SMITHY ARMS SPRING PUB OF THE SEASON 2020
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PUB OF THE SEASON SPRING 2020 SMITHY ARMS, OXSPRING
Our Spring Pub of the Season is the Smithy Arms in Oxspring. Landlord Dave Cross opened his pub in December 2017, having extended his garage to accommodate it. The smartly appointed L-shaped bar is at the crossover point between a micropub and a small pub but has all the cosiness and friendliness usually found in the former. There is bench seating round two walls, a ﬂagged ﬂoor and lots of framed photos and pictures, including a splendid Barnsley Bitter sign, At the back, a little beer garden/patio has great views out to the hills. On the real ale front, the three beers normally come from local breweries though the occasional more exotic guest puts in an appearance. On a recent visit the beers came from Chantry, Abbeydale and Bradﬁeld but a couple of weeks later the line up was Stancill, Acorn and York. Dave is very happy with the way the pub has developed and it’s become popular not just with locals but with
Sunday walkers. Opening times are 6pm ThurSat and 12.30 on Sunday. The presentation will be held on Sunday 26th April at around 5pm – everybody welcome. Details of bus times from Barnsley are in the Social Events Calendar.
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Barry & Sharon offer a warm welcome to all old & new customers
3 Real Ales Bar Snacks QUIZ NIGHT Wednesdays Sky Sports & BT Sport Bowling Green Function Room available to hire (Catering for function available)
01226 282339 Miners Rest, Palm Street, Barnsley. S75 2SU
CROWN INN 22 Hill Street Elsecar S74 8EL Tel: 01226 361488
A warm friendly welcome from Mick Kath & all the team. Three quality hand pulled cask ales at all times.
Quality locally sourced home cooked food served daily.
Cask Marque quality assured beers.
Steak Night Fridays 2 8oz sirloin steaks for £16.00.
Happy Hours: Mon - Fri 4.00 to 7.00pm
Sunday lunch £6.96 - 12.00 to 3.30pm
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PUB NUMBERS ON THE INCREASE BUT... The Office for National Statistics (ONS) recently issued its annual report on changes in the UK pubs sector. Previous reports had shown a largely steady decline in numbers from over 50000 in 2001 to a current total of 39145. (CAMRA’s own ﬁgures, and those of various trade bodies suggest the totals are more like 61000 and 47500 respectively because the ONS count pubs in a different way – but the trends are the same) This year, however, the ONS ﬁgures show a modest increase (315) in the total number of pubs. Small outlets (those employing less than 10 people) increased (by 85) for the ﬁrst time in over 15 years.
large family-oriented, food-led pubs haven’t put in much of an appearance – just the Dearne Valley Farm near Birdwell. We are, though, still suffering pub closures, generally small town or out of centre places like the Angel and Collingwood in Bolton-on-Dearne and the Alma, Wombwell. The threat to the traditional, community local continues to be very real and whilst the growth in town centre bars and foody pubs is good news, they operate in a different way. However, if these changes reﬂect what today’s pub and bar goers mostly want, then perhaps we just have to accept this.
The other growth area is in food-led pubs. Indeed, according to the stats, pub and bar enterprises now employ more people serving food than working behind the bar. This reﬂects a long-term trend towards people spending more of their household income on eating out and less on drinking out. Previous ONS reports suggested that, whilst pubs were getting fewer in number, those left were getting bigger. This also comes out of the latest ﬁgures – jobs in the sector increased by 7000 (1.6%) in 2019 and turnover increased by £847m (3.8%) to reach its highest level since the 2007/8 ﬁnancial crisis. These ﬁgures do seem to tally with what’s been happening in our own area. Last year we saw the opening of several, mostly quite small, bars (in Barnsley, the Tin ‘Oyle, Cucina Sky Lounge, Hill 16, Grapevine, Pourhouse and (not small) Falco Lounge plus Cristellos Lounge and the Vaults Bar in Penistone). We’ve also had a very welcome ﬂurry of micropubs over the last few years. Unlike other places round about, new,
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PUB, CLUB AND BREWERY NEWS Our last issue mentioned that the George & Dragon, Summer Lane, Barnsley had been bought by Andrew Page and his sister Diane and that they hoped to re-open in November. Unforeseen circumstances meant that necessary work on the building couldn’t actually start until late January but, hopefully, it will be open late March/early April. The plan remains to take it back to being a proper traditional pub with a selection of real ales, all from within a 25 mile radius, plus some quality keg beers. Rumour has it that a new bar will be opening soon in a unit next to Coffee Boy on Cheapside, Barnsley. It will be run by Deb and Des, late of Bar Ruelle, and be a real ale-oriented joint venture with Marstons. A planning application has been submitted to convert the Rose & Crown in Mount Vernon Road, Worsborough Common into eight apartments. CAMRA has objected on the grounds that a valuable community asset would be lost in an area not well provided with pubs – the Victoria and the Silkstone are the only alternatives and they’re not exactly close by. In our view, the application offends the Council’s new Local Plan policy I2 which says that community facilities will be protected where possible. We haven’t objected to two other planning applications. Developers want to turn the closed Collingwood Hotel, Bolton-on-Dearne into a sixty-seater restaurant with apartments above – we aren’t aware of any local interest in trying to keep this as a pub. The second application is to convert the long-closed Goldthorpe Hotel, Goldthorpe into ﬂats.
