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The hunt is on for the Great British Pub


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The hunt is on for the Great British Pub

Related tags Great british pub Inn Drinking establishments Public houses in the united kingdom

The hunt is now on for the UK’s best pubs and this year we’re making it even simpler for bars across the UK to enter the competition.

The Great British Pub Awards is the UK’s leading pub contest, pitching the UK’s best operations against each across a number of categories, culminating in one venue being named the Great British Pub of the Year.

Organised by the Publican’s Morning Advertiser​, the awards celebrate excellence within the pub trade and aim to raise the profile of the pub sector as a whole.

Ed Bedington, editor of the PMA, said: “Pubs are at the heart of our community, and with plenty of doom and gloom being cast around the mainstream media, these awards are a great opportunity to highlight the fact there are some amazing businesses out there that are not just surviving, but thriving.

“Each year we celebrate the best in the business, and this year will be no different. We’re calling on pubs across the UK to throw their hat in the ring to be in with the chance of taking home a top title.

“As well as benchmarking your business against the best in the trade, if you’re lucky enough to win an award, it can provide a massive boost to your operations.

“We’ve trimmed down the entry process, in the initial stages, to make it simpler to enter, so this year there’s no excuse. If you think you’re the best in the business, then enter now.”

This year, the PMA is also calling on consumers to nominate the pubs they think are setting standards in hospitality.

Bedington adds: “We’re calling on the people at the sharp end, the customers themselves, to get in touch and let us know the pubs they think are the best in the business.

“We think the endorsement of those that truly matter, the customers, is a great badge of honour for those pubs nominated, and we look forward to seeing the entries.”

Other changes to the competition is a shift away from regionality. The awards will now be selecting a number of national finalists in each category, with one pub from each selected as a winner.

Two new categories have also been introduced to the mix, with Inn of the Year to reflect the growing importance of accommodation to the pub sector and Student Pub of the Year, highlighting those operators that are staying relevant to the younger generation of pub goers.

Category list:

  1. Best Beer Bar/Pub ​- Open to pubs with an excellent and profitable beer offer that has helped drive business success in the past year.
  2. Best Spirits Bar/Pub​ - Celebrating bars/pubs with an excellent and profitable spirits offer, that is has helped drive business success in the past year.
  3. Best Wine & Champagne Bar/Pub​ - Recognising bars/pubs with an excellent and profitable wine/champagne offer, that has been a key part of the pub's success in the past year.
  4. Best Cider Bar/Pub​ -Open to pubs with a fantastic, money-making cider offer, that has helped drive the site's strong business performance in the past year.
  5. Best Live Entertainment Pub ​- Recognising pubs whose entertainment offer has been a core part of their business success in the past year.
  6. Best Family Pub​ - Open to pubs for who the family market has been a key part of their business success in the past year.
  7. Best Food Pub​ - Recognising pubs for who food sales are at the heart of their business success.
  8. Best Turnaround​- Recognising pubs that have best turned their business around over the past 12 months
  9. Best Sports Pub​ - Open to pubs for who sport is a key part of their offer and site success.
  10. Best Newcomer​ – Recognising new licensees that have made the greatest impact since entering the trade after January 2014 (open to new licensees to the industry)
  11. Best Community Pub ​- Open licensees that have succeeded in building a successful pub business that is at the centre of its community.
  12. Best Partnership Pub​ - (formerly Best Tenanted/Leased Pub)​ - Recognising licensees that have been the best exponents of the tenanted/leased/franchise model over the past year.
  13. Best Freehouse ​- Recognising the freeholders that have best developed their pub's business in the past year.
  14. Best Managed Pub​ - Recognising managed pubs that has driven trade most successfully over the past year
  15. Best Student Pub​- Recognising pubs whose student offer has been a core part of their business success in the past year.
  16. Best Inn- ​Recognising pubs whose accommodation offer has been a core part of their business success in the past year.


