It’s been a while since I sent out a proper newsletter, but I’ll try not to overload this one and bore everyone! There are bound to be some things I can save for the invitation going out in a couple of weeks’ time. Last year at this time I was complaining about the changing weather – downpours and sunburn – and it’s been pretty similar this year. We might have avoided the 40-odd degree droughts around the Mediterranean, but it would have been nice to have some settled dry sunny weather for the start of the school holidays, whatever the temperature!



It was fabulous – if I do say so myself!! We were on Stray FM news during the day, as well as the whole Made in Leeds 6:30 evening programme ‘The Lowdown’ being presented live from our event. James and Kerry were friendly and helpful presenters, and even joined in the dancing at the end.

The event was on the Stray FM website as well, along with The Wharfedale Observer, Yorkshire Evening Post and Telegraph and Argus sites. It even made The Guardian newspaper the following day – just a paragraph in a small article about events across Yorkshire to celebrate Yorkshire Day. [Next year we go global]

The results of the draw itself are now on our website, and the (non-)electronic scoreboard used to record the full list of 21 pairings is shown above with Bob and Catriona making sure everything was recorded correctly. There were so many people to thank that I’ve added them in a separate article at the end of the newsletter. Now the hard work starts – contacting celebrities and convincing them that Yorkshire Day 2018 is THE day to show their pride in their County by visiting it, and us!



At the rate of one per month!

  • I told you a few weeks ago that the White Swan had re-opened in June, and that’s now happily trading away again as though it had never been closed or changed hands.
  • The following month the Black Bull also re-opened – albeit missing its 2 promised start dates – and is now looking the same as before, but a bit different! And
  • Last Friday the Bay Horse also opened its doors again, but I don’t think most people in Otley have quite grasped the fact yet. What’s more, that ‘For Sale’ sign will soon be coming down off the front of the pub, making it, and Market Place/Boroughgate look better. It also shows that New River Retail have taken it off the market and given new landlord Paul an open-ended opportunity to make a success of the place. So let’s give him a hand by spreading the word that he’s open for business, and by all going in to welcome him to Otley! [PS – The sign’s now gone, as of 09/08]



Another one of Otley’s annual festivals that you really must see if you’ve never been to it before. Dozens of cars, bikes, trucks, buses, steam engines and trade stalls. Boot sale, kids entertainments, food and drink and lots more! Last year the weather was glorious – let’s hope it’s just as good this year. Free parking and £4 per adult, at Knotford Nook on Pool Road.



The weekend of Otley Folk Festival should be one where OFF and the pubs work together to make sure that it’s equally successful for both ‘sides’. The Folk Festival is sponsored by Black Sheep Brewery; some of the pubs act as hosts to the programme; and official and unofficial as well as spontaneous and planned musical events take place in many of the others. There is little doubt that many of the town’s pubs do a lot more business that weekend than any other throughout the year, thanks to the Folk Festival being in town. But it’s equally possible that a lot of people enjoy visiting Otley on Folk Festival weekend because there ARE so many pubs! Folk music and pubs do seem to be good bedfellows! The Visit Otley website even heads its own article on OFF “Terrific Tunes and Awesome Ales”!

So is there any other way that the pubs can help OFF to be a success? One obvious way is to take out an advert in the OFF programme. I don’t know the cost, I’m afraid, and it’s obviously a business decision for each pub, but having your details in a programme that so many people read during the weekend will at least let them know who and where you are, amongst the plethora of pubs in town! It also helps the finances of OFF, who have kept the price of weekend tickets down to only £55, and who rely on advertising as well as sponsorship, donations and grants to supplement the ticket price itself. You can also help by putting up posters and selling programmes. Let’s all help to make the Folk Festival weekend a huge success for the whole town.



Chippendale was baptised in Otley on the 5th of June 1718 and went on to be a worldwide furniture and design superstar. Although we have so far not been able to find any hard facts about his exact birth date or location, or where he lived as a child, we do know that he went to Prince Henry’s Grammar School before being apprenticed and moving away to York and then London.

So when the Chippendale Society celebrates his three hundredth anniversary next year, we’ve made sure that Otley will be involved. OPC Secretary Bob Brook is on a working group chaired by Otley Town Partnership, which is already planning how to make next year a memorable one for tourists who come to see where the great man was born. June will be the main month for the town’s celebrations, and we hope that both the Carnival and the Walking Festival will be included. We’ll let you know more when the plans get clearer, but in the meantime here’s the link to the Chippendale 300 website, which includes the Chippendale Trail. Otley’s on it!



