The doors they came out by Nostalgia for a vanished pub.

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Author: Sean O'Brien
Date: June 4, 2021
From: TLS. Times Literary Supplement(Issue 6166)
Publisher: NI Syndication Limited
Document Type: Article
Length: 1,435 words
Lexile Measure: 1280L

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HOWEVER SIGNIFICANT a place may have seemed, demolition begins to separate it from reality. There is an entire industry of local photographic nostalgia, books that try to hang on to what stood here or there, to re-locate the doors people went in and came out by, and the views the interiors offered of the street from which they can no longer be seen. Where we live there was an Institute where lectures and plays and dances took place. As the saying goes, "it went on fire" years ago, as did the house in the park bought by subscription to provide social amenities. Most dramatically, the construction of a flyover to replace a level crossing on the East Coast main line divided what was still a village neatly in half. Place-names themselves are coming slowly adrift.

Having only lived here thirty years, I find these things difficult to imagine. Perhaps the park will go next. But the most significant loss in my time has been the Fusilier, the local pub, closed three years ago, then pulled down a year later. Custom has transferred itself elsewhere, with the caveat that nowhere can ever be the Fuse or hope to emulate its climate of dank gloom, eccentricity and intermittent violence. Lockdown has possibly seen off all the pubs anyway. Many were already struggling.

But the Fuse hasn't quite gone away. It was a large, detached building in a style recalling the interwar roadhouses, with three bars, a kitchen, a function room and accommodation. Built to serve the council estate that never quite reached its doorstep, it left a large patch of ground behind. This was fenced off for some time. Word was that a local charity had acquired the site to build flats for adults with learning difficulties. But nothing happened, and continued to happen, until the fencing disappeared, and it was assumed that work would begin. In fact the fencing had been stolen, while the project remains stalled at the planning stage because of problems of access. To the north was a small private estate with a large retired population. The roads were narrow, with tight corners unsuitable for heavy...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A667421077