shakespeares presentation

September Pub of the Month presentation

Shakespeares showed just why they had been chosen for the September Pub of the Month award when members headed there for the presentation on 12 September, with nine real ales on offer, plus real ciders, and a range of craft keg and bottled beers. The regular ales, Stancill Barnsley Bitter and Abbeydale Deception were joined by specials from breweries such as Titanic, Mallinsons, Neepsend and others.

Our social secretary Patrick Johnson, who nominated the pub for the award, was on hand to make the presentation to manager Chris Wadsworth and his team, who had very kindly provided a complimentary buffet of bar snacks and made everyone feel very welcome.

Congratulations once again to everyone at Shakespeares!

olde nags head

District Pub of the Season Summer 2017

Our District Pub of the Season award is intended to recognise those pubs outside Sheffield city limits; any pub meeting that simple criteria is eligible for the award. The Summer 2017 edition of the competition was a two-horse race between the Eyre Arms at Hassop and the Olde Nags Head in Castleton.

Following a hard-fought campaign, in which both pubs made concerted efforts to win more votes by publicising their nominations on social media, we can now reveal that the Olde Nags Head pipped their opponents to the post by a margin of just three votes!

Congratulations to our winners, who will recieve their certificate in due course. We are hoping to arrange the presentation at some point in the next couple of months, so keep your eyes peeled for more information.

Don’t forget to vote for your favourite district pub in our upcoming Autumn 2017 competition. Details of the nominees can be found in Beer Matters and on our website.

kelham island tavern

Yorkshire Pub of the Year 2017

Sheffield’s Kelham Island Tavern has been announced as joint winner of CAMRA’s Yorkshire Pub of the Year competition for 2017.

The Tavern was entered into the contest having won Sheffield & District CAMRA’s Pub of the Year award a few months ago, and was up against all the other pubs put forward by CAMRA branches in the Yorkshire region. The voting subsequently saw our entry share the top spot with CAMRA’s National Pub of the Year for 2017, the George & Dragon at Hudswell, near Richmond. To be in such esteemed company is quite an achievement! Meanwhile, the runner-up prize was awarded to the Whalebone in Hull.

Presentations to each of the three prizewinners will be made on Saturday afternoons in late October or early November, so keep an eye out for the dates on this website as soon as they are released.

Dominic Nelson


Pub of the Month September 2017

I moved to Kelham Island, Sheffield in November 2011 after a little over 10 years of residence in the fine city of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Now, a period of that magnitude does not pass without the establishment of some routines, one of which got the weekend off to an early start with a few pints, a pub quiz and a game of darts at my favourite haunt (The Bodega, Westgate Road). Of course, moving to a new city involves no small amount of upheaval in one’s life, upheaval that I intended to mitigate by the transference of my Thursday routine. So, I sallied forth from my new flat to investigate the numerous new local pubs with some key questions in mind, namely: Is this pub inundated with cask beer? Is there a weekly quiz? Is said quiz on a Thursday? Is there also a dartboard? To my joy I discovered that there was indeed a place that could answer ‘yes’ to all of these questions and the name of that place was Shakespeare’s. Of course, my Thursday quizzing meant that I was a frequent enough visitor to the pub to get acquainted with staff and regulars alike. Indeed, before long I had regained the sense of a genuine pub community that I had, perforce, left behind at The Bodega in Newcastle.

Over six years and one ‘Sheffield CAMRA Pub of the Year’ (2013) later, Shakespeare’s is still a public house par excellence, and while it is true that pale ales tend to preponderate amidst the forest of beer engines, variety is also guaranteed with permanent provision of at least one stout or porter, in addition to half a dozen (sometimes more) craft keg beers, the corollary of which is no shortage of sours and imperial stouts, but also a phantasmagoria of IPAs, DIPAs and SIPAs. It’s little wonder that the pub sees such a steady stream of beer tickers flowing through its doors.

