It was my brother-in-law's birthday so we reunited the Brighton crowd for a proper knees-up in our local town of Bexleyheath, Kent.
The Furze Wren
Broadway, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 7DYThis was going to be a mammoth session that started in the early afternoon and would end with last man standing at a night club somehwere local. Now, I am no longer a night club person, so I knew I would be baling out at the last pub. The first pub most of us met in was the Furze. My brother-in-law plus a few other had started a little earlier in the Jolly Millers just a few hundred yards up the road.
I have been in here on many occasions and there is always a good selection of ales on. However, this time, the first beer I tried took a while to settle and tasted very odd. The landlord said it had been on only for that day, so was not either the first pint out or the end of a barrel. He changed it for something else but muttered that there was nothing wrong with it - to my palate it was definitely not tasting how it should. Anyway, I ordered up a replacement Bomabardier (an old faithful) which was bang on and had another whilst chatting, watching the rugby and awaiting the others as they slowly arrived.
The King's Arms
156 Broadway, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 7DWOnce everyone who was due to arrive had got to the Furze, we supped up and moved onto the next pub. For some reason I always get the name of this pub wrong. Bexleyheath used to have both a Kings Arms and a Kings Head. Due to the confusion I now only refer to this pub as the Kings Anatomy, so that way I am constantly right and wrong and know exactly which pub I mean.
Anyway, for a large bunch of lads to arrive all of a sudden, the bar staff were very friendly and served our drinks quickly. The ladies behind the bar joined in with our banter and played along with some of the little pranks we played on each other.
I used to come in here often with MB as we made our way around Bexleyheath's pubs trying to find a proper local. We managed several visits in a row (like with many other pubs) before we settled on The Robin Hood and Little John.
Anyway, the pint in here was served well but the rest of the lads were in a bit of a hurry to move along to the next venue, so I had to rush my pint a bit more than I would have liked to.
Visits: 1st / dozens previous
179 Broadway, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 7ESThe next port of call was The Rose. I had got chatting with a fella (Mark) in the Kings Arms who was a friend of a friend, who said he was a regular in The Rose. This claim was backed up by him getting us a nice discount on the round we ordered, result!
Again, the beers in here are well served and there is a nice choice for an evening's entertainment. Unfortunately, the younger lads were getting restless at the end of their pint so we headed on out to either get to the next pub or to grab a bite to eat.
I was beginning to feel peckish, so I joined half-a-dozen of the others in the local Wimpy. Now, I have not been in here for many years and was surprised at the choice of burgers etc. on offer - all served on a plate with a knife and fork by local girls.
The Wrong Un
234-236 Broadway, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 8ASThe next port of call was The Wrong Un. Those that had gone on before had managed to grab us a large booth in which to sit and chat (and watch a bit more of the rugby if I am honest). They were still eating their lunch when we arrived so more drinks were ordered.
We stayed in here for quite a while as the atmosphere was good, but things began to sour a little as the Jagerbombs took their toll on one or two of the younger lads. We drank up quickly, made our apologies and moved on.
The Golden Lion
258 Broadway, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 8BE
Our final port of call was The Golden Lion. The last time I drank in here was with my brother-in-law (whose birthday it was we were celebrating today) many moons ago. We got rather tipsy on Grolsch that time, but I do not recall seeing it on tap this time. I ordered an ale (but forgot to make a note of which one it was) and settled down at a table for the long haul.
I must admit I felt a little too old to be in here on a Saturday evening as the clientele was most definitely at the younger end of the spectrum. It was great to people watch, chat to the other oldies and generally look out for the welfare of the youngsters.
About an hour or so after we arrived, half the party disapeared to get changed for the evening's night club event. A few more late arrivals (one chap all the way from Bristol!) turned up at this point. As the group was beginning to fracture a little and getting rounds in was proving bothersome due to the noise etc. I did my usual rugby session trick of going onto the bottled lager with everyone else to make things easier. I managed a couple of American Budweisers before being handed a Budvar that rounded off the night for me.
It was at this point that I took stock of my surroundings in readiness for heading home and realised I was actually last man standing! They had all gone off to meet up for the night club. Oh well, I finished my beer, said godbye to a couple of young ladies I was chatting to to help them rid themselves of a clingy and irksome young admirer and wended my way home via the kebab shop.
Beers drunk on this pub crawl :
Furze : Bomabardier (4.3%) x2 - Wells Brewery, Bedford -a rich, full-bodied, strong ale
King's Head : Edinburgh Castle (4.1%) - Caledonia Brewery, Edinburgh -a malty, bitter red ale
Rose : Proper Job (4.5%) - St Austell Brewery, St Austell, Cornwall -a hoppy IPA
Wrong Un : Red Head (4.1%) x2 - Twickenham Brewery, London - a malty, ruby ale
We followed our beers in The Wrong Un with a couple of Jagerbombs
Golden Lion : 2x Budweiser and a Budvar from bottles, plus an ale on arrival that I unfortunately forgot to note down