Friday, April 24, 2009

Picture Of The Day : Riding Through The Glen

Today's picture takes up a theme I was running on the now consolidated "Pint Of Best" Blog and that is the survival of the British pub. With pubs now closing at a rate of five a day (is this what the Government meant by its famous "five a day" campaign) some time ago I decided that you should try never to pass an open pub without calling in for a pint, and if you can't have a pint at least take a picture of the pub before it disappears. The subject of today's picture - the Robin Hood which is on Wakefield Road in Brighouse - sadly fell into the latter category as I was on my way between two supermarkets (On a side issue, did anyone else notice the recent report which says there are now more supermarkets open in the UK than there are pubs?). So, as yet, I have not been in the Robin Hood, but I am determined to throw away my Tesco bag and call in there very soon.
So why, visitors from Beijing and Alberquerque (I know you are out there, you can't hide from Feedjit) will ask, is there a pub called the Robin Hood in Brighouse? Bighouse is nowhere near either Nottingham nor the Sherwood Forest Visitors Centre. Well it's a long and contentious story - some people believe that Robin Hood, if he existed at all, lived in the wooded glens just south of Pontefract making him a true Yorkshireman! But what is beyond dispute - if anything in a fictional story can be beyond dispute - is that he died at Kirklees Priory which was a few miles down the road from the Robin Hood pub. As he lay dying he is said to have shot an arrow and asked to be buried where it fell. In the woods just east of Brighouse is a Victorian grave which is said to be his. More recently someone has claimed that his bones were actually uncovered during building works on the site of the old Priory. I prefer the idea that the arrow - aided by a strong easterly wind - was carried into Brighouse and fell within the Tap Room of the Robin Hood. If I have time tomorrow I think I will call in and pay my respect to the old chap.

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