Lactic Enlightenment Searching for the essence of Milk and Milk Bars

While I’m at it …  

Posted on September 20th, 2004. About relatedOnTheNet.

Dunno who the are, but lokalink have some NMB pictures in the context of their surroundings.

Tea Shops on the web  1

Posted on September 20th, 2004. About relatedOnTheNet.

a good place for a cup of tea and a think” has a page about the Machynlleth NMB with more photos than I took.

He also went to Nardini’s in Largs, which I’ve been to a few times.

Small world.

Contact  

Posted on September 19th, 2004. About TouchingRealLife, NMB.

Whilst I was away on vacations, I got a very interesting email from somebody called Michael Wilson.

I think you’ll agree - some pretty interesting stuff. Thanks Michael.

Blog-able  

Posted on September 19th, 2004. About NowtToDoWiMilk.

non-NMB related warblings

Seven Weeks on  

Posted on July 23rd, 2004. About StatusReport.

National Milk Bars Known About: 10
National Milk Bars Visited: 10
National Milk Bars only Visited by proxy: 0
Ex-National Milk Bars Visited: 8
Cups of Tea Drunk (In NMB) : 13
Milkshakes Ordered: 1
Miles Driven: 1638
Postcards Bought: 12
Jokes Told: 0
Hat Shops Photographed:2

(current) ToDo list

Trip Report - Wrexham  

Posted on July 23rd, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are Here

A bright an early start (and excellent breakfast) from Llangollen meant that we were up and over the Horseshoe pass and into Mold quite early. We did look around but couldn’t find an obvious ex-NMB. (when I got home, I found an email from Mold Tourist Information, explaining where they thought it was - but, alas, it wil require another visit).

Then into Wrexham to take a picture of the Photo Shop that used to be an NMB and then onto Oswestry (for another failed wander around).

Finally home, and a third place in the quiz.

Maybe I should set a quiz with an NMB-themed round :-)

Going Home - Almost  

Posted on July 23rd, 2004. About NowtToDoWiMilk.

We set off back home, but decided that

  1. It was quite a long way
  2. Wales was nice
  3. We weren’t really that busy

So we stopped at a B and B. The first vacancy we found was in Llangollen. Luckily it was the weekend after the Eisteddfod and so there were places to stay.

We had a very nice curry in a Bangladesh restaraunt called ‘Red Rose’ and then went along to see the live music at the Sun Inn. Th pub had a jukebox requests book. The only argument in it was about the GLC (Goldie Lookin’ Chain). Which was quite mature and restrained if you ask me. The band were good. My favourite number was the one they were playing as we arrived. We met some characters. Safe.

Trip Report - Bangor  

Posted on July 23rd, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are Here

So, on to the last stop. I’d already visited Bangor, but it was a Sunday and it was closed. This was the last NMB that I needed to have a cup of tea in. Whilst there is still much NMB-related activity to do, it felt like this was an end.

Approaching the NMB from inside the shopping centre, we noticed that it said ‘Restaurant’ outside (contrary to the designation on the Napkin. Sure enough - it did have the NMB standard menu (the first one we’d seen today). But it wasn’t Waitress Service.

I had Tea and Scone, Jam and Butter (no cream here, unlike in Machynlleth when the chef whipped some especially for me) simon had a glass of milk.

As it was quite early (4 o’clock) I phoned up my Auntie in Harlech and arranged to have a cup of tea there too. It took a bit longer to get there than I expected - mainly due to a Swedish Volvo driver doing 22.5 MPH over the Llanberis pass. The tea was excellent, dare I say it, the best that day. The views from her house over the Lleyn Peninsula are just amazing. That’s what you get when you live in a house called ‘Bryn Mawr’ (Big Hill) I guess :-)

We set off for home.

Trip Report - Llandudno  

Posted on July 23rd, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are Here

After driving around Llandudno for what seemed lik an eternity, we squeezed the m-m sideways into a tiny space and trundled to the National Milk Bar. Again, no NMB meals menu, but this time, we found another Map on display. This one was just on an A4 sized piece of paper (and not painted on the wall or etched into glass) but it did add to the knowledge a bit.

One tea and one Hot chocolate later, we left. On the way to Bangor and the last known NMB that I hadn’t yet visited. We went via Conwy - which is very pretty.

Trip Report - Colwyn Bay  

Posted on July 23rd, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are Here

Passing through Abergele in another futile attempt to stumble across an Ex-NMB, we entered Colwyn Bay on the A55. Taking the prom exit, we drove into town and parked the m-m just around the corner from the NMB. I was a little worried that it might be closed - but everything was fine. I had a pastie with chips and gravy, simon had sausage chips and beans.

After the NMB, we had a little walk around town. I bought some books in a ‘Help the Aged’ and we made an NMB related discovery. Down near the station was a KFC which was operated by National Milk Bars.

Flushed with success - we headed off, the pretty way, to Llandudno. We stopped at the Chapel of St. Trillo, the smallest chapel in Britain. I bought a postcard for 20p in the Honesty box.

Trip Report - Rhyl  

Posted on July 22nd, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are Here

So, a quick jaunt down the road to Rhyl. Even in the short time we spent in Ellesmere Port, the road going the other way had become a nightmare, due to road works. This getting up in the morning thing sometimes pays dividends.

Passing through Prestatyn on the way - to see if there was an obvious Ex-NMB (or a KFC) , which there wasn’t, we went to Rhyl. Parking was a bit of a trauma but I squeezed the Milk-Mobile ito a tiny space and we headed to the NMB.

Rhyl looks a bit like it had seen better days - all the shops around the NMB were tourist tat shops, and it was raining. Anyway, the NMB was another Coffee Shop and followed along the lines of Ellesmere Port. No Waitresses, no NMB menu and a better selection of pies. We had tea.