space occupying the ground ﬂoor with toilets downstairs. Prices have been reduced on the freeholds of two local pubs, both currently shut – the White Lion, Kexborough is yours for £250k (down from £275k) and the Hoyle Mill Inn, Barnsley is now just £200k (from £225k). Folk just wanting a drink at the Waggon & Horses, Oxspring often used to be directed to the upstairs Rafters bar as the pub itself was reserved for diners at certain times. However, Rafters has now become a function room so drinkers are welcome downstairs, even when they’re busy with food. Planning applications have been approved for two new micro-pubs – at 66 Agnes Road, Barnsley and at 92 High Street, Goldthorpe. With the former, owner Gary Holmes has now started work on the project so the pub should be open soon. The free-of-tie lease of the Anglers Rest, Wombwell is on the market (for £5000) with Sidney Phillips. As reported last time, Geeves Brewery has given notice on its lease which expires in August – very sad. Elsewhere in Wombwell, Churchill’s Hotel/Squires Bar has installed a real ale from Naylors brewery of Cross Hills, near Keighley. On the pubs to let front, Punch Taverns still have the Rusty Dudley, Goldthorpe and New Inn, Gawber up for grabs while Star Pubs & Bars need new guv’nors for Chambers, Barnsley, The Ship, Worsborough, the Cross Keys, Darﬁeld and the Junction, Wombwell.
On the positive side, an application has gone in to change the use of the former Royal Bank of Scotland building in Church Street, Barnsley into a pub; the plans show a single bar
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BEER FESTIVAL ON THE MOVE (SLIGHTLY) Our annual Beer Festival, the ninth, is back for 2020 and we have an exciting new venue – the Elsecar Heritage Centre, so just over the tracks from the previous venue and a bit closer to the buses. As usual, the Festival takes place over the May Bank Holiday but, as you may know, this is a week later this year so we’ll be open to you thirsty lot from 4pm on Thursday 7th May, and from Noon on Friday 8th and Saturday 9th.
local and world draught beers from the Maison du Biere (@MDBelsecar) bar plus a favourite from last year, the gin bar. Our Festival is organised and run by unpaid volunteers so if you can help in any way, please get in touch – my email and twitter details are below. We hope you can all make it and have a great time.
We’ll have live entertainment from our musical partner @oneoverthe8 all day Friday and Saturday. The Festival will feature all the usual favourites, with 80 plus cask beers, 20 plus real ciders,
Andrew Festival Organiser firstname.lastname@example.org @beerbarnsley
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RANDOM RAMBLES No.6 - Darton to Oxspring How this works - I draw from a hat the names of two places in the area and visit pubs there and at two places in between. This time my chauffeuse (thanks Jane) and I started in Darton on a murky January Sunday lunchtime.
Darton is now blessed with two excellent micropubs but, as the Old Co-op Ale House didn’t open until 2pm, our decision on where to go was made easy. The Darton Tap has been around a couple of years now under the ownership of Ian Simpson and David Staniland. The interior was professionally designed and this really shows – the mixed wall surfaces, varied lighting and part wood, part tiled ﬂoors are all immensely stylish. On the beer front, four real ales were on offer – the house beer Watta (a rebadged ale from Molson Coors) plus Nailmaker Paleton and Chocolate Safari Stout and Rat White Rat. My Paleton was a typically excellent example of Nailmaker’s current output. As with many local pubs now, a scheme operates where you get a free pint for every nine you buy. On Thursdays you can enjoy Quizzingo, though I didn’t get
round to asking exactly what this entails. With several other top notch real ale outlets up the road in Mapplewell, this locality has become a paradise for beer lovers.
A short drive next to Low Barugh and the Millers Inn, the only Marstons-owned pub in our area. It’s very pleasantly situated next to the River Dearne and the big new housing estate opposite will no doubt be great for trade. On entering, you’re faced with a large island bar with a public/games area to the right and a good-sized lounge to the left. The former is notable for an attractive mural carved out of bricks depicting a hunter and two dogs – I think I was once told this relates to a previous name by which the pub was known. The comfortable lounge is the main place for eating, where your options are many, various and keenly priced e.g. Hunter’s Chicken for £6.65, Mixed Grill at £8.55. Offers include Curry and a drink on Wednesday (£6.15) and Grill and a drink on Thursday for just £6.85. This is one of those pubs where there’s always something happening – live music on Saturdays, Quiz Wednesday, Karaoke Friday and other events like clairvoyance evenings
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and speed dating (!). On the handpumps the choice was between Pedigree and Wainwright – I persevere with the former but don’t reckon it’s the beer it once was (no fault of the pub).
