The Stour Valley needs its railway back

Angel News

July 2006

The Angel: 26.08.00 NLE

That's to say:
Day 236 of the New Licensing Era

Wedding Special :

or, at least,
The Pre-Nuptual Ceremonies

Hazel's Hen


Forthcoming Events at
The Angel



Opening Hours at
The Angel

Daily: until midnight,
with hour drinking up

Friday and Saturday: until 1 a.m.,
with hour drinking up


A recent editorial visit to the hallowed portals of The Angel confirmed that all is in good stead, despite Messrs. Gr**ne K*ng's continuing attempt to imitate Grotneys of 70s notoriety in swallowing up previously-good breweries and to pretend to sell the same beer, but brew it in Bury St Edmunds - thus, Morlands, Tolly, Ruddles, Belhaven have lost, or soon will lose, any vestige of individuality, swallowed up by the accountant-fuelled maw.
But I digress.
The IPA was on excellent form, but much more to the point,
wedding bells are in the air, for

Hazel and Alan.

Weddings of the Century are, indeed, rare events - cropping up approximately once every 100 years or so.
So it is particularly important that we who purport to deal in "News" should have a finger on the pulse, an ear to the ground, an eye to the keyhole and a toe in the water to judge when such an event is about to occur.

Such contortions are beyond my ageing frame, but those who are younger than I have been kind enough to supply me with some of the gruesome details.

Hazel has made a name for herself serving beer. Alan has made a name for himself wearing strange sporting gear unrecognisable to anyone living south of Berwick.

What, exactly, are "Gers"? What is a "Ger"?

Anyway, all good weddings take some preparation, and both Hazel and Alan's many friends and admirers are determined that it shall all be done in style.
Hence what follows.

I received this from someone claiming to be "Mrs Darth". The tale tells of a "hen night" sans pareil.
In Comrade Blairescu's modern utopia, I have to be careful what I write, and certainly must not be seen to be condoning binge drinking, but it seems to me that there is much in this epistle which speaks of genuine affection and "looking out for" a group of fellow-topers.
Thus I make no apology for reproducing it,

and "Ta ever so, Lisa."

... rude, crude and tasteless ... but not really

I report back from Hazel's hen night on Saturday (29 July).
We started off a respectable (well as respectable as can be expected) bunch in The Angel at 5 p.m.
Yes that's right. 5 p.m.

Your correspondent feared for her very life (and indeed for her liver). Still, a fortifying pint of IPA set me right. I settled into a stable yet sustainable drinking pattern and settled back to watch the ensuing spectacle.

We met in The Angel for pre-meal drinking. Around 25 women from aged 17 to 60 dressed in fancy-dress. Yours truly was dressed as a pirate wench, which just ended up being a wench as the pirate bandana was too hot, and my sword kept poking people.
Hazel was dressed as Boudicca, and looked very regal. Amongst the throng were the following - as and when I can remember them:

  • Cleopatra (x2)
  • Disco Divas (x3)
  • Boudicca
  • Tinkerbell
  • Wench
  • Highway Woman
  • Bride of Dracula
  • Carmen Miranda
  • Little Bo Beep
  • Flamenco Dancers (x2)
  • Cruella De Ville
  • Minnie Mouse
  • Snow White
  • Pocohontas
  • St Trinian
I am sure I have left a few out, but no doubt others will fill you in.

6.00 p.m. - head off in a minibus to the Hartest Crown. There we had a lovely meal, whilst taking it in turns to humiliate the bride-to-be with little 'gifts'. These gifts were rude, crude and tasteless in the way only a hen night can manage. The memory of Hazel running around The Angel whilst wearing a hairnet, plastic apron and rubber gloves will make many hardened Angel drinkers positively flinch.

