News / Hotwells

Hotwells pub named among 50 best in the UK

By martin booth, Saturday Oct 27, 2018

A pub on a boat permanently moored in the Floating Harbour has been named among the 50 best UK pubs.

The Grain Barge on Hotwell Road was included on the list’s best views section, compiled by Jessica Boak and Ray Bailey, who live in Bristol and are the authors of 20th Century Pub.

They write that the Grain Barge is “one of Bristol’s brightest, airiest pubs, offering a view of the magnificent SS Great Britain across an expanse of water always teeming with activity”.

The Grain Barge is owned by Bristol Beer Factory, who also run the Barley Mow, and the bars at the Tobacco Factory and Arnolfini, as well as their tap room on North Street

They added: “There’s a range of interesting local beers in cask and keg, with a particular emphasis on the reliably decent Bristol Beer Factory.

“Sit on a stool by the window and watch dinghies swoop and turn and water taxis glide by, while historic ships the Matthew and the Mayflower (not that one) make their rounds. And you may occasionally see a dog on a paddleboard.”

The Grain Barge was built in Bristol in 1936 and started life as an engineless transport barge that carried barley and wheat from Bristol to Cardiff across the Severn Estuary.

The boat was bought by former Bristol mayor George Ferguson and refitted as a floating bar in 2007.

Read more: Artist sells paintings from floating gallery

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