Hoyland, for those of you not au fait with South Yorkshire, is in Barnsley and just up the road from Elsecar and its Heritage Centre.
Sorry for the lesson in how to get there, but with that knowledge you may well wish to beat a path to its door.
From the structure, I’d have a guess that The Beggar has been around for a couple of centuries, but the interior has been remodelled, probably in about the late twenties or early thirties. For, set in the panelling of what was the snug, are several small push-buttons, which you could (back then) operate to summon attention. The gent’s loos also give the game away, with a row of stand-up porcelain urinals for which an architectural reclamation yard would give their eye-teeth.
There’s a warming log fire to the right as you come in, and another to the left, and a billiard and live performance room to the rear. One L-shaped bar serves the lot.
The beers here are good staple offerings such as Hobgoblin and Sharp’s Doombar, alongside Flowers. It’s a good, solid, companionable boozer-plus which knows its customers, offers substantial, freshly-cooked comfort food and seems to pride itself on its individuality. Bravo to the landlord. One remarkable thing here is that they also run a Meals on Wheels service, based on their own daily menus.
There’s a lot of framed social history memorabilia on the walls, reasonable parking space, and tables for when the weather is fine. With plenty of pubs in this nook of the county going to the wall, The Beggar is clearly holding its own. Know why? Because it dares to offer service. And to be a one-off.
The Beggar and Gentleman, Market Street, Hoyland, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, S74 9QR. 01226 740608.