Punch Bowl

Worcestershire - Worcester

A historic pub interior of national importance

Listed Status: Not listed

Lichfield Avenue

Tel: (01905) 863054

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ThePunchBowlAtWorchester

Real Ale: Yes

Lunchtime Meals: Yes

Nearby Station: Worcester Shrub Hill

Station Distance: 1300m

Public Transport: Near Railway Station (Worcester Shrub Hill)

View on: Whatpub

A true rarity - a post-war pub which has barely altered since opening (1958 in this case). It serves the local housing estate and is located on a circular site in the middle of the estate with a church in the centre and shops round the perimeter. The smallish public bar faces the circle and has fixed seating, quarry-tiled flooring, brick fireplace, counter and bar back, all of simple, straightforward design. The unusual projection on the right was evidently for darts-playing and the fixed seat was for players and spectators (asimilar feature exists att he Peartree, St Denys, in Southampton, also dating from the 1950s. To the rear right is a small pool room then, at the back, a large function room, extended to accommodate a skittle alley. Finally, on the left, are a small smoke room and a former off-sales, now converted into an office. The plain fittings throughout reflect the austerity and desire for simple clean lines at the end of the 1950s.

Built in 1958 - opening date may be 1 December 1958 - this is a rare example of a barely altered 1950s pub with four rooms and off sales (no longer in use). The front left entrance leads to a lobby with original tiled walls (the toilets here are also unchanged). The public bar on the right with a quarry tiled floor retains its original bar counter, bar back, brick fireplace and fixed seating. There's a rather odd arrangement in the far right corner where a long recess accommodates the dartboard and the seating curves round to protect it, but we reckon that's the way it's always been.

Smoke room on the left has original counter, bar back, classic 1950/early 60s tiled fireplace and fixed seating. Just beyond that is the former off-sales which is essentially intact with its tiled dado, bar counter and bar back fitting but the front door on the left hand side of the building has been blocked up and the room is now an office and can only be viewed by request to the licensee. To the right of the bar is a small pool room, formerly known as the "blue room" and which again has its original bar fittings and seating though there is new floor tiling next to the counter. Toilets in this area are also unchanged apart from modern wall tiles.

The big function room at the back has seen the most change. The bar counter has a new top and new panelling but the originals survive underneath. The bar back shelving looks less than convincing but is the same as in the off-sales so must be presumed to be kosher. At the rear is a skittle alley, accessed from the function room, which was added 20/30 years ago and this necessitated blocking up of a window. It can be carpeted over and used as a second or extension to the function room. As you'd expect, all the fittings are utilitarian and entirely redolent of the period. The intactness of both these fittings and the planform make this a precious survivor, especially as it still fulfils its function as a social centre for the estate which surrounds it.

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