Not to distract from the obvious charismatic qualities of Norwood Junction that the mind would conjure up when left to muse on the name, but in reality this trip explores the delights of the leafy suburb of South Norwood. It offers a good selection of beers in a variety of hostelries juxtapositioned such that the essential thirst kindling inter tavern walks do not engender fatigue (i.e. if you follow the map you shouldn't get knackered or lost between pubs!).
Trains to Norwood Junction leave London Bridge with monotonous regularity during the rush hour. I would suggest the 17:12, the 17:27 or the 17:42. Each takes 13 minutes (beware the return journeys are of varying lengths all > 13 mins). On emerging from the station just to the left across the road junction is the rendez-vous.
John Wright Room 334 New Court
This is a large Truman's house, recently revamped with a pleasant modern decor, predominantly brass and glass. A busy one bar commuter pub. There is a loud jukebox presumably turned up to drown out the sound of people shouting to overcome the noise from the jukebox. Despite this there is reasonable amount of accomodation (due to the throughput of clientele - see 'jukebox' above). Food available hidden behind people glued to the br. Look for sewing machines in the tables (needless to say, better than pin-tables anyway).
On emerging from the pub turn left and head for the tunnel between the railings in the middle of the road. This is a underpass and hopefully the only tricky part of the route, so stick together and try to avoid the vociferous alsation at the other end!
Quite a contrast to the previous one; this is a pleasant backstreet pub with plenty of seats, all in one large bar area forming three sides of a square. Decorated in traditional style this is a quiet hostelry a 'quiet' jukebox and a pooltable. The only food however consists of crisps, peanuts etc. Those fast eaters (or slow walkers) who wish to mix business with pleasure, can hold themselves in readiness for the kebab house, Afro-Caribbean or Indian take-away emporia en route to the next venue.
One of the earlier Courage houses to carry Youngs beers as well, this pleasant modern pub deserves its 1987 GBG entry. A cosy interior belies the amount of seating available. The beer is in good condition and reasonably priced (for London!). Another quiet friendly pub. Has a strong cricketing theme as evidenced by the prints etc. round the wall.
A large comfortable 3 bar roadside inn. Popular, but sufficient accomodation for even a Hassrale onslaught! Good service and beer in passable condition. The scampi & lemon Nik-Naks received the raiding party's/committee's seal of approval. Also has a real gas fire. For those who wish to linger, this pub is an ideal venue especially as seating my be more readily available than in the next pub (and with only 5 pubs on the trip there is scope for flexibity in departure times(.
Certainly merits a visit by virtue of the selection of beers available especially as the element of suprise enters greatly into the calculation. The entire range may have changed by now although I can assure members that there is still a pub there! A well attended, long narrow pub with most of the handpumps on the second half of the bar (don't panic). A separate pool and darts room keeps the under-18s at bay. Reasonable amount of seating mostly right of the jukebox. No organised food but there may be a sea-farer selling sea-fare.
The pub is a gentle 10 minutes stroll from Norwood Junction station. The return trains to London Bridge run at 22:41, 23:09 and 23:37 arriving at 22:57, 23:27 and 23:55 respectively.
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