Sunday, 17 February 2013

Sir Charles Napier, Leicester

A little off the beaten track as it is, I'd recommend making the effort to visit the Sir Charles Napier. The pub is a classic inter-war years community local, recently refurbished, but still retaining three separate rooms including a cosy wood panelled lounge, and more functional games oriented bar. The interior is considered of sufficient merit to be included on CAMRA's inventory of Real Heritage Pubs, and more information on this and many other unspoilt classics can be found on the excellent searchable website: www.heritagepubs.org.uk.

Traditional, and some not so traditional games play an important role at the pub. League Dominoes, Darts, and Table Skittles are all popular, and compete for space with the more recent additions of Poker and Quiz nights.



The Skittles Table at the Sir Charles Napier is the somewhat rarer Leicester version, distinctly different to the more common Northamptonshire tables found in the south of the county. The pins and cheeses are the slender hardwood variety unique to the Leicester game, as opposed to the more chunky Boxwood or plastic used elsewhere. This makes for a very different game, one where the higher scoring 'Tips' (Whackups in Leicester) and 'Floorers' (Nine-a-Ball) of the Northants game are much harder to achieve.

The table is turned round and 'parked' in an alcove when not in use. It's a very smart and well maintained table, and the team presumably want it to stay that way. Skittles night is on Wednesday, with play in the South Leicestershire League which covers quite a wide geographical area including Earl Shilton, Syston, and Wigston.


Darts, Dominoes, and Skittles trophies jostle for position in the trophy cabinet.

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