Friday 19th April 2013
When I arrived at Welling station I didn't think I'd have to walk that far to the Door Hinge. Well, it was a lot further than I thought. Now, if someone asked me to describe Welling High Street, I would say it starts near the station and ends near the Door Hinge!
For a healthy fit person I would say, allow around fifteen minutes as a minimum. There are, however, a number of useful bus routes and I caught one back to the station.
The Door Hinge is another new micropub and as soon as I entered I felt on familiar territory. The main room was small, of course, and the side walls were wood panelled and painted in dark red, with the upper walls in a cream colour. I noticed a few tables and chairs around the walls, all occupied, and the tiny bar; basically somewhere to put the beer upon whilst payment is made. The beer is fetched from a cool room where it is dispensed straight from the cask. This can be viewed through a window. On my way to the single toilet I noticed there was another small room to the rear which was currently used for storage.
It wasn't long until I was chatting to the affable owner and landlord Ray and learnt a bit more about the pub. He said that it was five weeks to the day since the pub had opened and he said that he served 38 beers since then. With my crude arithmetic I worked out that indicated a least one new beer each day, a fine achievement!
The beers available on that day were: Dark Star (Partridge Green, West Sussex) Hophead (3.8%); Canterbury Brewers (Canterbury, Kent) Loco IPA (3.9%) and Kelham Island (Sheffield, South Yorks) Pale Rider (5.2%). Whilst I was there one of these was changed for Wickwar (Wickwar, Gloucs) Banker's Draft (4.0%).
I asked what the future was for the room at the rear and Ray said it was destined to be a quiet room. I think I understood the concept but it did seem strange when the only noise at the front was from conversation.
I then asked him about the pub's name and he explained it thus, I think: His mother's maiden name was Hinge and at school her nickname immediately became Dor, a shortened version of Doreen, which wasn't her name at all! I suppose it's the female equivalent of, say, Dusty Miller. So there you have it; the Pub's title is a celebration of Ray's Mum's nickname. You can't get more original than that.
The pub also sells wine and there is no food as such, unless you count crisps, nuts and pickled eggs. It's a lovely little boozer and shouldn't be missed it you are in South East London.
The Door Hinge, 11 High Street, Welling, London DA16 1TR. Tel: 07956 845509
Open: Tuesday to Thursday 15.00-21.00; Friday and Saturday 12.00-22.00;
Sunday 12.00-15.00. Monday: Closed.
The Door Hinge is about 15 minutes walk from the Welling station. Exit from the station on the up (towards London) side and walk down the approach road, turn left into Central Avenue. You will now see the traffic lights at the intersection with Bellegrove Road. Turn left and walk along on the same side. This road becomes High Street and you continue until you think you are leaving Welling; there you will find the Door Hinge.
Welling station is served by South Eastern Trains and has services to London Cannon Street and Victoria with a few to Charing Cross. There is a train about every 15 minutes. In the opposite direction they nearly all terminate at / start from Dartford. Services are less frequent at weekends.
Buses 89, 96, B16 and 486 run past the pub and routes 51 and B15 stop reasonable close.