601 Not Out – Retired (not hurt) – Time To Hang Them Up

Hang your boots up, Hang your boots up, hang your boots up (insert name here),” repeat x2 to the tune of “Oh my darling Clementine” was an oft heard terrace chant in the seventies.

And, as I hit the 601 not out mark with a magnificent pint of Bass in a locals wet led pub, this seems like a good time to hang up my blogging boots so to speak.

Like Sean Connery, I’ll Never say Never Again but increased work commitments, family commitments and the need to travel ever further in order to seek out new boozers mean it is probably time to hang them up.

(proper pubbery – The Hunter)

It’s been a magnificent journey through some terrific Midlands towns and I have had an absolute blast.  So many people to thank and firstly I’d like to thank the legend known as Martin Taylor for persuading me that visiting earthy boozers and talking absolute nonsense might actually be an idea way back in 2017.

I’d also like to thank anyone who has read this blog and also the people who have taken the trouble to comment on Lifeafterfootball.

I know that it takes an effort to actually comment and I can tell you now comments are the lifeblood of any blog so I am hugely indebted for your wit, banter, love of pubs, beer and, of course, typo corrections (you know who you are!)

Writing this blog allowed me to see an absolute array of boozers and I hope the current covid scenario doesn’t mean fundamental changes forever to the great British boozer.

Table service at the Stamford and Warrington, not sure that will work really, but let’s see what happens.

I also managed to pick up a medal, along with my pal, for drinking as we completed the Hartshill Mile in Stoke on Trent and duly collected a gong! – Read it here

Arguably, that day, was more successful than 16 years of football and I know Mrs BB was hugely impressed when I arrived home with some silverware….

Anyway, talking of Stoke on Trent, my final boozer is 601 – The Hunter ST11 9QX. It’s in a tiny hamlet known as Saverley Green and situated on the road between Draycott In The Moors and Hilderstone (good spot Mudgie).

It was Saturday night when I strolled in for a pint and there is a small bar that was pretty full, a jukebox that was playing some decent tunes, and a small snug that was less full.

Around 5pm on a Saturday it looked like it was warming up and I was amazed at how many people were here as I couldn’t seen any chimney pots in the vicinity.

(bench seating, Bass, pub games and a beermat – what a way to sign off)

The punters were friendly and with a choice of three ales on I asked the barmaid the six million dollar question.

“What’s the Bass like?”

“I can always recommend that here,” came the reply and it seemed like a perfect place to end Lifeafterfootball.

(what’s this?)

The Bass was truly magnificent and I even managed to spot a pub game that would have impressed Mark as my observation skills continue to improve with the more Bass I drink!!!!

A fantastic proper pub of the highest order that I can recommend to anyone who likes good beer and atmosphere.

I know how you all like your stats so here is the official rundown – region by region – of boozers visited. Plenty of scope to develop, but not enough time.

However, there is still plenty to cheer as I can recommend all of the following blogs at the bottom of this post, as they are a terrific read.  If you can’t find something beer or booze related in this smorgasbord then you really don’t like reading about beer or pubs!

A quick mention to Alan Winfield and Richard Coldwell who were top bloggers but more importantly true pubmen and are sadly no longer with us.

Alan’s blog can still be read here and it is legendary….

The Never Ending Pub Crawl

I’ll still be passing comment on fellow pub doyens blogs and occasionally posting the odd beermat on Twitter but, unless I’m tempted out of retirement with a mega bucks deal, then I’ll probably just be updating this blog occasionally with blasts from the past. 

So, as the anthem goes….”It’s a long, long road there’ll  be joys and sorrows too….”

Keep Right On To The End Of The Road Folks..

Essential Reading

Martin Taylor – GBG and publife

Pub Curmudgeon – Publife in all its guises

Colston Crawford – Derby Evening Telegraph The Beerhunter

Pubmeister – GBG and publife

Pubs Then & Now: Pete Allen

Paul – West Midlands Explorer (pubs in the Midlands)

Shove It, Chuck It, Toss It (Classic boozers and pub games)

The Wickingman – Bass guru and Peak walker

Garden Hermit – Hampshire pubs and publife

Citra – publife and hoptastic beer

Paul Bailey Beer & Travel – Kent based publife and pub views

BRAPA – (British Real Ale Pub Adventure) GBG antics

Jane Stuart – Blackpool FC/Chasetown FC Pies and Beer

Real Ale Real Music – Beer and tunes in the north

The Beertonian – All things beer in the home of brewing

Mappiman’s Real Ale Walks – Long walks and lots of pubs

Tandleman – Pub blog from a pub guru

Food, Travel, Football

Beer is the best – pub blogging from industry insider

The Travelling Barman – Midlands and beyond beer blog

The Cask Connoisseur – Midlands based pub blog

52 thoughts on “601 Not Out – Retired (not hurt) – Time To Hang Them Up

  1. But but but the transfer window isn’t shut yet! It’s been great reading these posts and I’m sure any archive material will be just as good even on a very occasional basis

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sad but understandable news. We all know how much work all of you put into the blogs. I am guessing I am not only writing for myself when I write that your retirement leaves a hole in my life. Thanks for all the great writing. Our loss will hopefully be your gain. Enjoy the extra time!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “this seems like a good time to hang up my blogging boots so to speak.”

