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Folklore: Odd pub names

Dave the Gnome 10 Jan 03 - 03:41 PM
Bert 10 Jan 03 - 03:45 PM
sian, west wales 10 Jan 03 - 03:52 PM
Mr Red 10 Jan 03 - 03:57 PM
GUEST 10 Jan 03 - 04:10 PM
Michael 10 Jan 03 - 04:23 PM
RoyH (Burl) 10 Jan 03 - 05:02 PM
Peter K (Fionn) 10 Jan 03 - 05:04 PM
Liz the Squeak 10 Jan 03 - 06:21 PM
Leadfingers 10 Jan 03 - 07:57 PM
greg stephens 10 Jan 03 - 08:01 PM
GUEST,Compton 10 Jan 03 - 08:09 PM
Strupag 10 Jan 03 - 09:25 PM
dick greenhaus 10 Jan 03 - 10:13 PM
GUEST,Billy 11 Jan 03 - 12:06 AM
mouldy 11 Jan 03 - 02:36 AM
Liz the Squeak 11 Jan 03 - 03:43 AM
ced2 11 Jan 03 - 04:35 AM
RoyH (Burl) 11 Jan 03 - 05:11 AM
Big Tim 11 Jan 03 - 05:18 AM
Long Firm Freddie 11 Jan 03 - 05:49 AM
Dave the Gnome 11 Jan 03 - 05:50 AM
Noreen 11 Jan 03 - 06:12 AM
Snuffy 11 Jan 03 - 07:19 AM
RoyH (Burl) 11 Jan 03 - 09:34 AM
Schantieman 11 Jan 03 - 10:24 AM
banjomad (inactive) 11 Jan 03 - 10:36 AM
breezy 11 Jan 03 - 10:53 AM
Peg 11 Jan 03 - 11:25 AM
Liz the Squeak 11 Jan 03 - 11:55 AM
Morticia 11 Jan 03 - 01:55 PM
GUEST,Les in Chorlton, Manchester 11 Jan 03 - 02:25 PM
Beccy 11 Jan 03 - 02:34 PM
mouldy 12 Jan 03 - 02:50 AM
Manitas_ 12 Jan 03 - 03:43 AM
Chanteyranger 12 Jan 03 - 04:27 AM
Dave the Gnome 12 Jan 03 - 05:27 AM
Banjo-Flower 12 Jan 03 - 07:33 AM
Noreen 12 Jan 03 - 08:29 AM
Peg 12 Jan 03 - 10:14 AM
Merritt 12 Jan 03 - 11:09 AM
Donuel 12 Jan 03 - 11:21 AM
Herga Kitty 12 Jan 03 - 11:21 AM
GUEST 12 Jan 03 - 12:08 PM
GUEST,Les in Chorlton, Manchester 12 Jan 03 - 12:36 PM
Mudlark 12 Jan 03 - 03:44 PM
ced2 12 Jan 03 - 03:53 PM
Bert 13 Jan 03 - 01:02 AM
greg stephens 13 Jan 03 - 03:20 AM
DG&D Dave 13 Jan 03 - 03:50 AM
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Subject: BS: Odd pub names
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 03:41 PM

Just off the Manchester, UK, inner ring road there is a pub called the 'Land O' Cakes'. Puzzled me for ages so I decided to look it up. The only sensible reference I can find is that Robert Burns used it to describe Scotland in one of his poems.

A little further out, just near the commonwealth games stadium, is the "Spanking Roger". Imagine what I found when I looked that up! Again there is a sensible expanation - A famous racehorse in the 1750's. There was also a piece of music ny Thomas Nuttall of the same name but which begat the other I know not!

Heading further out, on the A6 towards Derbyshire, is the "Soldier Dick". Excellent pub with good beer and food and a roaring fire for those chilly days agter you have come down from the high peak. The story of it's name is on the wall in the bar so you will have to go to find out;-)

Anyone any more? One I don't know is on the A34 near Congleton on the Cheshire/Staffordshire border, "The Bleeding Wolf". Any of our Stafordshirites know?

Cheers

Dave the Gnome


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Bert
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 03:45 PM

The Rorty Crankle out near Tunbridge is one of my favorites.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: sian, west wales
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 03:52 PM

There are two in the Whitchurch/Llandaf area of Cardiff: The Cow and Snuffers, and The Pineapple. Don't know the histories.

There's The Square and Compass just south of Fishguard, which isn't so unusual - it's an old quarrying area - but what I like is that the village is also called The Square and Compass. I like that; pubs rule!

