The Anchor, Pyrford, Surrey
The Anchor is on the River Wey that runs from West Byfleet to Pyrford lock in Surrey. The canal is a favourite walk of ours. It is flat for the buggy and lazy legs. It has ducks and boats to keep little ones occupied and it is very pretty. On sunny days it can be busy with bikes, lots of woofs and runners, so keep an eye out for them as we are known for a pile up. The only thing with a canal walk is you have to walk the same way back, but with the pub as a turnaround point, it’s really not that bad. The pub has a walk, if you’d rather park there and walk a circular route. From our house its only 2 miles to the pub. A good length for children, dogs, adults and to build up an appetite. The pub has only just started to serve breakfast from 9am-11am and we jumped at the chance of giving it a go.
On this occasion we decided not to bring the buggy, well Theo decided he didn’t need the buggy. Rookie mistake. (I am mum and I am the boss, not the 18 month old…). A decision we later regret. Theo has taken to walking everywhere and the buggy just doesn’t cut it anymore. This started off well, with big boys striding out with the dogs and Theo enjoying himself. Within about half a mile, Theo was done walking. Being carried was a much better idea. We did swinging, running, pointed at ducks, the big boys held his hands, anything to spare the back ache. For the rest of the walk he was slightly walking, mostly carried. He was in luxury, our jeans were not. The mud on our legs: a silent nod to fellow mums as they walk past. Mums just completely get what you are going through. Should have brought the buggy.
We reached the pub! The menu choices were small, but all you need. Luckily it was glorious sunshine and we sat outside. You can take well-behaved, clean dogs inside the pub for the rainy days. We generally choose to sit outside even on the cold days, dog walkers are hardy people! Plus more space for the children and less chance of them disturbing fellow diners. There is usually a playground, but this was being refurbished. That was a real disappointment as it keeps the children occupied. As you can see from the photograph, the pub is pretty much on the tow path, so you do have to watch them all the time. The safety of the playground is usually a god send, especially with a 18 month old tottering around. Our children used the cleared space for a paper aeroplane arena, love their imagination. (We always take a backpack with paper, pens, cars, etc. just in case). The pub does have colouring and puzzles to do as well. The Anchor is on the lock; there is a lot of boat traffic and you never tire of waving to boats. There is water bowls for the dogs and ample tables.
We had a full English, Theo a tea cake and the boys had bacon baps. Good coffee and there was cake! You can’t have a breakfast without cake. The only downside was it was a bit on the pricey side. We were expecting something a bit more as this is a new venture for them, but the food was good and all plates were clear.
Theo was exhausted and on the walk back fell asleep in Kim’s arms. Who needs the gym? Next time we are bringing the buggy. (I am the boss). Dogs dipped in and out of the water and the big boys made boats along the way to sail from the bridge.
No whingeing at all! The walks are a stress free for everyone when the children are occupied and they don’t actually notice that they are walking. Time for the mums to have a chin wag and actually enjoy the trip out rather than dragging the children along with bribery of cake and “its just up here” echoing.
For us a great local walk, good pub, child and dog friendly and you can make the walk suit your needs. The location really makes this pub and on a sunny day, it is perfect. Give it a go.