THE consensus among the locals is that the Swan Inn is a ‘proper pub’, one of the last and best in Worcester.

Another draw is Claire and Chris Bull, the big-hearted couple who have run the Barbourne Road boozer for the last five years. Home of Swan Swifts FC and the Swan Vespas Scooter Club, the pub is also a good place to watch live sports on the big screens. The pub showed the Six Nations game between England and Wales on Saturday.

The pub is also a popular venue for live music with Chalky Martin playing next Saturday at 9pm, performing Ska, Motown and Rat Pack hits. Father-of-two Mr Bull, 55, said the pub had live entertainment virtually every Saturday.

He would like to see more people give the pub a try after the impact of flooding on the trade.

They were very busy during the Rugby World Cup when sausage and bacon butties were laid on, free for customers.

Mr Bull said: “The weather has affected us quite badly. In general terms, the floods have stopped Worcester.”

The landlord, born and raised in Crowle, said: “It’s hard work but it’s good fun. It has its ups and downs like everything. We try to be a friendly and community-spirited pub. We do anything to help people.”

One of the things you notice about the Swan is the massive range of charities the pub and its customers have supported, raising many thousands of pounds. They include St Richard’s Hospice, the Poppy Appeal, Brain Research UK, the Air Ambulance, Kinship Carers and Ronald McDonald House,

“We try to do our best for all the charities and concerns,” said Mr Bull.

Regular Shaun Richmond said: “It’s a down to earth proper pub. There’s not many left. There’s good beer and lager. It’s a great pub and great people in here.

“Everybody knows each other but strangers are always welcome.”

Anthony McDonald loves the pub so much he comes all the way from Fernhill Heath for a pint. Asked why he kept coming back he replied: “They keep letting me back in.”

Patrick Duffy comes from even further afield, travelling in from Warndon Villages (although he used to live near the pub) to watch England win the triple crown against Wales.

“The beer is good here and we watch the rugby," he said.

Rumours abound that the pub is haunted by a ghost named Hubert who creates all kinds of mischief. But the locals have learned to propitiate the meddlesome apparition by drinking to his good health, a strange practice considering the poor fellow is already dead.

The pub has been running since 1831 and, before the coming of the railway, it was reckoned that 20 stagecoaches would stop at the Swan either coming from or heading to Birmingham. Pub Spy also managed to infiltrate the pub and gave the Swan a glowing write-up.