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Back street dive pubs

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posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 10:22 AM
I was working out of town today and took a lunch break at the dodgiest looking back alley pub I found close by.
It was great, pint of local real ale and a meat pie came to £3.50, free pool table, had a game with some guy who thrashed me while telling me tales about how he had just got out of police custody after a night in the cells for fighting, then I bought some cheap tobacco from an old man who sells it from his regular barstool in the corner.

Complimentary newspapers on the bar, the place stank of pot lol, full of rogues, but one of the most inviting places I've been to. I had no worries leaving my bag and pint at my table when I went out for a smoke, and chatted to a few more locals in the smoking area.
Now I fitted in quite well because I was in my scruffy work clothes and I grew up in a similar environment. I imagine in my suit and tie days I would have stuck out like a sore thumb and not been so welcomed, but I love these old fashioned back street pubs in Britain.

We have a few national chain type pubs and you can always expect the same drinks/food etc, but they just don't have the atmosphere so I never use them. Every time I'm out of town I find the roughest looking pub and am always pleased I did.

So, to Brits and members from other countries, do you shy away from such places or do you embrace them? They are slowly dying out in the UK due to the smoking ban, and competition of cheap alcohol from supermarkets, but every town and city has them still, and they are full of crazy cats compared to mainstream commercial bars.
Earlier this year I was working in the NE of England and found some brilliant backstreet boozers there, just the same, dodgy people but salt of the Earth.
Long live the British boozer

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 10:41 AM
a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

I’m attracted to the most dingy, dark, dangerous looking places you can go. I love dive bars.

Funny story, I got banned by the one I lived near in Los Angeles. It’s called (or was called) the smog cutter. The only people banned for life are me, Kim Jong Un, and Charles Bukowski. Our pictures are hanging behind the bar.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 10:43 AM
a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

The country does not matter to me but paying 5 times what a pint costs in the supermarket seems kinda silly. I can drink discreetly if need be but there's no way I'm paying 5 times for the privilege. I'm not a pub kinda guy.

ETA A "pint" (actually a half litre) costs almost 5 euros here in the Netherlands. No thanks. I'll pay 50 cents at the local supermarket and drink it at home.
edit on 5/9/18 by LightSpeedDriver because: ETA

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 10:44 AM
a reply to: underwerks
Haha cool story!

There were pictures of guys banned from the pub I was in today, a rogues gallery behind the bar above the spirits lol

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 10:46 AM
a reply to: LightSpeedDriver
Ah I like the human interaction thing, especially working out of town. The local ale was only £2 a pint and that was well worth the laugh I had with strangers.
Trendy bars nobody talks to each other, so you really are just paying for the drink, but back street boozers though, you get community for your penny's as well.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 10:54 AM
a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

When i left England i could go into my local pub on a friday night which itself was an inner city rogues gallery and drink about 6 pints and hit the chippy or kebab shop on the way home for about a tenner and forward twenty years later to about 3 months ago when I was recently back in Manchester UK and found a pub in the centre of Stockport that sold Polar bear lager for the grand sum of one pound twenty so i had a fair few and hit the chippy again all for about a tenner which was mind boggling given that i could just about get 2 pints for just under a tenner anywhere else.
The pub in stockport had smack rats coming in selling what they had just blagged on a shop lifting spree as well as shady deals being made in the dingy corners of the pub and money exchanging hands.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 10:55 AM
I have always been the local dive bar type...hate clubs.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:01 AM
About 40 odd years ago me and a mate were travelling around Northern France on a motorbike. On our way back to catch the ferry in La Havre we stopped at a bar in the dock area. It was rougher than sharks skin (if you've never felt shark skin you haven't lived) when we first went in you could cut the air with a knife. We got our drinks and it lightened up slightly but it went surreal quite quickly.
It was all down to a pinball machine. As we were on our way back we'd got a lot of shrapnel Francs so I had a go on the machine to get rid of it. Well cut a long story short I kept getting replay after replay. The locals virtually fell to the floor to worship us as literally no one EVER got replays on this pinball.
We left half an hour later and left the locals with about 20 replays as we'd gotta catch the ferry. We were better than sliced bread. They shook our hands, kissed us and they all came outside to wave goodbye to us.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:03 AM
a reply to: southbeach
Haha another cool story

Good deal on the lager, probably smuggled and 'tax free' then.
Smack rats selling stuff lol I see that all the time as well.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:06 AM
a reply to: crayzeed

Man that is really pulling it off, a French back street boozer being English!
I bow to you for that myself haha

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:06 AM
a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

Only pubs I drink in are 'traditional' old fashioned boozers with 'traditional' old fashioned principles.

Mainly drink in a good friend of mine's pub nowadays, I do some door and bar work for him as well.
No rogues gallery, don't need one.
We don't suffer fools and false people are soon found out and are 'encouraged' to drink elsewhere.

Vast majority of people have some sort of edge - run of the mill average Joe's don't last long.

Reasonably priced well kept beer and lager is a must.

Could tell a thousand one stories but......

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:16 AM
a reply to: CornishCeltGuy
I wont tell you the story then of before we went to France, while waiting for the ferry over we went into a dive in Southampton docks.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:17 AM

originally posted by: CornishCeltGuy
There were pictures of guys banned from the pub I was in today, a rogues gallery behind the bar above the spirits lol

I've been in a pub where they had a rogues gallery as "artist's impressions". It was really very good, and insulting!

In my past I have been in my share of dodgy places. If you don't start insulting people then it's good and they'll treat you like you are passing through - i.e. as a neutral. Just sit with your back to the wall so you can see the chair coming!

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:18 AM
a reply to: Freeborn
Yes, the best pubs in my opinion

My local is just the same, it's not a pub which many tourists would even notice, proper back alley down shady steps.
The paedo who got disappeared I mentioned in another thread was at that pub, not a pub to misbehave in, clear pecking order with men. My favourite pub, feels like going to a mates house.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:32 AM
a reply to: paraphi
Dodgy looking pubs are the best for people who chat when on my own. Just stick a quid on the pool table and play someone, I love that about old school pubs, meet loads of random people.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:49 AM
When I used to play guitar and sing the blues in bars for drinks and tips; it was always the scroungy places where the patrons tipped well and appreciated the Blues.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 11:58 AM
a reply to: olaru12
I love local live artists in backstreet pubs! I have mates who play the same and rough gigs are the best.
On that note, here's a localish band I've watched at some of the roughest pubs before they started getting bigger venues...

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 12:07 PM
Yep I've always had the most fun in dive bars good times. If you buy a couple rounds for everybody they treat you like a king . Lol

Another example is if you're looking for barbecue pick out the most decrepit place you can. They always have the best food .

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 12:18 PM
Nothing like a dark old bar with the smell of stale beer, old leather, and a old air conditioner blowing fog out of the vents. Thinking about it reminds me of an old haunt of mine on US-1 down on Marathon key.

posted on Sep, 5 2018 @ 12:32 PM
a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

Old Boozers are the best.
Gave up Clubs 15 years ago.
As someone else commented, you'll not get any conversation in a chain pub.
The old places manage to keep their charm and atmosphere wheras the new upstarts are devoid of it.
On a Lads weekend in Endnburgh (the Pub crowd)we made a small local our point of reference.
19 of us on and off all weekend. ALways welcomed even though we practically filled the place a few times.
On our last day we got to leave our luggage there for a few cheeky slurps before our flight.
A month later a load of them came to visit us on the back of our visit.
Raising a pint from my local of choice to this thread

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