Shouldham pub named West Norfolk’s best for the second time

Abbie Panks and Ian Skinner at the award-winning King's Arms in Shouldham
Abbie Panks and Ian Skinner at the award-winning King's Arms in Shouldham

A village pub whose community united to keep it open has been named as West Norfolk’s best for the second successive year.

West Norfolk’s CAMRA branch has chosen the King’s Arms at Shouldham as its pub of the year for 2017.

The pub, which closed in 2012 and was put up for sale, was re-opened under community ownership in September 2014, following a campaign by local residents to buy it.

Landlord Ian Skinner said: “We are delighted and a little surprised to have won branch pub of the year again.

“A big thank you must go to our fantastic team, to our customers, to the breweries who supply us with great beer and of course to drinkers and CAMRA member who have voted for us.”

Abbie Panks, vice-chairman of Shouldham Community Enterprises (SCE), which owns the pub, added: “The pub has grown from strength to strength in the two and a half years it’s been open.

“To have won Pub of the Year for the second year running is a real testament to the hard work of our great team. 

“Being a community pub represents people and we are still delighted to have been able to reopen the pub and be able to provide a welcoming space to socialise, build new friendships and to strengthen our community.”

The King’s Arms, which was one of four finalists for the accolade, will now be put forward for the Norfolk award and could yet go on to contest the organisation’s top regional and national prizes.

West Norfolk CAMRA chairman Steve Barker said: “This was a hotly contested competition and any one of the four finalists could have won.

“The King’s Arms is a fine example of a community pub and a worthy winner.”

The award is due to be presented during a ceremony at the pub next month.

A presentation will also be made to the runner-up, the Peddars Inn at Sporle, which the group said had been narrowly beaten in the voting.