The Bacon Arms, Newbury

The Bacon Arms, 10 Oxford Street, Newbury, offers accommodation and beers from Marston’s breweries. It is a Grade II listed 18th century coaching inn, which may have 17th century origins. It is named after the Bacon family who were based at Elcot Park in Kintbury.

Ian MacQuire is the new Landlord at The Bacon Arms. Ian has previously run The George and Horn at Kingsclere. Prior to becoming a Publican he served for 10 years in the Army.

A special interest of Ian’s is matching beer with chocolate. Perhaps West Berkshire CAMRA should investigate getting Ian involved with this for a themed social event at the pub?!

The kitchen at the Bacon Arms has reopened, including serving roasts on a Sunday. Special offer nights are Curry night (Wednesday) and Grill night (Thursday). For meal details visit the Menus page on the pub’s website.

The pub is usually open daily from 12 noon.

Live music returns with Gary Myles on New Years Eve 2021 and there will be a Jazz Night on 22 January 2022. A Comedy Night is planned for 21 January 2022. The pub is looking for someone to host Quiz Nights and anyone interested should contact Ian directly.

The exterior of the pub has changed over the years as shown in the photo below, from several years ago.

Phone: 01635 31822


Facebook: @baconarmsnewbury

The Bowler’s Arms, Wash Common, Newbury

The Bowler’s Arms has relocated to the new Falkland Cricket Club pavilion at Enborne Street, Wash Common, Newbury, with Richard Hayman continuing in the role of publican in charge.

When it first reopened in the impressive new premises, on 19 July 2021, no food was available but meal service resumed on 7 October 2021. Meals are served every lunchtime and Monday – Saturday evenings. Menus can be viewed online. The bar is usually open daily from 12 noon.

From Saturday 13 November, the Saturday Breakfast Club was introduced on Saturday mornings from 10.30am – noon.

Recent special events at the pavilion or cricket ground have included the annual sports quiz in aid of the Newbury Weekly News Over 80’s Christmas Parcel Fund (18 November), Falkland CC’s annual fireworks display (5 November) and Wash Common Community Festival (11 September).

There are multiple screens with Sky Sports for major events.

A separate function room is available.

Three cask ales are usually available including Fuller’s London Pride and St Austell Tribute.

The new premises certainly dwarf the previous single storey building (on right) which was demolished to provide a larger car park (photo from March 2020).

Visit the gallery area at the foot of the pub website’s home page for more photos including those shown below.

Phone number: 01635 47658

Bowler’s Arms website:

Facebook: @thebowlersarmsnewbury

Pubs adding Tipi tents etc.

The Old Boot Inn, The Craven Arms, The John O’Gaunt, the Woodpecker, the Five Bells, the Pheasant Inn, the Bladebone, the Blackbird, the Angel and the White Hart (Hamstead Marshall), the Rowbarge and the Bull Inn are among pubs in West Berkshire that have added Tipi tents or marquees to provide extra covered outdoor seating areas.

Click on links under photos (in blue text) to visit the pub’s website or social media account.

The ‘Boma’ tipi in the garden of the Old Boot Inn, Stanford Dingley
The Tipi tent at the Craven Arms, Enborne
Tiki tents in the garden of the John O’Gaunt Inn, Hungerford
Marquee with clear vinyl windows beside the Woodpecker, Wash Water
The stretch tent at the Five Bells, Wickham
The Garden Room at the Pheasant Inn, Shefford Woodlands
Heated teepee tent at The Bladebone, Chapel Row, Bucklebury
Covered and tented areas at The Blackbird, Bagnor also used for Paloma Pizza
Marquee at the Angel, Woolhampton
White Hart, Hamstead Marshall
Marquee at the Rowbarge, Woolhampton
The Bull Inn, Stanford Dingley

Pubs offering takeaway meals

When lockdown or tier restrictions prevented pubs welcoming diners into their premises, some have offered takeaway meals as a way to keep their staff employed and provide a service to the community.

Some pubs have offered a daily takeaway service while others offer takeaway meals at the weekend only, depending on their circumstances.

The Gun, Wash Common, Newbury

There is usually a requirement to order meals in advance for a specified collection time in order to ensure that the pub has enough ingredients and can space out customers’ arrival times.

Some pubs also offer a local delivery service which may involve an additional charge or minimum order value. Delivery of beer and cider may also be available.

