WHITE LION CELEBRATES 10-YEARS IN THE GOOD BEER GUIDE, BUT OTHER PUBS IN TOWN ARE STILL UNDER THREAT
Surrey Hampshire Borders Branch of CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, was delighted to present Ian Andrews, landlord of the White Lion, Aldershot with a certificate to celebrate inclusion for 10 years in CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale’s flagship publication the Good Beer Guide. The book celebrates the best real ale in the country and the White Lion has been pretty well a permanent feature in the award winning guide, since being taken over by Alton based Triple fff Brewery in 2007. For the past 10 years, Ian has been at the helm ensuring a range of excellent real ale has been available for his discerning locals and real ale fans from farther afield.
Ian’s work at the White Lion, clearly demonstrates that a well run community pub, focussing on simple things such as good beer and a friendly welcome can be successful. So last Wednesday a group of members from the Surrey Hants Borders Branch of CAMRA, spend an evening sampling the fine ales and presented Ian with a certificate to celebrate the past 10 years.
Pictured are White Lion landlord Ian Andrews (left) receiving his certificate from Surrey Hants Borders Branch Chairman Mick Bell. Mick said, “the White Lion is an excellent pub selling some fantastic local Triple fff beers, in a friendly environment. It is great to see the pub buzzing tonight and I am delighted to recognised Ian’s 10 years here and hope there are many more to come. However, it is important that people don’t take excellent pubs like the White Lion for granted and continue support such important community facilities. So if folk haven’t visited the pub for a while then why not pop out tonight for a drink and a chat with your neighbours?!
The success of the White Lion is in contrast to some other pubs in the town. Only recently Rushmoor Council approved a planning application to convert La Fontane nearby to flats. Sadly whilst we have commended the Council in the past for an excellent policy to protect pubs from being lost unless they can be clearly demonstrated not to be viable, in this instance they significantly failed to apply their own policies, even when CAMRA and the Aldershot Civic Society clearly pointed this out to them.
The council requires pub owners to show the pub isn’t viable and part of this requires them to show they have tried to sell it as a going concern. However in the case of La Fontane the price asked for was significantly above that which other local pubs such as the Royal Staff and Imperial Standard sold for in the past couple of years.
Unsurprisingly therefore there was little interest, but the Council spectacularly failed to seek evidence that the valuation was appropriate, which is in complete contradiction of their agreed policies.
Kevin Travers, Surrey Hants Borders Pubs Officer added. “It was so clear that sufficient evidence had not been provided that the marketing price was in any way reasonable and we really feel the planning department have fallen short in their investigations on this point. We did not believe it was possible to make any sort of judgement call on whether the price was ‘reasonable’ without considering recent pub sale prices in Aldershot and as soon as we did it was clear that the price being asked was very high and you then can’t help question the motivation behind this.
Rushmoor Borough Council need to properly follow their own policies, otherwise the wonderful pub heritage of Aldershot and the invaluable benefits pubs offer to the local community will be lost forever.
Branch Pub of the Season – Winter 2017/18
The winner of the Branch Pub of the Season is Alfred Free House Upper Hale, Farnham.
A certificate will be presented to the pub on the evening of Wednesday 21st March 2018
Branch Pub of the Year and Club of the Year Presentations 2018
Branch Pub of the Year and Club of the Year Presentations 2017
We have recently made awards to our Branch Pub of the Year and Club of the Year Winners for 2017.
First up was the Jolly Sailor, Farnham regaining its crown from the Prince of Wales Farnborough
Then for the 5th year in a row the Star, Godalming was awarded our Branch Cider Pub of the Year.
Last reviewed and updated 18th March 2018