Beers aside (heaven forefend!), the games foundation of darts has been built upon to include an upstairs games room with bar skittles, bar billiards, table football, board games and a Yorkshire dart board. Upstairs also is their spacious function room which is put to good use hosting gigs, dancing, meetings and parties of all sorts.

Of course, staff and regulars have come and gone since the Winter of 2011, but that ineffable sense of pub community has remained untarnished (indeed it is far from unusual to find that staff who move on to work elsewhere are merely transformed from bar workers into regular patrons). Manager Chris and his splendid outfit of beer connoisseurs are more than capable of helping the discerning drinker with their painstaking ‘which next?’ decision. All in all, Shakespeare’s is most worthy ‘Pub of the Month’; a fine place for fine ale served by fine folk in the company of fine people.

Patrick Johnson

harlequin certificate

Cider Pub of the Year presentation

The seasoned real ale drinkers of Sheffield & District CAMRA were drinking pints of a fruitier variety on Wednesday 26 July, as several of us paid a visit to the Harlequin on Nursery Street for the Cider Pub of the Year presentation. It was the fourth time the pub has taken the award, adding to their collection of certificates from 2011, 2013 and 2016.

harlequin blackboard 2

It was easy to see why the Harlequin is so popular with cider drinkers, with 27 real and craft ciders and perries available on the evening. The blackboard with a description of each of the ciders, tasting notes and very handy sweetness scale allows drinkers who may not be as familiar with cider to make a more informed choice and encourages people to be a bit more adventurous, which can only be a good thing.

liz harlequin 2

Congratulations once again to Liz and all the team at the Harlequin!

wisewood potm july 2017

July Pub of the Month presentation

On 11 July, members headed to the Wisewood Inn in Loxley for the presentation of our Pub of the Month award for July 2017. The pub was packed to the rafters to see branch chairman Mick Saxton hand over the certificate to licensee Pat Bailey and his staff.

With its convivial atmosphere, eclectic decor and excellent range of beers, the Wisewood Inn was a shining example of how a pub can be completely turned around in just 18 months, and a worthy winner of our monthly prize. Real ales available on the night included Acorn Barnsley Bitter, Abbeydale Moonshine, Kelham Island Pale Rider, Ilkley Pale and Bradfield Farmer’s Brown Cow. The offer of free beer for CAMRA members was very much appreciated! In addition to the free beer, those in attendance were provided with a complimentary buffet of sandwiches, sausage rolls, pork pies and other party food.

wisewood beers

Congratulations once again to the Wisewood Inn and everyone involved. CAMRA members, remember to vote for your Pub of the Month on our website or at the monthly branch meeting. Unfortunately, due to a lack of votes there will be no award for August. Let’s make sure that we have one in time for September!

(Pictured left to right: Rob Strong, barman; Bernie Greene, chef; Pat Bailey, licensee and Mick Saxton, branch chairman)

miners arms hundall northderbyshirepoty17

North Derbyshire Pub of the Year presentation

A number of CAMRA members from across the area along with local pub regulars assembled at the Miners Arms in Hundall, near Dronfield, on Friday 7th July to celebrate the pub winning CAMRA’s North Derbyshire Pub of the Year award.

CAMRA Regional Organiser Pete Boitoult presented the winners certificate and the whole cast of management and staff got behind the bar for the photo opportunity! A complimentary chilli and garlic bread supper was provided for all in attendance with a choice of hot or mild. We never asked if the chilli plants growing in the pub’s conservatory had been involved!

The pub is a traditional rural village drinkers pub that attracts a wide cross section of customers and has a choice of areas to enjoy your drinks – the main bar area with sport on TV and background music, a quieter lounge area, pool table room, conservatory with sofas and beer garden.

