The results of this year’s Aylesbury Vale village pub of the year have been announced.
The big award for Village pub of the year went to The Rising Sun in Ickford, which also finished runner-up in the Best Family Pub category.
Owner Jan Thomas said: “The team at the Rising Sun are passionate about keeping a traditional English public house that provides a great selection of well-kept real ales and serves fantastic, traditional, home-made food.
“We enjoy great support from our locals and regulars and in turn we encourage and promote traditional team pub games all year round.
“We are both proud and thrilled to have won this award and we’ll work hard to continue with what we’re doing.”
The Unicorn in Cublington won a special one-off award this year for its consistent excellence, while last year’s overall winner The Seven Stars in Dinton, received the Highly Recommended award.
The Pointer in Brill was chosen as the Best Food Pub, with The Old Fisherman in Shabbington taking the honours in the Best Family Pub category while The Rose and Crown in Ivinghoe won the Community Pub award.
The competition, run by Aylesbury Vale District Council and sponsored by Dayla, celebrates the roles of pubs in the life of the village, as well as what they offer to the district in terms of tourism.
After much deliberation, the judges chose the winning pubs in a number of categories including Best Community Pub, Best Family Pub and Best Food Pub before deciding the overall winner.
The winning pubs were chosen on the basis of their score from visits by mystery customers during which they were rated for aspects ranging from cleanliness and service to community activities and family facilities.
Councillor Pam Pearce, district council cabinet member for community matters and chair of the judging panel said: “The standards were so high this year, and our competition has something to do with that.
“These are coveted awards and pubs work hard to win them.
“Well done to all the winners and indeed to all the pubs nominated by their communities.”
All the finalists will be featured in the ‘Recommended Village Pub guide’, which will be available to download from the district council website at www.aylesburyvaledc.gov.uk