We all loved this long-gone pub - didn't we?

I should start by saying new normal … unprecedented times … etc. But I can’t stop thinking about the pub. Any pub.

Saturday, 9th May 2020, 3:18 pm
Updated Saturday, 9th May 2020, 3:18 pm

In these unprecedented times, with its nebulous future, all we can look forward to is the past. For right-thinking people this means reminiscing about pubs. Reminiscing is all we can do right now. It’s the new normal. Unprecedented.

So I was reading social media opinions about the best boozer in Sunderland past or present. I won’t mention any still nominally trading. Good luck to all businesses. Although I will profess bemusement at the appeal of bars designed solely for the delectation of those whose chief pleasure in life is swearing at sluggish racehorses on television.

But there’s no harm in discussing long-gone pubs. Several are still remembered fondly, despite their subsequent razing to the ground being too agreeable a fate.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Now closed for over 30 years, this was the best pub on Earth ... or something.

One particular pub, remembered with bewildering lament, is The Old Twenty Nine, on High Street West, which closed forever in the 1980s.

This licensed excrescence could only aspire to a spit and sawdust floor. Instead it had a notorious carpet of broken glass. For some reason, glasses were rarely used twice in this establishment. Well not for drinking from anyway.

It showcased bands of varying quality, who could all be heard with perfect clarity from the bus station, in Jarrow.

Save for one barman who was constructed on the same lines as the Royal Albert Hall, I have little recollection of the staff.

What I do recall is a cavalier disregard for both the legal drinking age by its punters and the proximity of Gill Bridge Police Station. Hands up though, this was its only appeal to my social circle back then.

I could continue, but as this is a family newspaper other descriptions are best omitted. Especially of the gents.

Yet whenever the Old Twenty Nine is remembered, it’s usually with a wistful smile. Why? Just because something is no more doesn’t mean it was any good.

Ditto the Upper Deck at the foot of Astral House. Its principal attraction was to yahoos whose recreation was tipping lager upon the heads of innocent shoppers below on a Saturday afternoon.

Good riddance to both. Agreed?

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper.

Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.

With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers - and consequently the advertising that we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspaper.

Thank you.

How to subscribe to the print edition:

It’s easy to subscribe to your local newspaper. We have arranged a special 20 per cent off subscription offer for people to take advantage of. Visit www.localsubsplus.co.uk, choose the newspaper title, the type of subscription and enter your details.