The pub chat details feature in Marr's upcoming memoir Set the Boy Free, and in an extract published by The Guardian on Monday (31Oct16), the guitarist recalls the reunion was very much in place - for four days.

Marr was so convinced he and the singer would regroup, he told his then-bandmates the Cribs about the plans and made arrangements to take time away from the group to work with Morrissey.

"We were only a couple of miles apart in south Manchester and arranged to meet up in a pub nearby," Johnny writes. "I was happy to see him - it was 10 years or more since we’d last met. We caught up with personal news and family and reminisced a bit.

"The drinks kept coming and we sat talking for hours. We chatted, as we always did, about the records we loved, and eventually we moved on to 'that subject'. There had been rumours for years that The Smiths were about to reform, and they were always untrue. I had never pursued any offer.

"Suddenly we were talking about the possibility of the band reforming, and in that moment it seemed that with the right intention it could actually be done and might even be great. I would still work with the Cribs on our album, and Morrissey also had an album due out."

Pleased to be back in touch with Morrissey, Marr started making plans, adding, "For four days it was a very real prospect.

"Morrissey and I continued our dialogue and planned to meet up again," Marr recalls. "I went to Mexico with the Cribs, and then suddenly there was radio silence. Our communication ended, and things went back to how they were and how I expect they always will be."