Wetherspoons fan Paul Bardill has visited nearly 400 of the popular budget boozers, but there’s a twist: he doesn’t drink.
Paul, who is an administrator for the Midland Railway in Derbyshire, generally has a Pepsi in every ‘Spoons he visits, sometimes he goes for a hot chocolate if it’s a cold day.
His goal is to visit everyone of the chain’s branches – there were close to a thousand at last count. Even in the midst of last year’s lockdown Paul managed to visit over a hundred.
Paul said his 2020 total was “quite an achievement”, adding “The pubs are all different but familiar."
He says the Wetherspoons atmosphere is special because “No one is judging you for being on your own.”
Wetherspoon spokesman Eddie Gershon told the Daily Star: “ We are thrilled that Paul loves to visit our pubs.
“He is one of an elite group of enthusiasts that enjoy travelling across the UK to visit as many Wetherspoon pubs as possible."
“Paul’s visits are slightly different as he doesn’t drink alcohol," but, Eddie added, "We appreciate his loyalty to Wetherspoon and trust that he will enjoy many more trips to our pubs.”
Paul visited his first Wetherspoons in Hastings, East Sussex, in 2009 but his mission to visit every single one only really got started 2014. So far he's managed 373 in total.
His epic 2020 tour started at his home in Derby and took in Wetherspoons branches in Birmingham, Worcestershire, Herefordshire, Gloucestershire, Somerset, Hampshire and Dorset.
His favourite, he says, is a converted cinema called The Picture House in Stafford.
He told The Sun that apart from providing food and drink at affordable prices the chain has also played a part in preserving the country’s architectural heritage:: “Some of the buildings are often interesting too, like old theatres and police stations.
"Wetherspoons has taken many which might have been demolished.”
Founded in 1979 by Tim Martin and based in Watford, the company operates 925 pubs as of June 2021.
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