A weave across country followed to the lovely and historic village of Silkstone and its cosy locals pub, the Red Lion. The lounge area on the right was dominated by two screens showing Manchester City pummelling Fulham. The décor features characterful rough-cast walls, a beamed ceiling, part stone-ﬂagged ﬂoor and curved, comfy bench seats at each end. To the left is a plainer room with a pool table centre stage and bench seating round two sides. There’s a raised patio area outside for when the sun shines. Real ales were Bradﬁeld Farmers Blonde and a ﬁne drop of Tim Taylors Boltmaker, one of the best ‘ordinary’ bitters around these days. A plaque near the door commemorates the fact that in 1838 the inquest into the Huskar Pit disaster was held here – this horrendous incident, in which 26 young children died, led directly to changes in the child labour laws. The ﬁnal leg of our journey took us round the edge of Penistone to Oxspring. Having started at a micropub, I’d originally intended to ﬁnish at one as well but the intended destination, the Smithy Arms, went and won Pub of the Season so the Travellers Inn became the ﬁnal stop. This white-painted pub is situated well
out of the village at a crossroads on the A629, hence its local name of ‘the Fours’. The interior is basically open plan but the old part is split by a large stone two-sided ﬁreplace (occupied by a stove) with a wide opening to the big-windowed extension which serves as a restaurant. Food is important here and it was very busy serving tempting-looking Sunday lunches. The homecooked offerings range from bar snacks to main meals, mostly in the £5 to £15 range and they pride themselves on sourcing food locally where possible. A Branch colleague assures me that the grub here is excellent so one for a future Chomps; whether I’ll be up to tackling the Barnsley Belly Buster Burger (£13.95) is another matter. Three real ales were being served, Boltmaker again, Abbeydale Moonshine and what is pretty much my favourite beer, Oakham Citra, in superb nick. The pub has lots going on including a quiz, a monthly singalong and special events such as Meal and Magician and a Whisky Tasting Evening. There’s a large beer garden and children’s play area and dogs and walkers are always welcome. Where will the hat take us next time?
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BARNSLEY CHOMPS The Milton Arms in Elsecar has long been a favourite of both local ale enthusiasts and pub diners. When long-serving licensees Phil and Vicky retired in October 2018, there were fears for the pub’s future but, fortunately, it was bought by True North Brew Co. As well as brewing ﬁne ales, these good folk own twelve pubs, mostly in and around Sheffield but also the Crown & Anchor, Barugh Green. Before reopening last spring, the Milton underwent a major refurbishment which included creation of three rooms upstairs and, thankfully, retention of the snug to the left of the entrance. For our visit, though, Jane and I sat
in the main eating area, which is divided from the bar by an attractive low screen. One change here since my last visit was a new colour scheme – the previous incarnation had been dominated by a rather overpowering purple/brown which has given way to a much warmer ochre. Beer ﬁrst and the choice of real ales was Acorn Barnsley Bitter, Abbeydale Moonshine and True North’s own Polaris. I went for the last, a superb hoppy best bitter. Jane can’t drink alcohol these days so she was pleased to see a wide range of non/low-alcohol beers forming part of the company’s Dry/Tryanuary offer – an Inﬁnite Session IPA hit the spot.
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For starters, I couldn’t resist the Chicken Liver Rum & Raisin Pate (£6.50). I love rum & raisin chocolate (anyone else have fond memories of Cadbury’s Bournville Old Jamaica?) but I’d never considered it as a savoury option so this was an intriguing prospect. As it happened, the combination worked very well with the rum/raisin lending a delicate but not intrusive sweetness to the dish which also featured toasted ciabatta and chutney.
Something I’d strongly recommend if you intend visiting True North pubs is to sign up to their Rewards scheme which gives you points on every purchase, leading to money-off vouchers in due course. Cardholders also receive special offers – so, for instance, we beneﬁted from an amazing 50% discount on this reasonably priced meal. It is also worth checking other meal offers available. (They appear to have a good choice for Vegans).
Jane began with Wild Mushroom Mac’n’Cheese Croquettes (£6.30). This was attractively presented, as were all the dishes, and the crispy outside of the two large croquettes yielded to a subtly ﬂavoured but delicious soft interior. Accompaniments were a truffled cheese dip and a rocket side salad with parmesan shavings. On to the mains, which for me was a SlowBraised Shin of Beef Bourguignon (£14.50). This arrived not in the usual stew style but as a pillar of shredded beef perched on an island of mash surrounded by a lake of rich wine gravy with a reef of glazed carrots and baby onions to one side. Once this was all mashed together, the ensemble came together beautifully, the beef being especially succulent and clearly beneﬁting from its slow cooking. The sheer quantity of the meat did rather overwhelm the available sauce but it would be churlish to grumble about that.
The pubs also have various food offers during the week such as Pie Night on Wednesdays when you get a pie and a selected drink for £7 or £10. Weekday lunchtimes you can have two main meals for £12.
Jane plumped for Steak Ale & Mushroom Pie (£10) which came with chips, mushy peas and gravy and constituted a very generous plateful. The pie was well ﬁlled with very tender and extremely tasty lean steak and button mushrooms. Jane is very fussy about her pie crusts but this suet based pastry, apparently hand shaped, was bang on. The home-made chunky chips were cooked to perfection. So, overall, we were mightily impressed – indeed, this is probably the best pub meal we’ve had since we started this series. Service was quick and friendly, albeit the pub was quiet on a winter’s Monday lunchtime.
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20 miles Brewery to Bar CAMRA LocAle - the accreditation scheme to promote pubs and clubs that sell locally-brewed real ales, reducing the number of ‘beer miles’ and supporting your local breweries. Listed below are pubs and clubs in our area which regularly serve at least one real ale brewed 20 miles or less from their bars.
