Sat, 08 Oct 2016
CHEERS! to all from the Cottage Inn, Upper Bucklebury.
The pub has once again been recognised as one of the best in the district, after winning the West Berkshire Community Pub of the Year Award for the third time in the past five years.
The Cottage Inn is home to family man Gary Bush and his wife Mandy.
The West Berkshire Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) has praised the couple’s initiatives and, after a vote, the pub has taken the coveted title.
CAMRA presented the pub with the award on Tuesday evening.
Mr and Mrs Bush have managed the pub for six years and, being their first pub, they were keen to make a difference to the community from the start.
Mr Bush has supported the two local schools – Bucklebury Pre-school and Upper Bucklebury Infant School – donating prizes for fetes and raffles.
The largest community event Mr Bush organises is the pub’s ‘Tour de Berkshire’ where more than 200 cyclists participate in raising thousands of pounds for Cystic Fibrosis.
Mr Bush also supports the Cottage Inn football team and provides the children’s Bucklebury Wolves team with a kit and somewhere to train.
His community spirit doesn’t stop there. The pub also plays host to many community meet-up groups such as book clubs, the local historian group and the Women’s Institute.
He also hosts an annual bonfire event and holds a classic car convention on the last Saturday of every month.
Mr Bush said: “I just want to say a huge thank you to all the customers and companies who voted for me and who continue to support the pub.
“It means just as much to us this time around as last time. I’d like to thank my wife Mandy, who does all the back of house work that no-one sees, and all my kids, Gavin, Callum and Carly, for their help.”
David Stallard, area manager of Hawthorn Leisure, formed in 2013 to acquire, invest in and support pubs across the UK, said: “The Cottage Inn is a perfect example of a great community pub. Gary and Mandy couldn’t be more deserving of this award.”