    A bit sad about this, fer sure, but… I can well understand mate.

    “but increased work commitments, family commitments and the need to travel ever further in order to seek out new boozers mean it is probably time to hang them up.”

    Not in the same league, but we are looking at doing the same thing with our lunch truck. With Covid killing out catering, me getting fed up driving (for free!) and my darling wife ready for (yet another!) change, it appears we could be stopping our lunch run by the end of the month.

    “and firstly I’d like to thank the legend known as Martin Taylor for persuading me that visiting earthy boozers and talking absolute nonsense might actually be an idea way back in 2017.”

    Hear, hear! And hopefully you’ll comment on his blog once in a while (as well as certain others). 🙂

    “I’d also like to thank anyone who has read this blog and also the people who have taken the trouble to comment on Lifeafterfootball.”

    Oooh, ooh! That’s me! (LOL)

    “and, of course, typo corrections (you know who you are!)”

    Oooh, ooh… that’s REALLY me! 🙂

    “and I hope the current covid scenario doesn’t mean fundamental changes forever to the great British boozer.”

    As do we all.

    “and duly collected a gong! – Read it here”

    Sigh. That post was on one our trips to see the lads (i.e. family commitments). 😉

    “Arguably, that day, was more successful than 16 years of football”

    Tsk, tsk! Maybe on par, but not more successful! Don’t sell yourself short Ian. You’re are, literally, one in a million mate!

    “and I know Mrs BB was hugely impressed when I arrived home with a medal….”

    And I won’t ask just how impressed she was. 🙂

    “and situated on the road between Longton and Blythe Bridge.”

    I won’t say much about the map except:

    – thanks to you I know that Alton Towers has a ‘fun park’ and;

    – where the bleedin’ hell is the A514! 🙂

    “(bench seating, Bass, pub games and a beermat – what a way to sign off)”

    Too bloody right!

    “and it seemed like a perfect place to end Lifeafterfootball.”

    (nods)

    “(what’s this?)”

    Oooh. I had that as a kid. It’s that solo player game where you take one out and try to jump the rest to have one final piece in the middle.

    Peg, I think it was called.

    “A fantastic proper pub of the highest order that I can recommend to anyone who likes good beer and atmosphere.”

    As you said; a great way to go out.

    “A quick mention to Alan Winfield and Richard Coldwell who were top bloggers but more importantly true pubmen and are sadly no longer with us.”

    Amen.

    “I’ll still be passing comment on fellow pub doyens blogs and occasionally posting the odd beermat on Twitter but, unless I’m tempted out of retirement with a mega buck deal, then I’ll probably just be updating this blog occasionally with blasts from the past. ”

    Totally understand.

    “Keep Right On To The End Of The Road Folks..”

    You read my mind. 🙂

    Cheers!

    PS – Curmudgeon linky no worky 🙂

    Also, IF I ever make it over there I hope to have a pint sometime with you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It would be an absolute pleasure to share a few beers with you Russ 👍 your input has been hugely appreciated on this blog and has given me many a lead into a story (Brentwood or Brentford for example 😀😉) I shall still be around mate and commenting on various nonsense! 😎🍺🍺🍺 Cheers Russ

      Like

  4. I can confirm that the Hunter is a splendid little proper boozer. Doesn’t look much from the outside, but it’s the kind of pub we would have taken for granted a generation ago but is now a vanishing species.

    It’s not actually “on the road between Longton and Blythe Bridge” – that’s duff gen from WhatPub. That’s at least a couple of miles away. It’s actually on the back road between Draycott in the Moors and Hilderstone. Did you notice the closed Izaak Walton a mile to the north next to the railway level crossing?

    Very sorry to hear you’re hanging up your blogging boots. You will be sorely missed, as you reached the parts that other bloggers didn’t 😦

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I love the fact you are an absolute font! Yes it’s right next to Draycott and I will adjust accordingly as standards must be maintained 😉 I didn’t spot that so may make a return journey for Bass 😎 and a view…
      Cheers for your comments Mudgie and I’m glad bog standard boozers got a bit of PR

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m just about old enough to remember the first time I retired my blog. Like all good bloggers, and myself, you’ll soon find yourself on the pro-celebrity charity blogging circuit, banging a few out for old times sake. A little bit slower to the keyboard maybe, but you never lose the old word skills Beermat.

