The Longest Crawl
by Ian Marchant
According to G.K. Chesterton, the act of getting to and from a pub is central to an understanding of British life and landscape. With around 60,000 ... Show synopsis According to G.K. Chesterton, the act of getting to and from a pub is central to an understanding of British life and landscape. With around 60,000 to choose from, he may have had a point. So bon viveur, pub singer and writer Ian Marchant set off with photographer Perry Venus on a gruelling month long British pub crawl, to go to and from a lot of pubs in order to test Chesterton's hypothesis. Not for the intrepid travellers the lame Lands End to John O'Groats route so beloved of Beefy Botham, people in chicken suits, etc. No, Ian and Perry set off from the Turk's Head on the Isles of Scilly, the most south-westerly pub in Britain, and by way of Plymouth, Glastonbury, Winchester, Kensal Green, Wild Wales, Walsall, Burton, Skegness, Lancaster, Gretna Green, Glasgow, Jura and Duff Gardens, ended up in the most north-easterly place you can go for a drink, the Baa Bar at RAF Saxa Vord, on Unst, in the Shetlands, where they breached national security. The two friends, high in the foothills of Middle Age, meander along the roads of Britain, meeting up for a drink with low comedians, award winning poets, Europe's foremost pub philosopher and Ian's Uncle Tony. Along the way they unearth the origins of gin and tonic, find out how pork-scratchings are made and how to make moonshine at an illegal still in the Welsh hills. They taste rough cider in the Blackdown Hills, twat a chav in Yorkshire, learn to distinguish between varieties of hedonism, and reveal how Pub Quiz is the new freemasonry. And yes, they went to Eli's in Huish Episcopi.