place for information on Ross-on-Wye and the Wye Valley
ROSS-ON-WYE - THE HOPE & ANCHOR POTTERS BAR
made the original version of this page back in 2000, when this
web site was in its embryonic stage and always intended to try
and both improve and to add to it. With maintaining the rest of
the web site however, it has taken me just under four years to
get around to making the changes. Recently working on the new
& Anchor web site brought back memories and reminded me
that it needed doing.
Potters Bar was always my favourite drinking establishment in
Ross-on-Wye during my youth and indeed is what made my decision
to choose Ross-on-Wye as my future home when the London office
I worked for relocated to Gloucester back in 1976. A decision
I have not regretted for a single moment!
photographs below, all except for the first one which I took during
the flood in 1978, depict the 'Last Night of the Potters Bar'.
The 'Last Night' to me seemed something akin to a wake, during
which the dearly departed will be forever sadly missed but the
party was great! I worked behind the bar that evening with Julia
Race, and Alan Weston, who had retired from pub work some months
previously came in later and gave a hand when Julia and I were
somewhat under the outfulence of incohol. Sic transit gloria mundi.
Please also see the Summer
I have left
the original text for this page in tact and it can be seen below
the photographs. Potters
Bar Reunion - November 2004 Photos are here.
Hope & Anchor in 1978 - the Potters bar is the barn Type building
to the left.
Potters Bar before the party began on the last night.
staff and ex bar staff. Tom, Glynis, Christine, Bryony, Julia, Gill,
the Two Alans.
aka Basil Fawlty and Bryony.
Race and I busy behind the bar.
Dave,' Bryony and Christine.
and I behind the bar after hours.
football table gang - Geoff Gwatkin, Joe Griffin, Mike Arnison and
myself, Alan, Bryony and Christine.
and I, either coming out of or going in to the ladies loo. I suspect
Band Night - A Confession
first experience of Ross-on-Wye took place in the summer of
1970 and, looking back on that visit, I feel something of a
hypocrite. In order to explain why, I have to tell you that
between the years 1977 and 1984, when I was in my twenties,
I had a part time job as barman in the, then, "Potter's Bar,"
at the Hope and Anchor. It was a great place to work. Barmen
in the Potters Bar seemed to hold an almost celebrity status.
I have a good many memories of those halcyon days. Working along
with Alan Weston, we became known as, "The Two Alans." However,
we used to hate working of a Sunday evening. The reason for
this was that the Potter's Bar jukebox,
loaded with its amazing collection of 1970s records, was about
the best in Ross at the time, but of a Sunday evening one of
the local brass bands would play outside and we would be forced
to turn the volume down, and to add insult to injury, supply
the band members with a free drink at half time. Sucking lemons
outside was a very popular pastime during brass band time but
at 9:30, when the band finished, the jukebox would immediately
revert to its more usual volume and staff and regular customers
of the Potters Bar became their usual cheerful selves once again.
was born in East London but lived in Barking, Essex and the reason
my first experience of Ross makes me feel so hypocritical is that,
between the ages of seven and sixteen, I had played in a brass
band myself. I had been on Holiday with my parents in Westward
Ho and, on our way back home, we detoured to stay with my father's
friend, George and his family, who lived in Mitcheldean. George,
at that time, played E flat bass for one of the Forest Brass Bands,
which at the time of our visit, was due to perform at the Hope
and Anchor. Being the summer holiday period, the band themselves
were short of some members and I voluntarily (with a gun held
to my head by my father) helped out by playing guest solo cornet
with them at that very gig.
I would like to have been able to name the band more precisely
but, being a nineteen year old at the time, I didn't take note
of the name of the band - pubs however, were a different matter
and I remember liking the girl I had to sit next to, though I
never saw her again after the event. Looking
back now, I wouldn't have missed my brass band upbringing for
anything - or those Sunday evenings at the Hope and Anchor. This
is the main reason for my adding this Potter's Bar page to Wyenot.com.
Places, buildings, ways of life, friends are often taken for granted
and one doesn't miss them until they are forever gone.