10.00 p.m. - we headed back to Glemsford for the official hen night 'tour of duty'. This involved a pubcrawl in Glemsford, which started at The Crown and was supposed to include the Black Lion, the Cherry Tree, the Sports and Social Club, and then finishing off at The Angel.
Luckily for the regulars at both the Cherry Tree and the Social Club (and rather unluckily for The Black Lion), the Black Lion had a karaoke night, so there we stayed. Some people sang, and one of the party threatened the karaoke organiser with being hit by a copper bed pan unless he was more appreciative of our efforts. There was a resounding, and heartfelt rendition of 'Black Velvet' by Allanah Miles,
(Editor's Note: there used to be a wonderful local pub duo ("Motivation"??) who did a brill version of that)
sung (shouted) by the slightly wobbly and emotional group, before we bid them farewell and staggered up to The Angel.

I'm not going to name or shame anyone, but I do recollect a certain pub landlady (brandishing two double vodka and cokes) refusing to leave the Black Lion on the grounds that she was having "far too much fun to be going home jusht yet *hic*"...more on that one later.

(Note of the time has been removed, in case Blairescu's Licensing Police read this)
The hardcore hens who hadn't cried off pleading liver failure ended up back in The Angel, where Kevin provided sustenance in the form of pork scratchings. Alan had very kindly put some money behind the bar to provide us all with a fortifying shot (or five) of vodka which was much appreciated. Many men of ill-repute (mainly the Plumb boys, Darth, Mark, Alan, Porous and Tom) were waiting to offer congratulations to the bride-to-be. This turned to howls of fear, as the hoard of drunken women started to get lairy (and as Hazel started running around with the hairnet on, with the addition of a very interesting pair of novelty deely boppers).

At around ( time censored to protect the innocent from Blairescu's Snoopers ) someone enquired as to the whereabouts of a certain pub landlady...whereupon a bewildered Tom (who had escaped into the night about 5 minutes previously) herded the slightly worse-for-wear Pillar Of Village Society through the door (along with a slightly dishevelled friend). Kevin was ordered to buy everyone a round of drinks, and there was a bit of a war with the volume of the music (with the Pillar Of Village Society winning). Darth Porter disappeared and then appeared behind the bar wearing a Cruella De Ville wig and brandishing a cigarette holder - for some reason he was asking us if "we wanted a Tia Maria, darlings?". The relevance of this was lost on your correspondent, but it seemed to strike a chord with older drinkers.
(Editor's Note: if you really want to know, visit this page.)
I am also slightly worried by the eagerness of Darth to dress as a woman. Perhaps he secretly wishes to be Princess Porter?

When the dancing started, and the final revellers started to sing along to Jethro Tull, your correspondent was escorted from the premises by a very patient and sleepy Darth Porter. I had an absolute ball, as did everyone else (judging by slightly pale looking Paula the following evening).

From levels of soppiness shown by the Bride and Groom To Be, they are looking forward to the wedding next week, and they will live - as they do in all the best sorts of fairy tales - Happily Ever After.

And that is all we can wish anyone

Mind you, I can't wait for the account of the Stag Night!


The True Spirit of The Angel

(The True Spirit of Glemsford)

However much we might chuckle (or tut) at the sort of exploit described above, certain truths remain.
When Mrs Darth wrote the Hen Night account, she added an extra paragraph, which I'm including here (with her permission):

"Other than that, I can happily confirm that I am fully settled in Suffolk.
L*ng M*lford isn't so bad, it is a big change from Manchester, but all for the better - it is so nice being able to walk through the village and have people smile and say hello rather than look at the pavement and totally ignore you as you walk past.
We've not gone entirely native however, and are keeping Manor Taxis well in funds by making sure we have at least one night a week in our favourite pub.
Everyone has made me feel so welcome, and I am eternally grateful to Paula, Hazel, and Mandy for making me feel so at home on the monthly girls night out.
It is hard moving so far away from your circle of friends and there is a risk of feeling isolated but thanks to the girls at The Angel, I seem to have bypassed that."

And that really does say it all about a village which attracts some criticism but is, in reality, a lovely, lively, friendly place.
Thanks again, Lisa.

Page maintained by Stephen Clarke, . Copyright(c) 2006. Page Created: 31 July 2006