By John Grainger, Property editor
Is there anything better on a chilly November’s day than coming in from the cold to the warmth of home?
Well, actually, yes – for a lot of people there is. The pub not only offers a warm welcome, but friendly faces and a well-earned drink at the the end of the day – so it’s no wonder that many people treat it as their home from home.
And yet pubs across the UK are closing at the alarming rate of 18 a week. On-demand TV, DVDs, PCs and, importantly, the availability of cheap supermarket alcohol have all conspired against the on-sales trade.
Another reason sometimes given is the decline in people’s sense of community – or is it the other way round, and the decline of the pub has contributed to that?
Whatever the reasons, and however steep the rate of decline may be – for now, at least – the appeal of pubs will always be there; they are a permanent fixture on our cultural landscape.
One way you can enjoy the best of both worlds – the living room and the bar room – without going too far out of your way is by living near the pub.
Just one thing: if you do fancy it, make sure you choose a good one. That may seem obvious – no-one wants to live next to a grotty pub – but there’s another reason: with so many going to the wall, it may only be the good ones that survive.
The following four homes are all just a beer-mat’s throw from excellent pubs and are all currently for sale in our area.
Number 54-56 Stonebridgegate in Ripon is a four-bedroom terraced house which started out as two smaller houses and could potentially be split again.
Situated opposite Paddy’s Park and within walking distance of the city centre, it also has off-street parking for up to three cars.
Handily, it’s just down the street from The Magdalens, which earlier this year was named Winter Pub of the Season by Camra.
Montague House on Devonshire Place in Harrogate is a distinctive period building which was was converted about seven years ago into five luxury flats.
Apartment 2 has two bedrooms, an allocated parking space in the private car park to the rear, and views over the Stray.
It’s also just round the corner from the Swan On The Stray, which stocks a range of mainly northern real ales, as well as continental beers.
Number 11 Church Street is a three-bedroom house in the heart of Wetherby. It has a low-maintenance yard to the rear and could probably do with some modernisation.
As if its central location weren’t enough, it’s also within sight of Muse Ale and Wine Bar, which has a beer garden and is owned and run by the same group as the Swan on the Stray in Harrogate, and so stocks a similar range of beers.
Finally, Nidd View Cottage on Kirkgate in Knaresborough is a beautiful grade II-listed property perched high above the river. Its two decked balconies and garden areas have stunning views across the gorge and towards the castle ruins.
The beamy, four-storey house has two bedrooms and a small under-house workshop and single garage nearby.
It’s also just a few seconds’ amble from the refurbished Mitre Inn, which achieved a four-star rating for its bedrooms and was listed in the 2009, 2010 and 2011 CAMRA Good Beer Guides.