As you know, we do like to throw in the odd article about health issues associated with alcohol consumption. Here’s a topical, and fashionable, article from Harper’s Bazaar about Beyoncé and a glass of wine.



St Peter’s brewery from Suffolk was offering visitors free tastings of its two alcohol-free beers, Without Original and Without Gold, at the UK’s first ‘Mindful Drinking Festival’ in London this weekend. The festival aims to “provide a platform for the growing quality and diversity of the UK’s alcohol-free drinking scene, with a range of zero to 0.5% alcohol craft beers, wines, ciders and sodas available for tasting, alongside street food, music and family entertainment. You can read more in Beer Today.



The Leeds branch of the Dementia Action Alliance (DAA) supports groups and organisations to help make Leeds a dementia-friendly city, and brings together everyone in Leeds who wants to make a difference for people living with dementia, including families and carers, so people can still participate in everyday life and maintain as much independence as possible. 

Life with a long-term condition shouldn’t only be about health and care services. It’s the little things that can mean such a lot to a person with dementia… like being given time to explain or pay in a shop or bank, having a helping hand when using transport, feeling welcome and safe in your community, having friends, things to do, ways of remaining a valued member of society.

Watch out for more news in our next newsletter, where there’ll also be details of the Golden Years Film Festival in Bradford at the end of September, which features dementia-friendly screenings. In the meantime, see the Otley Tavern section below for details of a 70s and 80s disco in aid of dementia and Alzheimers charities.



TYKE TAVERNER – Bradford CAMRA Branch Magazine

  • Nice to see this thankyou message to Greg Mulholland in the most recent issue – “ . . . thanks right now for the great efforts he [has] applied towards the campaigns that concern all CAMRA members and regular pub users.” Much appreciated by Otley Pub Club on behalf of our President.
  • Also appreciated is their inclusion of our Secretary’s article on the replacement of traditional pubs by micropubs, but that doesn’t mean we are opposed to new life being breathed into ‘Off The Tap’ in Bingley – now called ‘Platform 1 ¾’. New landlord Sean Garvey [ex-Dirty Dick’s and The Albion] himself says “My heart still lies with old-fashioned pubs. But is it what the public want? Let’s watch, wait and see.”
  • The Sir Titus Salt on Morley Street in Bradford, in the old Windsor Baths, is no longer a Wetherspoons [and not mourned in my opinion at least] It’s currently being run by The Brew Haus next door.

THE GUARDIAN MAGAZINE [Article paid for by Royal Canin]

  • We talk a lot about dogs in pubs, but what about cats? Nelson is the live-in cat at Tapping The Admiral in North London, where he has his own chaise-longue by the fire and has been in the pub for over 4 years. There is even a beer on the bar called ‘Nelson’s Whiskers’. Now we could start that whole argument about which is better – dog or cat – but dogs ARE allowed in as well [if kept on a lead] and they reckon “Nelson stands his ground pretty well” anyway! Now, there are a few ‘cat cafés scattered around Britain already. Any of you Otley landlords feel the time is right for a ‘cat pub’? [And readers, please let us know if you fancy one!]


  • The former Lentoid works on Gay Lane is now owned by Modelsport, who are planning a major overhaul of the premises and restoration of a traditional appearance to the building frontage.
  • The Yeoman – Full planning consent has been granted for “change of use and alterations to former public house into 3 flats and 2 semi-detached houses.” We told you this was in the pipeline, after we started asking the owners, Tate Oils, what their plans were at the beginning of the year. The Bulletin goes on to say “The renovation of a sorry-looking building that has blighted one of the entrances to town with useful accommodation is surely welcome.” That’s certainly true, no matter how bad we feel about having lost our southernmost pub [in town], and together with the brightening up of the old Lentoid site will make Gay Lane look a lot more welcoming to visitors arriving from the South.
  • Otley on the telly – Who’s spotted the cameo of Otley Market Place on the recent national TV advert for Lotto?
  • Boats on the river – initially there will be 10 rowing boats and 10 pedalos.
  • Painting street furniture – Although this and the cutting back of foliage in car parks has been arranged by Otley BID, it is being undertaken by Community Payback and all equipment and paint used is funded by Leeds City Council. See also Otley BID July Update.


