You left me dodging the bar blockers in Whitwick trying to return a dodgy half of Pedigree in an LE67 classic boozer.
Shifting a few junctions down the M42 took me to an old stomping ground of mine, Balsall Common.
It is a fairly leafy suburb of Solihull although with its CV postcode Coventry will be trying to claim it as one of its own and it was home for the best part of a decade for me.
With a train station (Berkswell) and a massive house building programme over the past twenty years it is almost becoming a small town as you can be at the NEC/Airport in no time at all and central Brum in about ten minutes (or Coventry, if that’s your thing).
Of course the beauty of its location means its train line takes you through Martin’s favourite Birmingham pub suburb of Stetchford and Paul WME’s recent travels took him to Adderley Park, which is in the running for the “ bleakest station in Britain award” 2019.
However, the station at Balsall Common, which is known as Berkswell is well used but also under the microscope with the impending arrival of HS2.
(a bit of Carling livery)
It’s not been met with universal approval and the boozer nearest to the station is apparently under the cosh.
The innovative titled 402 – The Railway Inn CV7 7EF had a lot of press coverage a while back after its owners were told it no longer had any value due to the proposed train line.
Apparently Station Road to Coventry under the bridge is going to be turned into a cul-de-sac and cut off through traffic past the boozer…although rumours that residents wanted all roads to Coventry blocked off are as yet unconfirmed.
Anyway, at present, The Railway is alive and kicking and very much Balsall Common’s locals boozer and a ‘proper’ station pub.
Pool tables, lads on a Sunday sesh, sky sports, bench seating, cask ale and also the added bonus of keg Brew XI.
I ventured in at around 7.15 on a Sunday and there was the remains of a good afternoon as there were a few lads in raucous form or just starting to slump whilst the bloke next to me was definitely ‘on it.’
Black Sheep, and others were on offer but I couldn’t resist the lure of keg Brew XI. It won’t meet with everyone’s approval but it was/is a Brummie classic and I don’t know who brews it these days but it hit the spot perfectly on a warm night.
(in full flow)
Cold, cool, chewy and crisp – perfect.
As Balsall Common continues to grow so the likelihood is that this place will continue to thrive as it is tidy, well-kept and feels like a proper pub.