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Johnny Pye, Heswall

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user reviews of the Johnny Pye, Heswall

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

A Covid-19 free zone on a Friday and Saturday night and nobody seems to care.
wirraldrinker - 6 Oct 2020 12:48
I thought I'd have a last pint late on Saturday night so I made my way through Heswall Bus Station towards the Johnny Pye. I could hear a band playing and things seemed promising. However, as I approached the pub door a man was hurled out and went sprawling on to the pavement, quickly followed by a second man! A scuffle and frank exchange of views then took place between the ejectors and the ejected. I turned around, walked back into the Bus Station and waited for my last bus home.
wirraldrinker - 20 Feb 2018 19:04
Much improved over the last year but still rarely see the manager and the ''open mic'' nights ended a few months ago. Reasonably popular at weekends and often has entertainment on a Saturday night. Although often a piss-poor singer with a loud music machine. Usually has four ales available from the Marstons stable. The Hobgoblin ''Gold'' has been superb recently. Still does steady business during the day and early evening due to cheap meal offers.
wirraldrinker - 19 Sep 2017 17:27
Saturday night was my first visit for a while.
The place was crowded. A band was playing. There was a good selection of ales from the Marston's stable.
HOWEVER, only two staff were working! They did a fine job but It took an age to get served. A customer was collecting empty glasses and taking them behind the bar! No sign of the manager.
Please management get this sorted out.
wirraldrinker - 25 Jul 2016 14:06
Very few customers on Saturday night. Banks's Bitter and Wychwood Hobgoblin were the only two ales. The Banks's was well kept and very reasonably priced.
A local told me there is still no on-site manager and that the open mic is now just once a month. I do hope it is not in another downward spiral.
wirraldrinker - 8 Feb 2016 16:28
Another beer and music festival is planned for August Bank Holiday. I hope it is a success.
wirraldrinker - 2 Aug 2015 21:12
Management changed at the beginning of 2015 but real ale and open mic nights have continued. I went in on Saturday night to watch the Champions League final on the big telly. The place was crowded but only two bar staff were working. They were rushed off their feet but just about coped. Well done to them. No sign of the new manager. Ales available were all from the Marston's stable - Banks's Bitter, Hobgoblin and EPA.
wirraldrinker - 10 Jun 2015 16:23
Uncomfortably crowded when I attended the beer & music festival but I suppose that's not a bad thing! A temporary outside bar had been set up but closed not long after I arrived. This left just two guest beers available inside the pub. They were perfectly acceptable though. Well done to management for organising.
wirraldrinker - 2 Jun 2014 16:51
The Pye is hosting a Beer & Music Festival 23rd - 25th May.
I hope it is successful.
I intend to go for at least one session.

wirraldrinker - 13 May 2014 19:39
Called in here last night and ended up staying until closing time. There was a good crowd of punters.
The ale choice was Hobgoblin and Banks's Bitter. I had several pints of well-kept Banks's. There was an 'open mic' session underway. Apparently it takes place each Thursday from 9pm. Some of the acts were very good. Well done to the manager for organising - Thursday evenings a few years ago would have been as dead as a Dodo.
wirraldrinker - 28 Feb 2014 15:04
Recently held a mini-beer festival which included live bands. I didn't attend but locals tell me it was a great success.
Full marks to the latest manager for organising it.
This pub has been crying out for someone with vision and energy.

wirraldrinker - 3 Sep 2013 10:25
Ventured in here on a recent Saturday night.
Less than half full but an improvement on the last couple of years. There were even some young customers!
Two ales available, albeit from breweries owned by Marston's.
Two very efficient barmaids. No sign of manager or his wife - locals say there often isn't.
Apparently a karaoke night is held one Saturday per month but is best avoided due to terrible noise.
Overall, a better experience than previous several years.
wirraldrinker - 16 Jul 2013 14:45
Another new manager has been installed!

