However, it is very noticeable from my blog of Closed Pubs how many of the pubs that have closed have been magnificent edifices of the inter-wars period, often in the “Brewer’s Tudor” style, almost resembling licensed stately homes, that have fallen into decay, dereliction and eventually demolition.
Despite their impressive architecture, was it maybe the case that many of these pubs were always too big and too impersonal, and never really developed that sense of community, intimacy and feeling at home that are so vital for success? Shortly after I moved into this area, I remember going in to the Gateway in East Didsbury (now a Wetherspoon’s) at a quiet time and being struck by what an unappealing, soulless place it was. Having said that, by the time I came to use them, most of these pubs had been gutted to a greater or lesser extent and so had lost much of their original character.
I’ve never been there, but one of the most magnificent survivals of this era of pub building must be the Berkeley in Scunthorpe, now owned by Sam Smith’s and featuring on CAMRA’s National Inventory of Pub Interiors. There are very few in the country that are anywhere near as intact.