The Goosebury Bush, reborn a Wetherspoon

Ah Mr Wetherspoon, we meet again.

Goosebury Bush Nottingham

The Goosebury Bush has a lot of work to do, and seems to be doing it so far, the other Wetherspoons’ in Nottingham city center are in an embarrasingly ropey state and are long overdue a complete overhaul, the recent opening of the TBI only further highlighted just how bad its city center counterparts are. Both the Roebuck Inn and the Joseph Else in my first hand experience have been guilty of having a pint returned to be tried by the barman, him commenting on how it ‘tastes of vinegar’ offering a replacement pint, and then leaving the other ‘bad’ one for sale until assumedly it runs out. No wonder many people are put off drinking real ale.

Goosebury Bush Glass Window

The pub has some interesting features including artwork, stained glass, and some odd woodworked tables, that made balancing a pint tricky!

Previous owners Varsity ended up selling to Wetherspoons, it’s worth pointing out at this point that the Goosebury Bush, or what once was Varsity is about 2 minutes if that from Nottingham Trent University; I would have thought it would be easy to hoover student money up from a pub placed here, or maybe it was and they wanted to cash in, who knows? and thinking about it, who cares? So what’s it like…

(if you’re wondering how to find it, follow the tram tracks out of Nottingham, turn right up the hill when you see a cemetary)

Goosebury Bush Interior

As you would expect from a brand new pub it’s all very tidy, how long this is set to last for remains to be seen, I just hope it doesn’t fall foul of student abuse! There are many very comfy leather sofas and soft chairs and plenty of dinner tables dotted around, including some in the unique overlooking point of the pub, alas it only overlooks a carpark, oh well.

Goosebury Bush Pumps

One half of the ale selection, note that this is opening day and running off its 'starter pack'

Goosebury Bush Pumps

This picture is as blury as this side of the bars ale is generic

10 ale pumps sets the tone and whilst the selection is currently somewhat generic this is more down to the ‘starter pack’ new ‘spoons pubs get given, speaking to the barman revealed that only 2 are ‘must stocks’ where as the other 8 are open to guests from Nottingham and further afar, given time this could be a bit of a gem, and it hopefully increases pressure on the other city center Wetherspoons dossholes.

Is it worth a visit? yes, even more so when the beer selection gets into gear, we will revisit in a couple of weeks and see what’s what, until then the Dr says drink some beer.

TBI – Trent Bridge Inn, the Wetherspoons way


It's a 'spoons Jim, but not as we know it.

Today marks the re-opening of the ‘World Famous Trent Bridge Inn‘ after its acquisition by Wetherspoons, clearly not messing around they chucked well over £1,000,000  at it giving the place a complete refurbishment. Whilst a little dark in places it’s full of artwork and cricket memorabilia, with the occasional Pies and Forest shot thrown in for good measure; given the size of this thing this is clearly the target audience as this is the largest Wetherspoons I have ever set foot in, if not the biggest pub, in places it’s massive, one of the rooms is like an assembly hall!

lounge lower

The decor is dark, and changes throughout.

lounge up

The top floor bar.

Last year prior to take over this famous building was a shambles and to be quite honest had been for quite some years, the beer ‘selection’ was practically none existent, the decor was tired and every time England had a cricket match next door the place was nothing but an embarrassment to Nottingham. Wetherspoons love them or hate them have swooped in and done a great job in modernising and making good use of the space, hopefully this will stand the test of time.

But enough about the decor, this isn’t Homos Homes under the Hammer, what’s the beer like? and this is where it gets a bit interesting, it depends what bar you go to, the TBI has a split bar as you walk in, another bar round the back, a bar on the left of the upper floor and a bar on the right of the upper floor, so that’s five bars, yes, the TBI now has FIVE bars.

bar lower

The downstairs 'hall' bar

bar 5

The top floor bar.

The beer selection changes with each bar, I only managed to get shots of 2 of the less impressive bars as the downstairs areas where packed, the main ale selection is as you walk in on the side bar. Unfortunately however even with the ‘full selection’ available at the side bar it’s quite disappointing. The ‘guest’ beers are the Wetherspoons generic uninspired choices such as Batemans XXB and Caledonian Deuchars, coupled with the normal snore festival of Abbot, Speckled Hen and the rest of the Greene King crew there was actually only 2 real beers that caught my eye, and one had just gone! Perhaps this will change, it is opening week. The beer selection is much better now the pub has had time to get into its stride, the usual Abbot, Speckled Hen etc generic beers of course adorn the bar, but 3/4 proper guests are now in action.

Nottingham Brewery thankfully have brewed a special bitter aptly named Trent Bridge Ale, now after 5 pints I can confirm confidently that this is a fine beer and I hope to see it on here all the time will continue to be brewed for the pub. Perhaps what I didn’t expect was the pricing, guest ales where £2.45 which is quite a bit more than the prices some will be used to from Wetherspoons, competing local landlords will no doubt be happy to hear this as all their business won’t be scalped from them!


Correct as of May 2011. Pricier than most Wetherspoons pubs.

Pay and display?  yep, Euro Carparks seem to own the (tiny) carpark at the side of the TBI, and they charge £1 an hour, the longest ticket you can buy is 3 hours.

pay and display

Note sly, 'have you paid and displayed' sign on the left!

So a half decent boozer then, but with the mediocre selection of ale I won’t be in any rush to get back, and those of you thinking you can sneak a view of the cricket unfortunately below is the best you can get, still you can see the scoreboard eh?