The Black Horse – 2011

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Night Reviewed: Wednesday

So, the final review of our first round of reviews.

It’s taken some time for us to post this review. For a start, this is the second time we have reviewed this establishment. The first time I lost the review notes and the scores way back at the start of 2011. This time we reviewed the place at the beginning of December 2011 but work has since overtaken matters, so it’s only going on now.

Anyway, as we took our seats, we could see the council workers putting up the Skipton Christmas lights outside. This distracted us for a short time from the annoying video screen above our heads which was playing a scrolling procession of advertisements and music videos.

The beer choice was ok. The usual suspects were present and correct, as well as one or two Copper Dragon beers. When in Skipton, do as the Skiptonians do – so we plumped for a couple of pints of Copper Dragon Best Bitter. Decent enough pints – and as we’ve no doubt said before, you would hope they would be when the beer has only travelled a few minutes down the road!

As we enjoyed our pints, we realised that the writing was on the wall for this pub – literally. A history of the pub was written on the wall next to us. The building was erected in 1676 and is Grade II Listed. Previously known as ‘The Kings Head’, it changed its name to ‘The Black Horse’ in 1729. Sadly it appears it hasn’t been redecorated since. Ok, maybe an exaggeration, but it certainly needs a facelift – years of carnage on a Friday and Saturday evening have clearly taken it’s toll. Apparently in 1893 the Craven Herald reported that Oliver Cromwell’s soldiers drank here during the Civil War. So quite a history there.

Generally the pub was busy for a Wednesday evening, though this may have been the start of the festive drinking season. However the volume of the music would have you think the place was packed to the rafters. We don’t mind a bit of music in a pub, but mid-week when you fancy a quiet pint, it was a bit too in your face.

Overall this is obviously a popular boozer at weekends due to its sheer size – its almost like a nightclub in reality. Due to its location on the High Street it’s also a popular haunt with tourists during the day. It wouldn’t be our first choice for a quiet mid-week pint, though we acknowledge that it’s probably not that sort of place anyway – if you want a big, busy, late opening weekend party boozer, then this is destination number one in Skipton.

Scores

Beer Choice (1 – 5): 2
Beer Quality (1 – 10): 7
Service (1 – 10): 7
Atmosphere (1 – 5): 2
Décor (1 – 5): 1
Toilets (1 – 5): 1.5

TOTAL: 20.5 (out of 40)

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