There's one locally called Y Polyn (the Pole) because it used to be a toll house - so it refers to the gate pole. I think it might have been burned down during the Rebecca Riots in the 1800s. People knew how to party then.

sian


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Mr Red
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 03:57 PM

Consulting my Penguin Dictionary of Pub Names I find

The Queens Head and Artichoke - the story dates from Henry VIII's sister who was married to a King Louis. Pub (London NW1) long gone apparently

Oh I could bore all night with this book ...........


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: GUEST
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 04:10 PM

There's one near Crewe called The Romping Donkey


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Michael
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 04:23 PM

There's one in Glapwell, near Chesterfield, Derbyshire, UK, called Then Young Vanish. This is somthing to do with a racehorse too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 05:02 PM

There is a pub in or near Prestwich called 'The Railway & Naturalist' I have a vague memory of seeing one many years ago called 'Hark To Towler'. In Yorkshire somewhere I think. Anybody got any history on these?. Burl


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Peter K (Fionn)
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 05:04 PM

I have a pal whose next book is going to be about commoners who had pubs named them. I'll pass on the Soldier Dick. Anyone know of others?


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 06:21 PM

'The Queen's Head and Artichoke' is still there and still running as a pub.... I can see it from my office window.

I've been in 'The Green Man and French Horn' and BOTH 'I am the only running footman' pubs.

My favourite has to be the 'Bat and Goldfish' on the Great North Road.....

In Weymouth, they revamped a pub and wanted to call it 'The Oar House'. No-one had any problems with this until they invited the well known (then) hostess and "brothel keeper" (sex for luncheon vouchers) Cynthia Paine. It's called 'The Boat House' now....

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Leadfingers
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 07:57 PM

Being a complete M C P I was always taken by the one on the A34 not far from Stratford on Avon-- The Silent Woman. also in Greys Inn road is a Grey Lion,the only one I've met.And nearly every road running North South from the A4 to the A 4020 has a White Hart on it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: greg stephens
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 08:01 PM

Burl, there may be a "Hark to Towler", but I think you might be misremembering the "Hark to Bounty" in Slaidburn.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: GUEST,Compton
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 08:09 PM

Going off on a slightly different thread, whilst reading the JD Wehterspoon magazine (I get it for the gardening column) the reason they call a lot of their pubs "The Moon under Water" ..is that George Orwell thought it would be his ideal fictional pub. So there!..meanwhile back on the quest!


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Strupag
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 09:25 PM

At Mousterlan near Quimper in Britanny, there's good pub called "Scoubi Du"
Like gaelic, I know that Du means black but Scoubi?
I've asked locally and no one seems to connect it with the american cartoon character.
Any Breton Mudcatters?


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 10 Jan 03 - 10:13 PM

I once stumbled across "The Frog and Wheatgerm". In Lincoln, as I recall.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: GUEST,Billy
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 12:06 AM

There used (30 years ago) to be a pub N of Liverpool called the "Duck Inn". The main entrance to the bar had a flight of about three or four steps down to the bar floor and a big oak beam at head height. If you were looking down at the steps and didn't duck as you went in, you banged your head on the oak beam. You could sit at the bar and watch for new patrons as they got bonked on the way in. Only bar I ever knew where you could get a headache before you got a drink.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: mouldy
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 02:36 AM

There's a "Hark to Mopsy" in Normanton, near Wakefield. The sign shows a foxhunt, so I guess Mopsy's a foxhound. There's one near us called the "Odddfellows". The spelling is deliberate - I heard it stemmed from a signwriting accident years ago, and stuck.

Over in the Peak District there's a pub called "The Knockerdown", and I believe that refers to a ghost found in lead mines, of which there used to be very many in the area. In Castleford there's a modern "family" type pub, built near the Freeport Designer Village, called the "Singing Chocker". It's a nod in the direction of the coal mines that were in the area. The last one has just shut. The chocker is the guy who fits the chocks (or pit props, as they are often called).

Andrea


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 03:43 AM

The Frog and Wheatgerm is part of a hideous chain, one of the flood of the spurious pub names, spawning names with the juxtaposition of an amphibian and other unlikely object, hence the Frog and Wheatgerm, Frog and Radiator, and others. There was a chain of the first pub restaurants which had whimsical names instantly which made you want to eat elsewhere, like the 'Slug and Lettuce' and the '(single syllable insect) and Cauliflower,the name of which I remembered last night and now have completely forgotten. They were famous only for having those silly sorts of names and toilets decked out in faux green marble with red and orange flecks in it.... you had to be careful not to chuck up in there, or you would never see where it went.

