Yorks Show: Fleece Countryside Inn wins Yorkshire Pub of the Year

It’s only been open for three years but the Fleece Countryside Inn at Barkisland has trumped the competition to be crowned Yorkshire Pub of the Year.

Sir Gary Verity

The West Yorkshire watering hole was crowned in all its glory at the Welcome to Yorkshire tent on the Great Yorkshire Showground in front of a crowd of around 100 people.

Sponsered by The Yorkshire Post and Theakstons, and organised by Welcome to Yorkshire, the competition attracted a record 13,500 votes this year making The Fleece’s victory all the more sweet.

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Presented with the award by Emmerdale actor Matthew Wolfendon, famed for playing David Metcalf, the pub’s landlord Lee Roberts to this newspaper that was ecstatic to win the trophy.

“We are very thrilled,” he said.

“The staff and the regulars there are what makes everything possible and this could not happen without them.

“I am very grateful to everybody who voted.

“Thanks you to everyone who made this possible.

“It is a proud moment for all of us.”

The Fleece was followed by the Bull Inn at West Tanfield and the the Royal Oak at Ripon, in second and third place respectively.

Speaking prior to the presentation Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Gary Verity said: “Prince Charles, who is on the site today, once said many years ago that ‘the pub is the hub’. How right he was.

“For many rural villages the pub is the hub and it shuts down the village dies.

“It is the centre of everything and brings people together.”

The remaining shortlist consisted of the Craven Arms at Appletreewick, the Anvil Inn at Sawdon, Crown Cushion at Welburn, the Shibden Mill Inn at Shibden, the Flying Duck at Ilkley, the Woodman Inn at Thunder Bridge and the Star at Sancton.

The shortlisted waterholes also form part of Yorkshire Ale Trail guide which is available in many pubs around the region as well as at the Welcome to Yorkshire website.