Archive for the ‘Hampshire’ Tag

The Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Portsmouth, Hampshire   Leave a comment


Pub #2151:

Pissing down rain on our return from the Isle of Wight, we arrived at Portsmouth and Southsea Station wet and hungry.  Looking for a decent burger in the pedestrianised shopping hellscape we eventually gave up.  I asked some bored looking Army recruiters if there was a Wetherspoon’s nearby and they said yes but they had to look it up on Google Maps.

“Let me get this straight…YOU don’t know where a bar is?”  One of them started to give a sincere response but I held my hand up; “and, you call yourselves ‘squaddies?’  Disgraceful.”  Big smiles all around and they actually gave us the right directions and wished us well.

“Enjoy the beautiful British summer weather,” one of them chirped as we dragged our luggage through the torrent.



The Brunel, not far away at the edge of the university campus and near the Guildhall, was an architectural marvel (as are many ‘Spoons).  The beer was good, the burger nothing to write home about (yes, there is more than enough irony in that statement to mock).

The rain continued until well after we started unpacking a few hours later.


Posted August 23, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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Monthly Run Review — November 2015   1 comment

November 2015 run chart

Last month here,

A few interesting runs this month including one in London to see where Joe Meek murdered his landlady and committed suicide (and produced some of the most sublime pop music of the 60’s).  There was also a celebratory run in Andover after the cancer all-clear and a literary run in Stroud, Painswick and Slad to explore the setting for Cider With Rosie.

The Cider With Rosie run included one of the funniest lines that I have forgotten to include in the original post and so include it here.  I was dashing in the rain down a steep hill from Painswick toward Slad and there was an old, stooped dude working his way up the hill using a walking stick.  A Land Rover pulled up beside him and the driver waved him in as I approached but the door was locked.  She tried to unlock it as he pulled on the latch and I came to a sliding halt with no room to pass.  They did this a couple of more times and it made me smile when he just yelled at her, “thank you, anyway.”  “Tough luck,” I commented and he looked up and said, “bitches be trippin'” then moved on his way. It is hard to run while laughing that hard.


Milf Street Swindon


Then, the annual Holiday Running Streak began and I have been hard at it the last 10 days (with 33 ahead of me).  Good treks on this one included the Trowbridge to Westbury pub dash and the Bristol and Bath Rail Trail run.  The monthly statistical breakdown is as follows:

November total: 171.1 miles
Average run (μ) was 6.84 miles with std dev (σ) of 3.28.
Runs more than μ+2σ (ie, 13.4 miles): 14.3 miles on 22 Nov and 15.4 miles on the 28th.
Year to date: 2242.7 miles so 2500 is still a possibility despite the slack performances in January, September, October, and the first part of November.

2015-11-22 Swindon Surrealist Art Installation Old Town Co-Op

Old Town Still Life at the Co-Op


Posted November 30, 2015 by Drunken Bunny in Running

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Globe, Andover, Hampshire   Leave a comment


The Globe was friendly enough, but I should have stuck with the lager…the Doom Bar tasted a bit ‘sweet’ like something other than Doom Bar had been in the lines (another ale? cleaning solvents?).  Not bad enough to send it back, mind, but not right.

Watched a few horse races on telly whilst deciding I didn’t have enough time to catch another pub before the bus home even though it was a short gallop to the station.  At 8 miles in two runs on the day, I decided to let the beer races be a draw (the earlier one winning by a furlong, while this one should be shot and sent to the dog food cannery) instead of going for Best-Two-Out-Of-Three.

Pub map here.


Globe Andover

Posted November 12, 2015 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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Camara’s Fish and Chips, Andover, Hampshire and a run   4 comments

Camara's Fish and Chips Andover cod

I had three miles scheduled for the day’s run and had done them on the way to the hospital for a final cancer check-up (after a few years of surgeries and intermittent — but harsh — chemical treatments). Good news sent a desire to do more running to my legs and with the day free I headed to Andover for no better reason than it is easy to get to by bus and I haven’t worn trenches into the running paths there…yet.