There is a delightful pub called 'St Peters' Finger' a corruption of St Peter ad vinculum, known locally as 'Pete's digit', but it's so nice I'm not telling you where.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: ced2
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 04:35 AM

There's the "Second West" in Lidget Green in Bradford never figured that one out as there is no First West(or East etc.) Was there ever a "Saggar Makers Bottom Knocker's Arms" in Stoke, Burslam or any other pottery town?


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 05:11 AM

Greg, You could be right. It was a long time ago and only fleetingly glimpsed from a car window. I also like the one Sian mentioned, The Cow & Snuffers, in Cardiff. Burl


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Big Tim
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 05:18 AM

Is "Slug and Lettuce", near Binfield, Berkshire, too common to be worthy of a mention?


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Long Firm Freddie
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 05:49 AM

There is (or was)a Hark To Towler in Bury, Lancs. As Mouldy suggests, this sort of name suggests a foxhunting reference.

There's a Banks's pub in the Black Country called The Struggling Monkey - so named after a pit pump (a Monkey) used to drain water out of the pit and which wasn't quite up to the job!

LFF


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 05:50 AM

Square and Compass would be a reference to Freemasons. I agree with Liz on the Frog and 'xxx' - We have a Frog and Firkin. Moon under the Water was way before Orwell - Most places have a reference to some local nutter trying to get the moon out of a pond - Moonraker, Moon in the water and Moon under the water being common references. I wouldn't take notice of Orwell anyway - he couldn't even find Wigan Pier, which, incidentaly, has it's own pub now as well!

No one caring to take a stab (pun intended) at the Bleeding Wolf yet?

Cheers

Dave the Gnome


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Noreen
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 06:12 AM

Burl and greg, there used to be a "Hark to Towler" very near me on Walmersley Road in Bury but it's now called the Towler Inn. There is still a "Hark to Dandler" a bit further out towards Ramsbottom. This and the "Hark to Bounty" at Slaidburn are all named after foxhounds.

A bit more about Lancashire pub names from the following site: http://www.bbc.co.uk/lancashire/the_knowledge/2002/10/31/hark_to_bounty.shtml:

Bounty was apparently the favourite hound of Squire Wigglesworth of Slaidburn. One day in 1875 he was in the Dog Inn in the town, having a drink while his pack of hounds waited outside. Bounty started howling - presumably because he'd picked up the scent of a fox - and the squire shouted "Hark to Bounty". For some reason they called the pub that from then on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Snuffy
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 07:19 AM

Is there still one near Ince called "Th' Sign's i'th Cellar"?


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: RoyH (Burl)
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 09:34 AM

Noreen, thanks so much for that. I had the right name but the wrong county. Maybe I saw the pub on one of my many trips to Bury to sing at the folk club. Burl


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Schantieman
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 10:24 AM

There's one on the Scotland Road in Liverpool called 'One Flew Over the Throstle's Nest'. Any guesses at the derivation? They've copped out completely on the sign and just painted the name on it. The last sign usd to have a question mark.

The Frog and Wheatgerm etc. are not only spurious and generally unpleasant (in conception, decor, food and beer, I imagine, although I have not yet plucked up the courage to venture into one) but have also done away with the original names of the pubs, some of which were hundreds of years old.

Moan moan, grumble grumble

Steve


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: banjomad (inactive)
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 10:36 AM

There used to be a pub called the 'Sour Milk Hall ' in Halifax, Yorkshire, and not far from me was one called the 'Starving Rascal'
Dave.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: breezy
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 10:53 AM

There is only one 'Silver Cup' and its in Harpenden.
So as 1 its odd.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Peg
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 11:25 AM

These names are hilarious! I must get that book.

I once ate at a Slug and Lettuce in the Cotswolds; but it was rather old-fashioned and quaint, not one of those chains...

I like The Haunch of Venison in Salisbury...

peg (gearing up for her trip to the UK on Monday!)


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 11:55 AM

Manitas has somewhere a book with all sorts of weird pub names in... can't lay my hands on it at present...

Big Tim, if you'd read all the posts, you'd have seen that the Slug and Lettuce had already been mentioned not 3 posts before yours.

I was in 'The Case is Altered' on Boxing Day... another corruption of a latin phrase, but I don't know which one!

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Morticia
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 01:55 PM

There's The Chocolate Cat between Andover and Devizes.Must pop in and ask them about that some day.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: GUEST,Les in Chorlton, Manchester
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 02:25 PM

We drove through Gorton, Manchester, today and I forgot to look but I seem to remember a puib called The Pig and Ball Bearing. I think it was re-named so after a song or story by Mike Harding.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Beccy
Date: 11 Jan 03 - 02:34 PM

The Old Toad, Rochester


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: mouldy
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 02:50 AM

Although I can't remember all the results (dammit), a few years ago the students at my son's uni went round the pubs in Trefforest, near Pontypridd, and switched any moveable letters in the names that were on the walls of the buildings. I know the "Knox" became the "Knob". I believe some other quite interesting names arose.

