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Pub Crawls: The Didsbury Dozen

It’s become something of a tradition on any birthday ending in a 0 or a 5 for me to do the Didsbury Dozen – a famous, or infamous pub crawl involving 12 pints in 12 Didsbury pubs!

I’ve done the Didsbury Dozen a couple of times before – firstly on my 30th birthday, and then ten years later when I turned 40. This year my birthday ends in a 5, so it’s time to put my drinking boots on again and prove I’ve still got what it takes (which I have, I totally have).

If the weather is nice there will be some excellent beer gardening opportunities and I’m hoping some of my oldest, newest, bestest and nicest friends will join me along the way. I’m hoping it’ll be a good day to remember and a nice way to celebrate my birthday.

Pub Crawls: The Didsbury Dozen

To make the most of the Didsbury Dozen, it’s really important to be disciplined with yourself and your pub crawl team mates. It’s easy to find a sunny spot in a beer garden and not want to leave, or to spend too much time in one place. Someone needs to marshal the troops, check no one is cheating and that you’ve visited 12 establishments before last orders.

My tip is to start early, get three or four pubs or bars under your belt fairly quickly, and then have a slow hour in a pub with a good beer garden. Then crank up the pace again, remembering to stop for a hearty bite to eat to soak up some of the booze and then power through to the end.

Of course Didsbury has lost some good pubs over the last few years, so each time I do the dozen I need to plot a new course. Each time I need to cross off an old favourite and add a new bar or two. It’s not the end of the world, just a sign of changing times.

This year the course I’ve plotted looks like this…

  1. The Woodstock
  2. The Railway
  3. The Metropolitan
  4. Slug & Lettuce
  5. The Station
  6. The Dockyard
  7. The Dog & Partridge
  8. The Nelson
  9. The Fletcher Moss
  10. The Royal Oak
  11. Ye Olde Cock
  12. The Didsbury

*With the option to swap one of these out for food and a beer at Expo Lounge.

Ten years ago Didsbury was quite a different looking place, pubs and bars have come and gone, some remain and will always be here, I hope.

This was the order I did the Didsbury Dozen in 2006…

  1. The Didsbury
  2. Ye Olde Cock
  3. The Famous Crown
  4. The Royal Oak
  5. The Fletcher Moss
  6. The Pitcher & Piano
  7. The Dog & Partridge
  8. O’Neills
  9. Saints & Scholars
  10. Cafe Rouge
  11. Hog’s Head
  12. Slug & Lettuce

And this is the Didsbury Dozen I did in 2016 –

  1. The Railway
  2. The Metropolitan
  3. The Greenfinch
  4. Slug & Lettuce
  5. The Station
  6. The Stokers Arms
  7. The Dog & Partridge
  8. The Milson Rhodes
  9. The Fletcher Moss
  10. The Royal Oak
  11. The Famous Crown
  12. Bourbon & Black

If you fancy having a go at the Didsbury Dozen, I wish you well with your challenge. The most important thing is to have fun, and a very good breakfast before you start.

Didsbury Dozen
This post was originally published in September 2016, but really needed updating, so I did.