Halifax MP Holly Lynch has nominated The Grayston Unity pub in Halifax for Parliamentary Pub of the Year.
All MPs from around the country have been invited to nominate a pub in their constituency to be considered for the accolade. Criteria for the award includes selling a selection of great beers, making a community contribution, a busy events calendar and having been nominated for an industry award. Ms Lynch believes that The Grayston ticks all of these boxes.
“Pubs make a big contribution to our community and the sector employs 900,000 people nationwide. Three pubs are closing every day due to financial pressures, but here in Halifax we have a number of new bars and pubs that are thriving as part of the town’s renaissance. The Victorian Craft Beer Café, The Alexandra, The Lantern, Pump Room Micropub and The Grayston Unity have all opened in the past couple of years, and with other more established favourites such as Shibden Mill Inn and The Big Six also in my constituency, picking a winner certainly wasn’t easy!
“We decided to put it to a poll in my office and The Grayston came out as the ultimate winner. It’s a great little bar with a busy events programme and it has undoubtedly made a positive impact on the town in the short time it has been open.
“The pub’s owner Michael also recognises his responsibility to the environment, which is important to me. When I launched a campaign for pubs and restaurants to stop using plastic straws, the Grayston was one of the first places to support the campaign. They also stopped stocking plastic beer kegs and encouraged other local bars to follow suit – an issue I hadn’t even thought about until they contacted me about it.”
Pub owner Michael Ainsworth said:
“We are naturally delighted to have been nominated for this award. We offer a rotating selection of good beers and over 100 spirits, and we do try to give a little back to the community as well – for example we don’t charge for tea and coffee on a Sunday and only ask for a donation to local homeless charity Happy Days.”
At the start of this year The Grayston gained recognition from BBC Radio 6 as part of Independent Music Venue Week. The bar was dubbed ‘the smallest music venue in the UK’, owing to the fact its main room can hold around 18 people at a push, and only if there is no drum kit involved. The pub was visited by BBC presenter Elizabeth Alker, who first described Halifax as ‘the Shoreditch of the North’.