Wednesday, 25 July 2012
11 Flying Lady
Visited on 22 May 2012
Here's the photo ...
... and here's the map
Hmmm, large housing estate with roads a little narrower than they might do them nowadays, probably late 60s/early 70s vintage, I wonder who built it? BZZZZT! I know, I know, chalet semis ... it’s a Wimpey estate!
OK you win. Yep, there was one in Hartford that backed onto the West Coast Main Line, which this one must do at its western edge. That one didn’t merit a pub, though. OK, the Coachman was close by, and it’s a decent boozer. And as Clive James might have said, once again I digress. We’ve reached The Flying Lady.
Celebrating that part of Crewe’s recent heritage that included thousands of aero engines and also the cars (until Rolls-Royce became a subsidiary of BMW), this is a single room pub that has a Tetley’s sign outside, but the only product on view is Smoothflow Bitter which is off (for which the licensee gets an extra bonus point).
“Hand pulled ales” are advertised, so what’s on offer? Well, it’s just the one, and it’s Young’s. Er, what? Young’s, as in Young’s of Wandsworth? The stuff they have on at the Buckingham Arms, near St James’s Park Underground? The same (minor confession – I usually have Special at the Buckingham Arms (Young’s do two bitters, the one at the Flying Lady is referred to dahn sarf as “Young’s Ordinary”)).
Why so? Well, Young’s is no longer brewed in London, as the Ram Brewery at Wandsworth closed and production has moved to the Charles Wells site at Bedford. So if brews like Bombardier are available in your town – and we will encounter this one in Crewe, so stick around – anything from Young’s may also appear. As with the Greene King IPA at the Rising Sun, it takes to being served in the Northern style OK.
So, having secured my pint, it’s time to look around. The bar top and other surfaces are an interesting colour. Those cut lines look familiar. Er, it’s kitchen worktop. Ho yus it is. And, d’you know, I’m not fussed about that. If that’s the best value solution for renewing the tops, then good for them. A for effort, in fact.
Everything is contained in one room – it’s a large one – and that’s games area, pool table, stage (music at weekends), and plenty of seating. The ceiling seems a bit low, and I wonder if that gave the extraction system fun before the smoking ban arrived. The low ceiling impression could be because it’s a big open area, or could be the brown wood effect material. I can’t make my mind up on that one.
Overall, the beer is fine and the one word that sums up this pub is Interesting. I’ve visited loads of recent build pubs and they’re usually dead boring. Despite being from the period that style often forgot, the Flying Lady is, well, different. And it’s worth taking a detour to stop by and have a jar just for that. So there.