It does not accept children and has been praised by reviewers for its “superb” gents toilets.

But now, the Bridge Inn in Peebles has been named Scotland’s pub of the year by the beer industry’s “bible”.

The hostelry, which sits on the River Tweed and has “well-maintained original Twyford Adamant urinals”, according to the Camra Good Beer Guide, has been listed as one of the book’s 16 top pubs in the UK.

The pub, which is known locally as The Trust and was once called the Tweedside Inn, is also lauded for being “cheerful [and] welcoming” and for its “bright, comfortable bar” decorated with jugs, bottles, memorabilia of outdoor pursuits and photos of old Peebles.

Each of the pubs were judged against numerous other local branch winners and deemed to be the best in the region overall, taking into account the “essential characteristics” which make a great pub: atmosphere, decor, welcome, service, value for money, customer mix and quality real ale.

Nikki Cassidy, manager and licensee at the Bridge Inn, said she was delighted to win the award.

“It is crazy for a wee town in the Borders to be beating all of the pubs in Edinburgh and Glasgow, we’re delighted,” she said. “The pub has a real sense of community, everyone knows each other and it’s a place anyone can just come in and have a pint on their own.”
She defended the pub’s decision not to admit children.

She said: “We don’t serve food so it is just something we have never done. It works quite well. There are a lot of places in Peebles where you can sit down and have a meal with your kids, this is something that makes us unique.”

Marshall Bain, president of the Scottish Licensed Trade Association, said that around 90 per cent of pubs now accept children, leaving the Bridge Inn in the minority.

He said: “We are of the opinion that if you can get as many people as you can in licensed premises, then we’re very happy and most pubs which have restaurants now accept children. However, there is still a market for a traditional pub, especially among real ale-ers.”

Social etiquette expert Roddy Martine praised the pub’s choice to ban children.

He said: “I am old fashioned enough to wonder why on earth parents would want to take their children into a
traditional pub in the first place?”

Camra’s Scottish director, Sarah Bell, said: “The Bridge Inn was selected for this year’s Pub of the Year Scotland thanks to its fantastic beer range on offer.

“Combined with its cheerful, welcoming atmosphere and views over the river, it is a fantastic place to sit an enjoy a pint either on your own or with friends.”

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Jane Bradley

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