Wales

Camra pub of year is Bridge End Inn in Ruabon, Wrexham

Bridge End Inn at Ruabon
Image caption The Bridge End Inn at Ruabon was said to be at the heart of its community

A small community pub which reopened three years ago has become the first Welsh winner of the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) national pub of the year award.

Camra said the Bridge End Inn at Ruabon near Wrexham had quickly become "revered across Britain by many beer lovers".

The McGivern family, who took over the pub, brew their own beer on site.

Licensee Peter McGivern said the pub had been a labour of love.

The family only took over the premises in March 2009 after it was closed for six months.

They strived to create a pub offering a wide range of traditional beer styles, rather than focusing on food, said Mr McGivern.

"As a result we've built up a mixed trade of locals and beer lovers from all over Britain," he said.

"We are delighted with this national award, particularly as we were told when first taking on the pub that there was little demand for real ale in the area."

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Media caption'It's created a hub in the community - and they do come for the quality of the beer from far and wide'

The competition looks at criteria including a pub's atmosphere, decor, service, value for money and, most importantly, quality of beer.

Mr McGivern said there were no distractions - the TV is only switched on in the pub during rugby internationals - with the unifying factor being the beer.

Camra said the pub was "one of the most remarkable success stories in the competition's history".

Image caption Peter McGivern (left) and his son Matthew

Julian Hough, Camra pubs director, said: "The pub is an unbelievable success story, and is a perfect case study of a local outlet playing a pivotal role at the heart of a small community.

'Rapid progression'

"By investing time into providing a quality beer range full of choice, the pub in a short space of time has become revered across Britain by many beer lovers.

"I offer my personal congratulations to the Bridge End Inn for such rapid progression in taking Camra's national pub title."

Camra said the pub had bucked the trend at a time when 16 pubs across Britain closed every week.

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