Customers of the John Bull love the pub for what it hasn’t got. There is no television, food, loud music or flashing lights. All you can hear is the sound of “good crack”. A natural home for a Cheese Club.
In October 2005, the pub started a Saturday Night Cheese Club with about six or seven founder members, each one bringing a piece of cheese of their choice. The first night brought a wonderful array of British and foreign cheeses. It also brought some surprised looks from other customers. The surprised looks did not daunt the founder members who tucked in heartily. Since then the ‘membership’ has grown considerably and is looked on fondly by the other customers. Attendance is erratic, with up to twenty turning up some evenings and only two or three on other occasions. The atmosphere is always relaxed and jovial, and plenty of Gus’s excellent and varied real ale is quaffed!
The whole thing is very laid back and informal - no membership fees or AGMs, or anything of that nature! We keep it to cheese and biscuits only - not even pickled onions. Gus kindly keeps the boards and knives behind the bar.
One popular member is extremely proud of his little red Swiss Army knife which he brings to cut the cheese. It is truly an amazing knife with several impressive attachments. Apart from the usual screwdriver and nail file, it has an ironing board, vegetable rack, trouser press and a Yorkshire Pudding tin! Joking aside, the club has been a great success. The members, like the cheeses they bring, are varied and full of character.
It works very well indeed.