The last time I was here, a dog as big as a horse walked in.
No chance of that this time as the new owners have adopted a different policy as the ‘No dogs allowed’ poster on the door announced.
The place is as cavernous as ever, though in fairness it’s bound to appear bigger on early Friday lunchtime when no-one’s in yet.
The four or five screens still pump out sport of one variety or another despite the empty chairs – Aussie rugby league and the ever-present sport of kings were order of the day.
There isn’t exactly a full range of ales on offer so I opted for the Stella and settled into a very pleasant leather-look sofa, warmed by the sun coming through the window – I could almost have dozed off. The bench opposite bore a plaque to ‘Bob, dear in our hearts forever’ – I assume he too dozed off here before going that one step further. Nice that he’s remembered though.
I couldn’t help but notice that the ceilings are ridiculously high. If it ever does get packed out then there plenty of space for the hot air to rise. Where I was sitting I noticed the blackboard next to the very plush pool table states Sunday lunchtime is killer time.
Music is obviously the other entertainment on offer – I hope Stone Three produced a good set on the Saturday night.
The only other posters on show all proclaimed that the pub’s owners have an absolute zero tolerance policy to drugs. No bad thing, but I assume the number of notices mean there was a real need to strengthen the policy.
It was at this point that I think the current owner walked past me – a very pleasant and jovial seeming fellow in a pair of ill-fitting tracksuit trousers. He made his way through to the garden at the back to help load up a car. I have to say, at a glance the garden looked just as large as the pub, but if anything more attractive.
By the time I headed out a few of the regulars seemed to be coming in and the place developed a bit more of a buzz.
Man’s best friend might not be welcome any more, but if you ask me The Chatterton Arms has improved since I was last in. Looks as if a change in ownership has done the old place a real favour.
Chatterton Arms, Chatterton Road, Bromley, BR2 9QW
Decor: *** (Repainted recently, not my colours, but tidy enough)
Drink: *** (still no great choice of ale, but the basics are present)
Price: **** (not bad at all, compares favourably to other locals)
Atmosphere: *** (quiet and relaxing)
Staff: **** (pleasant and welcoming)