With four historic pubs surviving along its High Street and the opportunity for a five mile circular walk, Theale represents the best of both worlds. A walk in the countryside and a village pub crawl all accessible by train or bus: what’s not to like…
The main drag through Theale village was once a stop along the London to Bath turnpike. During its 18th Century heyday Theale boasted as many as thirteen inns lining High Street. It was with some justification that Theale during this time was jokingly referred to as “The Ale” to reflect the amount of beer that was brewed and consumed there.
Today the modern A4/Bath Road bypasses the village and the old road is now, from east to west: High Street, Church Street and The Green. Although the coaching inns are long gone four still remain as pubs, some showing signs of their origins in the form of enclosed courtyards and stable buildings that once serviced the needs of horses and drivers. We have previously written about each of them in separate posts: The Bull, The Falcon, The Crown and The Volunteer.
For the purposes of this post the walk begins at The Crown Inn. Reading Buses service #1, and Newbury & District services 101/104/105 stop here. Also, for those arriving in Theale by train, Station Road emerges onto the High Street opposite The Crown (get bus/train times). Once again, we are indebted to iFootpath for the walking route. To view the route and online step by step directions click here. To download a printable copy click here. The mobile app is highly recommended – we find it indispensable – get it here.