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Home > Buckinghamshire > Skirmett > The Crown

The Crown

Picture source: Movement80


 
The Crown is now in residential use.
 
I discovered this pub whilst cycling around the county around 1979.
I chose the small door that accessed the wing of the pub in your photograph and was horrified to find myself in what was obviously someone’s front room! A man and his wife sat on one of the sofas watching television. I apologised profusely and began to back out but they would hear none of it, bidding me to sit on one of the vast sofas. Silence prevailed and then they asked me what I wanted to drink. I looked around the four walls with ornaments and pictures puzzled. ‘Beer? They prompted. I asked what kind and they said breakspears. Intrigued I accepted. The landlord rose with difficulty from the sofa, picked an earthenware jug from the floor and disappeared through a door at the back of the room. Heavy steps could be heard in wooden stairs and presently he returned with the jug and poured the cool, black beer into a convenient glass beside me. They then retired to another part of the pub leaving me to drink in peace.
The Bull and Butcher in Turville, a mile or so away also served beer from the cellar by the jug, but The Crown was the first and last parlour bar ina pub I had ever seen. Skirmett and the other villages deep in the Chilterns hung onto their traditions longer than necessary. On the way back from the Crown, I climbed the hill up to Frieth. Even a few years before this had been an unsurfaced road but had now been tarred. Half way up, I met a horse and plough coming down. I spoke to the ploughman who told me that the Chilterns here were too steep to run a tractor safely and that a horse-drawn plough was the only practical method of ploughing.
May the hidden Chilterns continue to stay behind the times!
Chris Lee (February 2018)
 
From The Good Pub Guide 1983:
Completely revamped since the Guide's last edition, and under new management, this village pub now has Windsor chairs on a neat carpet in its small main room. which has tankards hanging from its beams.  It is served from a stillroom, in which well-kept Brakspears Mild, PA, Special and Old Ale are tapped from the cask. A small white-painted side room has an old fashioned settle by its coal fire as well as the Windsor chairs around the trestle tables, and there is a small separate dining-room. The food comes as a surprise in such an attractively simple pub: besides ploughman's (£1.40), there may be lobster bisque (75p), duck pate (£1.50), artichoke hearts nicoise (£1.75), quiche Lorraine (£1.75), Melton Mowbray pie (£2.25), and red mullet in fennel sauce or guinea-fowl in red wine (£3.25). A big back lawn has picnic-table sets under cocktail parasols. Darts, shove-ha'penny and quoits.
 

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