The Great British Pub Awards, run by the Publican’s Morning Advertiser​, are recognised as “the one to win” by licensees; attracting hundreds of entries from thriving pubs around the UK, and with a category to suit every type of pub this is a fantastic opportunity to be recognised as the best in the trade.

Being selected as a winner or finalist in these prestigious awards offers the opportunity to raise your pub’s profile, opening the door to new customers and potential opportunities. Making the shortlist also generates excellent press coverage which gives you and your team well-deserved recognition.

There are plenty of categories open for entry including: Best Community Pub, Best Turnaround Pub, Best Newcomer, Best Partnership Pub, Best Food Pub, Best Beer Pub/Bar and Best Family Pub.

We can’t think of any reason why you wouldn’t want to enter these business-boosting awards, but don’t just take our word for it. This is what some of the previous winners think…

“We were absolutely thrilled to be announced National Champion in the Best Freehouse category. But to then be named overall Great British Pub of the Year - the feeling was almost indescribable. It’s fantastic news and good for business; it’s a wonderful endorsement of everything we are doing and great for the moral of the entire team.”

Simon Heaton, Shibden Mill Inn, Sky Great British Pub of the Year 2015

“We absolutely loved winning the GBPA - for no financial outlay we have reaped a huge amount of free publicity and we couldn't recommend entering the awards highly enough to anyone thinking of it, both for the huge amount of fun it is and for the financial rewards it creates.”

Sue Hawkins, the Bell Inn, Stow, Best Turnaround Pub 2014

“The benefits of winning the award have been threefold: we've certainly become much more well-known within the industry; our team are brimming with pride to be working at an award-winning pub; and we believe the award has played a significant part in the growth of our business.”

Susie Clarke, the Grafton, Kentish Town, London, winner of Great British Pub of the Year 2014

“It was a truly wonderful feeling winning the award which we have been after for many years. To be recognised by your industry peers gives you a warm glow inside. It makes all the hard work, late nights and thankless tasks seem worthwhile.”

Angus McKean, the Red Lion, Barnes, London, winner of Best Cellar 2014

The national winners will be announced at a fantastic awards ceremony at London’s Hilton Hotel on Park Lane, on 5 October 2016.

Bedington added: “We love celebrating excellence in the pub trade and these awards are the pinnacle of that. We’re looking to highlight the best businesses in the UK as both a beacon for other operators to aim towards, and also to generate a real buzz around those operators and boost their profits.”

We can’t think of any reasons why you wouldn’t want to enter your pub in this year’s awards. It boosts business, generates excellent PR for your pub, attracts new suppliers and gives your hard-working team a pat on the back! And with our new, simpler entry process, there’s no reason to delay, make sure you get your entry in now!

Visit​ for more information and details on how to enter.

5 reasons to enter

  • Time well-invested. Going through the entry process will help provide focus on what you have achieved in the past year and also any areas for improvement
  • Team recognition. Winning an award is also a fantastic morale booster for your team
  • Invaluable networking. Being part of the Great British Pub Awards also offers entrants fantastic networking opportunities
  • A great celebration. The awards ceremony at a top hotel in London features fantastic entertainment and bars. It is the best night of the year to celebrate the trade’s finest
  • It makes a difference to your business. Winners and finalists have reported a significant uplift in trade and publicity by gaining recognition at the awards

Box – Top Tips on entering

  1. *Read the entry criteria and ensure you understand what the judges will be looking for and stick to it! Understand the category you are entering and tailor the information to suit.
  2. *Bring your pub to life through your entry. Pictures and examples of initiatives highlighted in your entry form help make an impact.
  3. *Show the evidence. Don’t just put that you have achieved something - prove your statements. Use examples, figures and testimonials where appropriate to illustrate your achievements.
  4. *Remember to “market” your pub in the entry. Be innovative and show passion.
  5. *Put your heart and soul into entering! The Great British Pub Awards is an award well worth winning and makes a real difference to your business.

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