Good luck.

wirraldrinker - 31 Mar 2013 16:28
Just concentrate on your own reviews and testing your incontinence pants Burgess.
wirraldrinker - 22 Mar 2013 22:30
@wirralwanker - try visiting the inside of a pub for once in your life
happytyskie - 22 Mar 2013 20:48
Happytyskie - try 'copy & paste' instead of introducing your own dreadful spelling mistakes into my reviews. You semi-literate prick.

wirraldrinker - 22 Mar 2013 20:24
@just saying - don't worry about @wirraldrinker - he's only ever been to about 3 pubs in his life. Just look at some of his recent previous "reviews" which include:

"Appeared to have re-opened when i passed recently."

"It must be 30 years since I was last in this classic town center pub but even so I was dismayed to see That it was closed and boarded up When I passed yesterday.",

& the following classic pub "review"

"Went past at the weekend and noticed That as part of the recent refurbishment Ember Inns has painted the outside of the pub and peculiar light green. resembles That The color of a dried cow pat. Not an attractive look."

As you can see the guy can hardly string an intelligent sentence together anyway.

I've never visited your pub, but I promise at some stage in the future I will make the effort & give an honest assessment as I actually visit the pubs I review on here. @wirraldrinker likes to review pubs from the comfort of his car.

happytyskie - 21 Mar 2013 19:52
Justsaying – I take it you are the latest manager. I hope you aren’t another transient one.
Let’s be clear about my views, my main gripe is with Marstons. They obviously knew about the behaviour of the long-standing manager and the corresponding drop in takings but failed to act. I have absolutely no complaints about the building. I stated a few years ago that it is a spacious, clean and comfortable pub so I don’t understand why you think I hold a grudge against the pub. I don’t.
Marstons managerial appointments over the last year don’t inspire confidence – a succession of unsuitable or stand-in managers. You call it ‘teething problems’ - how could anyone appoint those obese, thuggish Evertonians? Five minutes spent with them and any sane person would realise they shouldn’t deal with the public – ever!
One other thing, I think you mean tittle tattle – ‘tickle tackle’ is something rude.
I honestly hope you turn things around but there is a lot to do due to Miserable Mick and the recession.
Many years ago the Pye was a thriving pub with a large age range of customers.
Gradually Mick became more and more of a tyrant, barring, insulting and frightening away customers, especially young people.
I’m not suggesting that the Pye turns into another Ravenscroft but visit Franklyn’s on a Saturday night and you will see what can be achieved.
I’ll continue to look through the windows when I pass most weekends to see how many people are inside and if I know anyone. Who wants to walk into an empty pub on a Saturday night?
Good luck.

wirraldrinker - 13 Mar 2013 13:52
Having read all the feedback and the back and forth posts, It is blatantly clear that a grudge is held against the Johnny Pye I hope the general public are smart enough to pick up on this and are able to see a case of sour grapes when they see one. @wirraldrinker since 2009 you have been calling for new management, It now has new management and you are still very negative towards the pub. it really does come across as a personal grudge against the bricks and motor that started with bad feeling towards the previous landlord but now its clear you have been unable to disassociate your personal feelings from him and the actual pub. I find it rather amusing that you keep approaching the pub to peep through the windows to run back and post your views online! I mean why? Why do you keep doing it? the Landlord has gone its been obvious there has been teething problems finding new management but it's not an easy job. When you run a pub you have to try and please every one all of the time. now it's going to take time to find new management who can take this pub on and take it to new heights. But i ask you what chance do they have when there is people like you with just negative feelings towards the building itself? It's not just management that are killing British pubs customers have their share of responsibility and you i assume really would have to be just a thorn in any landlord side. Every little thing that happens and your here on line tickle tackling to the world. Like it's your civic duty to let every one know that the pub was quiet in trade.

Why don't you let sleeping dogs lie! Give the new management a chance to try and re build the business without coming on here knocking everything. It's people like you doing this petty negative reviews that are not helping the pub at all. I just hope that like me other's can see you really do have a personal vendetta and I hope they are wise enough to go and visit the pub themselves to make their own judgement.

