Hello readers! Sorry I haven’t been around for a while, but you know what Southeastern trains can be like.

On a glorious Good Friday afternoon with the sun beating down on the streets of Bromley, I took a stroll down to The Railway in West Wickham for some refreshment.

The aptly-named boozer sits just opposite West Wickham station – the perfect location for commuters to fall into after a night of drinking in the City.

But on this stunning bank holiday afternoon, I was shocked to find the pub wasn’t particularly busy at all. The beer garden was scattered with customers and filled up slightly throughout my visit, but I only saw a handful of people sitting inside the pub.

The Railway’s décor isn’t particularly inspired but it’s clean-looking and welcoming enough – and on this occasion I intended to sit outside to sizzle in the sunshine (which I would, of course, later regret) so I wasn’t fussed.

The drink selection is well-varied with all you would expect from any decent boozer and I played it safe with an Estrella. I wasn’t particularly delighted to hand over about £4.50 for the pint but I shall blame inflation for this. These days, I suppose it’s fairly reasonably priced and I enjoyed my pint very much.

The staff, too, are perfectly pleasant and helpful – no complaints on this front.

I had expected I’d need to elbow a few unsuspecting strangers to fight my way to a table – but I strolled straight into the garden and sat myself down with no trouble whatsoever.

Sadly, the view in the beer garden of The Railway leaves much to be desired. Between the car park of West Wickham Leisure Centre and the building site on Red Lodge Road, there’s not much to enjoy – but the afternoon’s entertainment more than made up for the sub-par surroundings.

News Shopper:

The view from The Railway's beer garden

About halfway through my pint and just as I started to feel my face blistering in 25 degree heat, I heard a male voice slurring the word ‘keef’ over and over again.

“KEEF… KEEF!” blared down the street, causing several other sunburnt punters to turn their heads.


As two middle-aged men stumbled into sight, I realised the man in question was trying to get the attention of his friend, who I presume is named Keith.

Keith himself instantly struck me as someone I’d like to have a pint with one day. Also sunburnt, he moseyed through the Leisure Centre car park – which is raised on a slope - as his friend and a young boy walked on the pavement below.

Giggling to himself with a cigarette in his mouth, Keith reached the edge of the car park and gleefully climbed over the barrier.


Credit to Keith, he did as he was told and slid down the steep slope of the car park on his backside, giggling all the way.

Jumping up at the end (and pulling up his shorts, which he partially lost on the way down) Keith went on his way with his friend and the young boy, who rolled his eyes as he walked past.

I’m not sure how many others in the pub had followed Keith’s crusade through until the end, but I was gripped from start to finish.

As he sauntered away, I saluted Keith for his bank holiday spirit. If you can’t lose your inhibitions and end up absolutely legless at 4pm on a bank holiday in the sunshine, then when can you?

Atmosphere: *** Quieter than I had expected for Good Friday

Décor: *** Nothing wrong with it but could be more interesting

Drink: ***** No complaints with my Estrella

Price: **** Not too bad for a premium lager but I would always like to pay less

Entertainment: ***** If I could rate it any higher then I would