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03 May 2015

Search is on to find Northern Irelands Best Pub


Pubs from across Northern Ireland are being given the opportunity to be the toast of the industry, with the launch of Pubs of Ulster's Pub of the Year Awards 2012.

Pubs of Ulster, the representative body for the licensed trade in Northern Ireland, is once again embarking on its annual search to find the best in the business and is calling on all publicans to demonstrate the quality that exists in the local pub trade, in a bid to be crowned Pub of the Year 2012. This year's competition will again recognise the best pubs in each county with the Regional Pub of the Year Awards, which will be held in advance of the grand finale. The category winners from each region will then go forward to battle it out at the Pub of the Year Gala Awards night at Belfast City Hall on 14th November.

Commenting on the launch of the Pub of the Year Awards 2012, Colin Neill, chief executive of Pubs of Ulster, said:

"The Pub of the Year Awards are a great opportunity to reward and recognise the excellence that exists in the local pub industry across Northern Ireland. It has undoubtedly been a difficult time for many publicans but the industry has demonstrated its ability to not only rise to the challenges, but find new and innovative ways to overcome them. This year, the role of pubs in the local tourism and hospitality sector is set to be more important than ever before, as thousands of visitors descend upon towns and cities across Northern Ireland, each looking for a taste of the world famous Ulster / Irish pub experience.

"The Pub of the Year Awards recognise and celebrate this unique offering by showcasing the best pubs right across Northern Ireland. The awards act as a benchmark for the industry as a whole and I would encourage all pubs - whether they are large or small, in cities or villages - to show us what they have to offer."

This year's award categories are: Pub of the Year 2012; Outstanding Bar Person of the Year; Best Neighbourhood Pub; Best Food Pub; Best Family Friendly Pub; Best New or Improved Pub; Most Innovative Pub; Best Tourism / Visitor Pub. The awards will also acknowledge an outstanding individual, premises or organisation that has excelled in their field with the Pubs of Ulster Chairman's Award, which will be presented by the new chair, Mark Stewart.

As the only competition to focus solely on the pub trade, this year's awards are sponsored by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board, Britvic, Coca-Cola, Diageo, Dillon Bass, Heineken Northern Ireland, Molson Coors, Richmond Marketing and Tennent's NI. The awards are also supported by the Sunday Life, Hospitality Review and U105.

All premises entered into the awards will be judged, depending on their category, by written submissions, interviews or by independent mystery shoppers. An independent judging panel comprising of Martin Breen, editor of the Sunday Life; Gary McDonald, business editor of the Irish News; Adrienne McGill, business editor of the News Letter; Paul Connolly, managing editor of the Belfast Telegraph and Louise Murphy from Hospitality Review, will decide on the overall winners.

The closing date for the receipt of entries is Friday 6th July 2012. For further information about the awards or to enter online, please visit .

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Pubs of Ulster is the trading name of the Federation of Retail Licensed Trade NI.

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