The Miners has a range of 5 real ales served on handpump. The two regular beers are Pictish Alchemist Ale and the locally brewed Drone Valley Dronny Bottom Bitter with an ever changing selection of guest beers on the other three pumps. On the presentation night these included Acorn Summer Ale and Sonnet 43 Raven Stout. The Miners also boasts an extensive range of traditional cider and perry with around 20 listed on the blackboard! There is a discount for Real Ale and Real Cider for CAMRA members of 30p off a pint or 15p off a half every day except Monday when the beer prices are available to everyone at a bargain price!

A new feature on the bar is an extended gin selection with a range of around 15 available including the Sleeping Lemon Gin from the Wild Beer Company! The Miners also offers a selection of bar snacks including pork pies, bhajis, sausage rolls, flans etc supplied by Deli-Licious of Dronfield.

The pub is dog friendly, having some pub dogs of its own as well as numerous customers that bring ‘guest dogs’, a cask of water can be found in the conservatory labelled ‘doggy beer’ and there is a vending machine selling doggy treats to raise money for charity.

A limited bus service is available stopping directly outside the Miners Arms (TM Travel route 14 Dronfield-Chesterfield), otherwise it is walkable from Unstone or a short taxi ride from Dronfield town centre.

The Miners Arms hosts two beer festivals a year with additional guest beers and music. The first is in early June as part of the wider Three Valleys Beer Festival and the other is August Bank Holiday weekend when other events in the village coincide including charity cricket matches and the Land Rover trials.

Congratulations to team Miners for winning this award – beating off competition from other North Derbyshire pubs including our own entry, the Anglers Rest in Bamford – and we wish them good look in the next round of the competition against the other East Midlands winners. The pub that is judged the best in the East Midlands then goes into the national Pub of the Year competition.

Andrew Cullen

(Photo credit: Nick Wheat)

kelham island presentation 2017

Pub of the Year presentation

It will have come as no surprise to many that Sheffield & District CAMRA members yet again voted the Kelham Island Tavern as their Pub of the Year for 2017. Branch members descended on the pub in their droves on the evening of 22 June to see our social secretary Patrick Johnson present pub owners Trevor Wraith and Lewis Gonda with their award.

Kelham Island outside bar

The presentation was timed to coincide with the start of the pub’s own annual midsummer festival, and it must be said there was a fantastic selection of real ales and ciders on offer. Unfortunately, as designated driver for the evening, I wasn’t able to sample as many as I would have liked! In total, there were more than 30 beers available, ranging from local breweries including Abbeydale and Blue Bee, to those a little further afield such as Shropshire’s Salopian Brewery and Brodie’s from East London. The outside bar also stocked a varied cider selection, mainly featuring orchards from the West Country.

kelham island pizza

There was also no danger of going hungry, as freshly made wood-fired pizzas were available courtesy of the Sunshine Pizza Oven. The pub also kindly put on a spread following the presentation of the certificate. Congratulations once more to Trevor, Lewis and all at the Kelham Island Tavern on being voted Sheffield & District Pub of the Year 2017.


Club of the Year presentation

On Saturday 17 June, several members from Sheffield & District CAMRA headed to the Stocksbridge RUFC clubhouse to present the Club of the Year award for 2017. The clubhouse was opened in 1985 when the rugby club took over a derelict chapel. Over the years it has become well-known in the area for its excellent selection of ales, and was thoroughly deserving of the accolade.


The presentation was timed to coincide with the club’s second annual beer festival. In addition to the four real ales usually on offer in the clubhouse, an extra eight handpumps had been installed outdoors featuring beers from local breweries including Acorn, Bradfield, Hilltop and White Rose.

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June Pub of the Month presentation

Sheffield & District CAMRA members headed to the Broadfield on Abbeydale Road on Tuesday 13 June to celebrate the Pub of the Month award for June 2017. With its wide range of real ales (there were nine handpumps available on the night with the usual selection of True North ales plus guests), good food and relaxed atmosphere, the Broadfield was a worthy winner. The pub had last won the award in May 2015.

Branch chairman Mick Saxton (right) presented Ed Daly, one of the pub’s managers, with the certificate, which we are sure will take pride of place.