Postcards were easy to come by. Next stop Colwyn Bay.

Trip Report - Ellesmere Port  

Posted on July 22nd, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are Here

So, here we are, on the brink of the final push. There is a slight problem in that the last few to visit are the furthest away and are not open on Sunday. (esp Ellesmere Port and Bangor - the end-points). To fix this, the plan was to stay at a hotel/pub near Ellesmere Port on Friday night and then make a dash, West to East, covering the last five NMBs.

Which saw the big cheese and simon booked into the ‘Gateway to Wales’ hotel on Friday night. A quiet jar in the bar and then off for a stroll around the local area. Which appears to be called ‘Sealand’ or ‘Garden City’, depending on how you feel, I guess. We walked down a long road to a pub (the “Queen’s Ferry”) which was nice enough for an estate pub, very lively. There appeared to be a birthday party happening. It was clearly a locals pub, but we were made to feel very welcome. We had a little look at the magnificent blue bridge (apparently known locally as “the Blue Bridge”) and then wandered back to the hotel via a fantastic chippy and a pub that was having a charity auction.

Bright and early on Saturday, we set off (in the pouring rain) Northwards for the short hop to Ellesmere Port. Arriving in town, we spotted what looked like an NMB building just on the main road. It was now called ‘Roots and Boots’ but was clearly a cafe/coffee shop in the NMB style. Without employing too much thought (we hadn’t had breakfast at the hotel) we decided to have a bacon butty there.

Once inside, simon noticed that the address wasn’t the same as the address we had for the NMB, so we guesed we had the wrong place. Never mind, it was nice enough.

After finishing our repast, we then went in search of the real NMB and found it inside the shopping centre. This was the first ‘Coffee Shop’ and we noticed the following differences:

  • No NMB Menu
  • No Waitress service
  • Bakery in shop

Then we had a problem. Trying to get a postcard of Ellesmere Port. Newsagents, post offices, library - none of them could oblige. Finally, I bought a postcard of Chester from the Newsagents next to Roots N Boots.

Off to Rhyl.

Completion  

Posted on July 19th, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Just a quickie.

All 10 NMBs now visited, photographed and had a cup of tea in.

Detailed reports to follow.

Six Weeks on  

Posted on July 15th, 2004. About StatusReport.

National Milk Bars Known About: 10 (This is a hard number to pin down. Different information sources yield different answers.)
National Milk Bars Visited: 7
National Milk Bars only Visited by proxy: 0
Ex-National Milk Bars Visited: 7
Cups of Tea Drunk (In NMB) : 8
Milkshakes Ordered: 1
Miles Driven: 1143
Postcards Bought: 7
Jokes Told: 0
Hat Shops Photographed:2

(current) ToDo list

Discovery  

Posted on July 13th, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

So, I’ve emailed three Tourist Information Centres in towns that used to have NMBs. Wrexham, Mold and Oswestry (the three that I could find email addresses for).

I had a very nice reply from Annette in Wrexham who informed me that the NMB closed down over 20 years ago and is now a Photo Shop next to M&S.

If the technology works for the other two places - I’ll update here,

Five Weeks on  

Posted on July 8th, 2004. About StatusReport.

National Milk Bars Known About: 10 (This is a hard number to pin down. Different information sources yield different answers.)
National Milk Bars Visited: 7
National Milk Bars only Visited by proxy: 0
Ex-National Milk Bars Visited: 7
Cups of Tea Drunk (In NMB) : 8
Milkshakes Ordered: 1
Miles Driven: 1143
Postcards Bought: 7
Jokes Told: 0
Hat Shops Photographed:2

(current) ToDo list

T-Shirts  1

Posted on July 2nd, 2004. About TouchingRealLife.

T-Shirts are now in stock.

Four Weeks on  4

Posted on June 30th, 2004. About StatusReport.

National Milk Bars Known About: 10 (This is a hard number to pin down. Different information sources yield different answers.)
National Milk Bars Visited: 7
National Milk Bars only Visited by proxy: 0
Ex-National Milk Bars Visited: 7
Cups of Tea Drunk (In NMB) : 8
Milkshakes Ordered: 1
Miles Driven: 1143
Postcards Bought: 7
Jokes Told: 0
Hat Shops Photographed:2

(current) ToDo list

Trip Report - Denbigh  

Posted on June 30th, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are here

So, feeling a bit down about Colwyn Bay, I park up the m-m in Denbigh and wander into the town. Only to find that this NMB is very shut. And clearly has been for a long time.

To liven up my spirits, I go back through Shrewsbury and take a picture of a second Hat Shop (the other one is opposite the NMB.)

So, why does Shrewsbury have so many Hat Shops ? In the words of the great poet and Telly-Tubby narrator, Toyah Wilcox, “It’s a Mystery”

Weary and a little deflated, I returned home. Even stumping up two quid for a drive on a bit of road. Spirits were re-vitalised by good conversation and Quiz Winning.

Trip Report - Colwyn Bay  

Posted on June 30th, 2004. About InSearchOfMilk.

Pictures are here

Not visit Colwyn Bay, yeah right. So, I’m on the A55 and just gravitate towards the Colwyn Bay exit as if drawn by a powerful, invisible force. So, I drive to our old house and take a couple of pictures of it (I’m sure I looked really suspicious - but who cares). Then I get a little confused by the one-way system and end up driving past my fist school. Which appears to now be closed and up for sale. A bit depressing, but life moves on I guess.

Find the NMB and it is up for let too. It does seem to still be an NMB, just closed on a Sunday. So I’ll need to go back there too for a cup of tea. If it’s still operating.

Not the most uplifting trip to Colwyn Bay that I could imagine. So, back on the road to Denbigh.

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