It’s official – The London Tavern in Margate has received a certificate from CAMRA for being Thanet’s pub of the year.
Carl and Nancy Hilliard were presented with the certificate – which Carl has branded as their ‘Beer Oscar’ – on Tuesday (June 13) by Thanet Camra chairperson Jo Walbank.
The couple bought the Tavern in 2016 after selling their previous business, Ales of the Unexpected in Westgate, and sinking every penny into the new venture.
When they opened the doors for the first time Carl was crossing everything for it to be a success because there was no plan B.
Just over a year later and the pub has been crowned Pub of the Year for Thanet by CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale.
To scoop the award there must be, of course, great beer but beyond that the CAMRA judges look at the ambiance of the pub. They’re keen on maintaining a community spirit through their affiliated pubs to ensure they don’t close, as so many have over the last 15 years.
The atmosphere Carl and Nancy have created was key to winning this award, with help from the rustic ‘art gallery’ design by Joe Bradley and top food from head chef Joe Mullane.
Carl has hung the certificate on the wall. He said: “It is like a beer Oscar for us!”
The beers are also unique, with many on offer here not being available elsewhere – including the Barista Stout and a range of Belgian beers with flavours including cherry, peach and blackcurrant.
The pub also holds regular events including a poetry club every second Sunday of the month from noon to 2pm.