West Lancs Wander: Revisited

Yesterday saw the ever-hopeful band of ROB Camra venture into the wilds of West Lancashire. A variation of a trip that we last undertook some three years ago, it was interesting to compare and contrast the fortunes of the various hostelries.

First stop was the Original Farmers Arms at Eccleston. I’ve been here before and must admit to finding the Good Beer Guide description annoyingly misleading. It says that:”Up to 6 real ales are available, predominantly sourced from local micros.” They’re not; only two pumps are given over to micros. That aside, the Fuzzy Duck Golden Cascade was an easy start to the day

Our next stop, the designated lunch stop-as last time, was Croston. This proved disappointing on our last visit and I’d heard it had actually got worse. So it proved, at least for most of the party. The ex GBG listed Wheatsheaf was closed-no great loss judging by our previous experience here. The current GBG entry, the Lord Nelson, suffered from appalling service, whilst the nearby Grapes beer quality was less than stellar.
However, those of us more seasoned beerhounds who don’t mind going off-piste, whilst on the piss, were better rewarded for our efforts. The Black Horse, which on our last visit was a Cains house, was selling Moorhouses, and Everards (pronounced “fakatu”) Whakatu. Across the road, the sports club was selling a rather tasty pint of Arkwrights.

It wasn’t far to the Euxton Mills at Euxton and some Cocker Hoop and Cocky Blonde. The Red Herring at Coppull has a limited range, but is an interesting pub conversion. It once housed the offices of the mill next-door and has a decent outdoor drinking area where we enjoyed out Hornbeam Mary Rose.
The final stop undoubtedly offered the best selection of the day. Ten real ales were on offer at the Crown In Worthington . There was plenty to tempt the closet and not-so-closet ticker, but I found Oakham Citra to be the best of the bunch. This, despite Tandleman’s adjudging it to be inferior to Ossett Citra, brought much enjoyment to many. Perhaps too much to some people.

An excellent day out, socially, but Croston really needs to up its game to regain its once proud reputation.


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