Are these the UK’s most Christmassy pubs?

By Alice Leader

- Last updated on GMT

Christmas spirit: pubs across the UK are pushing the boat out to provide something extra this Christmas
Christmas spirit: pubs across the UK are pushing the boat out to provide something extra this Christmas

Related tags Christmas

From a pub that boasts 100 Christmas trees to another that has a real-life reindeer in the garden, CAMRA is celebrating its 12 Pubs of Christmas, each offering something special for the festive season.

The recommendations form part of CAMRA’s campaign to highlight the important role pubs play in local communities as well as its goal to tackle social isolation, particularly during the winter months.

CAMRA’s national chairman Nik Antona said: “Pubs play a vital role in tackling loneliness and social isolation.

“They are one of the last few places where people can come together to socialise outside the home and our latest campaign aims to highlight the amazing work pubs do to foster community spirit and encourage social interaction all year, including the Christmas period.”

CAMRA's 12 Pubs of Christmas​ 

  1. Kingslodge Inn, Durham – this pub is getting into the festive spirit by offering Christmas lunch and entertainment for older people living alone. It also runs a regular lunch club throughout the year.
  2. Churchill Arms, Kensington, west London – dating from 1824, this is one of London’s Real Heritage Pubs and is known for its quirky exterior. At Christmas, it is a sight to behold with spectacular festive decorations including 97 Christmas trees (93 outside and four inside) covered in more than 21,000 lights. 
  3. Errigle Inn, Belfast, Northern Ireland – there is something for everyone at the Errigle Inn during Christmas. It offers lights and decorations, live folk and rock music, the Christmas jumper pub quiz and live football between Boxing Day and New Year.
  4. Cambridge Blue, Cambridge – this ever-popular side street pub joins forces with the Mill Road Winter Fair to host Father Christmas and his real-life reindeer in the back garden. In addition, there is a highly-anticipated annual evening of carols and mulled wine with the Cottenham Brass Band.
  5. Cumberland Arms, Newcastle upon Tyne - Christmas at the Cumberland celebrates all things Christmassy with music, shopping, food and hot booze.
  6. Ship Inn, Ulverston, Cumbria - the Ship Inn hosts regular events including popular Christmas wreath-making workshops using fresh flowers or rags, which aim to encourage skills to be passed on between local generations, with funds donated to a local charity.
  7. New Inn, Helston, Cornwall – this pub hosts a wide range of local events all year round, including a popular Carols at Christmas event. This year’s takes place on 21 December with mulled wine and mince pies. A raffle will also be held, with proceeds going to Coast Medic with the aim of installing a defibrillator in the village.
  8. Duke of Marlborough, Somersham, Suffolk – events include a popular shopping night with mulled cider in November, where locals can buy and sell gifts, art & crafts, decorations, homewares and Christmas cakes. There are also creative workshops such a Lino Cutting Print Day with a local artist to produce a set of unique Christmas cards.
  9. The Bevy, Brighton – the Bevy is the first community-owned and run estate pub in the UK. At Christmas there is lots on offer including a free Children’s Christmas Party with Santa’s Grotto and disco (14 December) and Churches Together Christmas Carols (15 December). 
  10. Ye Olde Fighting Cocks, St Albans, Hertfordshire – a Boxing Day tradition takes place annually where Mummers perform their unique adaptation of George and The Dragon outside the pub. This year, Ye Olde Fighting Cocks is also staging a Christmas Night Bazaar through to 22 December in its garden.
  11. Clachnaharry Inn, Inverness – Clachnaharry Inn is a friendly 17th-century coaching inn which offers a free minibus service for those within a 10-12 mile radius of the pub at Christmas. 
  12. The Alexandra, Wimbledon, south-west London – the Alexandra serves up free turkey lunches and drinks on Christmas Day to anyone spending Christmas alone. Now in its fifth year, neighbouring shops and residents also donate food and presents to help spread the festive joy. This year, they are expecting more than 100 three-course meals to be served to those on their own, recently widowed, or those working away from home and family. 

Related topics Events & Occasions

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