Oakman Inns and Young’s were double award winners at the Publican Awards 2014 last night, with many of the industry’s leading pubcos recognised for their successes.
Young’s won Best Managed Pub Company and Best Food Offer (51+ sites), while Hertfordshire-based Oakman Inns scooped Best Community Pub Operator and Best Pub Employer (2-50 sites).
More than 1,400 people attended the glittering ceremony, the biggest event in the pub industry calendar, held at the Grosvenor House Hotel on London’s Park Lane and hosted by comedian and TV personality John Bishop.
Other celebrities joined in the fun, including Keith Lemon, the new face of Hooch, and two stars of reality TV show The Only Way is Essex.
The Publican Awards, hosted by the Publican’s Morning Advertiser and in association with Sky, recognise the achievements of top pub companies across 18 categories.
Other winners on the night included Fuller’s, Bath Ales and Brakspear (full list below).
Keith Knowles, managing director of Beds & Bars, picked up the Outstanding Industry Achievement award with Ian Payne, chairman of Stonegate Pub Company, being named Business Leader of the Year.
The PMA’s group editor Rob Willock said: “The Publican Awards is the premier event in the pub industry’s calendar. The judging process remains unapologetically onerous and rigorous. Entering the awards is not something to be done lightly – but if you win, you can be sure you deserve the accolade.
“All our winners are driving their businesses forward with energy and passion. Congratulations to them all.”
The judging process included dozens of HQ site visits by senior members of the PMA’s editorial team, mystery site visits to finalists’ outlets, conducted by Acumen, and research interviews with pub tenants across two categories by market researchers him!
The final stage of judging involved a full day of panel interviews where senior representatives from finalist companies were quizzed by a team of industry experts, City analysts, journalists, and industry body chiefs.
Publican Awards 2014 winners:
Best Accommodation Offer: Individual Inns
Best Pub Employer (51+ sites): Orchid Group; Highly commended, Marston’s Inns and Taverns
Best Pub Employer (2-50 sites): Oakman Inns
Best Pub Brand/Concept: Be at One; Highly commended, Orchid’s Pizza Kitchen Bars
Best New Pub/Bar – The Fishpool, Delamere, Cheshire (Nelson Hotels); Highly commended, The Pit, Leeds (Arc Inspirations)
Best Community Pub Operator – Oakman Inns
Best Tenanted & Leased Pub Company (under 200 sites) - Brakspear
Best Tenanted/Leased Pub company (201+ sites) – Fuller’s
Best Drinks Offer – North; Highly commended, New World Trading Company
Best Managed Pub Company (2-50 sites) – Bath Ales; Highly commended, New World Trading Company
Best Managed Pub Company (51+ sites) – Young’s; highly commended, Fuller’s
Best Ops Team: (large) Charles Wells, (small) Sports Bar & Grill
Best Microbrewing Pub Company – Leeds Brewery
Best Food Offer (2-50 sites) – Anglian Country Inns; Highly commended, Whiting & Hammond
Best Food Offer (51+ sites) – Young’s
Best Late Night Operator – Luminar; Highly commended, Intertain
Best Industry Initiative – Perceptions Group
Best Business Initiative – Punch Buying Club; Highly commended, Luminar
Business Leader of the Year - Ian Payne, Stonegate
Outstanding Industry Contribution - Keith Knowles, Beds & Bars