Cheers as social club lands top award

Just Regional
Jun 7, 2024 3 mins read

Aylsham Social Club is toasting being named the best in the Norwich area by beer and hospitality experts.

The thriving 800-member venue, in Hungate Street, is the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) Norwich and District Club of the Year.

Judges looked at a range of criteria including the welcome, atmosphere, décor, service, customer mix, quality of beer and value for money.
The awards are made by the Norwich and District CAMRA branch, which made a secret visit to the club to initially check it out before returning with a minibus full of ale fan judges when the Aylsham Club was in the shortlist of five whittled down from 25 venues originally considered. CAMRA branch clubs officer Des O’Brien said: “Aylsham Social Club did extremely well to win, because they came out of nowhere, having not even been on our radar 18 months ago.

“Since it reopened after Covid it has really put an emphasis on real ale, and now provides a wide range of consistently good beer.

“Accepting the award, club president David Smith said: “The award is an incredible achievement and a feather in the club’s cap, reflecting the energy and commitment shown by the hard-working bar staff, secretary, treasurer and committee.”

Club secretary Michael Halls added: “The award is excellent news and the members are all very proud.”

The club will now be put forward to the Norfolk-wide CAMRA awards, and, if successful, could go on to the East of England and National ones. Aylsham Social Club has a long and proud history having formed in 1939 as the Aylsham and District Ex-Servicemen’s and Social Club above the current Co-Op store in Market Place. It moved to its current home, the Grade II listed 18th century Collegiate House, a former school, in 1965.
Today it is a family-friendly club with two well-stocked bars, two full-sized snooker tables, two match darts boards, a pool room with jukebox and large screen televisions showing live sports. There is regular Saturday night entertainment featuring solo artists and bands, Sunday night cash bingo and a popular weekly Wednesday night quiz.

SIMPLY THE BEST: Aylsham Social Club staff and committee with the CAMRA award.

The club also holds regular charity events and has donated thousands of pounds to local charities and organisations over the years.
Find out more about the club on the Aylsham Social Club Facebook page @ The Club – Aylsham or call 01263 732182.

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