George Orwell - Moon Under Water

George Orwell when speaking about his favourite establishment ‘Moon Under Water’, said that there were ten key points that needed to be taken into consideration for the perfect pub.

  • The architecture and fittings must be uncompromisingly Victorian.

  • Games, such as darts should only played in the public bar so that in other bars you can walk about without the worry of flying darts.

  • The pub should be quiet enough to talk, with the house possessing neither a radio nor a piano.

  • The barmaids should know the customers by name and take an interest in everyone.

  • They should sell tobacco and cigarettes, aspirins and stamps, and lets you use the phone.

  • There should be a snack counter where you can get liver-sausage sandwiches, mussels, cheese, pickles and large biscuits with caraway seeds.

  • Six days a week you should be able to get a good, solid lunch – for example a cut off the joint, two vegetables and a boiled jam roll.

  • It should have a creamy sort of draught stout, which tastes better in a pewter pot.

  • They should be particular about their drinking vessels and never, for example, make the mistake of serving a pint of beer in a handleless glass.  Apart from glass and pewter mugs, they should have some of those pleasant strawberry-pink china ones – in George Orwell’s opinion beer tastes better out of china.

  • You should go through a narrow passage leading out of the saloon, and find yourself in a fairly large garden, he thought that the garden is a pubs best feature, because it allows whole families to go there instead of Mum having to stay at home and mind the baby while Dad goes out alone.

George Orwell also admitted that "to be fair", he did know of a few pubs that almost came up to his ideal, including one that had eight of the mentioned qualities.  However, he also said:

“If anyone knows of a pub that has draught stout, open fires, cheap meals, a garden, motherly barmaids and no radio, I should be glad to hear of it.”

George Orwell
George Orwell