A Liverpool City Region establishment has won the Campaign for Real Ale’s (CAMRA) coveted national ‘Pub of the Year’ prize.
The top pub was revealed alongside the winner of the ‘Club of the Year’ accolade, which went to Manchester’s Flixton Conservative Club.
The Cricketers Arms in St Helens has taken the ‘Pub of the Year’ crown, recognising the work of owners Andy and Denise Evans to turn it into a “true destination” watering hole for the nation’s beer drinkers.
When the couple took over the running of the venue in 2013 it was boarded up and hadn’t served cask ale since the 1980s, however it is now well-established amongst the community and serves a selection of 13 locally sourced cask ales alongside up to 20 ciders in the summer.
Meanwhile a number of social events are held at the Cricketers, which is also home to a new whiskey and gin bar and has plans for a new microbrewery.
Paul Ainsworth, CAMRA’s National Pub of the Year coordinator, says: “In less than five years, the owners have converted a boarded up pub on the brink of closure into a true destination pub for beer lovers across the country.
“What impressed me the most is that the Cricketers is a genuine community pub where people from all walks of life come together to socialise. It is a shining example of how a pub, which seems destined for closure, can have its fortunes turned around when in the right hands.”
A CAMRA presentation will take place at the Cricketers Arms today (28 February) to celebrate the victory.
Elsewhere in the North West, the Flixton Conservative Club will also receive its ‘Club of the Year’ accolade today.