The south west’s best pubs battled it out last night at St Austell Brewery’s 18th Estate Awards.
The annual event, at Newquay’s Great Western Hotel, celebrated excellence across the brewery’s managed and tenanted estates – made up of 180 pubs, inns and hotels across the West Country.
A total of 17 awards were presented throughout the evening, in categories including food and drink, accommodation, innovation and customer service. In addition to the awards, St Austell Brewery’s Charitable Trust presented a £5k cheque to The Benevolent – a trade charity that provides help and support to those who work in the UK drinks industry, and their families.
Steve Worrall, St Austell Brewery’s retail director, said: “We believe in doing things properly at St Austell Brewery and take great pride in looking after our guests and creating amazing experiences for them, every time they visit one of our pubs or hotels.
“While our Estate Awards may primarily be an internal recognition, they truly represent best practice, hard work and excellent service across the south west’s hospitality industry.
“It was a fantastic night of celebration and our pub and hotel teams should feel extremely proud of all that they continue to achieve.”
St Austell Brewery’s Tenants of the Year were Simon and Kelly Hill of the Tavern Inn in Newquay, while Rob Brewer celebrated a fantastic year of business at the Pier House in Charlestown by picking up the Manager of the Year Award.
The Par Inn picked up Community Pub of the Year, while the Central in Newquay and the Lanivet Inn won awards for their exemplary customer service.
Best Beer Pub went to Bristol’s Albion who grew their beer sales by 28% last year, while the Heron Inn in Malpas took home the accolade for Wine House of the Year. St Kew Inn was named the best tenancy for its food offering while the Pedn Olva took home Managed Food Pub of the Year for the second year in a row.
Accommodation Houses of the Year were awarded to the Old Custom House in Padstow, and long-time St Austell Brewery tenancy, The King of Prussia in Fowey. Graze in Bath and the Hewas Inn – in Sticker – were both praised for their business acumen, picking up the Best Turnaround Pub awards.
This year’s Innovation Prize was awarded to the Pityme Inn – in Wadebridge – who introduced an ‘order and pay’ mobile app, allowing their customers to book a table and choose from the menu, before arriving at the pub.
New additions to the St Austell Brewery were also celebrated. Morgan Maguire, from Truro’s County Arms, picked up the Apprentice of the Year award, while Jared Lothian and Hannah Mayne – from Lydford’s Castle Inn – were named the Brewery’s New Tenants of the Year.
In 2019, St Austell Brewery acquired five new tenancies and one new managed house. New managed sites opening in 2020 include the Rock Point Inn in Lyme Regis – the company’s first pub in Dorset – and the Harbour Light restaurant on Paignton’s North Quay.
Kevin Georgel succeeded James Staughton as St Austell Brewery’s new chief executive in January. Kevin, who stepped down from his role as Admiral Taverns’ CEO to take on the role, was previously a non-executive board director at St Austell Brewery for five years.