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Thursday 7 January 2016

Boats, beers and boozers 1

Here we are with a New Year and pretty atrocious weather to boot just at the moment. The grey rainy days has had me thinking about our last years trip around the canals and rivers of England. Through out that journey I kept a note of the all the pubs we visited and what beer I drank. It came to over 80 pubs and over 100 different beers. I did keep some notes, but not very comprehensively so I hope to do better this year. This series of items will be occasional, as and when I feel the need.

A lot seems to have been written about the pubs that are right next to the canal and easily accessible but we like to visit ones a bit further from the cut but make no apologies about having a little walk to reach it. All blogs about pubs and beer are purely subjective as every one has differing tastes but hopefully I will convey more than just the beer or more than just the pub, but the total 'experience'.

My first pub is actually right next to the canal all be it a bit of the cut that is not often boated I should think. The Leggers Inn is at Savile Town Wharf on the Dewsbury Arm of the Calder and Hebble. If you are heading east the turn at the foot of the Thornhill Double locks is quite tight, and for a deep boat the water is a little shallow but it is worth the half mile effort for a visit to the Leggers.

Half way up the Dewsbury Arm.

Savile Town Wharf was once a very busy basin serving the numerous mills that surrounded it. These have been cleared now and an ope car park is left. The building that houses the Leggers Inn  was the stable block for the boat horses. The pub is actually up stairs in the hay loft although there is a large outdoor area over looking the moorings. Upstairs the bar has a lovely multi stove that keeps the rooms nice and snug in winter. There are beams and quirky bits of machinery coupled with posters and enameled signs that give a great atmosphere. There are usually six hand pulled real ales on plus a couple of ciders. On our last visit I had a pint of Witch Hunt from Moorhouse of Burnley. It wasn't my cup of tea, but the Moonshine, lovely hoppy pale ale with plenty of fruitiness, from Abbeydale of Sheffield was gorgeous. The prices are good Moonshine was £2-50 a pint! The food is simple but good value and the cafe next door does nice 'normal' grub too. There is a pool table in the second bar and there is a function room where I witnessed a wake and a birthday party as well as the Mikron Theatre production of 'Rising Agent' last year.

About twenty minutes walk from the basin is a load of out of town shops to suit all. A further ten minutes will bring you into the heart of the town of Dewsbury. There are some nice restaurants and a few very nice pubs too, including a Weatherspoons, but the main attraction is the market. It is a 'proper' extensive northern market with just about anything you could ask for at rock bottom prices on the over 300 stalls. If you do venture this way make sure it is market day. The lovely Victorian Market Hall is open every day except Sunday and the open market is open Wednesdays and Saturdays

The Leggers Inn  from the moorings. The white building is the offices of CV Marine who run the basin. There are no designated visitor moorings but if the office is open pop in and ask the friendly folk where to go, and if it isn't just moor where you can, or where one of the locals points out.

We loved the pub and the town despite it having the heart of it taken away by the out of town shopping and the accessibility of all the other local towns. The market is a must though.

1 comment:

Marilyn, nb Waka Huia said...

Aha! Interesting esp because it has other stuff than beer - you know my thoughts on that tipple ...
Hope you are keeping warm and dry, team.