Anglers Rest - Wombwell Ardsley Oaks Club - Ardsley Blacksmiths Arms Millhouse Green Bridge Inn - Thurgoland Cawthorne Club - Cawthorne Cherry Tree - High Hoyland Cock Inn - Birdwell Commercial - Barnsley Comrades Club - Cawthorne Conservative Club - Barnsley Crown & Anchor - Barugh Green Crown Inn - Elsecar Darton Tap - Darton Dog and Partridge - Hazlehead Fitzwilliam Arms - Elsecar Furnace Inn - Hoyland Fox House Inn - Carlecotes Horseshoe - Wombwell Huntsman - Thurlstone Jolly Tap Real Ale Café - Barnsley Joseph Bramah - Barnsley Keys - Hoyland Common Knave & Kestrel - Hoyland Maison Du Biere - Elsecar Market - Elsecar Milton Arms - Elsecar Old Coop Alehouse - Darton Old Bakery - Mapplewell Old Moor Tavern - Broomhill Old Number 7 - Barnsley
Penistone Church FC - Penistone Penistone Cinema - Penistone Redfearn’s Bar - Barnsley FC Royal - Barugh Green Rose & Crown - Hoylandswaine Saville Square - Hoyland Common Shaw Lane Club - Barnsley Silkstone Golf Club - Silkstone Silkstone Inn - Barnsley Smithy Arms - Oxspring Spencer Arms - Cawthorne Sports/Social Club Hoylandswaine Talbot Inn - Mapplewell Tap & Brew - Hoyland Common Temple of Muses - Barnsley Tipsy Cow - Barnsley Travellers Inn - Dodworth Waggon & Horses - Langsett Wentworth Arms - Mapplewell White Heart - Penistone Wortley Arms - Wortley Wortley Hall - Wortley Wortley Men’s Club - Wortley Updated February 2020
How can you help? Look out for pubs displaying the LocAle sign. Order a LocAle beer – this may be highlighted with the LocAle crown on top. Enjoy the quality local real ale. Ask your local if they can stock a LocAle or contact Barnsley CAMRA if you’d like us to speak to a licensee about LocAle on your behalf.
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great reasons to join CAMRA 2 BEER EXPERT 1 CAMPAIGN 3 BEER FESTIVALS 4 GET INVOLVED PUBS 5 YOUR LOCAL 6 BEST IN BRITAIN DISCOVER VALUE FOR 8 7 MONEY 9 HEALTH BENEFITS 10 HAVE YOUR SAY Become a
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What’s yours? Discover your reason and join the campaign today:
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UNDERPERFORMING PENISTONE Penistone is a sizeable, lively, attractive and relatively affluent town – so why is the quality beer scene there so disappointing? In the last ten years or so, three pubs (the Rose & Crown and the Wentworth Arms plus the Britannia at Springvale) have closed, leaving just four in the town itself. Of these, the Old Crown and the Bridge don’t sell real ale. The White Heart did have cask beer and even its own brewery, though its products weren’t always available and, when they were, the quality was variable. However, it suddenly shut up shop in November and shows no early sign of reopening. The premises are on the market with Fisher German; offers over £500k are invited. Interestingly, there is no mention of the brewery in the particulars. As our photo shows, it recently suffered a small ﬁre.
This leaves just the Spread Eagle which, happily, does sell real ale. On a recent visit, only one handpump was operational, dispensing an excellent pint of Abbeydale Moonshine for just £2.40. Last summer, two beers from the appropriately names Eagles Crag brewery of Todmorden had taken up residence. The pub was refurbished in 2011 and features a small,
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cosy public bar (separate publics have become relatively rare in our area) plus a large lounge with a games area to one side. It’s a pleasant, friendly place but it would be good to have more pubs to choose from. A couple of bars have appeared in the last year – Cristellos Lounge and the Vaults Bar, both on St Mary’s Street. Neither, though, offers anything of interest to the beer enthusiast. Planning permission has recently been granted to convert the former NatWest bank on Market Street to a ‘drinking establishment’ though what sort of operation it will be remains to be seen. It will include a new roof terrace and lounge extension. There are some other real ale outlets in the town. The centrally-situated Royal British Legion club has handpumps but to gain entry you must either be a member or be signed in by a member who knows you. A little out of the centre, in Church View Road, the Penistone Church FC club house welcomes anyone wishing to sample their three changing real ales and up to three real ciders; this is a really nice club and highly recommended. The club house for the Cricket Club is in a rather isolated location at the side of the river and is only open weekends during the cricket season. Cardcarrying CAMRA members are welcomed and one real ale from a local brewery like Bradﬁeld is served. The Paramount cinema offers an Acorn beer on handpump but, of course, you need a ticket for a ﬁlm or a show in order to access the bar.
the large bar. There’s an attached conservatory restaurant area with great views out to the moors plus a separate barn which is the setting for the renowned Sunday carvery (sittings at noon and 15.30 – booking essential). The extensive bar menu is supplemented with six or seven daily specials and most main dishes are in the £11 to £13 range. Gourmet burgers are a speciality. Tetley Bitter and Black Sheep Bitter are the permanent real ales accompanied by two changing guests – on my last visit Box Soul Train and Exmoor Christmas Gold. The hotel section has twelve bedrooms and this is a very popular wedding venue. So what does the future hold for Penistone and beer lovers? Frustration with the current state of play led to the setting up, in late 2017, of the Penistone Community Alehouse project. This generated a great deal of enthusiasm locally and by last summer plans were well advanced to secure the old post office building off Market Street. Sadly, this all had to be put on hold at a late stage and things have gone quiet for now. If and when the project comes to fruition it would be a unique venture in that most communityowned pubs take on existing establishments rather than developing something from scratch. Here’s very much hoping they get back on track and that we see other improvements in the local ale scene.
