Anyway, here at ALE, we’re always keen to get our facts right so we consulted Chris and Debbie LIoyd who were the first tenants of the rescued pub. They told us that all the changes were directed by Greene King’s architect, Nick Canell. A major change was incorporation into the pub of the former landlord’s sitting room at the back of the pub (in the right hand section as you face the front wall). The small front bar on that side then had a separate door to the street (still there but kept locked). The wall which formerly divided the right hand bar from that on the left was knocked through to create the opening between them. The kitchen was added and the right hand side wall was rebuilt (the pub was at the end of a terrace, the rest of which has been demolished).

However, uncertainty still surrounded the area around the snug and its relationship to the now blocked up door from the alleyway. This was compounded when current licensee Craig produced an old photo showing that door labelled “Bottle and Jug”.

Only one thing for it – ask Greene King for the architect’s plans, and they quickly obliged. These cleared up the mystery. The alleyway door had indeed led to an off-sales, straight ahead, with a wall on the right, now removed. However the snug was there, accessed from a door on the left – so it’s original after all. You can also see on its outside wall (now within the bar) the tip-up seats used by customers of the “office”.

The drawings also confirm that the bar counter and bar back, the dados and bench seating and the fireplaces were all installed at the time of the refit.

It’s certainly great to learn that the snug, one of the most atmospheric pub rooms in the area, is a genuine relic from Victorian times. And although the rest of the interior is essentially a confection, it’s still a lovely place to be – helped of course by the consistent excellence of the ale and food.