LIFE sometimes presents you with difficult choices. There have been occasions where I have wondered how differently things could have been if I had picked differently.

You have got to wonder something while staring into the bottom of a pint glass, haven’t you?

Whether or not I should have chosen to spend my afternoon in Belvedere 100 yards away at The Eardley Arms crossed my mind, but it was hard to regret choosing the Prince of Wales.

This is a low-key, unfussy, largely satisfying boozer.

From the outside, The Prince of Wales is fetching.

It sits opposite a pleasant park, has hanging baskets, a clean and simple paint job, a lovely Georgian (?) prince in military dress on the sign (a lovely theme continued inside), and chalk boards plugging the football and karaoke.

Stepping in, I was warmly welcomed by a sassy, smiley middle-aged lady behind the small yet well-kept bar, who happily served me a pint of mass market, fizzy lager (such was my desire on the day) for £3.40 before I retired to a corner.

Also on tap was an ordinary range of beers – Spitfire, Ruddles and a Young’s ale.
Despite Heart beaming pop hits from the radio, this was a pleasant place to while away an afternoon.

The other punters were all very pleasant and chatty and there was a decent crowd for a weekday afternoon.

It must be said that they were predominantly male and slightly greying, presumably feeling right at home among the dated but immaculately maintained decor.

Hanging from the ceiling and on the walls were gleaming copper pots, ornate light fittings and it was accompanied by a lot of wood.

Little touches, like an errant fez on a speaker or bonus ball competition, gave me the impression that there’s life in the old pub too.

The Prince of Wales, Woolwich Road, Belvedere

How it rated:

Decor: **** (Clean, comfortable but lacking adventure)
Drink: *** (Decent fair)
Price: *** (Reasonable)
Atmosphere: **** (A nice place to spend an afternoon)
Staff: **** (Charming)