I still find it highly amusing considering the pubs location that your actually going up to it to look through windows!!! What really is going on in your head!
justsaying - 2 Feb 2013 14:21
Having read all the feedback and the back and forth posts, It is blatantly clear that a grudge is held against the Johnny Pye I hope the general public are smart enough to pick up on this and are able to see a case of sour grapes when see one. @wirraldrinker since 2009 you have been calling for new management, It now had new management and you are still very negative towards the pub. it really does come across as a personal grudge against the bricks and motor that started with bad feeling towards the previous landlord but now its clear you have been unable to disconsolate your personal feelings from him and the actual pub. I find it rather amusing that you keep approaching the pub to peep through the windows to run back and post your views online! I mean why? Why do you keep doing it? the Landlord has gone its been obvious there has been teething problems finding new management but it's not an easy job. When you run a pub you have to try and please every one all of the time. now it's going to take time to find new management who can take this pub on and take it to new heights. But i ask you what chance do they have when there is people like you with just negative feelings towards the building itself? It's not just management that are killing British pubs customers have their share of responsibility and you i assume really would have to be just a thorn in any landlord side. Every little thing that happens and your hear on line tickle tackling to the world. Like it's your civic duty to let every one know that the pub was quiet in trade.

Why don't you let sleeping dogs lie! Give the new management a chance to try and re build the business without coming on here knocking everything. It's people like you doing this petty negative reviews that are not helping the pub at all. I just hope that like me other can see you really do have a personal vendetta and I hope they are wise enough to go and visit the pub themselves to make their own judgement.

I still find it highly amusing considering the pubs location that your actually going up to it to look through windows!!! What really is going on in your head!
justsaying - 2 Feb 2013 14:15
No, Wirraldrinker. I think you've got real problems with this pub!
founddrunkinyourgarden - 29 Oct 2012 13:59
Like a morgue again the other night.
Apparently this place is on its' fourth manager this year.
The last one was sacked following alleged theft.
Marstons have got real problems with this pub.

wirraldrinker - 1 Oct 2012 11:28
Approached this pub at 11:30 last night (Saturday) but as I looked through the windows I noticed that there were only around 6 patrons scattered about the place. Didn't go in.

wirraldrinker - 9 Sep 2012 20:56
I learned last night that the new manager has been removed following some alleged unpleasantness. This is the most exciting thing to happen at this pub for years!

wirraldrinker - 8 Apr 2012 12:24
New manager installed about a month ago after last one left due to ill health (and died last week) but it is going to take a long time and a lot of enthusiasm to make this pub a destination of choice.

wirraldrinker - 7 Apr 2012 11:57
heswallnewbie if you mean the large, bald bloke then you are correct that is Mick the manager. Hes an arsehole with customer service skills from the 1970s. The sad thing is that he thinks hes funny and popular.
Hes alienated dozens of people over the years with the result that the Pye is now a quiet, old mans pub. As Ive said before, the pub could be so much better. Ive been hoping for years that the brewery would get rid of him. If only they would send in a mystery shopper one night when Mick has been on the sangria and then act on their findings.
Oh well.maybe one day.


wirraldrinker - 14 Dec 2009 11:34
Why should we avoid the place just because you were "insulted"?
founddrunkinyourgarden - 12 Dec 2009 13:04
in this establishment - if you happen to be served with a slightly dirty glass, when you bring it to the landlords attention - expect to be spoken to in a rude and surly manner and insulted. i was. avoid the place like the plague!

heswallnewbie - 22 Nov 2009 19:55
I really don't know what you've got against this pub, Wirraldrinker!
By and large your other comments are fair and reasonable. But there seems to be much spleen-venting regarding the JP or more particularly its landlord. I'm guessing of course, but have you had a run in with the boss on a previous occasion? Have you gone in, already half pissed, at three minutes to midnight and then nursed a pint for an hour?

There obviously seems to be enough punters to keep the place going. There has been a general dip in trade at the Pye (as there has been in most pubs I imagine). This would only be of concern to me if I were the landlord (which I'm not!), or if I had shares in Wolverhampton & Dudley (which I don't). If I was the boss of the Heswall Bar and Courtyard I would be really shitting bricks (8pm tonight NO customers whatsoever and the barstaff standing outside smoking). Maybe you should drink there, God knows they need the business!

The only things that concern me when I go to a pub is:

1. Is the pub safe and relatively dickhead-free?
2. Does it serve good real ale of a consistently high quality?
3. Is it reasonably priced or will I have to take out a second
mortgage to drink there?
4. Are you treated as a valued customer and not just a cash cow?

