Christmas 2015

The Hereford Arms, Gloucester Road, Brompton, London On 5th December 2015, at 12:30 p.m., around fifteen Borrovians met at the Hereford Arms in Gloucester Road, Brompton, London, for the George Borrow Society Christmas Dinner.  It was wonderful to see so many old friends and there was a lot more talking than eating going on.  The Hereford Arms provided an excellent meal, with many saying there was bit too much for them: something that doesn’t often happen in London.

Trish added a raffle in aid of the Society’s funds and even managed to sell some tickets to the Hereford Arms regulars.  Although we don’t mention it usually, our treasurer will be happy to accept donations, with details at the bottom of our membership form.

Sadly, owning to Government austerity measures, Tim could only propose one toast instead of the usual three: but, a paragon of efficiency, he still managed to include The Immortal Memory, Absent Friends and Borrovians the World Over.

As a few members had difficulty in reaching the Hereford Arms, here’s a few tips in future:

1.  The pub is a 4 minute walk from Gloucester Road underground station which is on the district and circle lines.  There’s very regular underground trains from Victoria station (both coach and rail), and regular trains from Paddington (Praed street station, at the front of the railway station) on the circle line (you want one going via Victoria).

From Euston, King’s Cross and St. Pancras stations you generally would take a convenient route onto the south part of the district or circle lines.  Liverpool street and Fenchurch street are on the circle line: just make sure you’re going the right way around.

There can be regular weekend engineering work, so check with Transport for London which also has maps and explains fares.

2.  The 49 bus (Battersea/Clapham Junction to White City) goes past Gloucester Road underground station and although a bit slower might suit some more than the underground.  All London buses are easy access, accept England concessionary cards etc.  Transport for London offer a journey planner if that won’t work for you.

3.  If you’re still stuck, you can always use Bing maps

Many questions about Borrow passed during our lunch, and here’s a few for those who like something to research:

1.  What would the Borrows have had for Christmas lunch?

Most people felt it wouldn’t be turkey, but perhaps goose and/or fish.

2.  The Hereford Arms was there all the time Borrow was: did Borrow frequent it?

The Hereford Arms started quite small and only achieved it present size when it merged with two houses that were in Clareville street.

We know Borrow and Robert Collinson would sit drinking in the square: was that an indictment of the Hereford Arms?

3.  Where did George Borrow make his money?

From Ivan’s recent book we know that when George married Mary she had held two mortgages totalling £9,000 on the Oulton Estate.

We also know Borrow might have saved some of his £200 Bible Society salary, and that he made some money from his books.

Again from Ivan’s book, we know that George Borrow purchased the Oulton Estate.