STOP PRESS the Old Crown has installed real ale in the shape of Sharps Doom Bar.
On the edge of the built-up area, in Cubley, is the excellent Cubley Hall. This elegant former gentleman’s residence was used as a children’s home for many years before closing in 1980 then reopening as a pub/hotel in 1982. It retains many original features including a tiled lobby, a beautiful panelled entrance hall with mosaic tiled ﬂoor and a ﬁne plaster ceiling in part of
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HOP ON THE BUS This is the last of my Hops on a Bus articles - I have something else in the pipeline involving visits to pubs and beer drinking.
times though there are seats at the bar. The Rafters Bar was once the drinking area for the pub but now is only opened for booked functions.
We are heading out on a mid-Saturday afternoon using the 21 and 21a Barnsley to Millhouse Green Stagecoach service. You’ll need the new Dayrider Silver at £4.90.
The bar offers two real ales, today’s choice being Timothy Taylor Landlord and Bradﬁeld Belgium Blue. The pub has a quiz night on Fridays.
We catch the 2.50pm 21 bus from Barnsley Interchange and our ﬁrst stop is the Station Inn at Silkstone Common, a 23 minute ride. This is a well established and popular pub right next to Silkstone Common railway station. It has three real ales on offer and on my visit in January I had the choice of Bradﬁeld Blonde, Timothy Taylor Landlord and Bradﬁeld Belgium Blue. I had a very pleasant pint of the Blonde. The pub offers good home cooked food and there is plenty of room for diners and drinkers. Live sport can be watched here with a TV screen near the bar or, for higher proﬁle events, a large screen is put into play. Quiz nights are Wed and Sun from 9.30pm. You’ll have a while here until the next bus, the 4.18pm 21 for a four mins ride or it can be a pleasant walk using the Trans Pennine public footpath to the next pub, the Travellers Inn at Oxspring. The Travellers is a large pub offering good home cooked food from an extensive menu, even having a pet menu. The pub is warm and welcoming with a restaurant area and a large drinking area.
Once you’ve ﬁnished in the Waggon and Horses walk back onto Bower Hill, and on the right you’ll see a pub sign for the Smithy Arms, this is the garage extension to the house and is a micropub where everyone is welcome. The pub opens at 6pm on Saturdays. Here in this popular village local you can play darts but a couple of tables need to be re arranged. No TV, no music, a great local for a chat. It’s also Barnsley CAMRA’s Spring Pub of the Year 2020, so well done. I called in having been a judge for the aforementioned competition and the beers on offer were Exmoor Antler, Dr Mortons Duck Baffler and Acorn Barnsley Bitter. I was tempted to stay for the Dr Mortons but had the Exmoor which was fabulous. You now need to be on the 21a bus into Penistone. Catch the 6.44pm. Once in Penistone, get off at the Church in town and walk for six mins to Penistone Church Football Club - head south onto Market Street, then High Street, then east on Victoria Street and onto Church View Lane where the Club is directly in front of you.
Three real ales are available, and today it was Abbeydale Moonshine, Oakham Citra and Taylor Boltmaker. Outside is a large beer garden that offers a great playing area for children.
The Club is very popular on match days and at weekends. The open plan interior has plenty of seating along with darts, pool and four TV screens, even one behind the bar so you won’t miss a goal while ordering drinks if a live match is on TV. Three real ales are available, Sharps Doom Bar, Ossett White Rat and a house beer “Up the Church”. The club is open to everyone and everyone is made welcome.
Our bus from here leaves at 5.42pm, the 21a and it’s just two mins until you get off at the Waggon and Horses.
It’s now about 7.45pm with my watch, time to head home. Walk back to Penistone Market Place and catch the 8.14pm 21a bus back to Barnsley.
This is a busy food pub where bookings are essential. The bar caters for the drinker after peak
Hope you have a good time, I did.
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‘NON ALE’ for DRYANUARY As a small consolation prize for being unable to join Podge’s Belgian Breweries and Battleﬁelds Tour in 2019 (details in BAR Winter 2019), Paul brought me two bottles of low/no alcohol Belgian beer in his two full crates.
