Sunday, 24 March 2013

Ye Olde Beverlie

I do promise that not all of the pubs in Canterbury are ridiculously old.  I know it currently looks like that but it's probably just because those are the pubs I tend to hang out in.

They smell nice.

I have just realised that this makes me sound like I go around and sniff old things.
Ye Olde Beverlie (or The Old Bev to the locals) doesn't even try to hide its age.  Clue is in the name.  It's not in the city centre either but located on St Stephen's Hill, leading from the city to the University of Kent. 

The pub is a listed redbrick building, dating back to c.1570 and was built by Sir Roger Manwood as part of a set of almshouses, a history that is proudly displayed within the pub restaurant.   While I was snapping away one of the waiters, clearly excited by the interest I had taken, came up and told me all about the pub.  I like this about The Old Bev; there is a real sense of pride in the premises and it's unique features.
These days it serves a mixture of Mexican and English food (not the most obvious of food choices for a old pub to be honest, but it works).  I did disagree with the chilli board assessments - but that is my personal taste.  I do happen to love my chilli's and I'm sorry, but a Habanero is not hot.
Like the other old English pubs in Canterbury, this one has a warm vibe with low, dark wooden beams pitted with ancient and long forgotten woodworm, a roaring fireplace, higgledy piggledy doors and staircases and nooks and crannies you can secrete yourself in.
Old church pews complete tapestry covered seats while the original ceiling, brick red flagstone floor and old green bottles with wax candles add to the rustic effect.
The Old Bev also has a large beer garden which is wonderful in the summer time and boasts the claim of being the origin of Bat and Trap.  This unique Kentish game is only really found in this corner of the world and is basically pub cricket.  There are a few pubs in Canterbury that still play and every year the Cricket Club hosts an annual tournament.  It's a fun game that is perfect for a summer day with a BBQ and a beer with friends and one that I will cover in a later post!
The wine and beer selection is good - there will be something for everyone here and it is also very reasonably priced.  Their olives are also a great bar snack.
I have not eaten here in years - not since my student days, but the menu could be enough to tempt me back in.  This place is popular with the students, being located close by to many of the student dominated residential areas just outside of the city centre and attracts a varied crowd.  It still runs the ever popular quiz nights as well, a popular destination for the students hoping to win a few extra quid!
Parking is extremely limited out front but there is plenty of on-road parking just around the corner.
Overall, a nice little pub, one I don't go to very often as it is a bit out of the way but definitely worth a visit for a game of Bat and Trap in the summer!


  1. Ooh, I'm a sucker for a good English pub, and this is definitely the real thing! You've photographed it so nicely :)


  2. Thank Jen - if there is one thing Canterbury is good for, it is a good English pub! It is widely agreed that you can drink in a different pub every day of the year in Canterbury and still not have been around them all!