“The Quest For The Perfect Pub” was written in the 1980s and includes a nice entry about the Clayton Arms in Quoiting Square, Marlow.

I have copied this above along with the book’s cover, although I have rather cheekily replaced their cover drawing with an old Clayton Arms photograph.

I remember that when I first read this book I learnt a new word - “Frowst”, the definition is “a warm and stuffy atmosphere”.

Along with The Bank of England in Dean Street it is a pub that holds numerous fond memories for many people, especially of long-serving landlord and landlady Ted and Kath Page.

Here are a few pictures recalling those happy times. Ted was very proud of his darts teams over several decades and an award winning line-up is the picture bottom right. Ted is centre, behind the cups.

It was of course very much a Real Ale pub, and Ted always pulled an excellent pint of Brakspears, with “Old Ale” a seasonal favourite.

The pub earned an annual entry in the Good Beer Guide.

Ted’s disdain for lager and lager drinkers was famous. A favourite story was his regular reaction when a newcomer asked for the dreaded pale liquid.

With a puzzled expression Ted would make great play of noisily shuffling around under the bar finally producing a bottle from which he would wipe dust: “Don’t often get asked for this stuff!”

I would dispute the bit in the book about “no other food” – Kath would always, upon request, produce a pork pie from her kitchen.

The Clayton Arms did not move with the times and that was part of the charm. I doubt if any like it still remain, although a few years ago I did find one that came close – The Red Lion at Snargate, on Romney Marsh. I wonder if that has now changed.

By the way, although I always called her “Auntie”, Kath was actually my mother’s cousin, not her sister.

It looks unlikely that the Jazz Club will get back to normal for some time yet, but my MarlowFM Jazz Show “Swing That Music” continues Sundays 6pm to 8pm on FM 97.5, or on line at www.marlowfm.co.uk (with “Listen Again” facility) and now also goes worldwide via New York’s Pure Jazz Radio www.purejazzradio.com

Contact Michael on michael@jazzfans.co or 01628 486571