North Acton

North Acton station first opened on the Central London Railway on 5th November 1923. Mainline rail services had already been stopping here since 1904 on the New North Mainline, which linked the Great Western Main Line and its services out of Paddington and the Chiltern Main Line services out of Marylebone.

With the growth of the Central Line, rail services were effectively rendered redundant so the station is now only served by the tube. Freight services do pass through here and one passenger rail train every weekday, although it doesn’t stop here, between Paddington and South Ruislip, which much surely qualify as a Parliamentary train – more about them here…

The station itself is pleasant if modest, the shelters at platform level are pretty basic as is the ticket office. There is a nice touch here in the shape of a collection of potted plants in the area in front of the ticket office. A mini garden so to speak!

The Pub: The Castle, Victoria Road, W3 6UL

The area around North Acton tube is mostly made up of modern office/housing blocks with Tesco Expresses, Dominos and the like underneath, so it felt rather strange to stumble on a traditional looking pub in the midst of it all. The Castle is on Victoria Road which can be reached from the footpath up from the station. Wth its mock Tudor frontage,  it looks every bit the quintessential pub among a collection of slightly anonymous new developments.

Inside, its fairly spacious. The interior has lots of nice little touches – I was a particular fan of the collage of 1980s football magazines surrounding one of the TVs. There are also a collection of black and white photos of the local area from back in the day. Perhaps not surprisingly given the football display, The Castle has both a Sky and BT Sports licence. It also has a sizeable beer garden.

As a Fullers pub, The Castle has their usual range of ales – London Pride, Seafarers and the like. There was also a selection of guest ales, including the marvellously named ‘Proper Job’. I couldn’t resist and gave it a quick try but it was far too sweet for my liking. The pub also caters for fans of the in modern lagers like Brooklyn and offerings from Camden Town brewery.

I was getting peckish while we were here, so went for one of their burgers. At £9, its towards the cheaper end for pub burgers these days. It was excellent so well worth the price. Other options on their menu included Fish and Chips, steak, hot dogs as well as a Thai Curry. My friend went for the Sweet Potato Fries which also looked very appetising.  It was fairly busy on our Saturday afternoon visit and had a friendly, welcoming atmosphere. That may have been enhanced by a very sweet puppy that was dashing around the pub while we were there.

To sum up,  The Castle is a top pub in an area which would seem to offer little in that way of entertainment when you pass by on the tube. If you’ve done that before with North Acton, think again and pop in here for a pint!

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