Image result for camra pulling together

Obviously, support from members of the public by ordering takeaway meals, advising their friends or mentions on social media etc will assist the pubs offering this service and help them to stay open. #PullingTogether

In February 2020 the list of pubs in the West Berkshire CAMRA area offering takeaway meals includes:

BagnorBlackbird (Friday – Sunday)

BeenhamSix Bells (Friday & Sunday)

Chaddleworth – Ibex Inn (Daily)

Compton – Foinavon (Tuesday – Saturday)

EastburyPlough (Wednesday – Sunday)

East GarstonQueens Arms (Friday & Saturday evening)

East Ilsley – Crown & Horns (Tuesday – Sunday)

The Great Shefford

Great Shefford – The Great Shefford (Thursday – Sunday)

Hampstead Norreys – White Hart (Wednesday – Sunday)

HermitageFox Inn (Wednesday – Sunday)

HungerfordDowngate (Thursday – Sunday), John O’Gaunt Inn (Thursday – Sunday, order on 01488 683535)

KintburyBlue Ball (Friday & Saturday evening), Dundas Arms (Friday & Saturday evening + Sunday breakfast)

Coach & Horses, Midgham

MidghamCoach & Horses (Friday – Sunday)

NewburyCatherine Wheel (Delivery only, Wednesday – Sunday, via Deliveroo), Document House (Friday – Sunday), Gun, Wash Common (Tuesday – Sunday), Spare Wheel (Thursday – Sunday + deliveries via Deliveroo), Woodpecker, Wash Water (Sunday lunchtime)

Peasemore – Fox (Friday – Sunday)

Stanford DingleyOld Boot Inn (Fridays)

Cottage Inn, Upper Bucklebury

Upper Bucklebury – Cottage Inn (Thursday – Saturday)

West Ilsley – Harrow (Tuesday – Sunday)

WoolhamptonAngel (Daily, order on 01189 713827)

YattendonWest Berkshire Brewery Taproom & Kitchen (Thursday – Sunday)

Please advise if any changes are needed to this list.

Work from the pub!

Many people are now able to work from home for one or more days per week. However, for some people there may be advantages to work from a third party site. Recently, there has been a trend for pubs to offer work facilities with table space, refreshments and wifi etc.. [Pub Desks were featured in a BBC News post on 11 October.]

The Newbury, 137 Bartholomew Street, Newbury is the first pub in West Berkshire to offer a daily ‘package deal’ for people wanting to work from the pub.

Click on the link below for details of facilities offered by pubs below (further pubs – all offering wifi / plug socket – will be added as advised).

The Newbury, Newbury – ‘Rent a desk‘ £20 per person from 9am to 5pm (Wed, Thu, Fri) includes lunch, unlimited tea and filtered coffee. T&Cs apply to enquire email

Crown & Horns, East Ilsley – Pub desk – indoors or outdoors (eg marquee). From 10am (Mon-Fri). £10 for 2 hours includes lunchtime ciabatta, unlimited tea & coffee. Tel 01635 281545 [There was a feature in the Daily Mail about the Crown & Horns pub desk offer on 13 October 2020]

Old London Apprentice, Newbury – ‘Pub desk’ in Back ‘Office’ bar – 3 hour slots including fries + dip and unlimited tea / coffee for £10. Contact Ken 07919004902

Plough on the Green, Newbury – #WorkFromBars Book 2 hour slots. Breakfast and unlimited tea / coffee available for £10. Book 01635 45207.

Rowbarge, Woolhampton – WFTP (Work from the Pub) – 5 tables bookable 11.30am – 5pm for £20 to include light lunch, unlimited tea & coffee. Tel 01189 712213

Bunk Inn, Curridge – Pub desk – 12 noon – 3pm (Wed, Thu, Fri). £15 includes light lunch, unlimited tea & coffee. Tel 01635 200400

Work from your local

Work from your local, is a community campaign to encourage people to work one day a week from their local pub, cafe or space. Venues are shown on a map on the WFYL website. Venues add themselves to the map (it’s free and they keep all income generated), stipulating their requirements for working there. People use the map to find venues they can work from.

Dining offers at pubs

Many dining pubs participated in the Government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme during August 2020.

Some pubs are continuing special dining offers from September 2020. The list below is not a full list and some offers may no longer apply so the advice is to check and book with the pub in advance. Click on the links for more details. Note that vouchers &/or advance bookings may be required for some offers.

