The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) has named the best four pubs in the country as part of its Pub of the Year 2022 competition, one of the most respected and well-known pub awards in the UK.
The finalists are the Station House in Durham, the Horse & Jockey in Stapleford, the King’s Head in Norwich, and the Tamworth Tap in Tamworth. They will now have a chance to compete for the National Pub of the Year title, one of the highest accolades afforded to Britain’s pubs.
The Station House in Durham was opened in 2015 by CAMRA members and takes a very friendly, back-to-basics approach with an emphasis on conversation. A wedge-shaped pub in the shadow of the railway viaduct, the Station House offers a changing range of beer and cider with a dark beer always on tap.
The Horse & Jockey in Stapleford is a welcoming free house boasting 13 real ales, including at least one dark beer and five of which are LocAle – i.e., brewed locally. It boasts a wood burner, sports TV, light music complimented by occasional bands and a weekly pub quiz.
The King’s Head in Norwich is a traditional two-bar city pub which has been a mandatory stop on the Norwich real ale trail since 2005, serving up to a dozen beers which are mostly from Norfolk breweries.
Finally, the Tamworth Tap is a 16th century part Tudor building in the shadow of Tamworth Castle. Eight handpulls usually feature one Tamworth ale, and there is a ‘CAMRA corner’ at the bottom of the stairs which includes a rare, complete set of Good Beer Guides. Themed events include beer tastings and ‘paint and sip’ sessions.
All the pubs in the competition are selected by CAMRA volunteers and judged on their atmosphere, decor, welcome, service, value for money, customer mix and most importantly – quality of beer. The four finalists will now have a chance to win the National Pub of the Year title for 2022, which will be announced in January 2023. The competition has been on hold over the last two years due to COVID-19 restrictions and was last won by the Bell Inn in Aldworth, Berkshire in 2019.
National Pub of the Year Co-ordinator Andrea Briers said:
“All of these pubs should be very proud of themselves for reaching this stage in the competition. It is a huge honour to be considered one of the top four pubs across the country. While each of these pubs offers something unique to their visitors, they all share the foundation of what makes a great pub – a warm and welcoming atmosphere, excellent service and a fantastic range of beers.”
The four finalists will be presented with their awards at local events over the coming weeks.