Back Your Boozer: a haven for ale fans at The Half Moon

Pub Feature - The Half Moon, Lawford Road, Rugby
Pub Feature - The Half Moon, Lawford Road, Rugby

Don’t be fooled by the Half Moon’s modest exterior. Venture inside the Lawford road pub and you’ll be met with the site of an much-bigger than expected open-plan drinking venue that’s been thoughtfully refurbished over the past few months into a cosy, charming, traditional boozer.

Landlords Brian and Jane took over the pub around 14 months ago and immediately started transforming what had been a rough-around-the-edges drinking den into a much cosier real-ale pub. They knocked a wall through to open up the pub’s front room and also got to work on finding the right ales to serve up. Brian explained: “The Half Moon is now only one of a tiny number of pubs in the area that are traditional, open fire, stone-floor pubs. There’s no Sky Sports or any of that because that’s not what we do.

Pub Feature - The Half Moon, Lawford Road, Rugby

Pub Feature - The Half Moon, Lawford Road, Rugby

“We’ve turned it from a drinking den into somewhere that’s the perfect place for a real-ale drinker. We’ve had some great feedback from our customers and some positive things said about us by Rugby Camra as well.”

The pub has also established itself as more of a social venue in recent months for various clubs, and now has its own pools, skittles and darts teams and has a weekly poker night. Alternate weekends there is also live music.

Brian added: “We’re delighted with how far the place has come since we took over. It’s the perfect place to visit for a relaxing drink after work and it’s also a good place to take friends and partners – and there certainly wasn’t many guys bringing their wives or girlfriends here a few months ago but thankfully that’s all changed.

To further entice customers in the Half Moon also has two open fires and a wood burner – making it ideal place to escape the winter cold with a relaxing drink.

Steve Heighton, of the Rugby branch of the Campaign for Real Ale, said: “It’s always been a very popular pub with the people that know about it. It’s a cracking little place that’s always full of characters, I cut my teeth as an ale drinker there many years ago.”

He added “It’s also one of the few pubs that’s been brave enough to pay for a substantial refurbishment and expand its size considerably. It’s paid off though and I’d recommend anyone who’s into their real ale to go along and see how much its changed.”

The Half Moon is located at the top of Lawford Road.