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Two contrasting pubs in a West Yorkshire town - Autumn 2016

In this issue we focus upon a traditional public house which is enjoying a new lease of life and a micro-pub occupying premises that used to house a branch of a national bank. Both are situated in the town of Silsden, a traditional Yorkshire town in the Craven area of West Yorkshire.

Silsden, listed in the 1086 Domesday Book, was settled during Saxon times at the point where two streams met, providing a natural watercourse for a community to develop around. Through time, agricultural occupations evolved into mill work and industrial jobs, especially when the Leeds to Liverpool Canal was created and throughout the Industrial Revolution. Today, some manufacturing stills remains. The layout of the centre of town actually hasn‘t changed drastically from the earliest map in 1610 and during the last census the population topped 8,000. Silsden is served by Steeton and Silsden railway station, one mile from the town.

The Punch Bowl, Silsden

The Punch Bowl is an example of building in a local vernacular style. Dating from 1784, it is two-story, made of local stone and sits prominently on a triangle of land at Bridge Street. A well-appointed lounge and public bar-cum-games room offer LocAle beer Timothy Taylor Landlord plus Thwaites Wainwright as a regular. A guest beer is available on weekends with Sharps Atlantic Pale Ale seen recently. Linzi and Sam have taken on the pub, which had been closed for a spell, and was in need of some care and attention. Following a general redecoration during the spring they are now working hard to make the Punch Bowl a friendly and welcoming community-oriented pub. Offering something for everyone, there‘’s live music on Wednesday evenings, Pie and Pool on Sunday evenings and a popular Tuesday quiz. Darts and dominos also feature.

The area to the front of the pub is nicely laid-out and offers plenty of seating as well as car-parking spaces. The pub is family and dog friendly and free WIFI is available. Freshly prepared food is served Tuesday to Sunday 12-2.30. Upstairs boasts a good-sized function room. The Punch Bowl is a proper pub in the heart of town, well worth a visit.

An historic as well as welcoming and friendly pub to spend time in. Drop in next time you‘re passing though Addingham or better still go there on purpose!

The Punch Bowl, Bridge Road, Silsden West Yorkshire BD20 9ND Tel 01535 657807 Open 12-11 daily. Bus routes 62 (from Keighley, Ilkley and Harrogate), 903 (from Keighley - day time only)

View the Punch Bowl on WhatPub.

The Counting House, Silsden

Just a few minutes down the main thoroughfare to Kirkgate and you‘ll find the town‘s newest venture, The Counting House. A sensible, sombre stone building, it formerly housed a Barclay’s branch outlet. Andrew & John have transformed it into an interesting and fun place to meet, eat and drink. Opened in March this year, it is bright and cheery with a single bar and numerous tables set in an L-shaped combined dining and drinking area. Four hand pumps adorn the bar and the offerings change regularly. Bridgehouse Holy Cow, Cherry Choc Stout and Blonde, Goose Eye Chinook and Theakston Old Peculiar are the LocAle beers which have been seen recently.

A bit larger in scale than many of the current batch of micropubs in the area, the feel is still comfortable and cosy and a warm welcome awaits you. The décor is quirky and funky with numerous clocks adorning the walls as well as newspaper articles from years gone by. At the back is a brightly painted suntrap, certainly a place to enjoy in good weather. The food is a big draw and the menu is interesting and freshly prepared. The Counting House is busy on weekends and it‘s worth booking if you‘re going in to eat. Certainly a change from ‘traditional” pubs, local support has been keen, creating the necessity to open for longer hours! The bar area is dog friendly and families are most welcome. There‘s free WIFI, eclectic music in the background and occasional live music events. A lively and fun establishment, drop by soon.

The Counting House, 23 Kirkgate, Silsden BD20 0AJ. Tel: 01274 405644. Open: Wed 3.00-10.30, Thu & Fri 11-11, Sat 09.30 am -11, Sun 09.30 am-10 pm (alcoholic drinks served from 11 am) Bus routes 62 (from Keighley, Ilkley and Harrogate), 903 (from Keighley - day time only).

View the Counting House on WhatPub.

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