The Good News: Greene King hits biggest Tub2Pub target yet

By The Morning Advertiser

- Last updated on GMT

Good news: there is lots going on across the industry (image: Getty/Richard Drury)
Good news: there is lots going on across the industry (image: Getty/Richard Drury)

Related tags Events Multi-site pub operators Pubco + head office

We acknowledge the sector is facing an extremely tough time with challenges left, right and centre.

However, we also want to show the positive news going on within the industry and here is where we will be highlighting good news by regularly updating this story.

To kick us off we’ve taken a look at some of the good news over the past few days and weeks.



Greene King has hit its biggest figure to date as part of its annual environmental charity initiative, Tub2Pub.

The Suffolk-based pub operator and brewer has collected 150,000 sweets and crackers tubs this year, which was six times more than in 2023 and a 500% increase on other previous totals.

It means 21 tonnes of polypropylene plastic has been saved from landfill and recycled while raising £12,600 for Greene King's official charity partner, Macmillan Cancer Support.

Greene King supply chain director Vance Fairman-Smith said: “We have been blown away by the incredible success of Tub2Pub this year.

It is brilliant how it has really captured people’s attention. These record-breaking results show just how much appetite there is for recycling and fundraising. It is great to see this increase in engagement with people and businesses across our communities.

"Huge thanks to everyone who collected the tubs to drop off at their local Greene King pub. It’s such good news for the environment and for charity."

Funds raised by the scheme, which was facilitated by recycling solutions experts co-cre8, will help the charity continue to support people living with cancer.

Since it began four years ago, Tub2Pub has collected 26,253kg of plastic, which is around 230,000 tubs, raising £23,908 for Macmillan.

Macmillan senior partnership manager Rachel Gascoigne said: “We are always so impressed by the fundraising efforts of both Greene King’s team members and its customers to do whatever it takes for people living with cancer and would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has made Tub2Pub the enormous success it has been this year.

"The simple fact is that every tub recycled goes towards helping someone living with cancer. Every tub, every penny and every pound makes a difference.”

Star raises £50k for Marmalade Trust 

Pictured: Marmalade Trust walk in Bristol

Star Pubs & Bars, the pub arm of Heineken UK, has raised £50k for its charity partner the Marmalade Trust, which describes itself as a charity dedicated to raising awareness of loneliness and helping people make new friendships.

Colleagues from across the pubco's estate took part in 10 charity walks, dubbed 'Star Turns Orange' events, to raise the funds, which will go towards loneliness awareness training in pubs and campaigns to increase understanding of the issue of loneliness in society.

Marmalade Trust founder Amy Perrin said: “We are a small charity with a big mission. We are dedicated to raising awareness of loneliness and empowering people to make connections. That includes signposting people experiencing loneliness to the right support and resources to help them make new connections and friendships.

"Thanks to the money raised by Star Pubs and Heineken our reach is spreading and is also making an impact in pubs, the length and breadth of the country. We’d love more pubs to get behind Loneliness Awareness Week 2024 on 10-16 June and introduce loneliness awareness staff training.”

New research, commissioned by Star, found 50% of the 2,066 adults surveyed felt lonely at least once a week while a tenth of respondents (11%) felt lonely everyday, with the most common time of day to feel lonely found to be on weekday evenings.

The research also revealed pubs played a critical role in addressing loneliness, with three quarters of pubgoers visiting the on-trade to connect with other people in their community.

In addition, more than half (55%) of respondents said they would like go on more nights out but do not get asked, while 88% felt social hubs, such as pubs, were important to prevent loneliness and make connections. 

Furthermore, two thirds of people thought it was important for pubs to create events for the community while four out of 10 said it was important for them to support charity.

Since making the Marmalade Trust its official charity partner last year, Star has raised more than £100,000 on its behalf through a range of activities, from a gala ball to quizzes and cake sales.

Star managing director Lawson Mountstevens said​: “We can all feel lonely at times. It is not exclusive to one age group or situation.

"Our research shows the scale of loneliness and how the current worrying times are exacerbating the issue. It also reveals the vital role pubs play in alleviating loneliness, acting as social hubs.

