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Other Pub News

City Centre

Ranelagh's Tavern is now selling locales. Beers from Rock the Boat and Burscough were available during November. Phil, the landlord, reports local beers will be regularly available.

The White Star on Rainford Gardens, is offering a selected real ale for £2.50 on Mondays to Thursdays, although the sign outside infers all the cask beer might be on offer.

The L1 Bridewell is due to reopen in December as a cocktail bar called Furnival’s Well.

Jean has reported that she enjoyed a few pints of Purity Gold in the Cornmarket recently.

The Pen Factory on Hope Street is now open on Sundays, from 2.00 to 8.00pm.


The Kensington, at 189 Kensington, has reopened after a refurbishment and is reported to be selling real ale.


The Grove on Breckfield Road North was a regular stop for Liverpool supporting CAMRA members going to and from the match when it was a Higsons pub. Happily the pub is selling real ale again, with one handpump in use. I enjoyed a pint of Hobgoblin on the way to a game at Anfield recently. Beers from Moorhouses have also been available.

Not too far away, the Gregson’s Well at the start of West Derby Road, which had been derelict for some time, has finally been demolished. When this was a Higson’s pub, it was a popular stop for people attending wedding ceremonies at nearby Brougham Terrace. The Tetley’s Gregson’s Well that was opposite it, has long since been demolished.


Bryn, the manager of the Willow Bank on Smithdown Road, reports he will usually have a locale on. On my recent visit White Star Seafarers, brewed by George Wright, along with Liverpool Craft IPA, were on tap. There will be also brews from slightly further away available. There are a total of twelve handpulls, with most normally in use at weekends. A good time to visit is Tuesday evening when all real ales are currently sold at £2.25 a pint. A 10% CAMRA member discount is available at other times.

A bit further up the road a planning application has been made to covert the previous Handymans shop at 461 Smithdown Road into a public house with food offer. The building, originally the Sefton Park Picturedrome, is bigger than you might expect. The plans include setting up a ‘Nano Brewery’. These premises will only be yards away from Wavertree’s last brewery at the Finch & Firkin that has long since reverted to the Brook House.

Old Swan

Lee owner of the Alehouse on Prescot Road is organising a small beer festival, Swanfest, at a nearby church hall early in December. All the tickets sold out quickly. I congratulate Lee for his work in promoting real ale in the area, both in his pub and with this festival. It is not too long ago that I wrote a piece for MerseyAle titled ‘Old Swan Beer Desert’.


There is a new licensee at the Derby Arms on the corner of Allerton Road and Vale Road, near Menlove Avenue. On my recent visit Sharps Doombar was available, but it has been reported that this alternates with Jennings Cumberland.


The Toby Carvery Aintree, previously the Rocking Horse, outside the entrance to the racecourse, is reported to be selling real ale.


The final day trading at Merton in Bootle as a Wetherspoon pub will be 11th December. This is part of the company’s policy not to have nearby pubs in their chain competing with other. The pub is expected to open under a new operator a few days later and hopefully will continue to sell real ale.


The handpump at the Bar du Fay was not in use when I visited in November. The landlord told me people chose not to drink the real ale when the weather was warmer. It is a pity the pump is not now back in use now the colder days are with us.


The Old Bank on South Road has introduced a loyalty card for their real ale. Obtain six stamps when buying a pint, to get a seventh pint free. Stamps will only be given and free pints redeemed from 12.00-8.00pm Monday to Thursday and 12.00-6.00pm on Friday.

The Trap & Hatch further along South Road has had problems installing their kitchen. Without food the pub has not been opening until 6.00pm. Hopefully all will be sorted soon and the menu will be available, so the pub will start opening at 11.00am.

Sam, the landlord at the Volunteer Canteen, reports he can have a couple or real ales at a time, free of tie. I enjoyed a pint of Heavy Industry Smoked Porter here during November.


The George, the large Stonegate pub at the start of Moor Lane in Crosby Village is currently closed for refurbishment by Stonegate Pubs. It is due to reopen at 5pm on 7th December.

Further down the lane news of the Crosby Village Social Club is that the building lease sold to a development company, Plans are to redevelop the suite of shops the club is above into a new retail space. Currently there is no cask beer here, but it appears ocassionally.

Nearby, the Crosby Hotel on Liverpool Road was again closed for a period recently. Perhaps the pub would do better if real ale in good condition was served here.

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Other Pub News

Liverpool now has another brew pub. Love & Rockets on Lark Lane have set up a small craft brewery on the premises producing keg beers. On my visit two beers were on tap, Carmen American IPA, 4.3%, and Satch, a 4.0% Export Pilsner. Two other brews are in their range, Gil Craft, 4.1%, and Doralis 4.3%.
The pub continues to sell cask beer, with Big Bog beers from Speke on the hand pumps on my last visit.
Perhaps sister pub, The Esperanza on Hope Street, which calls itself a brew pub, may also start brewing.

The Lord Warden on London Road has stopped selling Rock the Boat beers. Unfortunately sales never took off and some beer was being regularly poured away. Why can such a pub not be able to support real ale?

Two city centre pubs have closed for refurbishment. First is the Grapes Roscoe / Knight Streets, which is receiving its long planned improvements.

The second is the Yates's at Queens Square. The new image is as Yates, perhaps to further distance the modern eating pub from the earlier wine lodges. The pub is due to reopen mid-August.

Another pub being refurbished is the Horse & Jockey on Waddicar Lane in Melling. New publican here, Adam, has been in touch and informs us that real ale will be available when it reopens towards the end of August. Hopefully Adam’s deal with Enterprise Inns will allow him to offer some interesting beers.

A new outlet for real ale in Maghull is Bar du Fay, at 96 Liverpool Road South, which is on the 300 bus route from Liverpool to Southport. There is one beer engine that normally dispenses a beer from the Stamps Brewery. However, when correspondent Sean visited the beer was not on. Perhaps the beer is only available on busier days. People calling in here can afterwards catch the 300 bus up to Lydiate and visit the Scotch Piper.

I noticed that the Laburnum on Litherland Road Bootle is being offered for lease by Admiral Taverns. This pub has hand pumps and I seem to remember Deuchars IPA being sold here in the past, but there has been no real ale recently. Perhaps a new publican might try selling cask beer here again. The Jawbone along the road makes it work.

It is outside our area, but I decided to mention a new micro pub, as it is so easy to get to. The Beer Station at Freshfield is right next to the station. It is open each day, from 3.00pm on weekdays and midday at weekends.

Beer Station small

There are three hand pumps, two of which dispense beers from the local Red Star Brewery. The other will normally be a beer from another local brewery. 

There are also three keg taps that currently serve products from the Freedom Brewery, including their version of a Kolsch. 

Beer Station 2 small

Real cider is planned, but meanwhile there are bottles from Rosies and Aspinalls.
A selection of wines and spirits mean there is something for all people to drink.


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