SPORT ZOT (Brouwerij De Halve Maan, Bruges, Belgium) is 0.4% alcohol from a well-established brewery of deservedly high reputation. The beer is lively with a head that lasts and an attractive golden colour. It is well balanced and full bodied with the distinctive hoppy aroma and Belgian ﬂavour that I enjoy, reminding me of many happy trips to Belgium and the Netherlands. This delicious low/no ale is now at the top of my list. (Apparently folk from Bruges are affectionately known as ‘Brugges Zot’ – Zot means jester or madman). After quaffing the two bottles Paul brought me, I was keen to obtain some more but couldn’t ﬁnd an outlet in England. I contacted De Halve Maan Brewery and staff were extremely helpful, suggesting either Beer Hawk or Drydrinker internet suppliers. I signed up to both for updates and put in an order to the latter, taking advantage of an introductory discount. While browsing, two other beers tempted me, one for where brewed and the other for its name. HITACHINO NEST (Kiuchi Brewery, Japan) is 0.3% alcohol. I was intrigued about Japanese beer and pleasantly surprised by its quality. The self-described ‘Non Ale’ has a rich gold colour and is lively in pouring but the head does not
last, although it continues to taste lively. It has a slightly hoppy aroma and a well-balanced ‘beer’ ﬂavour. The brewery has made sake since 1823 but its beermaking only began in 1996; the beers’ names derive from a combination of the location of the brewery in the Province of Hitachino with its fertile soil and in the village of Konosu (‘su’ meaning nest). The neck label shows an outline of the brewery and pronounces ‘Non Ale’ and ‘NO’. The main label shows the brewery’s attractive owl logo and their website reveals how this evolved. VIRGIN MARY (Ilkley Brewery, Yorkshire) is 0.5% alcohol – ‘Did you know that a ripe banana can have 0.5% Alc in it?’ – I certainly didn’t. Another golden beer which is lively while being poured and the head remains for a short period. It doesn’t have much aroma but tastes very pleasant, hoppy and bitter as I prefer my non ales! The label has a simple, stylish design but the back is rather wordy: ’Powered by Beer’, ‘Powered by Taste’, ‘Powered by Virtue’, ‘Mary Jane reimagined’, ‘maximum ﬂavour, minimum guilt’, ‘Please Drink for Pleasure – Not for Effect’. I bought extra bottles on the strength of Ilkley Brewery’s reputation as well as the name. I have expanded my heritage role at St Mary the Virgin Church in Barnsley’s town centre from being coordinator of the Barnsley Pals Colours Project. With the support of Reverend Canon Stephen Race and some Founder Friends, we are setting up Friends of Barnsley St Mary to research, promote and care for the wealth of heritage in this important church. We felt that these nonalcoholic bottled beers could be ‘useful’ for one of events. (Membership is open to anyone interested and costs £10 for a year – application forms can be collected from St Mary’s Church or please email me). Jane Ainsworth email@example.com
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COMPETITION WIN A TENNERS WORTH OF REAL ALE Congratulations go to Mark Galvin from Old Town Barnsley who correctly identiﬁed the pub in the Summer edition as the Wilthorpe Hotel. Mark will be enjoyed a tenner’s worth of beer at the Old No 7 in Barnsley. There wasn’t a competition in Autumn/ Winter edition but it’s back. So it’s your turn to try and win some beer. Simply name the pub in the picture. This building is still standing but has had a change of use. To enter, simply send: (1) Your answer, (2) name and address, (3) name of a pub/club where you will drink your tenner’s worth of beer, and (4) state that you are 18 or over (people do still miss this out and we simply cannot accept their entry). Please submit your answers by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or text to 07736288072. Closing date is the same as “Copy Deadline”. Correct entries will be entered into a draw to take place within a week of the closing date. Good Luck… Text messages and emails will be deleted after the draw. We will not pass on any details or keep your information.
PUB AND CLUB WINNERS PUB AND CLUB OF THE YEAR WINNERS: THE HUNTSMAN, Thurlstone WORTLEY MEN’S CLUB, Wortley Pub of the Year 2019
Club of the Year 2019
PUB OF THE SEASON WINNERS: OLD NUMBER 7, Barnsley MINERS REST, Old Town Summer 2019
HOYLANDSWAINE SPORTS AND SOCIAL CLUB
SMITHY’S ARMS, Oxspring Spring 2020
Thanks go to: The Dog and Partridge, Hazlehead; The Cock Inn, Birdwell; The Jolly Tap Real Ale Café and The Old No 7, Barnsley; Maison Du Biere and The Crown Inn, Elsecar; The Millers Inn, Low Barugh; The Wentworth Arms and The Talbot Inn, Mapplewell and The Cherry Tree at High Hoyland for hosting recent CAMRA events.
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THE WAY WE DRINK NOW A recently-published report, the On Trade Beer Report 2019/20, contains some interesting information about the UK’s drinking trends. Nowadays, we do more beer drinking at home (with 4.3m pints per year sold through the off trade) than in pubs (3.6m pints). Those pub beer sales comprise 70% lager, 7% stout and 23% ale – 51% of the last is real ale i.e. this accounts for only one in ten pub pints. The report identiﬁes ale drinkers as less predictable in their choices, with 57% of them classiﬁed as ‘experimenters’, who prefer to try different beers. 64% of lager drinkers stick ﬁrmly with their favourite brand. Both ale and lager drinkers give ‘good service’ as their top reason for choosing a pub but ale drinkers next looked for ‘range of beer’ and ‘quality of drinks’ while lager drinkers prioritised ‘atmosphere’ and ‘prices’.
It may be that ale drinkers regard quality as important because real ale isn’t, sadly, always kept in the best nick – 70% of them claiming to have been served off or stale beer. However, the reality is that all we real ale drinkers come across bad pints now and then so the 70% ﬁgure actually seems very low – where are these 30% of drinkers who never get a duff example hanging out? More worrying, perhaps, is the ﬁnding that one in every ten purchases of ale ‘leaves the customer disappointed’. Finally, the trend towards so-called healthy drinking is evident, with sales of no and low alcohol beer having risen by 30% in the last year. As my other half reports elsewhere, this has gone hand in hand with vastly improved choice and quality of these options.
