Saving the British Pub
Sterling Efforts from the National TrustThe National Trust have produced a list of their favourite pub walks. The pubs they mention are in their care. I know the George Inn and The Red Lion (above) at Trust-maintained Lacock very well; also the Spread Eagle Inn on the Stourhead estate. I would certainly like to become acquainted with others they own.
Belfast VictorianaThe Trust suggest a walk at nearby Minnowburn before settling down under the gas lighting of The Crown Bar's high Victorian interior in glorious Belfast. Read all about the pub's history at Visit Belfast.
Cotswolds Cultural HubAfter a yomp in the wilds of the Cotswolds — possibly calling in at Hidcote for gardening inspiration — they suggest drawing a chair up to the open fireplace at The Fleece Inn, Bretforton. The pub is also a focal point for folk musicians and morris dancers, so you could time your visit according to what's on.
High HopesI hope the National Trust continue to take more pubs under their wing. Pubs are as important to the cultural fabric of this nation as churches. The pub and the church will often be the oldest buildings in a village, and the only two places that still draw the community together after hundreds of years. I wince when I see a historic-looking pub that has closed down in a small place. It's like pulling the heart out of a village.
I have asked the Trust for a list of all the pubs they maintain for you to tick off on your travels around the country. If it arrives, I will post it below.
UpdateThe National Trust came up with the goods. Thanks National Trust. List below.
Bankes Arms Hotel, Corfe, Dorset
Bankes Arms, Studland, Dorset
Buckinghamshire Arms, Blickling, Norfolk
Castle Inn, Bodiam, East Sussex
Castle Inn, Chiddingstone, Kent
Cross Keys, Cautley, Cumbria
Crown Liquor Saloon, Belfast
Dolaucothi Arms, Pumpsaint, Dyfed
Dolymelynllyn Hall Hotel, Ganllwyd, Gwynedd
Fleece Inn, Bretforton, nr Evesham, Hereford & Worcs
George and Dragon, West Wycombe, Bucks
George Inn, Lacock, Wilts
George Inn, Southwark, London
Hardwick Inn, Chesterfield, Derbyshire
King's Head, Aylesbury, Bucks
King's Mill, Wrexham, Clwyd
M. McBride's, Cushenden, Co Antrim
Manor House Hotel, Studland, Dorset
Marisco Tavern, Lundy Island, Devon
Nelson's Head, Horsey, Norfolk
Old Dungeon Ghyll, Great Langdale, Cumbria
Radnor Arms, Coleshill, Berkshire
Red Lion, Bradenham, Bucks
Red Lion, Broadclyst, Devon
Red Lion, Kilmington, Stourton, Wilts
Red Lion, Lacock, Wilts
Ship Inn, Low Newton-by-the-Sea, Northumbria
Sign of the Angel, Lacock, Wilts
Spread Eagle, Stourton, Wilts
Sun Inn, Saffron Walden, Essex (now a shop)
Swan, West Wycombe, Bucks
The Logan Rock, Treen, Cornwall
Tower Bank Arms, Nr Sawrey, Cumbria
Tyn-y-Groes, Ganllwyd, Gwynedd
Vine Inn, Pamphill, Dorset
Wizard of the Edge Inn, Alderley Edge, Cheshire