'It feels amazing to win the award': Northampton town centre pub wins countywide real ale gong

A Northampton pub has beat dozens of other watering holes across the county to become CAMRA's Pub of the year Northamptonshire 2019 winner.

Monday, 25th March 2019, 12:02 pm
Updated Monday, 25th March 2019, 12:21 pm
St Giles Ale House has won a countywide CAMRA award and has now been shortlisted for a regional award too.

St Giles Ale House first opened back in 2016 with the stated aim of helping patrons remember the art of conversation and was a life-long ambition of Terry Steers.

And judges seem to love the ideas, crowning them CAMRA's Pub of the Year Northamptonshire 2019.

"It feels amazing to win the award," Terry said. "I've been in the industry for 17 years learning about real ale and how to keep it at its best for the real ale drinkers of Northampton.

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The St Giles Street-based pub does not play music and instead endorses the art of conversation.

"To say I keep it the best in the whole county, I'm very humbled."

The award was given to St Giles Ale House after CAMRA bosses made their judgement on it being a community pub, with top real ale and cider.

Customers can choose from a selection of six real ales from around the county and a continental lager menu that changes every few weeks.

Terry now has plans to build a craft bar downstairs - using the brewing equipment from his late friend, John Margetts at Hunsbury Craft Brewery - and install a small brewery to start producing his own beer exclusively for sale in the ale house.

The ale house re-opened back in January this year after a two-week refurbishment.

The craft bar, upon completion, will host eight rotating craft ales on a tap wall.

Plans are also in the pipeline to open a beer garden before the summer and invest in toilet facilities downstairs.

Terry added: "St Giles Ale House is only as good as it's customers and I am very very lucky to have an amazing group of customers and friends.

"We quite often refer to them as 'our ale house family' because that's exactly what they are, it's not just a pub it's a real family and I think that's what makes the ale house so inviting. When you come in the door you are walking into our home and we love to welcome you.

"This award will help raise the profile of the ale house even more and hopefully we will continue to grow and that means I can get the basement craft bar and brewery done sooner.

"The garden works have been booked in and should be complete by mid May, giving us a lovely space out the back, which is a real sun trap during summer."