The publicans who gave back in 2018

By Emily Hawkins

- Last updated on GMT

2018 round-up: from bolstering the country's football excitement to raising thousands for charity, there were plenty of heartwarming moments
2018 round-up: from bolstering the country's football excitement to raising thousands for charity, there were plenty of heartwarming moments

Related tags Pubs Charity

Amid statistics of increased closures and Brexit fears, publicans continued to work closely with their communities and enjoy success this year. The Morning Advertiser looks back at seven uplifting moments from 2018.

Community thankyous

image: Tim Foster

Fire sadly gutted and forced the closure of the Somers Town Coffee House pub in Euston in June. ​However, staff at the Yummy Co site were bolstered by support from the community and emergency services. They reopened the pub with a special ‘hard hat’ party​ to say thank you to everyone who had helped evacuate and then rebuild the site.

Similar appreciation for the community was shown after a fire devastated a historic pub in Essex and a crowdfunding page was created for its live-in staff​.

Football fever


Unexpected success in the FIFA World Cup saw pubs host crowds of happy England supporters this summer.

Operators made the most of the country's excitement.

Sports bar chain Walkabout praised the efforts of manager Gareth Southgate with a ‘Wear a Waistcoat week’​.

The Gardeners Arms in Norwich temporarily changed its name​ to ‘The Harry’ in tribute to Harry Kane.

A newly restored Boot Inn at Freston, Suffolk, opened a community cinema just in time to screen England’s match​ against Columbia.

Overall, wet-led pubs enjoyed a boom in sales​ as punters headed to the pub to enjoy the warm weather and football games.

Christmas meals


With the advent of festive decorations and supermarkets’ adverts also came many stories of publicans considering how to give back to their communities this Christmas. From The Crown and Anchor pub in Kent​ to the Kingslodge Inn in Durham​, pubs are set to open their doors on Christmas day for those who need company.

“We were incredibly touched by the plight of older people whose lives are blighted by loneliness and felt it was our duty as an operator to step in to do something about this,” said The Inn Collection Group operations manager Paul Brown.



A Derbyshire community came together at the Oaklands pub in Littleover to perform a 'sign-along' for five-year-old Oliver Callis, ​who has Down’s syndrome.

Licensee Noreen Tristram said she had learned Makaton sign language, which combines signs, symbols and speech, to communicate with the pub regular.

“He’s a lovely little boy and this is our way of doing something special,” she said.

Life savers

(image: The York Press)

It's not every day bar staff face the situation of having to save a customer’s life. But when a pensioner went into cardiac arrest at the Blacksmith’s Arms in Naburn, York, pub staff were quick to act. They ultimately saved the customer’s life with a defibrillator​.

Fundraising successes 


Publicans continued to use the classic pub quiz to raise awareness of important issues​ and fundraise for local and national charities this year.

The World’s Biggest Pub Quiz​, organised by PubAid, raised a staggering estimated amount of £190,000. Close to 500 different charities - including the project’s partner charity Prostate Cancer UK - benefited from the quiz events. Organisers say they hope to smash this record​ next year.

Politicians recognised the charity efforts of pubs with an inaugural All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group and PubAid award​, Charity Fundraising Pub of the Year.

Awards celebrations


Operators felt the pay-off from long shifts and bold investments at the John Smith’s Great British Pub Awards and Publican Awards this year.

North London’s The Red Lion & Sun was awarded the ultimate accolade​ of the UK’s best pub at the GBPA awards this summer and publicans from across the country were recognised for their hard work​.

The New World Trading Company took home three titles at this year’s Publican Awards​, but nipping at their heels was a new entrant to the competition, Brewhouse & Kitchen, which took home two titles. The winners represented the best of the business.

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