Monday 18th October 1993
Those of you with long memories will remember the last time that we did this trip there was a heavy downpour and most people got soaked I can only hope that we do not repeat the experience. This is a fairly gentle stroll on a roughly circular route starting and finishing close to Hampstead tube station so even those constitutionally challenged among us should be able to manage it. Coming out of the tube station and turning right up Heath St takes us to our first pub.
1. Horse and Groom, 68 Heath St (map 11) [18:30]
Youngs bitter and special
This is a pub we have done before but the beer is well kept and its convenient for the station. Just opposite we can see the horrible fate reserved for pubs, the Nags Head (former CAMRA pub) has now turned into a Mexican restaurant and is full of youths drinking bottled lager. Ignoring that sight enjoy this pub which doesn't seem to have changed much since I first saw it 16 years ago, long may it last.
Going down Heath St past the station takes us to
2. The Three Horseshoes, 28 Heath St (map 27) [19:15]
Youngers Scotch, Theakstons bitter & XB, Abbot Ale
This used to be a Truman pub but has been taken over by Wetherspoons so I don't really need to describe it. There is no canned music, food is available in the evening apart from that it is a large somewhat anonymous pub.
Turning down Oriel Place which is an alleyway at the side of the pub takes us onto Hampstead High St and a short way down is our next pub.
3. King William IV, 77 High St (map 14) [19:45]
Courage Directors and best.
This pub has a flamboyant reputation so I have only scheduled a 30 minute stop. I have to say that I could see no signs of this but others may be more sensitive than me. This pub has several bars and lots of wood panelling and the beer was in reasonable nick.
Its a bit of a walk to the next pub and we pass a number of eating establishments so some might wish to avail themselves of the opportunity. Crossing the High St we continue on down the Hill till we come to the turning for Downshire Hill on our left.
4. Freemasons Arms, 32 Downshire Hill (map 6) [20:30]
Bass, Worthington best bitter, Fullers Pride
This a large pub with a large garden though I suspect that the season for sitting in the garden has now passed. The beer guide says that there is a skittle alley in the basement. They appeared to do food in the evening.
Keeping on down Downshire Hill we turn left into Willow Rd, then a right fork onto Church Hill then right into Well Walk.
5. Wells Hotel, 30 Well Walk (map 29) [21:15]
Boddingtons, Moorland Old Speckled Hen, Pedigree, Castle Eden
An L shaped bar which was quite crowded, there was a Darts board (in use) and no juke box (hurrah). There were some table outside on a small patio. The pub is raised up quite a way from the pavement and you have to climb a number of steps but even I made it.
Left out of the pub takes us back towards the station and into Flask Walk.
6. The Flask Tavern, 14 Flask Walk (map 5) [22:00]
Youngs bitter and Special
No apologies for another repeat from the last trip. Two bar pub, very popular, darts in the public. Glass panels seperating the public from the saloon bar. Noted in summer for the people overflowing onto the pavement though usually quieter on an autumnal Monday evening.