Bridge Inn is toast of the Borders as pub of the year

Nikki Cassidy, left, is presented with the pub's 2017 award by Sarah Bellis.
Nikki Cassidy, left, is presented with the pub's 2017 award by Sarah Bellis.

A Peebles pub is celebrating this week having been named the best in the Borders for the third time in four years.

The Bridge Inn, in Port Brae, has been named as the region’s pub of the year by the Campaign for Real Ale’s Edinburgh and south east Scotland branch.

The Bridge Inn in Port Brae, Peebles.

The Bridge Inn in Port Brae, Peebles.

The already award-winning pub, owned by Fife-based Kingdom Taverns, also won that title in 2015 and 2016 but finished runner-up in the regional rounds last year.

It also went on to be named top pub in Scotland and Northern Ireland after its 2017 regional win.

Now it is hoping to repeat that success, having won the regional accolade once again last week.

Nikki Cassidy has worked at the bar for over a decade, including the last seven as manager, said: “We will now go on to the next stage, and if we win the Edinburgh and south east Scotland heat, the next stage would be the Scotland and Northern Ireland award again.”

Also known as the Trust, and formerly as the Tweedside Inn, the Bridge Inn employs around a dozen full and part-time staff.

It offers at least four real ales, three on rotation, does not allow children in and boasts a large beer garden and weekly traditional music sessions.

Nikki added: “We only serve quality ales, and all of our staff are very knowledgeable about our ales.

“We always have a good atmosphere, and it’s a nice environment for both our staff and customers.

“Thanks go to all the tough competition that keeps us on our toes.

“Thanks also go to our fab customers who vote for us year after year. We will continue to do our best.”

Last year’s winner of the regional title, Kelso pub Rutherfords, co-owned by Simon and Debbie Rutherford, had to settle for second place this year.

The Plough Inn in Leitholm was placed third for the second year running.

The pub, opened in 2015 by David and Sarah McLean, won the Edinburgh and south east Scotland’s branch of Camra’s award for beer quality in December after coming runner-up for that same award for two years previously.

The four finalists in the branch’s Edinburgh, Lothian and Border categories are competing to be named Camra’s Edinburgh and south east Scotland pub of the year for 2019.

The Bridge is up against the Dreadnought and Stockbridge Tap in Edinburgh as they were named as joint winners for the city and Staggs in Musselburgh, East Lothian.