Weds 11th March 1998
This is a relatively short trip comprising only four pubs but most of them have several beers worth sampling so its not too abstemious a crawl. We start out at King's X station, cross the road pass by Camden town hall and turn left down Judd St where you will find on your left by the junction with Hastings Street:-
1. The Skinners Arms - 114 Judd St [19:00]
Greene King Abbot, IPA +Old Horny (Seasonal Beer).
Popular one bar pub which has undergone a re-furbishment during the last few months. Unfortunately Greene King cannot leave pubs alone, but at least the basic layout is still visible. The previous near- complete oval counter has been replaced by a linear one with no overhead rail for glasses, making the ceiling appear to be much higher. A dais seating area has been introduced, the cosy benches (e.g. by the fireplace) have been removed and the rear area is where the Gents toilet used to be, but is dominated by a very noisy extractor fan! Sadly the collection of ties hanging from the ceiling has now gone as has the previous landlord "Honest George", The new Gents by the way are downstairs and a great improvement over the former insanitary skid-pan.
Back onto Judd Street up to the Euston Road and turn left heading towards Euston Station then a short walk till you about opposite to the new British Library where you will find:-
2. The Euston Flyer - 83-87 Euston Road [20:00]
Fullers ESB, London Pride, Chiswick & 1845 (6.3%) + Guest e.g. Double Dragon, Everards Tiger and Morrells Varsity, (on stillage).
Brand new pub, occupying a sizeable area, right opposite the new British Library premises, rumour has it this was a former stationers. Wooden and tiled flooring in the style of an Ale and Pie shop. Impressively double glazed, but to no avail as the sound system would override external sounds anyway. Large establishment patronised by football supporters (note the projection TV) and ``locals'' i.e tourists and hotel residents. Food appears to be quite important (as in all Fullers Ale & Pie chain pubs) and is served in the evening, we noted a number of people eating. There is a large bell in the middle of the pub with a Heath Robinson style pulley system leading back to the bar, I wonder why? While we were there all the lights on the bar (but nowhere else) suddenly dimmed down then came back up, is this significant.
Cross back over the Euston Road and keep on towards Euston Station till you get to the corner with Chalton Street where you will find:-
3. The Friar and Firkin - Euston Road [21:00]
Friar Bitter, Confession and Gold
Normally extremely busy presumably due to after work attendees. The usual Firkin style pub with an all-wooden interior (no, not including the bar-staff for a change). This has a large dance floor area which despite the prospect of bands playing was, on the night, thankfully unoccupied. Very attentive bar staff, as mentioned before and overall a good example of David Bruce's concept of a decent basic boozer. It's a shame that Taylor-Walker have not replicated this in their other establishments.
Keep on along the Euston Road, cross over Eversholt Street and you will find in the base of an office block on the station concourse the Head of Steam which is actually upstairs.
4. The Head of Steam - Euston Road [22:00]
Hopback Summer Lightning, Highgate Dark, Cartmel Lakeland Gold, plus others but I didn't take a full set of notes.
Single bar pub soaked in railway memorabilia. Bar upstairs with toilets downstairs which are only accessible by means of a security code obtainable from the bar staff. Sky TV showing football on our visit. The bar appears to be a split level affair. There were a number of model trains hanging from the ceiling or at least I think there were.
Leaving here you are actually at Euston station where you can pick up the Northern or Victoria line tube.
Date: Wednesday 8th February 1998
Present: J.Featherstone, E.Featherstone, J.Wright, M.Chambers
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