Nights at the Dove TUESDAY NIGHT Pub Quiz WEDNESDAY NIGHT Free darts, free pool and Yorkshire tapas THURSDAY NIGHT Music Quiz
51 01226 2883 Free function room Follow us on n
for f more info
SATURDAY NIGHTS Live entertainment including open the box
Sunday Carvery now taking bookings for Mother’s Day
Dove Inn, 102 Doncaster Road, Barnsley, S70 1TP
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HANNAH AT THE HOB Spring Tonic I have been talking to friends about the cost of pub drinks and, more interestingly, our perceptions of value for money. During the current recession we still want to feel good so we buy cheap for some products and top price for others. This partly explains the popularity of cocktails, premium gins and fancy tonics. If I go to the pub, £4 feels expensive for real ale but when I go out with the girls, I readily pay £6 for a large glass of red wine.( I mean plonk because I am a greedy rather than discerning drinker.) But I did baulk at paying £6 for two standard tonics, not the FeverTree type. If I want a treat or to feel a bit special, then I love a cocktail. A homemade cocktail does not feel the same. The psychology is interesting when comparing drinking at home and going out. I think that drinkers expect beer to be one of the cheaper pub drinks but will pay a lot more for Italian lager etc. It is possible to make homemade tonic water but is it worth the effort? Lakeland (originally Lakeland Plastic!!!) sell a syrup to use with a Soda Stream machine. These are back in fashion, apparently. To make tonic from scratch see https://pinchandswirl. com/homemade-tonic-water What is tonic water? Tonic water (or Indian tonic water) is a carbonated soft drink in which quinine is dissolved. It was originally used as a prophylactic against malaria. Modern tonic has signiﬁcantly less quinine and is much sweeter. It is now drunk for its distinctive bitter ﬂavour. Quinine powder is made from the bark of the cinchona tree and was so bitter that British officials stationed in early C19th India mixed the powder with soda and sugar to create tonic water. The ﬁrst commercial tonic water was produced in 1858. The mixed drink of gin and tonic also originated in British colonial India, when the British mixed their medicinal quinine tonic with gin.
The use of bitters or herbal extracts made into medicinal drinks goes back to ancient times. Sydenham’s Treatise on Gout was published in 1683. He argued that gout was the result of high living and the free use of wine and other spirituous liquors. He recommended bitters—distilled alcohol infused with watercress, horseradish, wormwood & angelica root. These remedies were popular because they gave sufferers an excuse to take nips of strong spirit. The origin of cocktails? You may remember Clarissa Dickson Wright, half of the Two Fat Ladies cookery team. In an earlier life, as a top lawyer, she became an alcoholic. Her poor health and inability to shed weight was caused by the copious amount of tonic she drank with gin. The quinine in it damaged her adrenal gland. Do not let her problems put you off trying this recipe from two other television cooks on motor bikes.
Hairy Bikers. Gin & Tonic Sorbet. ( SERVES 6)
• • • • • •
300g caster sugar ﬁnely grated zest of 2 well-scrubbed limes 150ml freshly squeezed lime juice (about 6 fresh limes in total) 150ml freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 4 fresh lemons) 100ml tonic water 6 good slugs of gin & lime slices, to decorate
Put the sugar and lime zest in a pan with 200ml water and slowly bring to the boil, stirring occasionally. Boil for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat. Strain the juices through a ﬁne sieve into a bowl. Strain the sugar syrup into the same bowl, add the tonic and stir well. Leave to cool. Pour the mixture into an ice-cream maker and churn until it has a soft, sorbet-like consistency. This may take over an hour. Tip into a freezer container and freeze for at least 6 hours before serving. Scoop the sorbet into glass tumblers & pour over a good slug of gin. Decorate with slices of lime. If you do not have a machine, then pour the mixture into the freezer container and keep taking it out to whisk in order to break up the ice crystals.
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Great Newsome Brewery Tel: 01964 612201 email@example.com - www.greatnewsomebrewery.co.uk Great Newsome Farm, South Frodingham, Winestead, Hull, East Yorkshire, HU12 0NR, UK
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AWAY ALES A home win against Fulham was a good start to the season but it’s been tough going until our new manager took over. How will we fare on the road as the season progresses?
QUEENS PARK RANGERS Sitting in mid-table, QPR could go either way perhaps this season. They beat Leeds at home in January so this could be a tough away game for the Reds. The 2020 Good Beer Guide suggests The Defector’s Weld at 170 Uxbridge Rd (W12 8AA) is quite close to QPR’s Loftus Road ground. For our away fans, the guide recommends that CAMRA card carrying fans who aren’t wearing team colours are welcomed. Two Young’s beers and 3 guests on offer. Real ale outlets showing on “What Pub” are a bit sparse in this area but the Queen Adeleide at 412 Uxbridge Rd (W12 0NR) is 0.4 mile from the ground. The beers are Greene King IPA and 2 changing guests.
STOKE CITY Stoke started the season as badly as the Reds, so this could be a 6 pointer as the end of season approaches. The White Star at 63 Kingsway (ST4 1JB), off Church St and close to the King’s Hall, is a multiaward winning Titanic Brewery house. There are 10 handpumps with 5 Titanic beers and 5 changing guests.
LUTON TOWN Another struggling team as we go to print. Another 6 pointer? The Black Horse at 23 Hastings St (LU1 5BE) is a back street pub near Luton town centre. Once a 17th Century coaching inn, the pub has 3 regularly changing guest beers.
