George & Dragon in Hudsell named in top 16 pubs in Britain - here’s why and the full list of winners

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Yorkshire pub, the George & Dragon in Hudswell, has been named among the top four best pubs in the UK in the CAMRA Pub of the Year 2020 awards.

The competition is run annually to find the finest pub in the UK, with a pub in Berkshire claiming the top spot for 2020.

Have you ever visited the George & Dragon? (Photo: Brian Evans)

Have you ever visited the George & Dragon? (Photo: Brian Evans)

A homely country inn

While The George & Dragon wasn’t crowned the overall winner, it beat hundreds of pubs across the country to be named among the UK’s four finest in CAMRA’s prestigious Pub of the Year competition.

Described by judges as a “homely multi-roomed country inn”, this cosy pub can be reached via a pleasant walk from Richmond - if you don’t mind climbing the 300-plus steps - which brings visitors to its large beer terrace.

From here, pub-goers can take in the fantastic panoramic views over the Swale valley.

The Bell Inn in Aldworth, Berkshire has been named the best pub in the UK (Photo: CAMRA)

The Bell Inn in Aldworth, Berkshire has been named the best pub in the UK (Photo: CAMRA)

The pub was rescued by the community in 2010 and refurbished. It now features its own library, shop, allotments, and other community facilities, as well as food and drink.

The beers on offer are mostly from Yorkshire breweries and a dark ale is always available, often Rudgate Ruby Mild.

The pub has also impressed once before, having been crowned CAMRA’s Pub of the Year back in 2016, and it has been the Champion Pub of Yorkshire several times.

CAMRA’s National Director, Ben Wilkinson, said: “The top 16 contenders boast the perfect mix of the essential characteristics which make a great pub – great service, a welcoming atmosphere, fantastic decor, great value for money and most importantly, quality real ale.

“As our Summer of Pub initiative comes to a close, we’d like to encourage the nation’s beer drinkers to seek out these extraordinary pubs, which have been individually judged by our volunteers, ensuring a high degree of impartiality and integrity in their nomination.

How are the awards judged?

Pubs in the annual competition are selected by CAMRA volunteers and judged on a number of criteria.

These include the pub atmosphere, decor, welcome, service, community focus and the quality of the beer.

The top 16

The best pubs in the country have been highlighted in the national competition since 1998, with the awards intended to showcase quality venues across the UK that are worth seeking out and visiting.

A total of 16 pubs are selected in the shortlist, before being whittled down to four finalists.

These are the all 16 pubs that made the cut:

- Central Southern – Bell, Aldworth, Berkshire

- East Anglia – Red Lion, Preston, Hertfordshire

- East Midlands – Smithfield, Derby, Derbyshire

- Greater Manchester – Flying Horse Hotel, Rochdale

- Kent – The Admirals Arm, Queenborough

- London – Hope, Carshalton

- Merseyside – Cricketers Arms, St. Helens

- North East – Grey Horse, Consett

- Scotland & Northern Ireland – Bridge Inn, Peebles

- South West – Tom Cobley, Spreyton, Devon

- Surrey / Sussex – Hornet, Chichester, Sussex

- Wales – Mansel Arms, Porthyrhyd, Carmarthenshire

- Wessex – The Firkin Shed, Bournemouth

- West Midlands – Prince of Wales, Shrewsbury

- West Pennines – Swan with Two Necks, Pendleton, Lancashire

- Yorkshire – George & Dragon, Hudswell