I know Citra and Paul WME visited this place last week too so I won’t be the first blogger to report on the gem that is 682 – The White Swan B12 0QY
Like many big cities Brum has been guilty of letting some of its classic buildings fall into disrepair and then raise them to the ground… The Eagle And Tun is a prime example – read here.
However, in another of those ‘Phoenix From The Flames‘ style stories The White Swan in Digbeth has been resurrected by two blokes who know a thing or two about running pubs.
Will Young, who runs The Woodman – that classic Victorian Lister & Lea boozer next to (the soon to be resurrected) Curzon Street Station – is on the case. Joining him is Nigel Barker who is head honcho at The Wellington, a Brum alehouse institution.
Like a lot of Digbeth, it is ‘under renovation’ so the walk along Bradford Street, at the back of the coach station, is colourful or edgy, depending on your outlook.
There is no denying that this is a classic building though as Lister and Lea built it for Ansells in 1900 and it is a glorious sight of stained glass throughout, Terracotta on the outside and Minton Tiles indoors with the old adage “they don’t make them like that anymore,” very applicable here.
It’s been shut for two years and the big skip out the front tells you there is still plenty of work to do in the surrounding areas. SevenCapital have spent the last 11 years proposing to build a big development so there is apparently no rush…
However, they must recognise the value of this pub. With so many closing in Digbeth in recent years, this is an absolute winner and there is even talk of them building a beer garden once the much vaunted Connaught Square development begins…so expect some tables and chairs around 2030.
It was just after 3pm when I walked in the place just oozes pubbery.
A dartboard tops it all off and the barmaid was friendly and chatty, the Best Bitter (Hobson’s) was in terrific nick and there was a good atmosphere with around ten other punters inside.
The bar itself is terrific and I hope this place is well used as it is another sign of Digbeth holding onto its past whilst moving with the times.
At the other end of the spectrum is 683 – Halton Turner Tap Room B5 5NL. You’ll find this tucked away in Trent Street opposite a dance club and it is one to rival the Dig Brew Company Tap House nearby.
It’s under the many arches in the backstreets of Digbeth and is a good move for them.
They initially started brewing in Hall Green but there is probably more space an definitely more punters in Digbeth…
…so putting your brewery and taproom here makes commercial sense.
Cask or Keg,
this was perfect Middle England
and kid/dog friendly. It was very much ‘new Digbeth’ and was full, so will capture the new market perfectly.
I had some top class craft murk and a pint of Ghost Town (Halton Turner),
which was excellent and this is a venue that is only going to become more popular.
From Victorian splendour to Tap Rooms under the arches, Digbeth is becoming the ‘go to’ destination in Brum and I know just how trendy my readership is – get yourself there Dave!