    Enjoy your well-earned retirement, and I look forward to your next blog post…

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Ah Beermat, signing off with a pint of Bass in no nonsense Staffordshire fashion. 601 pubs blogged is a cracking achievement, probably worthy of another medal to be fair.

    Is there any truth in the rumour that Wolves have sought you out to fill the problematic right back slot after Doherty was sold to Spurs? I heard Nuno was enticed by hearing of your legendary clearances at St Andrews but insisted you gave up the Bass and changed your nationality to Portuguese…

    I too hope that you return to blogging at least occasionally but I appreciate how much effort it must take to produce regular postings, not to mention commenting on everybody else’s latest offerings too. Pleased to see the West Midlands came second in your league table, beaten only by mighty Derbyshire, and I’ll even grudgingly wish the Blues the best of luck for the new season. Cheers, Paul

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Cheers Paul WME. Contract talks were at an advanced stage but the stumbling block was the reduction in Bass consumption…I just couldn’t agree to it!!!!
      Really enjoyed your input on here and you are the doyen of those ‘unloved’ pubs so I expect to see some more Brummie classics (or even Derby) on your blog soon.
      That’s the West Midlands for you, always the bridesmaid!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi LAF/BBM. Very sorry to read that you’re “hanging up your boots” – for a while at least. Knowing the amount of work that goes into a blog post, your decision is quite understandable – especially for a prolific poster like you. I thought, at one stage, you were trying to outdo Martin, but that would really take some doing!

    I know what you mean about increased work commitments, as our orders here have really rebounded following the end of lock-down. My fear is, that all the gloom and doom in the press will prompt even more unjustified restrictions from HM Government, not just on pubs, but companies, like mine, that managed to weather the shut down and are just starting to get back on their feet.

    I’ve really enjoyed reading your posts about all those smashing down to earth, Midlands boozers. Regrettably I haven’t always had the time to comment on them all, but one day, when I have more free time, and this wretched pandemic is over, I would love to come and visit some of these unsung heroes of the pub world.

    Before I go, thank-you for the link to my own blog, your kindness is much appreciated, and until we meet again – preferably in a pub, each with a pint of Bass in hand, all the very best!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I can wholeheartedly recommend nearly all 601 of them Paul!!! Trying to rival Martin in blog output is a fools errand but enjoyed visiting so many pubs in such a relative short space of time…Hopefully your company will thrive and survive and the thought of a pint of Bass in some Midlands backwater boozer is absolute bliss.
      Cheers for all your contributions Paul.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Well, that is sad news for those of us who like to see the virtues of the ordinary boozer so well extolled.

    Six-hundred-and one is a lot of pubs in such a short space of time…I’ve not even made it to 300 yet (and I started before you!)

    Good luck with the extra work, but I’m betting that once you get into the swing of it, you’ll be back occasionally to regale us with more extraordinary tales from ordinary pubs!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I wasn’t expecting this news, you seemed to have been going from strength to strength recently.
    I’ve not been reading that long but have thoroughly enjoyed your ventures and especially the tales of those boozers that other blogs won’t touch (and cricket clubs)

    All the best mate and I hope life after beer blogging is kind to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Well, that’s a surprise, finding a blog about normal pubs was refreshing and certainly gave me a few pointers so thanks for that. Glad to have been able to point you in the direction of a few decent Leicestershire houses.

    The prospect of being shown to a table in the S&W is mind boggling and I can’t see it in Ibstock either!

    Cheers! 🔺🔺

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I was hoping to be the fiftieth tribute – but I’ll settle for forty-nine! I’ve really enjoyed your blog BB and I’m sure we can look forward to more when the time is right in the future.

    601 not out is a fine innings and those exceptional ‘Pint of Bass’ photos are a fitting way to declare! I think I’ll miss those the most as, with the help of your blog, I was a committed virtual Bass drinker 😉

    Finally thanks for the GHGTTP2 plug – though it’s very infrequent at the moment.

    Wishing you all the best and look forward to your return to the pub blogging scene in the future.

    Glyn, aka Garden Hermit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Cheers Glyn,
      I’ll round it up to 50 for you! It’s been great fun and the longer I don’t blog the more I think a comeback could be on in some guise…
      Time constraints are tricky at present plus current restrictions i.e table service make the whole experience a bit dull tbh although that isn’t the pub’s fault.
      Cheers
      BB

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Totally agree BB. It’s been fun reading your blog too and you’ll be back I’m sure. Table service is one of the things putting me off at the moment – but looking forward to better times next year!

        Liked by 1 person

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