2015-11-10 Andover Run

Time was still kind of tight after stopping for a pint at the Town Mills, so the run was kept a bit short and I grabbed a delicious piece of cod in Camara’s just as he was closing for the day (he had to turn the fryer back on to cook it but did so without complaint and even upgraded the order a bit).
Andover parish church arch c1150


Directly across from the chip shop just above the pedestrianized shopping street there is an old archway — 865 years old, in fact — which leads into a nice patch of grass next to the parish church. The sign reads, “Original Norman arch c1150 AD forming west doorway to old parish church.  Removed some 250 ft south to its present site in 1845.”
Camara's Fish and Chips Andover

(Note: this post is a continuation of the 2014 Chippy Challenge, with all related entries linked to this map)


Posted November 12, 2015 by Drunken Bunny in Fish and Chips, Food, Running

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Town Mills, Andover, Hampshire   2 comments

Town Mills Andover

With the afternoon free after a cancer-treatment follow-up (all clear, at present), I caught the first bus away from the hospital with plans to go for a run wherever it took me. As it took me to Ludgershall and there was a bus to Andover right behind my bus, I opted for that additional one to find some virgin trail. But, first I had a bit of celebrating to do and I popped into the nearest pub to the bus station: the Town Mills.



Town Mills Andover lounge

It looked big and foodie from without but after retrieving a Corvus Stout from the bar I followed the Bob Marley music upstairs to find it is something of a party house with a circle of couches under the heavy timber beams. Like a lot of old pubs, the layout is in snugs but in this case they are each as big as whole saloon bars instead of dinky/intimate rooms.


Town Mills Andover ducks

I watched some lads on a lunch break shoot pool then spotted a horde of ducks in the mill-race that runs under the building. I see this a lot around the canals: ducks on what is essentially the watery treadmill…getting into beach body shape, I reckon.

Pub map here.

Town Mills Andover beer garden


Posted November 11, 2015 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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Welcome Stranger, Kimpton, Hampshire   Leave a comment

Welcome Stranger Kimpton sign


The Welcome Stranger was a welcome sight as my hand was swelling rapidly and I needed a break (no pun intended). I took the outdoors photos then headed in the door near the sign and soon found myself behind the bar. Ushered rapidly out and around the right way, I was soon sitting at the bar choosing between Betty Stoggs and Dorset Gold. I like Stoggs but had never tried the Gold and felt adventurous.





Welcome Stranger Kimpton beer


A few minutes later, some musicians appeared fresh from a wedding at the Kimpton church. After pleasantries and an interrogation as to who was getting hitched (everyone there knew the bride, a local girl), one of the guys started getting the round in.
1: “Betty Stoggs, please.” Calling out to one of the others, he asked his preference.
2: “Oh, Stoggs is good.”
1: “Another Stoggs, then. And for [another band member’s name]?”
2: “Oh, I think she’d like a Stoggs, too.”
1: “And, a Stoggs.” Another bandmate emerged from the loo. “What’ll you have?”
3: “Ooo, Stoggs I think.”
1: “One more Stoggs, please.”

The woman band mate was in conversation about her instrument, some bag pipes, then pulled these out of the case to show the interested party. Then, for the next 6-8 minutes she treated us to an impromptu performance (YouTube video should be embedded, here):

Next, a crowd on a charity walk-a-thon came through while 40 or so of their compatriots passed by. I followed the last of this lot out and weaved through the crowd on the narrow farm track leading out to the military training area we were all soon to cross.

Overall, this was one of the most pleasant pub experiences this year.  Here’s the location map.

Welcome Stranger Kimpton



Posted September 20, 2015 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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Plough, Grateley, Hampshire   Leave a comment

Plough Grateley sign

My hand was already swollen from re-socketing my pinky after the tumble a few miles back so when I got to the Plough I ordered a pint of cider — ice-cold, y’know — to hold against the wounded paw.  It seemed to help.

The pub is a proper country one and just lovely inside.  A Bob Marley song was playing when I came in, the Beatles after that and someone covering “Do You Want To Know A Secret” just after that.  Surprising choices for the kids in there (I was easily twice as old as anyone in the house).  They have live music, too.

With no one to talk to and the throbbing abated, I moved on to the Welcome Stranger, a few miles closer to the end of my run and easily the best pub of the day (which really isn’t saying as much as it should).

Here’s where to find it.

Plough Grateley


Posted September 19, 2015 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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