"We’re delighted to help fundraise on behalf of Marmalade Trust and to highlight the issue of loneliness in society.”

Stonegate hits £500k charity milestone


Stonegate Group has hit a fundraising milestone of half-a-million pounds as part of its ongoing commitment to charity partner the Motor Neurone Disease Association (MND) and MND Scotland. 

The UK's largest pub company's managed network as well as its support and operational teams collaborated to raise the funds, which will go towards combating Motor Neurone Disease.

Commemorating the achievement, a cheque presentation event was held at the Fatling pub in Hornchurch, London, on Wednesday 8 May.

Stonegate Group CEO David McDowell said: “I'm proud to say we have raised an incredible £500,000 for our corporate charity partners, the MND Association and MND Scotland, demonstrating our collective commitment to making a meaningful difference in the lives of those affected by motor neurone disease.

"Together, via our incredible pub teams and wonderful colleagues in our support teams, we've not only raised funds but also awareness. Thank you to everyone involved for your tireless efforts and generosity.”

Other charity activities taken part in by the Stonegate community have ranged from epic walks along the South-East, conquering 30 miles of the great British Jurassic Coastline, to hosting dinner dances, quizzes, raffles and more.

Furthermore, the company said it remains dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of those affected by motor neurone disease through ongoing fundraising initiatives throughout the year. 

MND Association director of external affairs Chris James said: “Throughout the partnership with the MND Association, we’ve seen a multitude of innovative and creative fundraising challenges from Stonegate and these look set to continue over the coming months – all of which will further our vital support for people affected by MND in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.”


Fuller's raises more than £28k for charity partner 


Team members from across the Fuller, Smith and Turner estate have raised more than £28k for the pubco's charity partner, Special Olympics GB, as part of its third annual 'Bridge Walk'.

On Tuesday 30 April, 14 0 people from both Fuller’s and Special Olympics GB walked 20 miles between two Fuller’s pubs – The Bell & Crown in Chiswick and The Conductor, Farringdon, raising £28,500.

The funds will help support regular sporting opportunities that can transform the lives of children and adults with intellectual disabilities across England, Scotland and Wales.

Fuller's chief executive Simon Emeny said: “It was great to see so many of our colleagues out fundraising for Special Olympics GB, which has been our charity partner since 2018.

"This was our third Bridge Walk and it was the biggest one yet. It was an honour to have some of the Special Olympics GB athletes join us on the day – including Lloyd Martin who recently set a new record as the youngest person with Down Syndrome to complete the London Marathon.

"Days like this are a fantastic way for our team members to meet some of the people their fundraising supports.”

The walkers set off from The Bell & Crown by Kew Bridge first thing in the morning. Their first stop, after crossing two bridges on the route, was The Red Lion in Barnes and from there they walked to The Mason’s Arms in Battersea – crossing two more bridges along the way.

Next, participants visited The Mason’s Arms before heading onto The Banker by Canon Street station, crossing nine bridges along the Thames.

The final part of the walk was a short, four mile walk – including two more bridges and weaving its way through the City – from The Banker to The Conductor. The full walk was just over 20 miles and took around eight hours to complete.

Special Olympics GB CEO Laura Baxter MBE said: “Thank you, once again, to Fuller’s for organising another fantastic day. The Bridge Walk is not only about raising vital funds for Special Olympics GB – but about strengthening our partnership.

"I know the nine athletes present today really enjoyed getting to know our friends at Fuller’s and spirits were high all day – down to the last mile of the walk. We are all looking forward to next year’s event.”

Stonegate property team taking on Snowdon for charity

Some 26 members of the UK's largest pub company's property team are preparing to climb the highest mountain in Wales to raise money for the Motor Neuron Disease Association.

Stonegate's property team will come together on 3 July to take on the Snowdon challenge, which has been spearheaded by head of property Jonathan Guise.

The group will be taking the Llanberis path, which is the longest route, stretching 14.5km with a 3199ft ascent.

Stonegate director of property Andy Cavanagh said: "MND Association and Stonegate have a longstanding relationship and the team are always looking for creative ways to fundraise for this worthy cause.

