The Bell Inn in the English village of Aldworth, Berkshire, which has been run by the same family for 250 years, was crowned again the winner in the Campaign for Real Ale’s (CAMRA) National Pub of the Year on Wednesday.

The only pub in the county of Berkshire with an official Grade-II listed (buildings that are of special interest, warranting every effort to preserve them) interior, the Bell Inn was named the best in the country this time for its strong community focus, relaxed ambience and great beer.

“The judges were impressed with how a stranger entering the pub was treated like a regular straight away. It’s clear that the local customers use the pub as a community center as well as a place to drink, and the warm welcome and knowledgeable staff made us feel right at home,” said competition organizer Ben Wilkinson.

“Nothing can beat the combination of good beer, great food and warm heritage pub,” Wilkinson said.

When the inn, originally a manor house, won the award for the first time in 1990, it was run by current owner Hugh Macaulay’s parents.

“The Bell Inn has been in my family for 250 years and my mother and father were running it when we last won the award. It’s a wonderful thing to be recognized for driving quality year after year,” said Macaulay.

“Not much has changed because we have kept our interior unspoilt all this time, and intend to keep it that way for years to come,” he said.

Started in 1988, CAMRA’s National Pub of the Year is an annual competition where pubs across the country are judged and selected by volunteers from over 200 local CAMRA branches based on their atmosphere, decor, welcome, service, community focus and the quality of their beer. Enditem

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