Inverness bar leads licensed trade awards for best in Scotland

The Den Johnny Foxes

The Johnny Foxes and The Den in Inverness was named best venue in this year’s Best Bar None Scotland National Awards to find the best licensed premises.

It took the title of national champion as well as the award for best independent bar in the annual awards that were held at the BT Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh.

The Johnny Foxes and The Den nightclub (pictured) came top out of more than 400 bars, pubs and clubs that participate in Scotland’s Best Bar None programme that recognises high standards in creating a safe and welcoming environment at night.

Don Lawson who owns Johnny Foxes and The Den said: “It was great to have won the prize for best independent bar but to have picked up the National Champion 2014-15 Award was a complete shock and I really can’t wipe the smile from my face!

“I am beyond delighted for the team at Johnny Foxes and The Den but also for Inverness. To have two winning venues from the city is a great testament to the talent here.

“Best Bar None is a great initiative to be a part of and the awards are really taking over others in the industry as it’s so focused and structured.”

The Arts Bar at the Mercure hotel in Inverness took the title of best hotel bar while the Glenmavis Tavern in Falkirk was named best bar.

The Three Sisters in Edinburgh, part of EH1 Group, won best pub while the award for best independent pub went to Bon Accord in Glasgow.

Campus in Glasgow was named best nightclub while two Aberdeen clubs won special awards: The Institute won for best use of innovation and The Garage won best public health initiative.

Mandy Haeburn-Little, director of Scottish Business Resilience Centre who hosted the awards ceremony, said: “These awards look to recognise the best examples of Best Bar None venues which focus on public safety and customer care, together with the key principles of prevention of public nuisance, protecting and improving public health and the protection of children from harm and to help positively flourish Scotland’s night-time economy.”

The Best Bar None scheme, which is sponsored by Diageo, Molson Coors, Heineken, Tennents, Maxxium and Chivas Brothers, has been created through a partnership between Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, suppliers, The Scottish Licensed Trade Association, the security industry and Scottish Government to celebrate and reward licensed premises for looking after their customers and helping to improve Scotland’s night-time economy. It is an integral part of the Safer Areas Initiatives throughout Scotland.

Licensed premises that wish to join Best Bar None are assessed by trained, impartial assessors and applicants are scored according to national guidelines. A panel of judges assess the applications and confirm that all applications have met the required standard.

Full list of winners

National champion 2014/15: Johnny Foxes and The Den, Inverness
Best pub: The Three Sisters, Edinburgh
Best independent pub: Bon Accord, Glasgow
Best bar: Glenmavis Tavern, Falkirk
Best independent bar: Johnny Foxes and The Den, Inverness
Best hotel bar: Arts Bar at Mercure Hotel, Inverness
Best nightclub: Campus, Glasgow
Best specialist entertainment venue: University of Strathclyde Students’ Union, Glasgow
Best use of innovation: The Institute, Aberdeen
Best public health initiative: The Garage, Aberdeen
Heart of the community award: The Corbie Inn, Bo’ness

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