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Reviewed On: 15 Jun 2004
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Public Houses in Reading
Berkshire, England.
Jolly Anglers
Previous Names / Status:
Kennet Side, Reading, Berkshire, RG1 3EA
0.95 miles from Reading station [Map]
Final Score: 5.0 out of 10
Steve's Score:2.5 (Out of 5)
Gray's Grade:2.5 (Out of 5)
Steve Supped:Holsten Pills
Gray Gulped:Holsten Pills
Garden / Facilities:Some well positioned benches out the front - perfect for sitting next to the canal.

17 October 2004

The pub gave off a slightly uncared for feeling with a tatty pub sign hanging out the front and the gents bogs were very basic. It wouldn't hurt to tidy the place up a bit with a quick bit of paint around the edges. Inside it was pleasant enough though and gave a warm welcoming atmosphere. The guy behind the bar was very friendly and the locals seemed like a nice bunch. There was pool and darts crammed in next to a scattering of tables and chairs wedged in around the bar in the centre of the pub. I wouldn't mind coming here at all if there was a decent beer or two on the go, but as it stands there's little to set it out from other standard Reading pubs. Mind you if Ben Whitmarsh likes the place...! G.
What is setting it apart is the lack of at least one real ale, but it's not all bad at all. I actually really liked the place. Sometimes you get a feeling for a place and think, ok, it's not the best in the world, or even in the top 1000, but for some reason, I like it. And I did. It's pretty small on the inside, especially in the half we were in but it was quite busy. Most of the blokes were watching the golf. It was the World Matchplay and Lee Westwood was trying to keep up with the mighty Els but at the time we were there he was having to play a shot from a footbridge! Needless to say, he lost. Anyway, It just felt like the place you could come for a few beers and relax with a couple of mates, (leave the ladies at home cooking!! - or let them go out for a sauna or manicure or some such girly thing if you really must) have a good chat and feel contentedly blokey for a while. S.


Not entirely sure about our choice of drink here. Still, I don't think I'd ever had it before. At 5.2% it's a premium lager, but I don't think I could get excited about it!! The beer selection was rather limited, a couple of draught lagers and one draught bitter (was it John Smiths?). It's only a small pub so you wouldn't expect much - but it really was a bit basic on the beer front. G.
Yes it was but I'm pretty sure they had strongbow if you got desperate and the bar man was a really friendly guy. S.

VISITOR FEEDBACK [Give Your Feedback]

(Rated 8 out of 10)
Damiank visited in November 2012

"A cracking little local"

(Rated 8 out of 10)
Gavin visited in August 2010

"Great simple pub with good beer and food. Biggest criticism and something that puts me off returning, is that looking out of the window you can't see the canal for the landlords cars."

(Rated 10 out of 10)
DAVE visited in October 2008

"well done to JON the new landlord really has turned the pub back the way it was great pub and i would and will be putting it down for best pub in reading wel done jon"

(Rated 8 out of 10)
Brian Jones visited in October 2007

"The pub was extensively refurbished in 2006 and is now in the 2008 Good Beer Guide - so please ignore the 'no real ale' rating. This is currently one of the two pubs around Reading that regularly serves Harvey's Sussex Best Bitter - and a good pint too. There are usually two other guest beer, usually from one of the breweries from the area. The television can dominate a bit if there's football on, but calling in when there's a darts match may mean you're called on to help finish up the sandwiches. This pub has had its ups and downs. Currently it's very much on an up."

(Rated 7 out of 10)
Maryanne visited in September 2007

"Well, it now has a new sign and a full refurb!! New management- excellent Sunday lunch (nice big old plate and cheap, coutesy of little Maria). Maria and Max are your friendly publicans, and friendly they normally are. Plus, you get to sit by a river... in the summer time there is sunlight there all day- excellent for tanning. I agree about the blokey aspect of this pub tho... you may experience a sexist comment or two, which can be pretty annoying. But all in all, I've had many a nice afternoon/evening down there. (But if tyou don't like dogs, avoid as it is a dog walkers paradise. Oh and bike riders too... if you have small children then you need to wacth for the bikes as they come flying down the toad path.) Yes, a pub full of characters."
Chris visited in February 2005

"Thankyou all for your kind words regarding the Jolly. I am the Manager and Licensee of the Jolly Anglers and I would just like to bring you up to date on a couple of things. Firstly the London pride is back this weekend, I have to take it off during the Winter because it is very much a seasonal pub, being by the canal of course. I just lose too much beer in the Winter and cannot justify keeping it, anyway, it's back now. Secondly, the pub is actually between Leaseholders at the moment and so there is no-one responsible for investing money for it's re=furbishment. It does have an "uncared for" look about it, but I try to keep it as clean as I can. It is a friendly place and the locals love it and really help to give it a happy and warm atmosphere, I love 'em! Come the Summer months, why not pop down to see us on a sunny Sunday afternoon and enjoy one of the best 'chill-out's' happening in Reading, biased maybe, but best I've known."
Winton Davies visited in December 2004

"This was my local for a long, long time. Yep, the Anglers was always a really friendly little bar. And as a lager lout, I neverminded the lack of Real Ale..."

Average Visitor Score: 8.20 out of 10


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Jolly Anglers Pub (Reading, Berkshire)
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