves that luck.   We had a drive round Withernsea so Dad could rekindle more memories of family holidays before we headed to Hedon.

713. Shakespeare Inn, Hedon

And after 'losing' the first Hedon pub (more on that later), we accidentally stumbled on our other one.  It initially reminded me of the Beech Tree in Kirk Ella, so I was expecting it to open up into some huge estatey family friendly unatmospheric room.  So I was surprised to see that it had the 'reverse tardis' effect, with just a circular bar and two small rooms each side.  Even the loos were hidden in the entrance area.  We saw two Great Newsome ales (very Locale as the brewery is at nearby South Froderingham) and went for a Pricky Back Otcham.  The barmaid, who had pretty brunette potential, was stifled by two things.  One, being friends with two strangely capped chavs at the bar, and secondly, being deaf which Dad took exception to as he likes being the deaf one in social situations, he later revealed.  Luckily, there was a large outdoor drinking area at the front of the pub, and we found a secluded bench next to a nice floral display round the corner, and rated this beer, drink of the day.  And the added bonus of being outdoors, we finally got to have the pasties!  We left and I waved at one of the capped chavs, what a nice chap.  Maybe.  

Dad arriving at the 'reverse Tardis' in Hedon

714.  Haven Arms, Hedon

The GBG had incorrectly listed the address as 'Sheriff's Highway' rather than 'Havenside' so it was one of the day's highlights when we finally found our final pub, nestled down a peaceful country lane with a couple of a bench outside, annoyed as we disturbed their peace as we parked opposite.  We entered a quite large but dark and low roofed pub, where some friendly locals were giving us ale recommendations at the bar.  The Ashes theme was in full 'swing', and I had a Jimmy Anderson themed one and Dad had a 'Golden Pair' but Great Newsome.  We were served what seemed to be a Mum with an army of friendly daughters.  Maybe some were nieces.  They all looked the same anyway, but that could be Hedon.  Now it's credit to Dad that he thought his Golden 'Pair' was a pun on 'Pear' and it was like a farmhouse perry.  Problem was, I wasn't convinced and research showed me it was a rather bog standard bitter.  Conclusion, Dad was drinking vinegar.  Then, my Jimmy Anderson which had displayed sulphurous notes (do I sound professional?) totally turned half way down.  We left what was remaining, couldn't take them back at this late stage, and beat a swift retreat., though I did say bye to 'daughter: K993B'.   Worst beer quality in a BRAPA pub this year.  The slight confusing factor to me is that there were so many ale drinkers at the bar!

There was no beer haven at the Haven.
So I'd tempted fate by telling Dad how lucky he's been with the quality of our East Yorkshire visitors when we were leaving the Plough.  As time was still on our side, we popped in for a swift half at Greyhound in Riccall to wash away the taste of vinegar though the Bateman's guest wasn't amazing, but the beer garden was, well until the rain bucketed down and we sat in the smoking area - pub was heaving which was a total culture shock if you've read my archives review, it is normally just me and Dad in for lunch on a midweek lunchtime.  

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The remaining East Yorkshire 'ticks' are at North Cave (to be visited in August) and New Adelphi, 8pm gig venue opener in Hull, which I'm working on.  Tom's "evening tick in it's own right" makes a lot of sense, as does Dad's "on a football evening" post-match so we'll see how things go.  I take Tom's point about leaving a game early.  Problem is, I can't do the Fulham home game so amusingly (if you read my 'Hull City relegation' post, Ipswich would be the next opportunity!). 

See you Tues/Wed for a review of my Thornton trip & August preview, though I might try and get another archive out today or Monday.



  1. There is a pub in Grimsby town centre with a 'Husband creche', I think there working is. Positioned directly opposite the entrance to the shopping centre.

    Time for the pedantry special. What is 'pretty brunette potential'. Despite any other flaws to a person's character, both pretty and brunette are surely definate terms, ie you either are or aren't, and I don't see how you can have potential to become either of them.

    Depending on when you do it and what gets in the new GBG, you could also combine the New Adelphi with new East Yorkshire / Selby ticks en-route, or do some pre-emptives, rather than just a one pub evening. The other, so far in the box that it actually falls back out the bottom of the box idea, is to wait for a band you like to be on, seeing as it is a gig venue, and get it that way. It would seem a bit more fitting to use it fully for its intended purpose.

  2. Thanks Tom, I wonder how many husband creche pubs there are, maybe it is commonplace?

    I think that what appear definite characteristics on the surface can be muddied by deeper lying barmaid weaknesses.

    True on the New Adelphi, particularly with my letter "B" band required soon, depending when the next bank newsletter meeting is.

    I'm half heartedly following a York CAMRA ale trail with 24 pubs you have to get stamped (8 pubs are York central, 8 are outer York and 8 are villages outside York). Prizes for 12, 18 or 24 stamps. Deadline 31st Aug. Got 4 stamps so far. But one is in Selby. One is a BRAPA tick in Newton-on-Ouse. A lot are non GBG at the moment. Interesting sub-challenge.

    1. The trouble is that your descriptor 'pretty brunette' is a physical quality, rather than a reference to a person's character, though I suppose the pretty is a matter of opinion. Deeper lying weaknesses do not affect said descriptors, but obviously do affect their ability as a barmaid.

      You can presumably get your 8 pubs in York really easily on non-BRAPA nights (not that I condone the existence of such nights). Are the outer York pubs such that you can get 7 of them easily on said nights. Clearly the Newton-on-Ouse has to be done, and I'd be tempted to do the non GBG while you are at them as pre-emptives. If the appear on an official CAMRA trail, they must have a good chance of getting in the guide at some stage.

      The Looe Valley RUG (or CRP, I can't remember their official status or name) have got a similar scheme in association with Cornwall CAMRA. The idea being that you travel by train between the pubs, much like the Transpennine trail, get a stamp in each, and get a prize. I think it is a tee shirt as one prize, a glass as another, something like that. There were a few pubs in each of Looe and Liskeard, together with 1 or 2 at most of the intermediate shacks. I picked up a leaflet prior to the 1-0 win at Home Park when Plymouth scored a disallowed goal, the flag was up as soon as the player touched the ball and they still danced along to the after goal music, that day. Possibly a good way to identify pre-emptives in an unfamiliar part of the world is that. And you get to bail out at the brilliantly named St. Keyne Wishing Well Halt, one of my more desired shack ticks just for the name.

  3. Haven Arms beer quality gets zero out of ten. The wattle and daub built Plough at Hollym was a delight and stands remarkably straight, despite my photo.

  4. I trust the photograph isn't a projection of what the pub will look like with further erosion.

    I think you should both sign up to the CAMRA beer rating service and award zero for the Haven Arms. Though that could lead to it being removed from the GBG, thus meaning another East Yorkshire pub has to replace it.

  5. Yes, but if replacement pub is close to or near to Hull, it might be a New Adelphi stepping stone.

    Dad, you'll be pleased to know your photo of Hollym pub won plaudits on Untappd. "York Beer Monster" said it was a great photo and reminded him of a 1980's Depeche Mode album cover, which makes you cool in 2015.

  6. Also Tom, yes it would be logical to think that if included in the York CAMRA ale trail, they must be rated as good ale pubs, but after my pint of Leeds Best in the Melbourne (of Haven Arms quality), plus the fact Blacksmith's Arms in Naburn is included, makes me skeptical.