The night time glitterati of Guildford’s pubs, bars, clubs and restaurants all got together at the Electric Theatre earlier this month to crown our town’s Best Bar None winners.
For those not too familiar with the awards, here’s a little run-down.
The Best Bar None awards scheme operates right across the UK and is designed to reward and acknowledge those venues that consistently go the extra mile to safeguard customers and reduce alcohol-related crime and anti-social behaviour. Experience Guildford joins forces with Guildford Borough Council, Surrey Fire & Rescue and Guildford Pubwatch to deliver the awards, with each of the venues that put themselves forward judged against a set of key safety and operational criteria.
What does it mean for you on the other side of the bar? Well, for any of the venues that achieve accreditation, you can be sure that they take your safety and well-being very seriously. And for Guildford as a whole, this means that visitors can come to our town assured that they can “enjoy themselves, have a great experience, but above all, a safe experience.” – in the words of Mick McDonnell, National Coordinator of the scheme.
This year we had a record 34 venues put themselves forward for the awards across eight different categories – plus we also recognised an overall winning venue that will go through to the national round and represent Guildford at the House of Lords. So, without further ado, let’s introduce you to our winners.
This year’s top-notch prize went to Popworld, along with the Best Late Night Venue award from within the national category.
Overall Best Bar None winner/ Best Late Night Venue National
2-3 Armour Buildings
Pumping out pop classics and party anthems, PopWorld has long been a favourite amongst those looking for a little high energy relaxation to take them into the early hours. VIP packages, themed party nights and great drinks offers all go hand-in-hand to make this such a buzzing venue. And winning the Best Bar None overall award just goes to show it’s a safe venue too.
Thanks to Ei Publican Partnerships the team at PopWorld have £500 in the bank to have a little party of their own to celebrate their win, and here’s what Alex Greenhalgh, general manager there, had to say:
“We’re really happy to have won both the Best Late Night Venue and the Best Bar None overall award as it shows that all the hard work from the whole team at PopWorld Guildford has really paid off.
“These awards mean a lot to the town and to Guildford as a whole; they’ve definitely made all of the operators here up their game. Over the years I think the whole town has increasingly benefited from the Best Bar None scheme and it has done much to bring all of the bars together as we have collectively got behind them.”
Other winners include:
Best Late Night Venue Independent:
University of Surrey
01483 683 252
Housed on the University of Surrey campus, Rubix has hosted a stellar list of artists and DJs over the years, including Tinie Tempeh, Calvin Harris and Stormzy to name just a few. Alongside these, there are plenty of other hot weekly club nights plus weekly Students’ Union events on offer, giving all our students a well-deserved break from the books.
Best Pub Independent:
Anchor & Horseshoes
194 London Rd
A local pub in the heart of the historic village of Burpham, the Anchor & Horseshoes dates back to 1796 and was originally featured in the Doomsday Book. Passionate about their local community and bringing folk together, they’re a top tip for the whole family, even those on four legs, have a large rear garden for alfresco drinking and dining, plus they screen all the must-see sporting action.
Best Pub National:
This much-loved riverside pub serves up all your favourite pub classics and seasonal specials in a family-friendly setting. A popular spot for locals and visitors alike, it also offers a great range of distinctive Kentish ales from Britain’s oldest brewer, Shepherd Neame, alongside an extensive array of international lagers and world wines.
Best Bar Independent:
13 Stoke Fields
As the town’s leading curator of emerging, national and local music, The Boileroom also delivers a diverse programme of community and creative arts. It’s been eclectic in its approach since it first opened in Guildford in 2006, and that very independent spirit continues to this today. Breathing life and soul into Guildford’s music scene, it’s the perfect hang out for individuals from all walks of life looking to see the latest talent across a range of contemporary music genres.
Best Bar National:
The Long Bar
3 Alexandra Terrace
Housed within the Harbour Hotel, The Long Bar is a lively venue that ramps up the pace with live music and DJs as you head into the weekend. Expect a gin’erous gin list, signature cocktails and a wide selection of wines all guaranteed to toast good times with family and friends to.
Best Restaurant Independent:
124 High Street
01483 56 32 77
Tucked away off the High Street by Tunsgate Arch, Positano is an authentic Italian restaurant that serves up the classics and more with the utmost of charm. Their traditional Italiano dishes and fine Italian wines will transport you straight to the Mediterranean, whilst their warm and inviting hospitality will keep you coming back for more.
Best Restaurant National:
2 North Street
0344 692 0271
American themed TGI Fridays have been a staple on our high streets for decades, and still stand the test of time to this day. Serving up a classic menu of signature burgers, ribs and steaks, you’ll also find all your favourite cocktails, great beers and a kids menu that will bring a smile to any little ones face. Known for their ever-charismatic, high energy service style, the team at TGI’s are always focussed on offering a great night out.
The nighttime offering in Guildford has never been so good, and these winning venues are a testament to that. Check them all out, plus head to www.experienceguidford.com to discover more that our town has to offer.