Route 4/4a

The number 4 bus, operated by TM Travel, serves a number of Sheffield’s south-western suburbs, heading out from the city centre, through Sharrow, Brincliffe and Ecclesall and on towards Bents Green and eventually Ringinglow. The twin service 4a takes an alternative route from Ecclesall Road, heading down Carter Knowle Road before terminating at Millhouses Tesco.

Although these buses only run once per hour, services run on weekends, continue until around 11pm and pass by a number of excellent real ale pubs, making it ideal for visiting a few pubs that are a little further out of the way.

The route begins at the Sheffield Interchange, so if you arrive early you can call into the Old Queen’s Head to get refreshments ahead of the journey. The three regular Thwaites beers are nowadays joined by a number of guest offerings, which often feature local breweries such as Abbeydale and Little Critters. The pub also offers an interesting range of Czech food on its menu, which is well worth a try.

On departing the bus station, the service meanders through the city centre, heading past the Moor Market towards London Road before turning right up Cemetery Road. Here you will find the Beer Engine, where there are up to six real ales plus a selection of craft keg and tapas.

A little further up the road, just past the roundabout, the bus stops almost outside the door of the Stag’s Head on Psalter Lane. This Thornbridge pub serves a range of core and seasonal beers and has a pleasant beer garden.

The bus continues on Psalter Lane, past the currently closed Psalter Tavern, and onto Ecclesall Road South before reaching the Prince of Wales pub on the left-hand side. Today, this pub is mainly food-focused but real ale is still on offer, with Timothy Taylor’s Landlord and Tetley Bitter regularly available.

As mentioned earlier, the 4a service takes an alternative route here, heading down Carter Knowle Road past the Cherry Tree and on towards Tesco. The Cherry Tree is a community pub which recently won an appeal to retain its status as an Asset of Community Value, and has Black Sheep Best Bitter on cask.

Meanwhile, the number 4 takes a right turn onto Bents Road and up towards the Hammer & Pincers at Bents Green, where there are four real ales available including local favourite Abbeydale Moonshine. There are also two weekly pub quizzes, on Tuesdays and Sundays.

The route continues out as far as Ringinglow, with a stop just outside the Norfolk Arms Hotel, before heading back towards the city. The Norfolk Arms has up to six cask beers on offer, with regular beers from Abbeydale, Bradfield and Exit 33 joined by three guests. One real ale, a different one each week, is priced at £2 per pint on Mondays and Tuesdays.

On the way back into town the bus follows much the same route, but just in case you want to try one more pub, the approach to the Interchange from the opposite direction means that the bus stops directly outside our Pub of the Month from March 2018, the Rutland Arms. Here, there are up to seven real ales, with the regulars provided by Blue Bee.

Dominic Nelson

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