Labouring with love through the Bass mirror

In early 2018 a plan was hatched by a motley but happy crew to create a list of pubs serving Draught Bass on a permanent basis. It’s been described as a labour of love for me, perhaps appropriate as my maternal grandfather was a brewery labourer in Burton. I do sometimes question why I started this madcap enterprise. My best guess is that I just didn’t want to see Draught Bass to die without a fight. I had a stupid idea that the common man could help reverse the decline in distribution of one of the world’s finest ales. You can read my original post here.


Social media often gets criticised for creating division and worse. However I think it’s worth thinking of the positives. In this case the listing seems to have gained followers and, more importantly, many who have been prepared to share their knowledge. Good people who just want to do their bit. To some extent it merely follows in the fine tradition of the merry band of the Honourable Order of Bass Drinkers who’ve sought to keep the Bass flag flying over many years.

The Bass Directory will only be updated in this post in the future, rather than the original post. Please click on the link at the end of this post for the listing.

To the many who have joyfully shared their knowledge, my thanks for making it possible. To those who’ve developed the idea – the start of a top 100 Bass pubs and adding ‘occasional but regular’ Bass pubs, my thanks. And most importantly, to the pubs that serve Bass and to those of you who’ve downloaded the Bass Directory to get a pint or two of Bass, my heartfelt thanks. Please keep sharing.

What could we do next? I would like to promote a National Bass Day in 2020. I have a date in mind to coincide with William Bass’ purchase of his brewhouse in Burton. More later, but in the meantime I would like to hear from any pubs, CAMRA branches, and individuals who would be willing to support the National Bass Day. As ever we’re all doing this for free.

Post-pandemic it happened. National Bass Day 2022 on Easter Saturday 16th April. A Facebook group of over 1.400 drinkers and publicans all reflecting their pleasure at a pint or two of cask Bass.

National Bass Day 2023 will again take place on Easter Saturday, this year falling on 8th April.

And please remember, it’s all about cask Bass brewed in Burton rather than the insipid bottled stuff made in Shamlesbury, near Preston.

Thank you

Whilst I lay claim to all the errors and omissions (BTW, comments and additions welcome below or by PM to my twitter account), the listing couldn’t have been put together without others’ sterling efforts. The CAMRA volunteers who produce the GBG and WhatPub entries for a start. My fellow Bass obsessives – RetiredMartin, PubCurmudgeon and Britainbeermat who were willing to sit next to the strange bloke on the Bass social media bus. And everyone else amongst the twitterati and the National Bass Day Facebook group who contributes their favourite Draught Bass haunts. And of course, thanks to Mrs TWM who accepts that a lunchtime stop on a long journey might surprisingly be selling Bass.

Bass April 2023

Commercial use of this post and the Bass Directory is not permitted.



  1. Pingback: Mirror, Mirror on the pub wall, where can I drink Draught Bass? | thewickingman

  2. I have sold Draught Bass since 1983, when I bought the Tynemouth Lodge Hotel public house in Tynemouth, NE30 4AA
    Currently selling more Bass than any other bar on Tyneside.
    On a bad week we do 10 casks.
    The Tynemouth Lodge has been in every edition of the CAMRA Good Beer Guide since 1984 and I received a special award plaque for 30 consecutive entries in 2014


  3. Latest update. Coach & Horses, Horsley, Derbyshire. New GBG entry in Amber Valley.

    99% sure permanent as Bass and Pedi seemed to have dedicated pumps with an exotic guest like Hobgoblin on other side of the bar.

    I prefer flat Bass, but this creamy with tight head example would please the Beer Mats of the world. NBSS 3.5.

    Liked by 1 person

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  5. Thanks to your fantastic Bass pub list my colleagues and I are now regulars of Simpson’s in the City of London. A 2020 national bass day is something we’d be very keen on, please do keep us informed.

    Well done and thanks once again for a great blog and pub list.