"I'm proud we have rallied 26 willing volunteers for our Snowdon hike challenge and we've been amazed by the funds raised so far.

"It will certainly be a challenge to climb Snowdon but we've got a determined team who are dedicated to the cause."

While the team have a £15,000 fundraising goal, they are looking to surpass it and at the time of publication, had reached more than a third of the target.

Joseph Holt appoints its 'youngest landlady'


Manchester-based business Joseph Holt has hired its youngest ever landlady.

Zoe Carnan, aged 25, has been appointed to run the Clock Tower in Northwich, Cheshire.

The licensee has launched free weekly salsa lessons for customers, one of the many new initiatives she is planning at the pub.

She said: "I was approached by a customer who comes from Venezuela and he told me he really wanted to do something for the local community. As an experienced salsa dance, he suggested offering complimentary sessions at the pub.

"I thought it sounded such fun, so lively as well a great form of exercise. It was also likely to be a new experience for lots of people so I immediately said yes to the idea. Our classes cater for all levels and abilities and unlike other places that offer lessons are free.

"So, it really is an open invitation to enjoy the rhythms of this wonderful Latin dance."

Zoe has worked for the family-owned firm for seven years, starting with a casual bar work role while at college. She has worked her way up after completing a qualification in health and social care and gradually, Zoe assumed more management responsibility before being offered the chance to take over the Clock Tower.

She added: "It's quite a steep learning curve but also extremely exciting too. Pubs today are so much more than places to have a beer or something to eat.

"Joseph Holt pubs are at the heart of the community and host so many activities, social groups, events and more. Salsa sessions are just the start of what is going to be an exciting new phase for the Clock Tower."

The business has been in the same family for six generations and is celebrating its 175th​ anniversary this year, which it is marking with a commemorative lager.

Operation director Mark Norbury said: "Joseph Holt offers so many career opportunities and many entry level staff have worked their way up to managing their own pubs.

"Zoe is a great example of this as well as a huge asset to the brewery. We are all delighted to see her hard work, enthusiasm and enterprise being recognised at such a young age. I'm sure under her stewardship, the Clock Tower will go from strength to strength."


Last month (March) was The Morning Advertiser​’s Publican Awards. Businesses from across the sector and across the country were celebrated and honoured with the prestigious awards.

You can read more the winners here​.

Following this, The Morning Advertiser​ editor Ed Bedington wrote about why we should appreciate the positives​ within the industry.

Just this week, licensees of a village pub celebrated 40 years​ at their Suffolk-based site. Barry and Jane Waterman took on the White Horse in Beyton – a Greene King Pub Partners venue – in 1984.

The pair have operated pubs in partnership with Greene King for a total of 47 years, starting at their first pub in Cambridge in 1977, making them among Greene King’s longest serving tenants.

Furthermore, the recent Easter bank holiday proved positive​ for a number of operators. Lincoln-based business Strait and Narrow saw a strong lead up to the long weekend.

Operator Jez Nash said Good Friday (29 March) was the best ever for the site, with the bar three deep at midday.

Sunshine in Suffolk meant the Unruly Pig in Bromeswell had a “cracking bank holiday weekend’s trade”, owner Brendan Padfield told The Morning Advertiser​.

On the subject of weather, while it was a stormy night on Thursday 28 March, even the front door being blown off didn’t stop customers flocking to the Kings Arms in Bexleyheath, Kent during the Easter period.

Licensee Pete Marshall labelled the weekend as “positive” with lots of great customer feedback and lots of fun.

Sticking with Easter, Proper Pubs – the community wet-led division of Admiral Taverns – successfully collected more than 17,600 chocolate eggs to donate to communities in need across England, Scotland and Wales.

Since the beginning of March, each Proper Pub has been encouraged to collect as many chocolate Easter eggs as possible to try to ensure as many people across the UK have a sweet treat to look forward to.

Every pub chose a selection of local initiatives to donate to with one pub – the Queens in Bredbury, Stockport – collecting more than 1,000 Easter eggs for cancer treatment centre The Christie NHS Foundation Trust.

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