OldCiren - Cirencester, Gloucestershire, UK
Many will recall the time when unlike today, Ciren had so many pubs that you could visit a different one every night of the week. At one time, Pubs were social hubs; each with it’s own community of regulars, who treated the pub like an extension of their own homes. As well as Sports teams and games played such as Darts, Dominoes and Cribbage, many pubs in Ciren hosted meetings of men’s friendly Societies and organisations such as the Rotary Club, The Lions Club or the ever popular “Buffs”. The Royal Antedeluvian Order of Buffaloes (Buffs) were particularly well attended in Ciren and from the 1950’s to at least into the 70’s in my memory, there were five pubs in town that hosted Buff “Lodges”. For me, every Monday Night was Buffs night at the Golden Cross in Blackjack Street, with an occasional visit to lodges at the Brewers’ Arms, the Queen’s Head or down Victoria Road to the far-off, Foresters Arms in Queen Street. Open to all men of “good character” the Buffs raised money for Charity and enjoyed good fellowship while doing so, (with a few pints of Arkell’s beer in hand.) Music was an essential part of Buff’s meetings, with various fraternal songs throughout the evening, accompanied by an appointed “Minstrel” playing a slightly out of tune upright pub piano. The Golden Cross had one such instrument in the skittle alley; upon which, my late Father and I would “render harmony” for the Lodge throughout the evening. The “Harmony” would continue after the Lodge closed, in the Public bar of the Cross where more beer would be be drunk - and all on a Monday night.
The pictures this week are from Buffs Socials and the Buffs Easter Bonnet competition in 1974.
Note = The title “Buffs” came from a popular song at the time of the RAOB foundation in 1822 (“We’ll chase the Buffalo”).