“There is a house in New Orleans…”as the song goes, is slightly catchier than “there is a house in Church Gresley…” only a bit, mind.
The 1964 classic from The Animals is arguably their greatest moment and therefore was reasonably excited when a boys night out in the nineties to Granville’s in Stone involved a gig with Alan Price playing the classics…however, he kept on asking for quiet in the crowd…
(spot the Bass sign)
…as you can imagine that went down like a lead balloon and his vocal chords were still as good as ever but, silence for a gig, no thanks Alan.
Anyway, I digress and the last thing anyone wanted in 589 – The Rising Sun DE11 9NR in Church Gresley on Sunday afternoon at about 4.30 was quiet.
A proper old school locals boozer which was very much about having the craic as opposed to earnest silence and beer tasting notes.
This became apparent as I walked in and there was a group of around five bar blockers but I could still see the SA (Brains). However, just as the barmaid was pulling it through the pint of foam told her it was finished so I tried to strain my neck and shuffle round to see the other cask option.
(cask round the other side)
The barmaid admitted she wasn’t sure so gave me a taster and it was nice, but tasted quite lively, and she confirmed it was stronger.
At this point, one of the lads at the bar looked at me in a “what are you doing,” kind of way and I explained I was looking at what beer was on.
(go with the local brew)
“Mate, I’m on the Carling and it’s magnificent,” he announced to great approval form his pals. “I’ve had no bother with it and I’ll try a few more (or words to that effect).”
As I always bow to peer pressure, I decided to go for Burton’s finest, much to the barmaids’ surprise. “Are you sure,” she said. “Yes go on,” I replied and the geezer at the bar was duly delighted, gave me a knowing nod, and went back to his lively conversation.
(A top lad – typical funny bloke in a pub)
The barmaid then brought out the Track & Trace book with my Carling and got me to sign and a woman behind me, joined in with the “I wouldn’t give her your number, be careful” before bursting into laughter with a crew in the corner.
It was that sort of place and there was a good thoroughfare with people coming and going at regular intervals and a good atmosphere where the barmaid was in the thick of the action as the lads (and lasses) were playing up and having a proper Sunday afternoon session.
Someone very quietly put the TV and I could faintly hear “Highway To Hell” followed by “Everybody Wants To Rule The World,” and despite requests from the barflies to crank up the noise the barmaid knows the current (ridiculous) rules and kept it low key.
This would be the sort of place Alan Price would like to play a gig now and under the current restrictions but the minute noise is allowed once more it would be well off his radar.
So, to summarise, a top locals pub that I suspect was just warming up as I left not long after 5pm and it serves cask but Carling is a popular option if you’re not sure!
The dartboard, pool table and fruit machines were all turned off or not in use so it is clearly following the rules and likely to be very lively when operating on all cylinders. It also has a red telephone box in the corner of the bar, which is a first on my travels.
Definitely worth a visit pre or post Gresley fixtures and glad to see it surviving post covid.