Friday, 23 August 2013


I have visited many boozers over the years. Good ones, average ones - and boozers that are piss poor!

But you occasionally come across a pub that has a 'wow factor'. A watering hole that ticks all the boxes - and one you eagerly look forward to patronising, at the earliest possible opportunity. 

The Polished Knob in Todmorden, on the Lancs/Yorks border was a delight to visit, when doing an article for the local press.

It was originally known as the Black Swan, and built in 1902 by the former Burnley brewer, Massey's - and friends had been telling me to go and pay the pub a visit - so I politely complied with their request.

You walk in and get that instant warm, welcoming feel. The regulars are instantly willing to chat and make you feel at ease.

There is a great selection of ales - six in all - and all rotating, at two quid a pint, Monday to Friday. Christ, there was one at £1.50! A special daily offer - again, ever changing ale.

Regular, Stewart said: " It is a great pub, lovely people and the live entertainment every other Monday is superb. The Walsden Rat Pack are on in 30 minutes, and the place will be packed."

It was a two man band, playing 70's and 80's - and the place did become packed, for 'The Pack'.

These type of boozers are the lifeblood of our local towns and villages - and owners Chris and Claire Hartley have done a superb job in making this, very much, the hub of the community.      .

They have been here three years and are obviously very passionate in providing a service to the residents of Todmorden and beyond,

All cask beers are locally sourced, and they have a good choice.
Claire said: We support eight independent brewers and like to have the lower strength beers - it's what our customers demand."

I was still pretty impressed with the pricing structure for their cask ales - Two quid, Monday - Friday and £2.30 at weekends! Even the Peroni was only £2.50!  

The pub is spacious and open planned - and has an impressive tiled floor as you enter. There is a most attractive emblem of the original owners, Massey's, embedded into the tiles. A nice, historical feature.

Chris said:" It was covered with carpet, when we took over. We were flabbergasted that such a lovely tiled floor and special feature could be hidden!"

Todmorden residents are so lucky to have a boozer like this. No undesirables in this establishment. Just a friendly, mature clientele, enjoying a pint and having a natter - it's how it should be. 

Aye, will be calling again soon to this popular hostelry. What, two quid a pint, a £1.50 special - and SIX rotating ales, served by happy, affable staff. And the ale drunk by friendly, chatty regulars.

Yes indeedy - I will have some of that! :-)