As the country melts under a magnificent heat wave and the possibility of England actually reaching the last eight of a major football tournament I thought I would keep up the temperature by recalling some classic Midlands ‘Spoons.
I’m a big fan of Tim Martin’s boozers and I don’t think anywhere else in the country encapsulates modern life as well as his pubs.
More often than not they are last man standing in some suburbs and perform a vital role, none more so than in Yardley, a suburb of Birmingham where it was packed to the rafters of a Friday lunchtime when I visited The WIlliam Tyler B25 8UT
If this was a down to earth no nonsense boozer then The Shoulder Of Mutton LE65 1AF hits a slightly different market but is still hugely effective.
Don’t get me wrong this still has all sections of society eating and drinking but this has a more family feel in the early evening and then a real party feeling as the night progresses with Ashby De La Zouch being a definite party town.
Solihull is my home town but arguably stocked with some of the blandest pubs in Britain for its size, so the The White Swan B91 3SB has been a welcome addition to the town centre.
It’s always busy and has a lot of polite OAPs queuing, well it is Solihull after all, but is hugely needed in this town.
The Square Peg B4 6PH in central Birmingham has one of the longest bars in Britain and is set in the old Lewis’ (not John Lewis) department store.
It’s in one the last few parts of Brum to be fully redeveloped and was wonderfully chaotic on the Saturday night I visited and absolutely rammed. A cracking atmosphere and well worth a visit to see the real Birmingham.
Finally, the best building is without doubt The Standing Order DE1 3GL which is an absolutely stunning piece of architecture that has been revived by Wetherspoons.
I like the fact that they restore wonderful buildings and are flexible to use all kinds of old shops where there’s a market. The beer is invariably excellent and well-priced.
The pub industry would be a poorer place without Wetherspoons – top stuff.