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Inspired by George Orwell, Paul Moody and Robin Turner take a nostalgic road trip around Britain in search of the perfect pub. ‘A deeply satisfying travelogue’ Stuart Maconie

In 1946, George Orwell, a man fond of a pint, wrote about his favourite pub, The Moon Under Water, in his EVENING STANDARD column. But it didn’t actually exist. It was Orwell’s vision of a perfect pub. Today, Wetherspoons have fourteen Moon Under Waters, and the nation is awash with identikit, high-street lounge bars competing for a dwindling clientele.

Paul Moody and Robin Turner’s road trip around Britain, therefore, is not just a search for the perfect pub. It is a deeper investigation into what has happened to British pub culture, once the toast of the world. In fact, it is a search for a kind of life-force kindled by the British public, something the powers-that-be are forever trying to extinguish.

Along the way, such luminaries as Pete Brown (‘the King of Beer’), Tim Martin (Wetherspoon’s boss), Iain Sinclair, James Dean Bradfield and Paul Kingsnorth are consulted – along with a host of micro-brewers, landlords, politicians, bloggers and barroom philosophers. What emerges is a picture of the country as seen through a pint glass, a vision that goes to the heart of what it means to be British.

Reviews

It's a fascinating travelogue to which anyone who fancies a pint or three can instantly relate, looking deep into the importance of pubs to society along the way. For anyone who's barmy about their boozers, it's an absolute must-read.
SCOUT LONDON
An entertaining celebration of the British pub.
BIG ISSUE IN THE NORTH
The authors are sure guides on this epic mission and incorporate humour and genuine warmth into their descriptions of pubs around Britain. A well-crafted and absorbing account.
THE SUNDAY BUSINESS POST