  • This is the new 16-page A5 glossy visitor guide produced by Otley Town Partnership and All About The Story. It contains the top 5 ‘must-dos’ for each of 4 different categories of visitor attractions when you ‘make a day of it’ in Otley. It is really rather good, and if you haven’t seen it yet you must go out and get one. I don’t know, but I assume it is being distributed to tourist information centres around the County [and maybe even M1 services, along with our Ale Trail leaflets!] Best thing about it? The Otley Pub Club website gets mentioned twice – in the ‘History and Heritage’ and ‘Great Shopping’ categories


If you don’t know ShortList, it’s an entertaining website containing news, entertainment, style, tech and our favourite Food & Drink!

First there’s a great article by novelist David Whitehouse, arguing that drinking alone isn’t the social suicide you think, nor is it only for boring losers! It even has a plan of the perfect solo drinking environment, and exactly where to sit in it to achieve perfect relaxation and satisfaction.

Then there’s a description of the best holiday Air BnB ever – a whole pub to yourself in rural Ireland. It doesn’t come with any free drinks – just the genuine bar with original hand pumps, pub games, and a garden with an outside fire. The village is tiny and there isn’t even a shop – but there is a real pub if you get fed up of being in your own one!!



THE BLACK HORSE HOTEL, for letting us use their function room free.

CHARLIE CHUCK, for agreeing to join us and take part in the draw.

Doris Dent Estates, for making that possible.

O’DELI, for providing us with a bag full of Prosecco corks to number and use in the draw [sorry we changed our minds and used envelopes instead!]

ANITA WALKER & WHARFEDALE WAYZGOOSE for agreeing to come and swell the numbers and dance on live TV.

MADE IN LEEDS TV for filming The Lowdown live from our event.

DAVE RICKETTS of Otley Camera Club for the fabulous photos.

THE WHARFEDALE OBSERVER, STRAY FM, YORKSHIRE EVENING POST AND TELEGRAPH AND ARGUS, for promoting the event in advance, and reporting on it afterwards.

DAVE PENTELOW, our Survey prize winner, for helping with the draw and bringing his friends along to swell the audience.

PHIL SMITH from SHOE CAKE COMEDY CLUB [last Friday of every month at The Horse and Farrier!] for coming down to support us. And of course –

ALL OF OTLEY’S PUBS, without which there could be no event! May they live long and prosper!




  • Now re-opened and taken off the market! Best bit of news we’ve had this month! Opening hours for the moment are midday to 23:00 Sunday to Thursday, and midday to midnight Friday and Saturday, but might change depending on demand. See article above for more details.


  • Also fully open again [see article above], and Chris and Marcus are keen to provide whatever their customers demand to get the place buzzing again. They’re back to providing a heap of real ales and choice of lagers, as well as a good gin shelf for starters.
  • There’s a quiz every Tuesday night from 9pm. £2 per team; £25 bar voucher for winners; bottle of wine for picture round winners.
  • On Wednesdays from 7pm “Find the Ace of Spades to win a cashpot” – £1 to enter, and it comes with a free supper.
  • Dog friendly pub, with a huge car park and beer terrace at rear.
  • Saturday 19th of August – Spenna from the Otley Ska night on the decks from 9pm. Motown, Northern Dancehall, Bluebeat, mod, new wave, ska, reggae.


  • Quiz every Thursday from 8pm-ish. Comes with a free supper, and 8 pints for the winners.


  • Curious Summer Social on the 18th to the 20th of August. A celebration of beer in the heart of Otley, hosted by North Bar Social and The Curious Hop bottle shop.
  • No tickets needed, just make sure you turn up! Last year the weather was terrible, but it didn’t stop us from having a brilliant time, and this year will be even bigger and thus surely BETTER!
  • Featuring over 40 different taps, we’ll be offering a ridiculous amount of incredible beer from our favourite breweries inside and outside the bar, 


  • They’re in need of extra bar staff, so if you’re interested or know anyone who is, just call in.


  • Now have all Sky Sports channels, including two different channels on two screens, so just ask for whatever sporting occasion you want to watch!
  • Food at half time as well – burgers, jackets, chips, baguettes, paninis. Again, you only have to ask.
  • Children and dog friendly, with a secure beer garden.
  • Large free car park at rear for the nominated driver!


