The Lion Hotel in Treorchy, South Wales has been crowned Pub of the Year at Ei Group’s Awards for Excellence, in recognition of its role as a vital community hub and long-standing contribution to the lives of so many people in the area.
The reinvigorated awards programme run by Ei Group, the UK’s leading pub company, recognises the outstanding publicans and pubs in its estate along with operational excellence across the company. The winners were announced at a gala awards ceremony held at Coombe Abbey, Warwickshire last night (10 July).
The Lion’s publican Adrian Emmett impressed the judges with his tireless efforts to make the pub a true hub of the community. The pub is famous locally for its busy schedule of entertainment and events, including live music and sport, comedy nights and multiple festivals. The pub also plays host to numerous community groups and Adrian has forged links with the local school and charities to support good causes.
He earned the top spot after judges reviewed hundreds of entries put forward by publicans across the UK that are form part of the Ei Publican Partnerships estate. The awards were judged by a select group of industry experts alongside senior Ei Group executives.
The ceremony saw Ei Group honour two long-serving publicans that have demonstrated incredible commitment to the industry over the course of their careers. Picking up Lifetime Achievement Awards were Andrew Scott from the Crown & Trumpet, Broadway, Cotswolds alongside Michael and Janet Ostler, who have spent almost 40 years running the Red Cow Inn, Brent Knoll, Somerset.
The awards also celebrated top performing pubs in the company’s Managed Operations and Managed Investments business units. Best Craft Union Pub was The Queen Hotel, Morley, Leeds while Best Bermondsey Pub was named as The Waldorf, Manchester. Ei Group’s partnership with Hugh O’Boyle and Caroline Jones, Dirty Liquor, also achieved recognition.
Simon Townsend, Chief Executive at Ei Group, said: “Judging our new awards scheme was not an easy task. We saw an impressive number of entries and our group of expert judges were struck by the extraordinary levels of dedication and passion to the industry demonstrated by every single publican that entered.
“Our new awards programme has offered us the opportunity to celebrate the most outstanding operators across our estate, learn from the best and inspire other publicans to further raise retail standards and business performance. We are incredibly proud of all of our finalists, and in particular Adrian at the Lion who runs an outstanding pub and is truly a worthy winner.”
The 2018 winners are:
- Best Community Hub – Lion Hotel, Treorchy
- Best Food Offer – Milk House, Sissinghurst
- Best Sports Venue – Directors’ Box, Manchester
- Excellence in Cellar Standards – British Oak, Blackheath
- Best Marketing Initiative – White Horse, Dover
- Best Joint Investment – Snooty Fox Tavern, Kirkby Lonsdale
- Best Newcomer – Leigham Well, Streatham
- Best Live Music Venue – Hootananny, Brixton
- Best Turnaround – Horse & Jockey Hotel, Liverpool
- Best Multiple Operator – Bruno Nunes, Creative Hospitality Group
- Best Outdoor Area – Culpeper, Aldgate, London
- Best Craft Union Pub – The Queen Hotel, Morley
- Best Bermondsey Pub – The Waldorf, Manchester
- Managed Investments Award – Dirty Liquor
- Lifetime Achievement Award (2 x winners) – Red Cow Inn, Brent Knoll and Crown & Trumpet, Broadway
- Ei Group Pub of the Year – Lion Hotel, Treorchy