The Stour Valley needs its railway back News from the Angel: Another update ... so soon? ...The Stour Valley needs its railway back

The Angel continues to go from strength to strength. Along with three pub teams (of varying degrees of success, it has to be admitted) there are the distinct drinking groups who assemble at lunchtime, in the early evening, later on, on Saturdays or at Sunday lunchtime, on Mondays or Tuesdays, or just for the crib,and so on.

There are the veterans and the newcomers, the young and old, male and female: one thing binds them - the tradition of a typical English pub.

This update focuses on just a few main events of the last few weeks.

It must be remembered that these pages are an unofficial record of the goings on at The Angel, from the partisan point of view of a paying customer. All views expressed are those of the author. So up yours, Greene King.


Key Events: February 22 2003

The Angel maintained its unique tradition of novelty and innovation when, on this Saturday night, the pub hosted the fourth "Poems and Pints" evening. The second was held on 13 February 2000.The third was on 2 February 2002.
For those not in the know, these evenings take a very simple form, rather like those fine old "Round the Room" song sessions which used to grace pubs (in the days before dreadful Juke Boxes and Musak systems were brought in to appease mindless yoof who couldn't entertain themselves ... ) ... but I digress ... . At a decided time, order is called, and participants begin to contribute verse in a variety of forms: some of it is doggerel, some of it is self-written, some of it is both.
Some of it is happy, some of it is gloomy, some of it is funny, some of it is sad, some of it is deadly serious.
Some of it is familiar, some of it is new.

Let it be said that, in the space of two hours, we had 65 poems read, by a dozen or so people. Some people came to listen. Daisy brought the house down with a couple of brilliant renditions.

If anyone can point me at anything similar happening in any pub, I'd love to hear from them.
Meanwhile, thanks to everybody who read and/or listened, and thanks to Kevin for letting it happen.
Actually, Saturday is normally a quiet night in the Angel, so the till must have smiled as well.

Home Visits from Abroad

As recorded elsewhere, mid-February saw the brief return of our Brittany correspondent, M'sieur Robert Bonfroid aka Mr Robert Chilwell, on his grand Progress to visit friends and family.
It was great to see him, and share his enjoyment of his new abode. He showed us some photos of the wonderful Breton countryside.
He even promised me some to illuminate these pages.
Didn't you, Bob?

March 2003

Nothing like a Good Romance #3

As I wrote last time, "an even better cure for the Dark Days has been the public planning of the Wedding of the Year."
I am delighted to report that, on Saturday 8 March, 2003, TA became Mrs Jonathan Farrance, in a ceremony in Long Melford Church.
Whilst not wishing to risk legal action like that brought by Mr and Mrs Douglas, my reporters at the event tell me it all went without a hitch, that Sippo remembered not to cough at the "just cause and impediment" bit and that Graham did not let out an audible sigh of relief.
The evening "do" at Alpheton Village Hall was in good Suffolk style, and the best efforts of a March gale to demolish the tent gazebo, totally failed to put a dampener on the proceedings.
With everybody else, those of us who have been watching this romance blossom through trips to Uttoxeter, Bournemouth and Greece, wish Jonathan and TA all the very best for their lives together.
Will they make it to Alton Towers? Watch this space.

Team News: Cribbage

The New Year has continued to be one of mixed blessings for the Crib Team. The restoration of Old Salty to the side has had some effect, but they seem destined for a mid-table placing.

Team News: Quiz

The Quiz team won the League.

Let us not crow over the final surge of success against the White Horse, The Swan B and The Globe.

Let us gird our loins, instead, for the struggle yet to come in the Knock Out Rounds.

Team News: Darts

Angel Darters Win A Second Game ... Scoop .... Shock ... Angel Darters Win Another Game ...

Yes: it's true.
On March 3, the Angel D'Arts Team, inspiringly led by Kevin L'Estrange, bettered their previous record of 1 win by winning a second game against a team mysteriously calling themselves "Mutton". I presume it must be the name of a pub.
Grinning from 'ere to there, all Kevin could say was "I'm delighted for the team; we did it for each other, Brian."
Brian smiled too.

Other News

Paula, Kevin and D'Arcy have been on their holidays for the last week or so (10 March). No postcards have arrived, and Kevin did turn up for the most recent Darts team victory, so the exact nature of the holiday is in some doubt.
Rumours of job lots of emulsion being shipped in from Do-it-all lead us to suspect that the time may have been spent decorating.

In the absence of Kevin and Paula, the pub has been left in the calm hands of Quiet Chris, who seems to be another out of the Thorogood stable of bespoke barmen best suited to the tenancies of the Thorogood empire. Welcome Chris. Don't believe everything Dave Hill tells you.

Hannah's off jaunting again.
Now, there's a surprise.
Spain this time.

Jos's extension develops apace. It's all a wooden kit at present, but the roof goes on soon, and then, who knows?

Erratum and Addendum

I have been taken to task in the hallowed pages of my guestbook, by one Young(ish, but rapidly ageing) Whippersnapper from Chelmsford via Tye Green, in the following terms:
"Steve I'm shocked! No room in the news section for my 'enthusiastic' rendering of 'Mustang Sally' on New Year's Eve?"

Sorry Neil. I forgot. Pain doesn't last long, really, does it?

I've been asked to make clear that the "Kebab Club" that meets every Friday night does so only during approved licensing hours.

Oh yes, and Jim "Sizewell" Gardner has been a bit unhappy since the Tractor Boys stuffed the Canaries with their own Sage and Onion, courtesy of Delia.
Smile Jim.

I've decided to keep each addition to these pages separate, rather than simply add length. I hope regular readers will not get too confused.
To see earlier editions, follow thses links:

January 2002 - The New Year begins

And Photos, too

December 2002 - December at The Angel

September 2002 - Early Autumn in Glemsford

August 2002 - International Special Edition

July 2002 - Newcomer at the Sign of the Flower Fairy; Transatlantic Oddities; Peregrinations

June 2002 - The Flower Fairy, World Cup and the Jubilee

Kevin and Paula's Early Days at The Angel The Flower Fairy

The end of The Thorogood Era

Life under The Tyranny of Spaniels

The first part of 2002

News from Christmas 2001 and January 2002

News from - December 2001

Back into October and November 2001

Page maintained by Stephen Clarke, 09 November 2005 Copyright(c) . Created: 27/08/2002 Updated: 06/07/2003