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Bright, warm, welcoming pubs, ideal for cold winter nights - Winter 2014

Tis the time of year of short days and long nights which lend themselves to visiting bright, warm and welcoming pubs. The heart of the British winter is the time to showcase pubs that offer comfort and cheer even on the darkest days.

The New Inn, Cononley

The New Inn, CononleyCononley is a village historically part of the West Riding and is situated 3 miles south of Skipton in the Aire Valley. A settlement in medieval times, most dwellings date from the 17th century. Traditionally, farming and the textile industry employed the villagers. The former is still significant today, but many of the 1000 plus locals now commute to Skipton, Keighley and Leeds for their work from this pretty part of the Craven District.

The New Inn is a painted stone building situated on Main Street in the middle of the village. Boasting mullioned windows and low beamed ceilings, it has a single main bar with a wood-burning stove set in the stone fireplace. To the left of the entrance there are numerous tables and a small room named “the Archives” with a pool table and television. There are wooden picnic tables outside the front of the pub and a secluded garden at the back.

A busy community pub, this Timothy Taylor tenanted outlet offers Golden Best, Boltmaker and Landlord as LocALe beers with Ram Tam occasionally available. There‘s also an ever-changing guest beer sourced from breweries around the country. Jane Savoury and her experienced team offer a warm welcome and friendly service. There‘s a Tuesday quiz which is very popular and occasional live music events. Upstairs is a comfortably furnished room suitable for private parties, meetings and village events. Good pub food is served daily.

The New Inn is a very traditional village pub providing a place to meet, greet, eat and generally enjoy yourself. Although close to Cononley railway station, if you‘re catching a train south, allow time to cross the level crossing as the barriers often come down early!

Open: Mon: 5-11, Tue-Fri 12-2.30 & 5-12, Sat 12-12 & Sun 12-11. (Bus 78A from Skipton stops nearby and runs daytime only Mon-Sat.)

The New Inn, Main Street, Cononley BD20 8NR Tel: 01535 636302 (View on WhatPub.)

The Dickie Bird, Thwaites Brow, Keighley

The Dickie Bird, Thwaites Brow, KeighleySome seven miles along the Aire Valley is the town of Keighley and at the top of the hill to the east side of town is the residential area called Thwaites Brow. Backed by farms and open fields, this long-established community offers great views of the town and the Aire Valley.

Sitting in the middle of this pleasant area is the Dickie Bird. Formerly called the Druids Arms, it was re-named a few years ago in honour of the famous cricket umpire. A substantial Yorkshire stone building, it was most likely a residential property before becoming a public house and today it is a lively community hub.

There‘s a comfortably furnished lounge with a wood-burning stove where you can relax with a book about Dickie Bird, chat with friends or watch sports. The games room features a pool table and darts board. Colin and Bev are friendly and accommodating but enforce a no-swearing policy and the pub is extremely family friendly. There is a large children‘s play area in the garden and a good-sized car park. The LocAle beer is ever changing, with Wishbone* Bandit on offer at my visit and Naylor‘s Sunset going on after. In 2012 local CAMRA members presented the Dickie Bird with an Improved Pub Award to acknowledge their effort in increasing beer choice and quality from previous years.

A busy, lively pub, there are music evenings, bingo nights, joker poker and smart phone quiz evenings as well as regular music events. Private parties can be catered for and the homemade food has a good reputation. Sky sports is available. Truly involved with the community, the pub supports the Long Lee Cricket Club and local junior football teams. A welcoming and fun pub, offering something for locals and visitors alike.

*Wishbone is the newest brewery in the branch area, based in Keighley. More information on Wishbone can be found on the web-site breweries page

Open: Mon-Fri: 4-11, Sat & Sun: 12-11. (Transdev bus 705 provides a frequent service from Keighley throughout the day and stops near the pub.)

Dickie Bird, Thwaites Brow Road, Thwaites Brow, Keighley BD21 4SQ. Tel: 01535 607963. E-mail dickiebirdpub@gmail.co.uk (View on WhatPub.)

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