Are you running the best pub in the country?

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Enter now: the 2023 Great British Pub Awards are now open for entries
Enter now: the 2023 Great British Pub Awards are now open for entries

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The search for the UK’s best pubs returns as The Morning Advertiser launches the 2023 Great British Pub Awards.

Known as the Oscars of the pub industry, the awards is now in its 24th​ year of celebrating businesses across the country.

  • Have you got the best pub in the UK? Enter the Great British Pub Awards for free here

Returning the Manchester, this year’s ceremony will be taking place on Tuesday 19 September at the city’s Victoria Warehouse.

For almost a quarter of a century, the GBPA has been shining a spotlight on the real champions of the trade – the operators who are in the thick of the action every day.

Ed Bedington, editor of The Morning Advertiser​, which organises the awards said: “These awards are a great opportunity for superb pub operators to be recognised for the brilliant job they do, day in and out. We are going through some really challenging times in the pub trade at the moment, and the ability to be able to recognise and be recognised for excellence could be key.

“The awards really do put a spotlight on the trade and individual businesses and can help give a huge boost to any operation. Previous winners and finalists have seen significant jumps in trade as a result of being in the competition.

“It’s also a great opportunity to take a step back from the day to day operation of your pub and have a good look at it, not to mention the assessment of judges should you make it through the initial stages. There are so many benefits to entering the competition, I would urge all operators to throw their hat in the ring and see how your business stacks up against the best in the trade.”

Former winners

Last year’s Great British Pub of the Year was the Gun Inn, Findon in West Sussex after taking the title of Marston’s Pub of the Year.

Following being named champion​ of champions, licensee Sally Harris said: “Winning has been an absolute whirlwind.

“I wasn’t prepared for the level of attention we got. It’s lovely, people are stopping me in the street and congratulating us. It’s a bit like we are suddenly a little tourist attraction.

“Our first Sunday [after winning], it was like the bus dropped off and everyone came in for a drink.

“We are always busy on a Sunday but to have that influx of people, it has been incredible.”

Named Best Food Pub in 2021, the Unruly Pig in Bromeswell, Suffolk is no stranger to accolades.

Operator Brendan Padfield outlined the impact the Great British Pub Award win had on the rural pub.

Making a difference

He said: “These awards really do make a difference to your business. We saw a discernible leap in business after we were lucky enough to win.”

The Cott Inn, near Dartington in Devon was named the overall Great British Pub of the Year in 2019.

The pub originally was announced as Greene King Pub of the Year before fending off competition from 16 other category winners to take the overall title.

Lifting the trophy, licensee Mark Annear said: “It feels fantastic [to win]. We have a fantastic team who are really committed to it. They’re absolutely delighted to win.

“It’s just great to have the recognition, the pub was closed and we’ve done loads of development.

“This is seriously a great accolade and we are really pleased to get it.”

Full list of categories:

  • Best Pub Garden
  • Best Pub for Food
  • Best Pub for Families
  • Best Pub for Dogs
  • Best Pub for Sport
  • Best Pub for Entertainment
  • Community Hero
  • Best Pub Chef
  • Best Young Pub Chef
  • Best Country/Rural Pub
  • Best City/Urban Pub
  • Best Sustainable Pub
  • Admiral Pub of the Year
  • Greene King Pub of the Year
  • Marston’s Pub of the Year
  • Punch Pub of the Year
  • Stonegate Pub of the Year

The awards are kindly sponsored by Booker/Makro, Diageo, Everard Cole, Coca-Cola Europacific Partners and Molson Coors alongside pub company partners Admiral, Greene King, Marston's, Punch and Stonegate.

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