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