Wednesday 21 February 2024

...Back For Another Pint At A Wierd Weatherspoons

Quiet stillness...St Thomas' graveyard, Lymington.

In the quiet stillness of the graveyard of my long past blogs, rests one entitled 'Summoned By Bells',  an epitaph to my fist visit to JDW's 'The Six Bells, Lymington, SO41 9ND back in March 2018.

In it,  I focussed mainly on cheap beer,  the name of the pub being linked to an old pub on the site and the beer drinking bell ringers from St Thomas' church next door., and... oh yes, virtually all my photos were out of focus.

On a more recent visit with my son, Martin, I realised that there was still some interesting, if not downright wierd, stuff about this pub that I had missed last time, and so here we go again...

google maps

The more recent history of The Six Bells premises is that it was an old home furnishing and linen store, a local family enterprise, which traded on the site for 150 years, as C. Ford & Co.  It is situated at the top of Lymington High Street.  

 The old shop front lettering is now displayed inside the pub...

Still on display, the name for household furnishing in Lymington for 150 years.

A photo frame inside the pub records what happened next....

The slightly bizarre tale of a furniture shop a nutshell, it was purchased in 1997 by two blokes,  Terry and Geoff.  They sold gifts and similar household stuff to C. Ford & Co. , and even left the old shopfront name in place.  

Their claim to fame according to the newspaper article shown in the above photo, was that it was Britain's rudest shop, with the owners 'putting straight' any customers who didn't behave well in the shop.  For example: 'if you can't leave those books tidy, then leave them alone'.

When Terry and Geoff decided to call it a day, they sold to JDW, and the story hit the national media (just google 'Britains Rudest Shop').  In their last few weeks of trading they put a sign in the window which said:  

'Britain's Rudest Shop is Closing Down

After 170 years only a few weeks left to be insulted, don't miss the experience!!'

...and when it closed, a new sign took it's place...

'**** OFF!


It should be said however that the insults were (mainly) delivered, and received, in good humour.

How to follow a story like that?  

 Well I suppose I'd better ask for a pint of cask...

Just ask for any of these 3 top cask ales...

....I was tempted by the three headliners (and the Ruddles Best), but in the end opted for a Goddard's Wight Squirrel 4.3% ...

Price rises may have occurred since this photo was taken

  ...a rich, russet colour, not unlike the island's red (not white) squirrels it refers to.  Definitely a NBSS 3.

Russet - just like an Isle of Wight squirrel

Spurning the cask, like an insulted furniture store customer, Martin had some some craft and foreign beers...


...but we buried our differences and shared the crisps...

Two flavour crisps - made for sharing

The other slightly wierd thing in this pub, is on the first floor balcony area, where a set of mirrors are placed to give an kaleidoscopic view of St Thomas' church next door.

St Thomas - creatively reflected.

The rudest shop back story of The Six Bells must be one of the quirkiest for  a Weatherspoons pub...

 ....and all the photos are in focus this time, win-win!

There goes the bell, drink up!

1 comment:

  1. Love this story!! A rude shop is perfect for spoons and I’m a fan of spoons so it’s a big win. The localish brew looked spot on too