GLASSES ARE being raised to a much-loved Dobcross pub after it was crowned Newcomer of the Year in the North.
The Swan Inn clinched the prestigious title in the Marston’s Pub of the Year Awards 2013 – despite landlords Michael Powis and Tim Newbold only taking over twelve months ago.
Tim revealed mystery drinkers visited the pub to judge them before they also had to impress at a final interview stage and admitted they were surprised at coming out on top.
“It is fabulous. We didn’t expect to win anything, it just happened,” he said.
“We knew we had to meet certain criteria but we were not really told what that was. All we know is that we got top marks in everything.
“When we took over we knew we could improve things but we did not know how successful we could be.
Since taking the reins, the duo has transformed the pub’s upstairs function room from a ‘mothball’ into a thriving place for events and community meetings.
And a recent extension to add a fifth real ale pump to the bar and revamp the back room so customers can relax by the fire has proved a huge hit.
Michael added: “Being relatively new arrivals, we have worked hard to get the atmosphere, food and drink on offer and customer service absolutely tip top. We are thrilled to be recognised in this way.”
John Green, regional manager for Marston’s Inns & Taverns in the North, said: “It’s a fantastic achievement for Michael and Tim and their team, who provide crucial support.
“Through licensees like Michael, we are proving that running a pub business remains a very rewarding career.”
The Swan Inn now goes forward to the national round of the competition and judges will revisit the pub to assess it again, with winners announced on June 13 in Birmingham.
Visit the Swan Inn in Dobcross, call 01457 873451 or visit their website for more information: http://www.theswandobcross.com/