Cheers as Brixham’s Queens Arms named pub of year

Queens Arms landlord Chris Simmonds (right) accepts the award from South Devon CAMRA chairman Bob So

Queens Arms landlord Chris Simmonds (right) accepts the award from South Devon CAMRA chairman Bob Southwell in a suitably masked and distanced ceremony. - Credit: Archant

Brixham’s Queens Arms and landlord Chris Simmonds are the toast of South Devon - and the local community.

The Queens has been named South Devon CAMRA’s Pub of the Year - for the third time.

The Queens and mine host Chris also showed how they sit at the heart of the community in the close-knit fishing port by raising more than £1,100 for the Joanna C appeal.

The 45ft Brixham scalloper sank off the coast of Sussex. Skipper Dave Bickerstaff was rescued and was taken to hospital. The body of Adam Harper was found on the boat and fellow crewman Robert Morley is missing presumed drowned.

Landlord Chris accepted the award recently from South Devon CAMRA branch chairman Bob Southwell in a suitably masked and distanced ceremony. This is the third time the pub, in Station Hill, has won under Chris’s leadership.

CAMRA members voted the Queens Arms top considering quality of real ale, community focus, pub style, décor, furnishing and cleanliness as well as service, welcome, and atmosphere.

Chris said: “I am over the moon. It is such a great thing. It is fantastic.

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“It is the third time we have won it. I don’t think you are allowed to win it two years running. It is to make sure people go out and look for other pubs.”

The money raised for the Joanna C came via an online auction for four boxes of ale which had been donated.

Chris said: “One of the bidders paid £120 for a 10 litre box and then put it straight back in.”

Friend Andrew Strang said: “Chris Simmonds has done an amazing thing. He has proved how important pubs that are independent and sit in the centre of our communities are.

“He has raised over £1000 for the crew of the ill-fated Joanna C despite being closed by the government.”

Andrew appealed: “Please support local family businesses at this awful time, they are the ones who give back to the community not the multinationals.”