Many pubs rose to the challenge and managed to continue to provide vital outlets for people struggling with lockdown.
Now the Great British Pub Awards Pub Heroes 2020 is looking to recognise and celebrate the stories of those pubs and is calling on operators to share their tales.
Ed Bedington, editor of The Morning Advertiser, which organises the awards, said: “Pubs play an important role for many in society, providing a social outlet, but also providing key entertainment to get people out of their homes.
“The lockdown challenged operators to continue to think of ideas to ensure they continued to play that important role, and pubs up and down the country surprised their regulars with their innovation and ingenuity.
“From weekly zoom quizzes to providing opportunities for struggling musicians through to regular interactions with isolated customers, pubs showed that despite the challenges they were facing, they did not let their customers down.”
The Great British Pub Awards Pub Heroes is an evolution of the traditional Great British Pub Awards, and aims to shine a real spotlight on some of the fantastic achievements of pubs during the corona crisis.
Bedington added: “Pubs have really been hit hard by the crisis, but rather than shut up shop and walk away, we’ve seen operators not only rise to the challenge, but go way beyond that, doing amazing things to support the communities they serve.
“We want to use these awards to help shout from the rooftops about how great pubs are.”
You can enter the Keeping the Community Entertained category, sponsored by Sky, now at www.greatbritishpubawards.co.uk and the winner will not only receive £1,000 from Coca Cola to put towards a charity of their choice, but also the opportunity to bid for a £10,000 grant towards a business improvement upgrade or community project of your choice.
The full list of categories in the competition are:
- Feeding the Community – A pub that has kept their community fed
- Front-Line Support – A pub that has supported the NHS and other front-line workers in a variety of ways
- Staff Welfare – A pub that has gone above and beyond to look after their teams
- Community Mindfulness – A pub that has supported the community’s mental health
- Community Services – A pub that has looked after vulnerable customers
- Business Continuity – A pub that has found innovative ways to continue to deliver its services during the lockdown
- Pub Shop – A pub that has pivoted to provide essential supplies to its local community
- Charity Champion – A pub that has raised money for charity despite the lockdown
- Keeping the Community Entertained – A pub that has continued to provide vital entertainment to its community – virtual quizzes, concerts etc
- Sheltering the Community – A pub that has provided a room for someone in need
- Punch Pub Hero of the Year
- Admiral Pub Hero of the Year
- Greene King Pub Hero of the Year
- Ei Publican Partnerships Pub Hero of the Year
Entries are open until this Friday July 31 and the competition is sponsored by Booker, Coca-Cola European Partners, Heineken UK, Diageo, Sky, Ei Publican Partnerships, Admiral, Star Pubs & Bars, Punch Pubs and Greene King.