Tuesday, 17 July 2018

My Top Five Pubs

This will be my last post.

Canterbury

Royal Dragoon
Photo Taken by Alan Winfield
My 500th pub and  a great Shepherd Neame tied house with a great drink of Shepherd Neame Master Brew.

This was a very large pub crawl, which included one pub in Chatham, twenty five pubs in Canterbury and six in Woolwich south east London.
My mate Chris took the photo of me stood outside, my other mate was sat inside.

Folkestone

Earl Grey

 
Photo taken by Alan Winfield

The Earl Grey was situated on Folkestone's nice looking old high street. 
This was me and my wifes favourite pub in Folkestone, a single roomed Shepherd Neame tied house,
We had some great times in here, the best was a session with a gang of UDR lads who sat round us. When they found out it was our honeymoon they would not let us buy a drink.
When it came to chucking out time we said our goodbyes and we all said what a good session it was.
We staggered back to the pub we were staying at well ready for bed, but the landlord collared us and said it's your honeymoon so you're going nowhere, we're having a late session on the guinness, there were only about 6 of us but it rounded the night off for us.

Lincoln

Morning star


Photo taken by Alan Winfield
A cracking pub with different rooms.
I first did the Morning star back in 1983 when it was a manns tied house. Me and the wife always go to the Morning star when in Lincoln top pub with about five real ales on.


Stapleford

Feathers Tavern

Photo taken by Alan Winfield


When we moved to Stapleford in 1985 the Feathers became our local. A two roomed Shipstones tied house we drank in the lounge. I made lots of friends we even took the silver cross pram in loads of times. The Feathers was a Shipstones tied house the bitter and mild was always on top form.

Falmouth

The Front

Photo taken by Alan Winfield


As the name says it's on Falmouth's sea front.
A long single room with bench seating and chairs. There was a good lively atmosphere each time we came in. You can also bring your own food so we had two fish from the chip shop which is above the pub. We had a fish each and a few each of Skinners Lushingtons it went down a treat.

This is the final pubs on the never ending pub crawl. I found out three weeks ago that my cancer had returned and both the top ENT and oncology consultants said it was not operable and that I would die soon.

I would like to thank Dan for his help in setting my blog up also other pub bloggers who have helped me make my blog look better.

I will leave my wife who has been a rock during my illness, a son and daughter, a grandson and granddaughter,

Cheers Alan





31 comments:

  1. Alan, I have never met you and I cannot claim to know you other than through your blog posts. Having said this, I am truly sorry to hear your bad news. Please accept my good wishes for the time you have left and for your wife and family.

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  2. So sorry to hear your news Alan, It's been a great blog. Best wishes, what more can I say...

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  3. Very sorry to hear that, Alan :-(

    We never met, but your blogs always put across a great love of pubs of all kinds, and often took me back to a vanished era.

    As you've said yourself, you lived your life the way you wanted to, not how anyone else told you, and you gave the impression of having loads of fun along the way.

    Remember the good times...

    Peter

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  4. Wish I had something better to say than "Thanks" Alan. This blog and your comments on other are a tribute to you and your enthusiasm for pubs. The Front is a favourite of mine; I'll have to go and seek out the others (if they're still around).


    We'll miss you mate.

    Martin

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  5. I've very much enjoyed reading your accounts of the never ending pub crawl. I will raise a personal toast next time I'm drinking in The Front. Best wishes.

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  6. That's awful news.

    Alan, you've given us lot a huge schooling on rough boozers, dodgy northern mill towns and doing 24 pubs in a single crawl like it's normal.

    We won't see your like again. I hope you enjoy the rest of your time with us.

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  7. I'm really sorry to hear your news Alan. I have loved reading your blogs and thank you for all your kind comments. I have dedicated my most recent post to you and will continue to raise a glass to you in the futre. A true pub man and remember the good times

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  8. Hi Alan, Reading about your pub crawls of Manchester on Pubs Galore in the 1980's about old pubs I knew, aroused my interest. I have always followed your crawls around the country since. Known as "fearless Al" for surveying the roughest pubs, the target of the "Full Winfield" for 22+ pubs will stay with us for ever. Cheers! Al.

    Alan Hurdle

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  9. Alan, very sad that I never had a chance to meet you since I know you are not like anybody I have ever known. Very sad to lose your perspective on pubs. A very different take on them. I learned a lot from what you wrote and that is the best thing you can give to a stranger. Dave

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  10. Alan,so sad to hear your news,your blog has given me a great deal of entertainment and contributed greatly to the world's knowledge of pubs over the years.

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  11. Mr Winfield, I'd just like to thank you for all efforts on the blog over time,greatly appreciated.Such is the nature of being online that it's often common that there are many such as myself who read and enjoy posts over time but rarely comment or get to meet up.Thank you for all you have done. By coincidence your last pub mentioned The Front happens to be a favourite of mine when rarely down there.Best regards,David Halliwell

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  12. Alan,very sorry to hear about your news. I never met you, but I enjoyed following your footsteps from pub to pub.

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  13. Very sad to hear your news, Alan. I'm another who never met you in person, but your obvious joy in visiting pubs shone through in your blog.
    Cheers

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  14. Life can be cruel, but I reckon you've had a good one till now, I think our favorite pubs and beers differ in style but its been a privilege to read your adventures here and you're great reviews on Pubs Galore, a shame we never met.
    All the best,
    Citra/Moby/Mick.

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  15. I didn't start seeing your posts until 2018 and I wish I'd found them earlier. I think your blogging style is unique and refreshing. If pubs in your crawling area were trying, I think you'd notice and reflect that in your blog. If I was a family-run pub that was really trying, I think you'd have picked this up where other bloggers would have passed us by. Thanks for your blogging Alan. Your posts will stay in my mind.

