The Royston micropub in Broadstairs was packed to the rafters last night (April 17) as owners Andy Smith and partner Melissa Goacher and their team were presented with the Pub Of The Year award by Thanet CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale).
The Royston is named after Andy’s late dad Roy and it first opened on what would have been his birthday in September 2021. This has been the first year the venue, on The Broadway, was eligible to enter the CAMRA awards and it came out top for its “consistently good quality beer” and being a community hub that “feels like home.”
Martin Knight, from Thanet CAMRA, presented the award saying: “The first time I met Andy I knew (The Royston) would grow to be one of the best pubs about. I have loved it every time I have been here, it really feels like home for me.”
He added that scoring was done by the panel on eight different criteria and The Royston had “dominated.”
The micropub and coffee house was a year in the making due to the pandemic and a change of planned location but has boomed since opening in September 2021.
Receiving the award Andy said: “Build it and they will come they said, and here we are. I had never served a pint and never worked behind a bar until a year and a half ago. I owe it to all of you guys in here. I just wanted to provide a nice place for people to enjoy and for people to make friends and want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the support.”
Andy thanked his staff, son Liam who is also part of the business, his mum and his late dad.
Gadds brewery donated a cask of its new Earth Day beer, brewed in collaboration with planet saving Toast Ale in London, with customers asked to pitch in s donation to Music in Hospitals & Care. The charity vets independent musicians who are paid to perform in care environments.
Andy said: “The money we raise will be given directly to Thanet Dementia care homes to pay for a performance. We’re starting with Broadstairs homes and then Ramsgate and Margate. It looks like we should be able to raise enough to pay for a performance in each Thanet home.
“My dad died of dementia and I was disappointed with the focus on music therapy in one of the homes he was in so wanted to make a difference somehow to others suffering with it.”
Delighted Melissa said: “This is the first time we were allowed to enter (CAMRA awards) so we are really chuffed.”
The Magnet in Broadstairs has been named in second place for the CAMRA awards with The Hovelling Boat in Ramsgate and the Two Halves in Margate highly commended. Presentations to these venues will be taking place shortly.
Find The Royston at 2 The Broadway, Broadstairs, or on facebook here
Find out more about Music in Hospitals & Care charity here