I am planning a train journey in early January. Fly in/out of Manchester.
Mission: Visit as many counties as possible, with at least 1 pub in each.
Britrail pass, so no hassle with tickets.
Arriving early Tuesday 2, and first leg is from Manchester airport to Crewe, then:
Wed 3. Birmingham-Nuneaton- Burton On Trent- Derby.
Hey Gunnar, its a real shame i wont be able to meet up & show you Shrewsbury as ill be in Savoire, France on the 2nd! Jeremy (blackhaddock) wouldve met you & shown you the delights of the town as well as pubs very close to the stations in Wellington & Oakengates but he’s in California! I can however advise on where you should go. The (newly opened) ‘Station Hotel’ is opposite Shrews train station and always has Salopian on draft, as well as a good bottle / can selection & some modern craft keg. The Salopian pub 5 mins walk has around 7 cask lines often with small indie breweries you dont see anywhere else, often Welsh, often North Yorkshire. Worth a look. Admiral Benbow is a proper timeworn old pub i wouldnt normally recommend but you should find Shropshire breweries Ludlow & Six Bells. The Three Fishes also tends to have a not too exciting selection but is a nice creaky old pub where you may pick up Shrop breweries like Hobsons & Salopian. Appleyards deli should sort you with some regional train beers from Monty’s, Ludlow, Gwatkins cider (the owner Mike is on here as purpledragons)
Hereford has a much better selection of bars / pubs. Hereford Beer House, Firefly & Beer in Hand (home to the excellent Odyssey brewery) should keep you busy. Worcestor has the Firefly which i think is best option in the town.
Not much in Nuneaton so depending on how long you have between trains, there’s either the bar(s) outside the train station or if you have more time the Lord Hop (10 Minute Walk from the train station).
In Grantham Beer Hedz is the furthest from the train station of the three bars (on Rate Beer) about 10 minutes walking. I have only been to Bee Hive in Grantham which was good, not much else to see in Grantham.
You might be better getting your Northumberland tick in Hexham or Haltwistle. That would allow you to get a bit more mileage under your belt before the first stop - Wylam is only about 15 minutes out of Newcastle so you could be wasting time because the pub isn’t open early enough. And I think you might have to change trains at Hexham coming from Wylam anyway. National Rail Enquiries site seems to be down at the moment so I can’t check details.
Also, you might need to change at Preston travelling from Carlisle to Liverpool so that could be a better option for the Lancashire tick than Ormskirk.
Good point, my initial plan was to fly in/out of Newcastle, and Wylam had survived from there. Will look into Hexham or Haltwistle.
Will also considering stop in Preston, think Ormskirk was in my plan because a railway to Liverpool. My wingman had this suggestion, but the last part of this journey isn`t carved in stone yet,
Thanks for all comments and advice, much appreciated !