Although ‘Storm Barbara’ was promising gales and heavy rain, four walkers met in the Water Witch at the appointed hour. Barry was suitably dressed with one of his seasonal jumpers. The first beer was a Bootleg ‘No. 1 Christmas’. A walk along the canal to the White Cross, a selection of beers greeted the party, I tried third pints of Hook Norton ‘Greedy Goose’, Hawkshead ‘Jingle Bells’ and Burton Bridge ‘Old Expensive’. It was the opening day for the Britannia, after its purchase and refurbishment by the Borough Brewery, so that was our next port of call, all their beers were available, along with Old School ‘Old Yule’. ‘Barbara’ was getting into stormy mood as we walked down Moor Lane, we took shelter in the Gregson and a Lancaster ‘Chestnut Red’. The rain eased a bit and we continued down to the ‘Whittle’ (Golden Lion), a Castle Rock ‘Snow White’. On to the Tap House, Fell ‘Spiced Raisin Brown Ale’ and the strong and expensive Hawkshead ‘Northern Imperial Stout’ at 9.5. The Bobbin was our final stop, we perhaps should have started there, as there was a god selection of festive ales, I tried the Abbeydale ‘Damm Good Stuffing’ and Skinners ‘Christmas Fairy’. A very good day with I think the best ever collection of Christmas beers.
A slightly smaller group met in the Exchange, three beers, I tried two, Wadsworth ‘Dray Bells’ and Milestone ‘Donner Blitzed’. It was a somewhat disappointing day, only finding Christmas ales in two more pubs, although we called in others, drinking non-festive brews. The Eric Bartholomew had Arundel ‘Winter Knights’ and a fruity Cross Bay ‘Christmas Ale’. The Morecambe Hotel had Bank’s & Taylor ‘Santa’s Slayer’ and Cross Bay ‘Krampus Yule Lord’, a dark weisse beer.