Sat, 03 Nov 2018
THE Cottage Inn, Upper Bucklebury, has made history by being crowned the Best Community Pub in West Berkshire for an impressive fifth time.
The pub, operated by Hawthorn Leisure, has been recognised by the Campaign For Real Ale (CAMRA) for its many community-led initiatives, overseen by landlord Gary Bush.
To recognise their important role in different environments, The Cottage Inn shares the award with Newbury pubs, the Old London Apprentice and the Cow & Cask.
During his six years of management at The Cottage Inn, Mr Bush has helped provide sponsorship money to two schools in the area, supplied kit for the local football team as well as offering the pub’s acre field as a training ground.
Mr Bush also contributes a barrel of beer to the annual Bucklebury Beerfest and uses the pub as a hub for many community meet-up groups, including book clubs, the local history group and Women’s Institute.
In recognition of this award, CAMRA presented The Cottage Inn with a commemorative plaque at a celebratory event on Thursday, October 4, when free beer was on offer to the local community.
Speaking of the pub’s achievement, Mr Bush said: “We are really proud to have been recognised for our commitment to the local community.
“Bucklebury is at the heart of everything we do and this award highlights the difference we can make.
“We look forward to doing more in the future to support the people of Bucklebury.”
From Newbury, the Lamb and the Plough on the Green were well supported but it was the extensive list of facilities, meetings and events that earned the award for the Old London Apprentice and its landlords Ken and Caroline Amor.
The ‘What’s-On’ blackboard at the front of the pub displays a wide range of events and many charities are supported including Guide Dogs for the Blind.
The Cow & Cask showed yet again that small is beautiful for the micropub’s welcoming environment, hosted by landlord Ian Batho.
Conveniently situated near the station, football and rugby supporters often call in to discuss their team’s performance and celebrate or drown their sorrows.
The charity events and monthly quiz also show commitment to the community.
Andy Pinkard, CAMRA’s Branch Chairman said: “Traditionally, the pub has always been at the heart of a community.
“The three pubs recognised here are outstanding examples of how a pub can become a catalyst for wider community interaction and support.”