As regards to how many punters it has or who is asleep in which alcove, these are issues for the pub owners & managers, and not for the customers.


founddrunkinyourgarden - 29 Jun 2009 02:23
Despite my reservations my mate insisted we visit this pub on a recent Saturday night pub crawl in Heswall. He goes in here much more often than me. I had a pint of Bankss Bitter and he had Marstons Smooth both of which were fine. In fact the beer is always very good, its just that the place has so few customers to sample them! There was also another ale available (cant remember it) plus all the usual Eurofizz.
It still does the meals that you would expect from a pub chain.
This is a spacious town centre pub with a small car park on one side and a larger pay and display car park on the other. It is clean and comfortable and the background music is quiet but whenever Ive been in it is dead.
This Saturday night was no exception eleven customers at 9:45pm. One elderly gentleman was asleep in a tiny alcove, I kid you not!
I was told that unless there is a Liverpool or Everton game being shown on the two screens the place is pretty empty.
Years ago this was a popular pub with customers of all ages. There was also a weekly quiz . I realise all Heswall pubs are quiet during the week but this one is quiet every night!
Despite this, apparently the manager doesnt like people arriving at the pub after 11pm even though it is open until midnight at weekends. I was told he saunters down from his accommodation upstairs and has a habit of telling people it is closed and turning them away! The recession obviously hasnt hit him yet. I wonder what the brewery would make of this. The manager concerned has been in place since the pub opened 15 years ago. I suspect he is on a salary and therefore doesnt give a toss. What a waste. I speak from frustration. I would use this pub much more often if it was only run properly.
A couple of years ago the Ravenscroft opened and very recently the Heswall Bar and Courtyard. Both are doing well at weekends, at the Johnny Pyes expense. The brewery must be able to tell from the till receipts that this place is dying in the evening. Come on Marstons get a grip! Put somebody in charge here who WANTS to run a pubbefore its too late.


wirraldrinker - 30 Apr 2009 20:19
Wrong again Wirraldrinker!
founddrunkinyourgarden - 7 Feb 2009 15:47
I can only assume that 'founddrunkinyourgarden' is in fact the manager!


wirraldrinker - 4 Feb 2009 15:34
Yes the Pye could put a band or two on but as it's all open plan there is nowhere to escape to if you don't like what's being offered. The pub could end up with less customers rather than more. Maybe they've already looked into it, I don't know.

Some evenings during the week there is not a whole load of customers but that could be said of practically every other pub in these cash conscious times (I walked past the newly reopened Slak and saw that the barstaff were threatening to outnumber the customers!)

I doubt that it was the manager who was so dismissive of the FOUR real ales he offers judging by his many years in the Good Beer Guide and the cellarmanship certificates behind the bar; and for Wirraldrinker to say that you will find better kept real ale in the Dee and the Jug is just arse-gravy of the highest order.
founddrunkinyourgarden - 4 Feb 2009 13:33
This pub is probably the only one in Heswall not in a residential area and therefore could offer music/bands etc however it never has.
Does most of its business during the day. Located in the town centre it attracts shoppers and pensioners for meals. Meals very reasonable but coporate.
Dead at night.
Reasonable selection of beers including one real ale although I wouldn't rave about it like 'drunkinyourgarden'. The manager once told me there was no call for real ale and 'anyway it's too much trouble'. If you want good real ales get to the Dee View or Jug.
In conclusion, a tired pub run by a tired manager.
Desperately needs new management.


wirraldrinker - 29 Jan 2009 14:54
I understand that the "Pye" is not to be included in the 2009 Good Beer Guide. As a newly re-joined member of CAMRA I must admit that I am mystified by this pub's glaring omission. It is, in my opinion, the best establishment on the Wirral (if not beyond) in terms of consistent beer quality. If this pub cannot get into the GBG with all its most obvious dedication to the craft of real ale, then, by rights, the Good Beer Guide should be the slimmest of volumes ever published.
founddrunkinyourgarden - 30 Nov 2008 02:25
Modern but welcoming Banks pub run by Mick and Lezley. Best kept real ale for miles around. Good food, a no smoking area and two screens for sports coverage. A diverse mix of customers.If only all new pubs were like this.
founddrunkinyourgarden - 6 Feb 2006 17:48

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