  • Quiz 9pm every Thursday
  • Monday darts, friendlies against The Junction and The Otley Tap House
  • Live music every other Saturday
  • Karaoke every Friday night
  • Delicious home-cooked food
  • SKY sports


Live entertainment still to come in August:

  • 18/08 – Saul
  • 19/08 – Ajay Lister
  • 25/08 – Andy Gale
  • 26/08 – Tony Fletcher

And on Saturday 16th September, a charity disco night in 70s and 80s fancy dress in aid of Alzheimers and Dementia charities. 8pm til late!


  • All SKY and BT Sports channels for the start of the football season
  • Darts and dominos leagues starting and need new players [especially darts]
  • Going to start traditional pub games on Mondays from September – bar skittles, bagatelle, shove ha’penny and more.
  • They’d like to start a jazz session late afternoon/early evening on Sundays. Are there any jazz musicians out there who would like to take part? Contact John at the pub.


  • DJ from 7:30 to 11:00pm on Saturday the 26th of August.
  • Experienced bar staff required, just call in and see Marie.


  • Quiz night every Thursday at 8pm
  • All hot drinks come with a free brownie
  • Tap takeover by a different Yorkshire Brewery every month – 4 hand pumps and 1 keg, and a brewery representative on hand to answer questions.
  • Toddler mornings every Tuesday 10am
  • Gin tasting, 1st and 3rd Tuesdays every month


Live music at The Junction In August:

  • 15/08 – The Crows
  • 19/08 – Dr Bob
  • 22/08 – Rock Steady
  • 26/08 – Hallfall Down [Nick Hall]
  • 29/08 – Cherry Valentine


  • I was a bit late getting up to The Yew Tree, on Saturday the 12th. The front car park was full, the back one nearly full of cars – and dead bodies. The pub itself was full of the living dead getting ready for the Otley Zombie Run that night, so I made my excuses and left! (Rather than interrupt a very busy barman with a request for information!) More next month.


  • There’s a big poster by Hogs Back Brewery at the side of the bar called ‘An Introduction to Beer’. So if you and beer still need an introduction, you know where to go!


  • The third of our re-opened pubs [see article above]. Now with a large food menu, including breakfast on market days, entertainment every Friday, and SKY Sports on TV. The building still manages to retain a lot of its old character though!


  • THE MANOR SESSIONS, every Thursday
  • Sunday quizzes every week;
  • open mic Fridays every week;
  • Irish sessions every 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month [evening] and 1st Sunday of the month [afternoons].


  • Nicola and Heather promise a barbecue in their beautiful beer garden sometime over the bank holiday weekend – but don’t know exactly when yet, so watch out for news on their Facebook page.
  • Quiz every Thursday night at 8pm, starting on the 17th of August.
  • Open mic night September 3rd and first Sunday of every month.
  • Roast dinners EVERY Sunday!


  • Open mic night 1st Thursday every month at 8:30
  • Comedy night last Friday every month, next one 25th August at 8pm [doors 7:30] just £5 a ticket.
  • Mondays morning coffee and cake specials, and traditional afternoon teas. Starting 21st or 28th.
  • Mini beer festival during Otley Folk Festival weekend, 15-17 Sept.



As these pages are the responsibility of the individual pubs, I can’t guarantee they’ll be up-to-date, I’m afraid – but where they are, the information is likely to be much more current and comprehensive than my monthly newsletter! It’s worthwhile checking with the one you fancy going to, just to make sure nothing’s changed.






















As with Facebook, some of these might not be up to date, but if you follow them you’re likely to get timely updates on what’s going on between our newsletters.
















I think there’s only two pub accounts in town so far, [as well as ours at otley_pub_club]


Stew and Oyster

– – / / – – / / – – / / – –


Finally, my usual apologies for errors and/or omissions this month. If you are receiving these newsletters and any other correspondence from Otley Pub Club by email, but you no longer want them, just email the return address and let me know. On the other hand, if you stop receiving our newsletters in future but you still want to be a member, something’s gone wrong! Remember this email address for the future – , or get in touch via the website and I’ll put you back on the mailing list right away. Thanks!


Bob Brook

OPC Secretary


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