The Fitzherbert Arms in Swynnerton has been voted as the ‘Best Pub in Staffordshire’ in the prestigious Pub and Bar Awards in London. The pub will now be entered into the running for ‘Best Pub in the UK’, battling against its sister pub the Cholmondeley Arms who won ‘Best Pub in Cheshire’.
This award completes a very successful 12 months for the pub who also received ‘Favourite Newcomer’ from the respected Alistair Sawday’s awards back in July, as well as a finalist of ‘Best New Pub’ from the Publican awards in March.
The Fitzherbert Arms, located on Lord Stafford’s estate, reopened in February last year after a period of significant restoration work that saw the famous 19th Century pub restored to its former glory as an enchanting, quintessential village pub that oozes character and features.
Tim Bird, owner of Cheshire Cat Pubs & Inns who operate the Fitzherbert Arms, comments; “We are so proud of this team and all that they have achieved! The pub has only been in operation for just over 12 months and has already proved its merit with a stream of awards. What’s more important, however, is to see the positive response we’ve had from customers and to see such a famous old pub thriving again.”
The judges were impressed with the pub’s enticing décor, featuring creative interiors and pieces such as a blacksmith forge and unique anvil tables. Other highlights included the warm atmosphere, created by three cosy fires, a ‘friendly vivacious team’ as well as the platefuls of flavoursome food ranging from seafood platters, steak and stout pies, crumbles, brownies and port-poached pears.
The Fitzherbert Arms was also praised for its range of drinks that include 30 different ports (more than any other pub in the country), 16 wines by the glass and a real cider as well as four cask ales produced within 35 miles radius of the pub. The pub is also holding a gin tasting night on May 11th.
Tim Bird and Mary McLaughlin operate seven country pubs, five in Cheshire, one in Dorset and now one in Staffordshire. The group have had an extraordinarily successful year opening two new establishments and receiving a flurry of awards including: Best Food offer in the UK, Best Pub group in the UK, as well as being recognised in the Northern Bar and Restaurants Top 50 Companies.