I spent last weekend visiting relatives in Willoughton, a small village in rural Lincolnshire with a population of only 341 (At the 2011 census). The village has a small Post Office/Shop, a church, a village hall, and a pub, The Stirrup Inn. It’s a very old building, thought to have existed since 1536, becoming an inn around 1774.
The late Queen Mother is said to have visited the village in the 1960s when she kept horses in local stables. I’m sure Stirrup was kept well stocked with gin and Dubbonet then!
Being a small village without much to do, the pub is popular with locals at the weekend. My first drink there was from up the road in Yorkshire, Black Sheep Best Bitter (3.8%). With the glorious summer weather, a cold pint of this full-flavoured dark-gold bitter really hit the spot.
Despite being such a small pub, they regularly rotate a local ale on tap. When I visited, it was a mango pale ale from Axholme Brewery, “Kesar”. It was a nice light, refreshing beer, but not as strong a mango flavour as I would have liked (Compared to Drygate’s Disco Forklift Truck, which I tried recently). They also had a good variety of gins for such a small place, 13 I was told by a local (If I remember correctly!)
As Scotland is lacking in vineyards and wineries, I had hoped to plan a visit to a nearby one while I was in Lincolnshire as I had spotted a few small ones on maps, but unfortunately it couldn’t be arranged. I’ll get to a vineyard one of those days!