Cambridge – Old Ticket Office

Despite using Cambridge railway station relatively regularly, I’ve managed not to notice that this pub opened in June 2018. Its presence has only become apparent to me since it’s now listed in the Good Beer Guide and it has pleased CAMRA, who have given it numerous awards. The pub is operated by the City Pub Company, who now have fifty or so pubs, and I like what they’ve done with the Bath Brew House (in Bath), the Lion & Lobster (in Brighton) and St. Andrew’s Brew House (in Norwich).

I’ve had a look through the beers that this pub has been serving and there’s lots of innovation. I wasn’t particularly impressed with the beer selection that was on when I visited, but I imagine that their trade is down and so this is the response that they feel most appropriate at the moment. Having written that, the Norfolk Topper from Barsham Brewery was a locally sourced beer and it was well-kept and quite drinkable.

The staff here are way above average, really engaging and welcoming. This gave me an excellent first impression and indeed, positive impression throughout my visit. I can see why the pub is doing so well.

The pub’s web-site doesn’t say much about the history of the building that they’re in, which is a shame as it’s quite glorious. The pub’s name suggests that it’s the station’s former ticket office and the transformation is quite beautiful as it almost looks like this bar was always here. The green is inspired by the colour scheme of LNER, the 1923-1948 one and not the current one.

For those who like to people watch, the outside terrace is ideal. I sat outside and spent most of my time fending off a wasp, a reminder to myself that it’s safer for people like me to sit inside. Sod the continental approach, it’s rarer to get rain, wind and wasps when sitting inside.

So, all rather lovely, hopefully their beer selection will be more exciting when things start to return to some form of normality. But, it’s clear that this pub has been doing some great things and it’s become increasingly popular, so this is a useful on-trend addition to the railway station.