Andrea


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Manitas_
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 03:43 AM

I think The Case is Altered was a corruption of something like Casa Alta. There is at last another one somewhere up the A5 near Stoney Stratford.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Chanteyranger
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 04:27 AM

The name isn't what makes this one funny - just the combined businesses attached to it. In Ennistymon, Co. Clare, Ireland: "Nagle's Bar/Undertakers."

Chanteyranger


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 05:27 AM

And I have just remembered. Only funny for discworld fans. I went in a bar in Tralee called Sean Oggs.

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Banjo-Flower
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 07:33 AM

For LOTR fans there's always the Middle Earth in Whitby

Gerry


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Noreen
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 08:29 AM

Yu're welcome, Burl. Unfortunately no longer a folk club in Bury. :0(

Schantieman, the Throstle's Nest has been on Scottie Rd in Liverpool for a very long time (a throstle being a thrush). It became One Flew Over the Throstle's Nest when a certain film became popular- just can't think of the name of the film...

Les's post reminded me of a good pub in Droylsden, east Manchester, called The Pig on the Wall. Built on a former pig farm, the locals say that the farmer used to lift the pigs up on the wall to watch the world going by... There's a lovely collection of all sorts of pigs (china and stuffed) behind the bar.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Peg
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 10:14 AM

We have one called The Squealing Pig in Boston with all sorts of pig art and curios too; good food too!


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Merritt
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 11:09 AM

Great thread.

Understanding that the "pubs" most folks describe here are likely a bit different from a bar in the U.S., my favorite bar name is:

   Woody's OK
Or Isn't He?

Am not sure of the actual origin of the name, although I've asked. The construction of the last part is common phrasing in the rural areas around northeast Wisconsin. It's located in the City of Oconto.

- Merritt


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 11:21 AM

Ye Olde Bung Hole


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 11:21 AM

LtS and Manitas

Between the Case is Altered (Eastcote) that you were in on the Herga Mummers tour on Boxing Day, and the Royal Oak you ended up in, there are 2 more Case is Altereds - one in Wealdstone High Street, and one in Old Redding. I think they may derive from the Peninsular War against Napoleon.

I've a feeling that the Starling in Pinner is unusual. There's a Pineapple in Amersham.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 12:08 PM

A really disgusting Plastic Paddy pub in Copenhagen called O Murphys. Met plenty of Murphys, but never met one with an O before.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: GUEST,Les in Chorlton, Manchester
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 12:36 PM

Noreen,
what a chord you struck with The Pig on the Wall. My mother was waiting with a sick friend for an ambulance. When it arrived the sick friend recognised the driver and said 'he was that daft bugger who put a pig on the wall to watch the band march past'.

I loved this expression but never found it's origin. In 1978 I joined Gorton Morrismen and some time later danced for free beer at the opening of the very 'The Pig on the Wall' in Droylsden.

That Pig may have been a new one or an upgrading (probably down grading) of an older pub.My mother and her friend lived in Ellesmere Port (50 miles away on Mersyside) and had never heard of Droylsden.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Mudlark
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 03:44 PM

Dont know about the pub itself, but it had a great sign. Located just across the street from Monk'sBar Hotel under the Wall in York, a copy of E. Munch's "The Wail" very well done in wood.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: ced2
Date: 12 Jan 03 - 03:53 PM

Me thinks there's a game to be had here.... rather along the lines of Mornington Crescent... Can I try "The Red Pig" for a starter!


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: Bert
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 01:02 AM

Then there's pub nicknames.

The Fox and Pelican in Grayshot, Hants is often refered to as The Dog and Duck.
Then just a few miles away down on the A3 the The Black Fox, referred to affectionately as The Flat Box.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: greg stephens
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 03:20 AM

And all Boar's Head pubs are invariably called The Whore's Bed by the witty(?) locals.


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Subject: RE: BS: Odd pub names
From: DG&D Dave
Date: 13 Jan 03 - 03:50 AM

In Derbyshire I have had music sessions in:
The Knockerdown (accurately described by Mouldy above).
The Quiet Woman (is this an oxymoron?).
The Hobbit (Now happily reverted to its old name the Red Lion).
The Hurt Arms (form a local family name).
The Morris Dancer (in Lichfield Staffordshire).
Dave.


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