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  16. Alan, thanks for sharing your wonderfully unique views of Britains pubs with us all, we will all be raising a glass to you.

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  17. Alan, your photos/crawls have brought back many fond memories amongst friends (and strangers) in the pubs I frequent. They have sparked fierce debates and discussions and are a unique record of a lost time (pre iphones/digital cameras/google maps etc.) A time nobody thought to document as ‘boy turned to man’ amongst the dingy backstreet boozers of east Manchester.

    I just had a look and am saddened that only 2 of your top 5 pubs are still serving (Lincoln/Falmouth). I plan on visiting them both and raising a pint to one of the great pubmen.

    You will not be gone completely and I sincerely hope you have plans for your photo collection, it needs preserving and long may those images take people back to a chapter in their lives that had since been lost.

    ‘Photo by Alan Winfield’

    Go easy Alan,
    Alex (Quosh)

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  18. Alan,

    It was a pleasure to meet you towards the end of one of your crawls of Sheffield (in 2014) and to read your reviews and blogs, and especially to see your photos on Pubs Galore and on your blog. Your contribution has been massive and unique.

    Thanks for sharing some of your thousands of pub experiences with us. You will not be forgotten.

    Cheers

    Will

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  19. Thank you Alan for all your posts over the years. Bring back to life what pubs were like and especially some of the estate pubs now gone.

    Good luck to you and your family and thank you for sharing

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  20. Thank you for all your posts. We "virtual" friends will miss them.

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  21. Thank you for all the posts, reviews and photographs both here and on PG. Your enthusiasm for the pubs you visited always shone through.

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  22. Please know that I am writing this as I read, and before I look at any other posts:

    "there were only about 6 of us but it rounded the night off for us."

    So your legendary crawls started when you were married. Well done! :)

    "top pub with about five real ales on."

    I think Martin would have something to say about that! (LOL)

    "This is the final pubs on the never ending pub crawl."

    Crap! :(

    Alan, believe it or not you are an inspiration to a lot of us. You embody the 'live for the day' motto, especially to those of us that like a good pint. :)

    Death seems to have a time and place for all of us. Lord knows it's been nearby to my loved ones (or hovering nearby) for the past year or so. I realise this is little comfort but I think Valhalla has need of some hard drinking fellows and you've been nicked mate.

    This may sound inappropriate but I am currently on what would be the equivalent of my 9th pint at 4%. It is only fitting that I do so reading your post.

    Thank you for enriching our lives.

    Cheers

    Russ

    PS - I'm still annoyed I couldn't figure out that bloody flag outside the Ring 'O Bells. :)

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  23. I don't know where else to put this, so:
    ==========================================

    They say there is a place above… we go to when we die,
    By heaven is this haven known… although I’m not sure why.
    But there’s another resting place… for those quite strong of heart,
    Valhalla by the Vikings known… for those who stand apart.

    They say tall tales are sung up there… great deeds by Bards are told,
    Not only worthy must one be… but also very bold.
    This usually involves a fight… against great odds it seems,
    But they will also honour one… if worthy Odin deems.

    Such is the case for one Brit lad… quite ordinary he,
    In Folkstone he did honeymoon… nowt special ‘bout that see.
    But on that night he supped some pints… and all of them were free,
    With Guinness it continued on… thus borne, epiphany.

    He’d take a ‘crawl’ when ‘ere’ he could… around the pubs he’d go,
    A Never Ending Pub Crawl this… his better half in tow.
    And this he did for many years… no pub he would avoid,
    In fact ‘back street’ he did prefer… might say that he enjoyed.

    For cask and keg this too applies… our lad he could care less,
    “The pub’s the thing” he might have said… to fans he would impress.
    He might alarm the bearded folk… or those that tick a box,
    But Alan Winfield, as he’s known… would simply say ‘Boll-ocks’!

    The journey is the thing you see… the destination moot,
    Sit back, relax, enjoy the ride… it’s sure to be a beaut.
    For at the end if you look back… can say with honesty,
    That what took place, without a doubt… a marvelous journey.

    For Alan Winfield this is true… a legend some might say,
    Deep down though he is just like us… though in a different way.
    The path’s he’s blazed some might walk down… and as they do, bethink,
    While others make a mental note… next time they take a drink.

    Alas the latter is my bane… for I live far away,
    But Alan’s path I swear I’ll walk… if I’m I the U.K.
    So to this “never ending” guy… I raise my glass of beer,
    And hope that up ‘above’ we’ll meet… that’s worthy of a tear.
    ==============================================================

    Keep a pint cold for me when 'ere we meet Alan.*

    Cheers

    * Even John Smiths Smooth :)

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    Replies
    1. Sigh, 'in' not 'I' on the third last line.

      I blame the two 9.5% Ice Bocks I drank whilst composing this.

      Cheers

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  24. Extremely sorry to read this as I'm actually now in Folkstone and just walked past The Earl Grey.

    I won't forget meeting you in Bristol and undertaking your crawl with you. Don't think those 23 pubs will be the same when I revisit them in the future without think ing of that day.

    All the best and it's been a pleasure to know you, hope you enjoy the remaining time with family and friendsto the fullest possible.

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  25. I was so sorry to read this Alan. I've enjoyed reading your posts over the last few years. Your blog is unique, especially in the realm of beer blogging, a genuine and honest record of English pub culture.

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  26. Hello Alan.
    Like all your other blog friends I’m very sad to hear your news.
    I’ve enjoyed your pub adventures and memories and thank you for sharing them.
    We are thinking of you and your family.
    Until we all raise our glasses in the eternal hostelry...
    Our very best wishes,
    Glyn & Di

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  27. So sorry to hear this, Alan and family.

    Have one for me in the estate pubs in the hereafter - it is a never ending pub crawl after all.

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