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The Goverment has announced changes to the Small Brewery Relief Scheme which could drasticly reduce the choice of beer available.

Please sign the petiion to have these changes reversed


 

Pub & Club Annual Awards

While the branch celebrates four Pub Of The Season winners throughout the year, these often go to long standing pubs and bars which are awarded for longevity of excellence. Starting from 2013, the branch decided it wanted to also recognise pubs that excel in specific areas.

The branch presents four annual awards in addition to existing Pub of The Season and Pub Of The Year awards:

Best Newcomer

Most Improved Pub Or Club

Best Community Pub

Best LocAle Pub or Club

For full details of the awards, click here

 

Stretford Sip Club - TH Best Newcomer 2014The branch has named The Sip Club, Barton Road, Stretford as Best Newcomer 2014.

The bar which was also the branch's Pub of The Season for Autumn 2014 opened in April 2014 but has made a massive impact in such a short time - some much that even before CAMRA could present the Newcomer Award, it was named "Best Bar" in the annual CityLife Awards.

They went on to complete a triumvirate of awards with an off-field offering from the Federation of Small Businesses in recognition of their efforts to promote and engage with other Stretford businesses. Local MP Kate Green nominated the bar for the Business Buddy Award after noting their efforts to use local suppliers whereever possible (including almost exclusively offering beers & ciders from local brewers and producers) and to promote other Stretford businesses via events such as the bimonthly "Made In M32" craft fairs.

Pictured is branch chair Paul King presenting owner Heather Garlick with the Best Newcomer award.

The runner up for Best Newcomer was The Moose in Hale.

 

The Church InnCongratulations to Carl and Steve (pictured left, with Trafford & Hulme branch's Mark Reeves) and the rest of the team at the Church Inn, Hulme, on winning the 2014 Trafford and Hulme Most Improved Pub of the Year award.

A JW Lees pub, it was refurbished in 2013 with a new kitchen and outdoor drinking area and a warm welcome is always guaranteed. Having successfully run a bar in Macclesfield for 14 years, the Church set them a new challenge, having been off of the real ale map for years and generally a bit run down and ignored. It now serves two Lees ales and has a real community feel with a clientele consisting mostly of locals, students and university staff.

A kitchen fire in 2014 was a small setback but they have shrugged that off and continue to serve excellent home cooked food (the steak and ale pie is a winner, according to regulars). In an area where traditional pubs can be counted on a few fingers we wish them a long and prosperous future, well done!

At the branch Annual General Meeting on 9th October, the branch will be voting for the annual pub & club awards which recognise excellence outside of the quarterly Pub Of The Season and annual Pub & Club Of The Year Awards.

Members are encouraged to visit the nominees to learn about them for themselves before the vote. Click on the pub name to be taken to their WhatPub.com entry which has a map of how to find the pub.

The nominations are:

Best Newcomer

Awarded annually to the pub, bar or club which having opened in the 15 months preceding the award best fulfils the attributes of a good pub, bar or club. The factors to be judged are the same as considered when judging for Pub Of The Year - quality of cask ale (and cider), atmosphere, décor, customer service, welcome, value for money and customer mix. Pubs, bars and clubs which have re-opened after a period of closure shall be eligible if they had been closed for a period of 12 months or more before re-opening under new management.

Best LocAle Pub/Club

Awarded annually to the pub, bar or club which the membership feels has done the most in the preceding 12 months to support and promote the CAMRA LocAle Scheme, serving quality locally brewed ales, encouraging their customers to choose locally brewed products and educating them about the origins of the real ale on offer.

Most Improved Pub/Club

Awarded annually to the pub, bar or club which the membership feels has shown the greatest overall improvement over the 12 months preceding the award.
The factors to be judged are the same as considered when judging for Pub Of The Year - quality of cask ale (and cider), atmosphere, décor, customer service, welcome, value for money and customer mix.

Best Community Pub

Awarded annually to the pub or bar which is considered to best embody the attributes of a true community pub and which has a sense of the pub belonging to the people and the local community. Examples of a pubs role in the community include: Notice boards featuring local events; Sports teams linked with the pub; Pub games team nights held; Hosting of meetings for local community groups; Organisation of charity fundraisers; Organisation of trips for customers; Provision of services to the community (e.g. post office, parcel collection, shop)

 

Additional nominations can be made at the AGM.

 

In a time of many pub closures, the Best Newcomer award celebrates that all is not doom and gloom in the pub world and that amongst the closures, we are also gaining new or re-opened outlets which are well worth waiting for. The runner up in this category was Pi (Altrincham) which opened on Shaw's Road near Altrincham Market last October. Sibling to Pi (Chorlton), the Altrincham branch continues the same successful formula of friendly service, great selection of real ales and an almost unsurpassed range of world beers, with great gourmet pies for when you are peckish. However, in what could possibly be considered cruel irony, Pi lost out to a new bar which is its Chorlton sibling's new nearest neighbour. Font (Chorlton) opened in March this year in the premises of the former Iguana Bar which had been closed for two years. With eight cask ales and a massive 25% discount to CAMRA members, Font has helped draw more people into what was already an excellent strip of pubs and bars along Manchester Road from the Sedge Lynn at the south, past Pi & Font to deNada at the north end.

Chorlton can also boast the winner of the Most Improved Pub or Bar award. Although some may consider that The Jackalope would have been a contender for the Best Newcomer award having only taken on the moniker in February, the Barlow Moor Road bar remains under partly the same ownership as its former name Escape. However, the transformation in this small bar since Lee Gorton joined Rob Loader and decided to revamp the bar has been remarkable. Although Escape offered one or two real ales and quality was usually reasonable, Jackalope now offers four ales from some of the hottest names on the local and wider brewing scene with Salford's First Chop being near permanent alongside RedWillow, Arbor, Magic Rock, Fyne Ales and more. A regular line up of live music and other events has helped draw in the customers to keep the ale turning over regularly and making sure the place is rarely quiet. There's even the regular "Jackgammon" nights - while poker tournaments have been a recent fad in pubs, how many have tried backgammon tournaments to bring the customers in?
In a complete contrast, the runner up in the Most Improved category is a traditional back street local. Since Yvonne Hartley took over The Railway on Chapel Road in Sale, the once lacklustre pub has seen a turnaround in its fortunes. It is busier with locals returning, has more atmosphere and is turning over more real ale meaning that the quality of the offering is much improved. The work of Yvonne and her team is testament to the importance of good management to traditional pubs and how there is hope for any seemingly dwindling pub in the right hands. If other landlords want to see how to improve their pub, they could do worse than look at what is happening in Sale.

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