An homage to ‘North Road Spoons’

By and

Wetherspoons, colloquially known as ‘Spoons’ was founded in 1979, and has since become a staple favourite of the British public. Its name alone embodies perhaps one of the best underdog stories of all time, famously immortalising the founders’ schoolteacher who told him that he would never amount to anything. 

Unfortunately for Mr Wetherspoon, his pupil amounted to a whole 861 pubs that operate throughout the UK and Ireland, two of which are based in our very own Durham. We are all familiar with the typical sight of Durham students flocking in their masses to The Bishop’s Mill, although the ‘other’ Wetherspoons of North Road, the Waterhouse, is arguably an even more beloved landmark. 

In an objectively tragic turn of events for many Durham residents, students and Wetherspoons’ staff, the Water House was put up for sale earlier this month. This friendly establishment with its dependable regulars and lively pub quizzes, offers a mellow alternative to what can be a rather overwhelming experience of Lloyds transforming into a nightclub. ‘Sudden’ and ‘intense’ are two words that spring to mind when describing this process, with lights strobing, music thumping, and even fights brewing by about quarter to six. All of this is perfect if you’re in the mood for an exciting night, but if you simply yearn for a quiet pint, the Waterhouse is a positive safe haven in comparison. 

While the price of drinks is one obvious reason why students so heartily appreciate Spoons, the pub’s national menu is also something to admire. Ranging from pub classics to vegetarian deals, Spoons even incorporates special cuisine nights, such as Thursday night’s Curry Club. In our view, it really does have something for everyone – and at incredibly affordable prices. Some of our personal favourites, as vegetarians, are the halloumi and Quorn nugget wraps, accompanied by the revered Spoons chips, which have never failed to impress us, neither in quality or quantity. 

Its name alone embodies perhaps one of the best underdog stories of all time

In fact, last week we felt obliged to visit Spoons and try some delicacies that stray from our usual choices. We sampled the new Quorn nugget basket which was both affordable and tasty, as well as the fish and chips, with overwhelming impression of the latter being that ‘it was a like a massive fish finger’- which is not necessarily negative. We also ordered three small plates of nachos, chips and curry sauce, and roasted vegetable pizza, none of which can accurately be described as ‘small’, for the bargain price of £12.95. During this visit, the chip quantity was off the scale; we could not even bring ourselves to keep counting, it was frankly exhausting. 

The price of drinks is one obvious reason why students so heartily appreciate Spoons

We even found room to splash out on dessert, of which there is a wide variety, including ‘mini’ options for those who tend to take it a bit too far on the savoury options. Additionally, the unlimited amounts of sauces in Spoons remains a refreshing source of comfort in this money-grabbing world. There is not enough space to detail the many reasons that we love and cherish the Water House Wetherspoons, which welcomes us all with open arms at all times of the day – we just hope it’s legacy lives on.

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