GBPA 2022

Meet the finalists for Best Pub for Dogs sponsored by

By The Morning Advertiser

- Last updated on GMT

Top dog: we've taken a closer look at the six contestants in the running for Best Pub for Dogs
Top dog: we've taken a closer look at the six contestants in the running for Best Pub for Dogs

Related tags Events Great british pub awards Cumbria Lancashire Kent Coventry

Here's the lowdown on each of the of finalists in this year's Best Pub for Dogs category in the 2022 Great British Pub Awards.
Greenhead Hotel, Greenhead, Cumbria 

This hotel, within sight of Hadrian’s Wall, is a great destination for owners and dogs that like to take longer and more unusual walks. Whether they’re staying in one of its dog-friendly rooms or just down for the day, they will find carpeted public bars areas for canine comfort, and, unusually, a choice of warm or cold running water for a good hose down from the pub’s permanent dog-washing station. 

Dogs that are staying the night get a welcome pack containing poo bags, a ball and bag of treats – and the morning turns into a proper dog’s breakfast of scrambled eggs and sausages. 

The Bellflower, Garstang, Lancashire 

Heather Brandwood and the team at this managed Marston’s pub have gone all out to make it a welcoming venue for dogs and their owners, whether those from the local community or holidaymakers staying close by. 

The Bellflower takes its commitment to the canine market seriously, undertaking risk assessments and special staff training to make dog visits comfortable for all its customers. 

But it’s also a fun destination for furry friends, with a wide selection of premium “doggy doo-dah” treats, bowls and blankets, a choice of water from “ale” and “lager barrels” in the garden, and toys and balls, the latter sold to raise money for a local animal charity. 

The Bellflower’s experience in the transition from dog-free to dog-crazy has provided an inspiration that many other pubs in the Marston’s group have followed. 

The Leicester Arms, Penshurst, Kent 

Situated close to Penshurst Place, one of Henry VIII’s former houses, the 400-year-old building that is now the Leicester Arms is a magnet for locals and tourists alike. Signage on entry makes it clear that canine visitors are just as welcome as humans, if not more so.   

Dogs are welcome to stay the night in one of the pub’s 13 rooms, and will receive an overnight pack in a hessian bag printed with the room number, and containing, among other items, a tin of dog food and a bottle of Pawsecco. The doggy bar menu offers a choice of wet, dry and raw food. 

The Oak, Baginton, Coventry 

The look of the Oak takes inspiration partly from its proximity to Coventry Airport – the décor includes banks of airline seating – and partly from the team’s love for dogs. 

There’s a large fenced paddock which provides a secure space for dogs to run around in, under the watchful eyes of their owners as they relax in the adjacent garden. 

The pub has canine refreshment areas at various points, both inside and out, and a free poo-bag dispenser and dedicated bin in the garden. 

The Oak benefits from marketing links with the Kennel Club, whose headquarter are just down the road. 

The Pheasant, Bassenthwaite Lake, Cumbria 

Set in beautiful Lake District walking territory, with a large garden and 20 dog-friendly rooms in its package of accommodation, The Pheasant is an ideal stop-off for dog owners and their pets. 

The charming country inn has a choice of dog-friendly areas, whether customers are looking for a full dining experience or just want to have a drink or two in a cosy snug. 

The Inn Collection pub has an extensive dog menu to run alongside the human one, with other attractions including free snacks on the bar, a wash-down point for dogs returning muddy from walks and a “dog library” of sticks to chew on and return. 

The Runner, Swindon 

The menus are a good indicator of the esteem in which visiting dogs are held at Jayne and Miles Tilsley’s The Runner. While the human menus are loose-leaf paper affairs, the dog menus sit neatly in picture frames on the bar and tables.  

The couple have bought new energy to this managed Arkell’s Brewery managed site, giving it a friendly feel, with dogs (and their owners) high on the list of target customers. 

There is plenty of space between tables and a large garden with a barrel water station, lots of water bowls and a dog paddling pool. 

Dogs are assured of an enthusiastic welcome from a team who are all big fans. Jayne has even been known to start job ads with the line: “Do you like dogs?”. 

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