|The Obelisk, Herefordshire (I don't know why, it just is)|
Good evening weary travellers,
Only two months left of the pub ticking calendar year, where has it gone?
39 pubs visited in the month (plus one pre-emptive and one 'bonus' pub) sounds like a great success, sure it was THREE times than number of pubs I visited last year, and also eclipsed the pathetic October average of 19.
Having said that, there were missed opportunities (the Morgan in Great Malvern, Sunday lunchtime ticking in Central London) and with the kind of dedication I showed in September, I should have been more around the 45 mark. Never mind. I currently am on 1135 pubs, so the aim by 11:59pm on New Year's Eve has to be 1200 which looks fitting in a way.
If I can stay disciplined on the 'six' a weekend theme (not always strictly possible) and 1.5 pubs per midweek, plus the odd little 'bonus', it should be achievable. Though sadly no more time off work before January.
I visited some incredible pubs, had some amazing experiences, and met some great folk on my travels over the last month, so choosing a "top three" was very difficult so here are 5, in no particular order .....
1. Plasterers Arms, Norwich
2. Farmers Arms, Birtsmorton
3. Shepherds Arms, Whaley Bridge
4. Wyche Inn, Upper Wyche
5. Pump Room Micropub, Halifax
|Enjoying a pint of Hook Norton in Birtsmorton.|
1. Tilted Wig, Warwick
2. Derehams Inn, Loudwater
3. Hope, Richmond
|Even this pic couldn't inspire the Hope at Richmond to greatness.|
It all starts with one of final remaining West Yorkshire ticks, before a trip to Sheffield to take on Championship leaders (at time of writing) Sheff Utd, with all their passing and movement and Chris Wilder and Billy Sharp and blah blah blah. Pubs before AND after is the order of the day to numb the pain, as I look to knock off my remaining 5 in Sheffield, one of which I've tried THREE times to get to but to no avail! 4th time lucky?
I then look to finish West Yorkshire and we have a special guest BRAPster from work joining me for that, then a bonus trip to help Martin Taylor get a pub tick done, before Sat 11th sees Dad join me on the second of our mystery train trips. But where will I take him this time? Clue, not Warwick.
I'm then going to see what of North Yorkshire is achievable on a Tuesday night before starting on the South Yorkshire massive. Places like Harrogate, Hensall and even Northallerton look do-able. Skipton may have to wait til June for reasons I won't go into here, Acaster Malbis is so close by it is painful, but buses just don't run late enough.
Sat 18th comes with a nice little bonus trip to London the day before, a "work trip" but I'm going with a bloke from Rotherham so no doubt a bit of Stones and Wards will be drunk in Smithfield and Cannon Street on the Fri evening, well I can hope! I'm actually staying over in Milton Keynes (yes, I did just say that) basing myself there for joys like Woughton on the Green which Martin so enjoyed, Newport Pagnall and Stoke Hammond also on the agenda.
And Sat 25th sees me back on the Cheshire trail. Like Bucks, it is slow progress limping towards the finishing line as I keep wandering into other counties (North Wales, Derbyshire on my last 2 visits). This time Barthomley is the tricky pub required, but I may be able to combine it with a bit of Crewe or Congleton or the like, which now need return visits since the 2018 GBG.
And if I need a cheeky bonus Fri or Sun to help me get towards that 35 target in that final week or two of the month, then so be it.
Happy pubbing all, and rest your livers on your days off (but not tonight obviously).