West Berkshire Taproom and Kitchen, Yattendon (Mon-Wed)

The White Hart, Hamstead Marshall (Wed & Thu)

The Dolphin, Newbury (Tue & Wed)

The Queens, East Garston (Tue & Wed)

The Eastbury Plough, Eastbury (Wed)

The Bowler’s Arms, Newbury (Thu)

The Catherine Wheel, Newbury (Mon – Wed)

Hare & Hounds, Speen (Mon – Wed)

The Tally Ho, Hungerford Newtown (Mon – Wed)

The Five Bells, Wickham (Thu)

The Fox, Hermitage (Mon – Wed)

The Fox at Peasemore, Peasemore (Thu – Sun)

The Blackbird (Pizza Paloma), Bagnor (Wed & Thu)

The Castle, Donnington (Mon – Wed)

The Red House, Marsh Benham (Mon – Wed)

The Swan, East Ilsley (Tue – Thu)

The Angel, Woolhampton (Mon – Wed)

The Old Boot Inn, Stanford Dingley ( Mon & Wed)

The Bull Inn, Stanford Dingley (Tue & Wed)

The Bladebone, Chapel Row (Wed – Fri)

NB – No cask ale available at establishments below:

Oxford Street Kitchen & Bar, Newbury (Mon – Wed)

Slug & Lettuce, Newbury (Mon – Wed)

The Woodspeen, Woodspeen (Sun)

Please email with details of any other pubs to include in this list or if any offers are withdrawn.

Castle Inn, Cold Ash

Nathan and Kirsty Wilson-Bridges reopened the Castle Inn, Cold Ash on 9 August 2019.

Kirsty is from Thatcham and first met Nathan while studying at university in his Bristol base. Before their children were born, they ran a village pub west of Bath. They now have two school-age daughters and are keen to cater well for families and allow the pub’s car park to be used for school runs.

They have redecorated the pub and the new Venetian blinds give the pub a more contemporary look. Some original artwork by local student artists, on display, is offered for sale.

The Castle Inn, often used as a meeting place, will remain a community pub and an integral part of the village. Nathan is keen to get a darts team
back in the pub which also sponsors the Cold Ash Boys & Girls Under 9 football team.

Improvement plans include fitting a new kitchen and rebuilding the shelter on the front terrace.

The six cask ales include Good Old Boy, Butcombe Original, London Pride, Sharp’s Atlantic Pale Ale and two changing guest ales. On a recent Cask Marque accreditation visit, the pub scored 100% to gain a plaque and certificate.

Popular events are the Monday quiz, Friday meat raffle and live music.

The pub is open all day from 12 noon daily.

End of an era at the Castle Inn, Cold Ash

On the afternoon of Saturday 3 August 2019, while Maggie Hex was busy cleaning the kitchen, Nick Hex accepted a special award from Tim Thomas on behalf of West Berkshire CAMRA for 29 years service to the community at the Old Chequers, Thatcham and the Castle Inn, Cold Ash.
If Nick and Maggie had stayed on at the Castle Inn a month longer they would have achieved 30 years.
Sunday 4 August is the final opening day with Nick and Maggie running the Castle Inn.
‘Hexit day’ is 6 August! After clearing and cleaning on Monday and Tuesday, a new couple arrive to take over.
Nick remembers that Courage Best and Webster’s Yorkshire Bitter were on the bar when they first took over. Since then, new handpumps have been added to provide a ‘permanent beer festival’. Good Old Boy, Butcombe Bitter and Indigenous Brewery Tickety Boo were among the beers available on Saturday.
The CAMRA group enjoyed a few beers, in good condition, from their patio table in front of the pub.
Nick and Maggie live in the village and although they are leaving the pub trade they plan to continue working for a while before retiring.
Take Courage – Best Wishes & Good Luck!

A summer of fun planned by the Craven Arms

The Craven Arms nestled in the small village of Enborne will be organising a number of events this summer to help celebrate CAMRA’s Summer of Pub campaign – an initiative to encourage pub-going over the summer months.

Starting with a quiz night on the first of the month, they are organising a number of events to encourage locals and visitors alike to head down to their pub this summer. Forthcoming activities include:

  • Outdoor BBQ and licensed bar with live music from the Newbury band Beatlejuice, who will be covering the fab four hits in their own unique way. Visit from 12 pm noon for food and 4-6pm live music on Saturday 6th July
  • Quiz night on the first Monday of every month – the next quiz will be the 5th of August
  • Garden party with a BBQ and live music from Newbury band Mash, covering all your favourite hits both new and old from 5-7pm on Saturday 10th August
  • Summer Ale Amble with the local CAMRA branch, Saturday 27th July
  • Country Day including a BBQ, hog roast and bar from 12 noon – grab your cowboy hats and join our bar dance from 4-6pm with Liam Barnes and Dave Dart on Saturday 24th August

See press release.

To find out more events taking place or to get involved, visit

To find out more about the Craven Arms, visit