New readers to this blog might be wondering exactly who Alan Winfield is? He is often mentioned in reverential tones on LifeAfterFootball and with some justification, as he is the doyen of #pubmen.
You can still read his wonderfully gritty blog here whereby he would go on legendary all dayers, often with Mrs Winfield in tow, and take a picture of every pub and give a minimalist no nonsense account of no nonsense boozers.
He actively sought out pubs that many people would swerve as they might be a bit edgy but Alan knew that these kind of boozers are by far the best.
Friendly punters (usually), the occasional lively encounter, acerbic humour, industrial language, funny stories, p*** taking, banter with the staff and the feeling that the pub, rather than the beer, is the most important thing.
That’s not to say beer isn’t well kept or there aren’t some good cask ale pubs out there but, even if it’s keg only, people will go for the atmosphere and not the latest trend.
Paul WME also visits many boozers off the beaten track and his excellent blog can be read here as he has taken on the Winfield mantle of backstreet boozers.
Unfortunately, Alan is no longer with us but if you’ve never read his blog then I suggest you settle down with a pint and trawl through some classic pubs, many of which have long bit the dust.
As a Nottingham lad, I know Alan would have approved of 623 – The Fairham NG11 8LT in Clifton.
One of those suburbs in Nottingham which anyone who has driven into the city on the A453 (everyone from Birmingham) will have seen The Crusader pub on the main A road and then turn right and you are in Clifton.
A few supermarkets, a school and a shed load of chimney pots later you come to The Fairham, which is a classic friendly pub.
Food van in the car park, punters outside having a laugh, paint splattered clothes and Hi Viz jackets rather than suits and pizzas were order of the day but at least half the people on the beer patio said hello and the gaffer/barmaid was top notch and couldn’t do enough to help or make you feel welcome.
It had that nicely chaotic feel that you will only know if you’ve been to a pub like this and John Smith’s Smoothflow is THE drink for 2021 – according to Martin – and it did the trick here in the absence of any cask.
Clifton FC is just over the road and loads of chimney pots in the other direction so I reckon – come next Monday when you can sit inside – this place will be a hive of activity.
Considering it was just later 1pm on a Thursday it was doing brisk trade. Despite a less than complimentary view on Pubs Galore – read here – I thought it was a cracker and the sort of pub everyone should visit to get a taste of proper #publife.
It was so chilled the bloke with his dog wasn’t fussed when I told him I was taking a picture of the front of the pub and I thnk a few were starting to settle in for at least the afternoon as the weather was holding out well.
Alan really was the estate pub king of the East Midlands if not all of Britain and he’d be pleased to know The Fairham on the Farnborough Road is ticking over nicely.