ONE of the hidden gems of the beer world has been honoured with a CAMRA 'Golden Award'.

CAMRA – the Campaign for Real Ale – is marking 50 years by recognising some of its favourite venues for beer.

Just three places made the list in the Merseyside and Cheshire area including Appleton Thorn Village Hall.

Not only was it made CAMRA’s National Club of the Year winner in 2019, it now has a 50th anniversary Golden Award for 'consistently pouring great pints'.

Since the Massey family took over in 2004, the former school has become one of CAMRA's most decorated venues.

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This is due to the ever-changing range of seven cask beers sourced from all over the UK as well as from micro-breweries and Warrington and Cheshire brewers.

Appleton Thorn Village Hall has also been consistently praised for its staff knowledge, surroundings, atmosphere and the sense of community it has created.

Last year bar manager Chris Massey told us: “I hand-pick all the beers and it’s about getting the right styles that people like from pale ales to copper bitters.

"I enjoy discovering and working with new breweries. You get CAMRA members known as ‘beer tickers’ who travel all over the country to sample beer from new breweries so it’s great if I can get something on they’ve never had before.

"It’s just about keeping your eyes open and trying to keep ahead of the game to stay relevant with the beers while also supporting the local breweries.”

Warrington Guardian:

This unassuming former school is one of the best places for beer in the country, say CAMRA

The Golden Awards recognise people, groups of people or businesses that have made a 'significant contribution to CAMRA’s aims, helping us get to where we are today'.

Gary Timmins, CAMRA’s awards director, added: “I am delighted to be honouring these establishments today with a CAMRA Golden Award.

"2021 is our anniversary year, and we want to take this opportunity to celebrate the successes of great British locals as well as CAMRA’s achievements – we wouldn’t have got far without their support.

“This anniversary comes on the heels of an incredibly difficult time for the industry after a year of lockdowns and restrictions. I hope the teams behind the winning pubs and their locals will take this award as appreciation for all the hard work involved in running the business, over the decades and especially now.

"Nominations were submitted by our members and consumers, which says a lot about the support and impact they have had.

“Winners have been chosen for their successes in standing the test of time; for being convivial, characterful and community-focused, and of course for consistently pouring great pints. I applaud these pubs for their dedication, for being community stalwarts and campaigning heroes.”

Nominations for the Golden Awards were made by CAMRA members and locals. More than 240 pubs submitted were whittled down to 32 winners, including five that have appeared in all 48 editions of CAMRA'S Good Beer Guide.

Other Golden Award winners in the region include Borough Arms in Crewe and Roscoe Head in Liverpool.