Tuesday, 19 February 2008
Trouble at the Tubs
The Two Tubs is located in the centre of Bury, opposite the parish church. Allegedly Bury's oldest pub, there are stories of secret tunnels leading between the pub and church. Built around two oak trees from Charles 11's time, it's often quoted as the Two Tubs (AKA The Globe), even though it hasn't been called the Globe for 200 years! Operated by Thwaites, the Blackburn brewer, it use to be a cosy multi-roomed pub with lots of character. It was opened up several years ago and although quite well done, it lost some of its appeal.
The Tubs is something of a conundrum. It should be a flagship for Thwaites, but, as with a lot of their pubs, they didn't seem to know what to do with it. Lacklustre management led to a decline in its reputation and it suffered under the competition of Wyldes and JDW nearby. First mistake was getting rid of cask Mild and replacing it with inferior beers. Second was the half-hearted food operation-food only served at lunchtime when both the pubs nearby were serving all day. Third was the strange opening hours-closed on sundays, thereby missing out on all the sunday shopping trade.
Bizzarely, recently, Thwaites has leased the pub to Eease Leisure who's main interest seems to be weekend entertainment, leaving the pub usually dead in the week. Three beers are available-Original, Bomber and Wainwrights and quality on the Bitter and Bomber is generally ok, if not spectacular. Wainwrights can be more problematic and is sometimes very iffy. Perhaps to try and improve its image, an over 21's policy has now been introduced. Some of the other conditions are reasonable-ie no caps etc. But no work clothes? The Tubs is not some upmarket gastropub. It is an ordinary boozer in the centre of Bury. Even worse is the ban on trainers. What is this, the 1980's??? They should concentrate on the actual clientele, rather than what they are wearing. I always thought the idea of pubs was to be as inclusive as possible, but obvioulsy not.
Whilst sipping some warm Wainwrights, my thoughts were interrupted by an arguement between two old drunks. One I recognised as being barred from most of the pubs in town. I was just thinking they shouldn't have even been allowed in here in their state when kapow, it all kicked off. Cue fisticuffs and broken glass. Worthy of the GBG-the Good Brawl Guide. And this was only Monday night. Well, thanks for proving my point, guys. I suppose it could have been worse-they could have been wearing work clothes or trainers...