Sunday, October 16, 2016

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester

Playing Bagatelle in Chester.


We love playing pub games and when our friend and minigolf rival Jam Trubridge told us that you can still play Bagatelle in Chester we knew we'd have to hunt down a table for a game.

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester
The Union Vaults in Cheshire is a proper pub. They've got a dart board there too

Jam recommended the Union Vaults so, after our ride on the Grosvenor Park Miniature Railway, we headed to the pub.

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester
The Union Vaults had a nice table. It was a great place for us to have our first play of the old game 

We received a nice welcome from the locals at the busy pub and they were very happy to help us novice players have a game.

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester
The final resting positions of the balls in our close contest

One of our favourite pub games is Bar Billiards and the rules of that game can appear complicated to a newcomer. Bagatelle is no different in that respect. However, while the two cue, table and green baize ball games may also appear to be similar in appearance, looks can be deceiving.

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester
Playing for the black - as you must unless it's been cupped

What's really nice about Bagatelle is that there are no mechanisms on the table, so once you're go is over and you've totted up your score, you have to retrieve the balls and let the next player take their turn.

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester
Emily playing a nice opening shot

With each pocket worth from 1 to 9, and the black ball scoring double if potted, the aim is to reach exactly 101 points. We found ending the game to be quite tricky indeed, as to do so you must finish on 101 - for instance, if you needed thirteen points (as we did at one point) but shot a total of 14 or over on your turn, your break was stopped and the next player took to the table.

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester
The table was placed next to the window and near a telly showing the horse racing, so it seemed like we had the eyes of the pub upon us as we played! We did receive plenty of tips from the locals as well though

In our match-up I picked up the win 101 to Emily's 92. My highest break was 33 (the opening one), while Emily scored in the twenties on one go.

Bagatelle at the Union Vaults pub in Chester
The final score

It's a great game, simple to pick up and play, but one that takes ages to master. We'll definitely play Bagatelle again.

Check out the Chester & District Bagatelle League website for more information on the game and places to play it in and around Chester.

Related blog posts:
- Pub games
- Sports and games we've played
- Bar Billiards
- Chester

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