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  7. Pingback: YOUR 2020 BASS CALENDAR – retiredmartin

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  9. Pingback: National Bass Day 2020 | thewickingman

  10. Just ticked off my 37th Christmas at the Tynemouth Lodge Hotel – where Bass has been my No.1 selling cask beer since day 1.
    My policy of having 3 house ales plus a changing guest ale works for me.
    There are so many outlets trying to sell too many changing cask ales – with no house beers and no reduction in the big range at quiet times of the year like now (January) – net result is inconsistent quality and some sour beer – no good !

    My advice to a novice publican is to keep the cask range tight, so that no barrel is on sale for more than 3 days and make sure the casks are fresh and not over-vented when they go on sale.
    And – have at least one permanent house ale – as a superb consistent. beer such as Bass will guarantee a healthy footfall
    And – taste the beers regularly.
    And – never ever clean a beer line with caustic line cleaner when. a pub is trading – as sooner or later there will be a catastrophic event. affecting an unsuspecting customer.

    Liked by 1 person

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  13. Just checked our WhatPub listings and the following are reported as regularly stocking Bass:
    Star Inn Bath
    Bladud’s Head Bath
    Harington Club Bath
    King William IV Bath
    Livingstone Bath
    Old Down Inn Emborough
    Butchers Arms Farmborough
    Crown Inn Frome
    White Hart Hotel Midsomer Norton

    NB. Angel Inn Westbury no longer stocks Bass

    Regards Bath & Borders CAMRA


  14. I’m a Londoner from Sussex. Not much luck there, Bass-wise, it seems. Do you know if the Simpson’s Tavern you mention in EC3 is the same one that the internet tells me is in Cornhill, corner of Ball’s Court? I don’t locate one in Gracechurch Street


  15. THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! The once mighty Bass brewed under licence by that tiddler Marstons!!! I’ve been drinking Bass since I was 13 (tall lad) and remember in the 1960’s when the aweful Red Barrel was flavour of the month and crap landlords a staff chucked the ullage from the drip trays INTO the Bass barrel cos “only the old guys drink it and they don’t know their arse from their elbow”!! Well they did then and all went where that shit didn’t happen and now I’m on the recieving end of “all real ales are cloudy” & “that’s what it’s supposed to taste like” from the equally ignorant! BTW the Tap & Spile by the pier in Bangor, Gwynedd usually serves a good ‘un but Shaun (cellerman) left shortly before lockdown and they’re wrestling with a Gaggia coffee machine, screaming on the bar, and trying to turn it into a bleedin’ Bistro! The current landlord cut the regular delivery to one barrel from three when he took over five years ago and a swarm of regulars de-camped! I do hope that the site doesen’t excise my fruity language but I think that it’s like good beer.. essential!!


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  18. If anyone would like a trip out before they get down to the serious Burton Bass tasting (see Burton on Trent Pubs Clubs, Facebook) South Derbyshire has very good Bass at the White Swan and Melbourne Inn in Melbourne, the Chequers at Ticknall, (very nice), the Mill Wheel and Rodney at Hartshorne and the Joiners Arms at Woodville. The best though is at the Swan at Milton, (pure nectar). They are doing a promotion at the Swan where, if you drink 8 pints over the weekend, you get a free pint.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Pingback: THE SOUTH LAKES BASS REGULATIONS – retiredmartin

  20. I finally got round to doing a Bass tour of Stoke on Trent in September, which I had been planning before Covid happened…
    First up was the Unicorn, a very friendly and well presented pub, with what turned out to be the best Bass of the day (NBSS 4). The Woodman didn’t have any Bass, but if I remembered to ask whether this was permanent or temporary, then I forgot to write down the answer. They did have quite a few other beers on, and a tap takeover from Tiny Rebel, so quite possibly Bass will be back.
    It was good to see the Golden Cup restored, but the Bass was “only” NBSS 3.5. At both the Wheatsheaf Stores and the Cross Guns [NB the latter not on the Bass pubs database] the barrel ran dry as our round was being poured, and the replacement seemed a little undercooked (NBSS 3). At the Cheshire Cheese [NB also not on Bass pubs database] I would describe the Bass as being green (NBSS 2.5).
    Final Bass pub of the day was the Coachmakers Arms (NBSS 3.5). It might have reached 3.75 if the appropriate resolution had not been defeated at the Camra AGM.

    Liked by 1 person

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