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Chelsea Transfer Target

Apr 27, 2019, 3:23 AM

Posts: 4419
Location: Oxford
Team(s): Pompey

Post #776 of 778 (605 views)
Re: [oxpete] Proper pubs [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Two establishments visited on that very hot and sunny Easter Saturday in Dorking, while ticking Meadowbank as Dorking Wanderers FC cantered away with the Isthmian title and beat Bognor Regis Town. Pre-match was...

King's Arms
45 West Street

...a Shepherd Neame pub in a rickety 600-year-old building of low beams, loose tiles and uneven floors which just about managed to stay the right side of appearing rather smug with itself. However, the post-match offering was better over the road at...

Cobbett's Beer Shop & Micropub
23 West Street

...a great little micropub that doubles up as an off-licence too. On a sunny Easter Saturday evening the place was a bit over-packed, not least with the fine folk of Bognor Regis, though there is a larger drinking room further back and a little yard out the back-door.

On arriving at Cobbett's, I saw a bloke in a cream linen suit pacing the pavement outside on his smartphone who I'm pretty darn sure was none other than Terry Venables! He made eye-contact with me but then quickly turned away, perhaps recognising me as that bloke demanding Terry Fenwick's head on a pike following that embarrassing defeat to Charlton back in the 1997~98 season. Using the free wifi, I tried checking his twitter feed to see if he was admitting to being in Dorking that day, but it appears that there are dozens of Terry Venables accounts of variable levels of honesty (not that 'Venables' and 'honesty' are two words with that much in common anyway). One claimed he was by a pool in Malaga, while another was telling Rio Ferdinand that he was an idiot. So no closer the truth.

I did pop into one other pub on West Street - the Old House, next door to Cobbett's - but decided not to bother staying when I saw the barman taking an inordinate length of time to conjure up a gin cocktail in an empty jam-jar. I've heard that such nonsense is fashionable in that London place, but had never yet seen it before my own eyes. Crazy

Chelsea Transfer Target

Apr 27, 2019, 4:31 AM

Posts: 4419
Location: Oxford
Team(s): Pompey

Post #777 of 778 (587 views)
Re: [oxpete] Proper pubs [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Easter Monday was even hotter and sunnier, and was spent in the southern fringes of Essex as I made my way to watch East Thurrock United FC's gallant but ultimately failed attempt to avoid relegation to the Isthmian. I only managed one of my targets in the town of Grays, but it was the enjoyable...

White Hart
Kings Walk

...which is just a couple of minutes walk south of the railway station, crossing via the dinky little pedestrian level crossing gates. The White Hart has been the local CAMRA branch's Pub Of The Year for south-west Essex on numerous occasions, and is a regular in the GBG - four real ales of eclectic choice on offer on this occasion - and it's all rather comfy and friendly inside too (made even more agreeable for me when they put the Pompey v. Coventry early-kickoff on the telly).

There were a couple of other Grays' pubs nearby that I'd have really liked to have visited too, namely the Theobald Arms (recommended to me by Timmy Tabby), and The Wharf which is a ancient-looking tavern right on the riverfront, but I'll have to save them for when I go to tick Tilbury FC. Instead, I spent my time walking the footpath that hugs the River Thames muddy shoreline down to Stone Ness, a turn on the river that gives views up to the Dartford Bridge and across to the hills of Kent. Close by here are also the two pylons that hold up electricity cables of the 400kv Thames Crossing. These two pylons - one in West Thurrock on the edge of Grays, and the other on the Swanscombe peninsula in Kent - are the tallest electricity pylons in the country at 190mtrs height, and with a span of 1372mtrs across. Also here is a long isolated concrete wall which is obviously a magnet for graffiti artists - about half a dozen were at work on Monday morning, with a brilliant long stretch of paintings of Beano charaters, including Dennis The Menace and several of the Bash Street Kids. A great walk along the river if you've got the time to do it.

The only other pub I managed was closer to ETUFC's ground...

The White Lion
Lion Hill
Essex the village of Fobbing, which just about keeps its rural setting just off the eastern extremity of the town of Corringham, and is about a fifteen minute from the football ground. The pub has plenty of creaking wooden beams and small cubby-holes, and despite being a food destination still manages to keep its drinking-house personality. Part of the building claims to be fourteenth-century, and it also claims to be one of the starting points for Jack Straw's Peasants Revolt of 1381 following riots in Fobbing, when an army 5,000 peasants marched to confront King Richard II in protest at the introduction of England's first poll-tax. The peasants were promised 'freedom from serfdom and justice' if they returned home peacefully, but violence erupted the next day and the King's army over-ran the rebels. Jack Straw, Watt Tyler and 200 rebels were later executed.

One last pub I'd have liked to visit was back close to the railway station at Stanford-le-Hope, which is the GBG-listed Rising Sun (again recommended by Timmy Tabby). But time wasn't on my side, so I'll pop in there next season sometime.

Chelsea Transfer Target

Apr 30, 2019, 2:54 AM

Posts: 4419
Location: Oxford
Team(s): Pompey

Post #778 of 778 (389 views)
Re: [oxpete] Proper pubs [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Another twenty-three pubs visited in April in the 365 Pub Challenge, giving a running total of 123 pubs in 120 days so far...

Visit 365 different pubs in the 365 days of 2019

101. King's Head, 31 Fisher Street, CARLISLE
102. Half Moon, 17 St.Clement's, OXFORD
103. Wheatsheaf, 129 High Street, OXFORD
104. OXO Bar, 48 George Street, OXFORD
105. Seven Stars, 40 Albert Square, RUGBY
106. Lord Hop, 38 Queens Road, NUNEATON
107. Harcourt Arms, Cranham Terrace, Jericho, OXFORD
108. Guide Dog, 38 Earls Road, Bevois Valley, SOUTHAMPTON
109. Junction Inn, Priory Road, St.Denys, SOUTHAMPTON
110. South Western Arms, 38 Adelaide Road, St.Denys, SOUTHAMPTON
111. Sussex Brewery, 36 Main Road, Hermitage, EMSWORTH
112. Blue Bell, 29 South Street, EMSWORTH
113. Green Man Ale & Cider House, 17 South Street Tarring, WORTHING
114. Windmill Inn, 42 Mill Lane, RUSTINGTON
115. The Phoenix, 13 Duncan Road, Southsea, PORTSMOUTH
116. Staggeringly Good Brewery, Rodney Road, Milton, PORTSMOUTH
117. The Lanes, 15 Worthington Street, DOVER
118. Breakwater Brewery Tap, Lorne Road, DOVER
119. Priory Hotel, Station Approach, DOVER
120. King's Arms, 45 West Street, DORKING
121. Cobbett's Micropub, 23 West Street, DORKING
122. White Hart, King's Walk, GRAYS
123. White Lion, Lion Hill, Fobbing, CORRINGHAM

...and here are the photographs of April's pubs...

Counties of England ticked in April: 5
Warwickshire, West Sussex, Kent, Surrey and Essex.

Total number of counties ticked so far: 25

(This post was edited by oxpete on Apr 30, 2019, 3:03 AM)

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