is right at the edge of town, and looks more like a small , or maybe villa, with double bay windows in brick. The sign declares it is a pub, but without it, I would have thought it a genteel residence.
In fact‘s bays were added in and the original builder’s bill is framed inside. The original building dates back to , and is one of the oldest of the many pubs and inns in the town. I was told there were once twenty-seven, I guess as many per head of population as coffee shops in or churches in a village.
When the bays were added it was known as ‘‘, serving the railway that once led on to the quarries in the hillside to the south west. One of the locals (lived there all his life!) said that there had been a horse- drawn tramway before the railway, taking limestone away and bringing loads of coal up from . The railway was closed in as part of the .
I noticed thathad won best small pub from and clearly had its own sense of community, with ‘outings’ including a recent green bowling day.
seems caught between two worlds; there is the sense that things have hardly changed since the , with small bric-a-brac shops and shop fronts that feel they belong to a sepia photograph, but also signs of the new century: a delicatessen, a sign announcing the coming of a new arts café. Just opposite is the (aka " ") where I had two amazing breakfasts, but which has a ‘For Sale’ sign hung outside. I asked the next morning and found she is retiring, and hoping that it will be bought as an ongoing business, but it’s a reminder that even local institutions can change.