Expedition to Lowestoft by Man in a Hat .
It’s the big one! A full scale expedition spanning 4 days & 3 nights, that most County Supporters have been planning since June last year.
Sacrifices have to be made.
Friday is Red Nose Day, so getting the bus to Stockport dressed as a ballerina & dancing along the viaduct (all for charity of course), is off for another year.
Sunday is Mother’s Day. Who knows what consequences there may be from missing that?
Over 12 hours has to be spent travelling to & from Lowestoft. The Fingerpost Flyer sets off at 7.30am & won’t get back until well after the last buses have gone.
But, the prospect of watching County play at the UK’s most easterly point, the farthest east County will ever have played, Finland & China aside of course, was just too enticing.
For those of you making the trip, trying to explain to the uninitiated why, just throw some JB Priestly at them!
"To say that these men paid their shillings to watch twenty-two hirelings kick a ball is merely to say that a violin is wood and catgut, that Hamlet is so much paper and ink. For a shilling Bruddersford AFC offered you conflict and art."
Piers & Pints
Lowestoft has much to offer: 2 piers, a beach & its very own brewery - Green Jack. Unfortunately, the brewery tours are only available Friday afternoons, but at least that’s one less thing to fit in I suppose.
But what of the real ale hostelries I hear you cry! Well, after much effort, I’ve narrowed my list of targets down to 18, not counting the ground, which I gather also serves real ale.
There are no less than 6 Good Beer Guide entries to get around. The Stanford Arms, Mariner’s Rest, Triangle Tavern, Oak Tavern, Oddfellows & the Norman Warrior.
The Wetherspoons, which is right next to the station, starts a 17 day beer festival on Friday - Lord help us! It’s named after the famous Polish writer Joseph Conrad.
What’s the link between Lowestoft & Joseph Conrad? I’ll have to get to you about that one.
On paper, the best real ale boozer in town is the Stanford Arms, which boasts over a dozen ales & is a mere 2 minute walk from the ground. I think I better get them a new picture for the WhatPub? website though.
In addition, the Triangle Tavern hosts the annual Thumb Wrestling World Championships, but you already knew that didn’t you?
What’s the Plan?
Friday - breakfast at the Plaza; train to Lowestoft; swift pint in Norwich at the Compleat Angler en-route; arrive about 6pm; exploration of Lowestoft; sing; bed.
Any thoughts of me being first to arrive were shot down in flames on Monday, when Dave Wilks informed me that his party will arrive about 3pm via Doncaster & Nottingham & Geoff Thomas told me that he was going over on Thursday!
I feel like such a lightweight.
Saturday - pier; Man in a Hat duties; match; further exploration of Lowestoft; spicy food; sing; bed.
Those of you planning to enjoy the weekend in Lowestoft may appreciate forewarning that I will be performing at the Fishermans Wharf on the South Pier on Friday evening, & then at the Oak Tavern Saturday evening.
Sunday - other pier; beach; half hour stroll to Oulton Broad for lunch; return to Lowestoft to mop up any boozers yet to be checked out; bed.
Monday - make way home & check in for re-hab.
As you know, you can find all of the pubs I try on the excellent CAMRA website www.whatpub.com
Remember, I’ll be wearing my Top Hat & trying to get as many photos of you lot as possible, for the last time this season, so watch out!.
See you there!
Man in a Hat.