LEEDS Always a tough game and, with Leeds riding high in the table, can the Reds pull off a surprise win? The Grove Inn on Back Row (LS11 5PL) is a classic West Riding pub. Originally at the end of a row of houses, it is now hidden away among modern offices. Eight real ales from local and regional breweries are available. Keep an eye out for Barnsley’s own Acorn beers.
NOTTINGHAM FOREST As we go to print, Forest are mid-table but they’re a big club with an illustrious history and may make a late push for promotion. The Vat and Fiddle on Queen’s Bridge Road (NG2 1NB), 2 minutes from Nottingham railway station, is the tap for the adjoining Castle Rock brewery. Thirteen handpumps feature 7 of the Castle Rock range and guest beers and real ciders.
BRENTFORD Brentford are a small club with a small old ground. As I write this they are in a Championship play off place. They are obviously doing something right and it won’t be an easy game I suspect. The Griffin ground boasts a pub on each corner I understand – what a good idea. The Black Dog Beer House at 17 Albany Rd (TW8 0NF) re-opened in 2018 and was a former Royal Brewery (Brentford) pub dated back to around 1861. Seven real ales and 5 ciders on offer here to end the away season. Hope all goes well for the end of the season, home and away. Come on you Reds.
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BRANCH OFFICERS The Pubs Officer and Clubs Officer positions are currently vacant. If you’re interested, please contact the Branch Chairman.
Branch Chairman: Andrew Taylor firstname.lastname@example.org Branch Secretary: Nigel Croft email@example.com
RECYCLE THE BAR Pass it to a friend, take it to work or leave it for others to read when you have ﬁnished!
Membership Secretary: David Walker firstname.lastname@example.org Young Persons Officer: Alex Forrest email@example.com Acorn Brewery Liaison Officer: Phil Gregg firstname.lastname@example.org Geeves Brewery Liaison Officer: Nigel Croft email@example.com Social Media, Publicity Coordinator and Website Editor: Nigel Croft firstname.lastname@example.org Branch Magazine Distribution Officer: Colin Mallin email@example.com Treasurer/Social Secretary: Margaret Croft firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone h 01226 714492 - m 07734 155792
Beer Festival Co-ordinator: Andrew Taylor email@example.com
The deadline for news & articles for consideration & competitions is:
Pub Protection Officer, Branch Magazine Editor: Paul Ainsworth firstname.lastname@example.org Cider Officer: Andrew Hamilton email@example.com
These should be sent to the Editor at the address on the left.
4000 Copies Seasonally
To advertise, contact Matelot Marketing Ltd Neil Richards MBE - 01536 358670 or 07710 281381 N.Richards@btinternet.com Follow us on Twitter! @barnsleycamra & @beerbarnsley Like us on Facebook! www.facebook.com/barnsleycamra.org.uk
CAMRA Ltd 230 Hatﬁeld Rd St Albans AL1 4LW 01727 867201 firstname.lastname@example.org uk www.camra.org.uk k
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SOCIAL EVENTS CALENDER APRIL Tue 7th Beer Tasting Social at the Jolly Boys Tap in the Victorian Arcade, Barnsley to taste, of course, Jolly Boys brews. Meet from 7.30pm – all welcome. Thur 9th Beer Festival Meeting at the Joseph Bramah, Barnsley from 7.30pm. Anyone interested in volunteering, please come along.
Tue 30th Branch Meeting and Social at the Cherry Tree, High Hoyland. No public transport here so we’ll arrange it – contact Margaret (see Branch Officers page) to book a seat. Meeting starts at 8pm. More socials may well be arranged so check the Barnsley CAMRA website. Margaret is also trying to organise a brewery visit shortly so, again, check online or contact Margaret direct.
Sun 26th Pub of the Season presentation to the Smithy Arms, Oxspring. Catch 21a bus from Barnsley at 3.10pm for presentation around 5pm then return bus from Oxspring at 6.25pm (though there is a later bus at 8.25pm as well). Tue 28th Branch Meeting and Social at Old No.7, Barnsley starting at 8pm.
MAY Thur 7th – Sat 9th Barnsley Elsecar Beer Festival See article elsewhere for further information. Tue 12th Beer Tasting Social at Anglers Rest, Wombwell to check out the Geeves beers. Bus 226 from Barnsley at 7.15pm. Sun 17th Meet and Greet Afternoon at the Miners Rest, Barnsley Come along for a chat, drink and casual afternoon relaxing in good company at this recent Pub of the Season – from around 1.30/2pm. Tue 26th Branch meeting and Social at Saville Square, Hoyland Common 66 bus from Barnsley at 7.35pm – meeting starts at 8pm.
JUNE Tue 9th Beer Tasting Social at the Wentworth Arms, Mapplewell to sample Nailmaker beers. Bus 1 from Barnsley at 7.30pm.
Micro brewery located in Penistone, Sheffield ~
Craft ales, beers and lagers available in bottles, cask and kegs ~
Orders available direct from the brewery or from www.eebriatrade.com ~
Mobile bar availble for event hire
Whitefaced Beer Co. micro brewery and mobile bar penistone, sheffield Dave: 07894532456 @whitefacedbeer
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Congratulations go to the Wortley Menâ€™s Club, Wortley, Barnsley
Congratulations go to the Old No 7, Market Hill, Barnsley
Presentation dates and times will be announced in the summer edition. Welcome Inside Barnsley CAMRAâ€™s BAR - Page 28
Magazine from Barnsley Campaign for Real Ale