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Nottingham Best Bar None 2022 award winners announced

An evening of celebrations took place at the Albert Hall on Tuesday 25 October 2022 as Nottingham City’s Best Bar None Awards recognised the city’s best pubs, bars, clubs, restaurants and entertainment venues.

Best Bar None is a national initiative supported by the Home Office and drinks industry that aims to improve standards in the evening and night-time economy.

Following a two-year absence due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the awards, delivered by Nottingham Business Improvement District (BID), and supported by Hickman James Specialist Creative and Print Services and Abstrakt Creative, celebrate best practice amongst the licensed trade, highlighting Nottingham’s venues’ efforts to maintain and create safe, responsible and well-operated venues.

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Nottingham BID has been operating the scheme since 2010, through its Managed City stream of delivery, to assist in creating a safe and welcoming environment in the city centre. This year, over 90 establishments within Nottingham city centre were successful in gaining Best Bar None accreditation across eight different categories.

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Covering national and independent operators, each venue was assessed and judged on criteria including prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, prevention of public nuisance, and protection of children from harm, and for the first-time venues were measured on their ability to meet strict criteria to protect women and girls from harm and reduce vulnerability as part of the Safe Space Pledge, which was introduced earlier this year to the criteria.

The category winners of Nottingham Best Bar None 2022 are as follows:

Best Club: The Level, Nottingham Trent Students’ Union

Best Restaurant: Fat Cats

Best Live Entertainment Venue: Rock City

Best Large Pub: The Bierkeller

Best Small Pub: Ye Olde Salutation Inn

Best Large Bar: Oz Bar

Best Small Bar:  31K/Yolk

Best Entertainment Venue: Roxy Ballroom


Commenting on picking up the award for Best Restaurant, Dan, General Manager at Fat Cat Nottingham said: “Winning this award is massive for us, especially for me as I only took over the role in August.

“We wouldn’t have won this without the team, it has been tough lately, not just for us, but for the entire hospitality industry, thankfully things are starting to get back to normal, and the future is bright.”


Whilst the Operations Manager, Matin from Oz Bar said:

‘We’ve been nominated a few times but this is the first time we’ve won which is really, really good, it’s a real shock to be fair!

“The last year has been really hard with Covid-19, and now the recession, so events like Best Bar None help bring the community together and increase the morale in hospitality.

“It’s fantastic to be a winner and it means a lot to us.

“The team has worked really hard to improve the venue and to get the accreditation as a safe venue means so much to us.

“We think about how people want to be treated, the importance of creating a safe environment, somewhere that people can feel comfortable and be themselves.

“The future looks good for us, as a sports bar we’ve got the World Cup coming up, and with Forest in the Premiership, it’s great to see the fans coming in, and spending time with us in high spirits.”

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Attending the awards was Allie, Front of House and Events Manager and Will, Director of 31K and Yolk, who after collecting the award for Best Small Bar, said:

“We are a cocktail bar and restaurant and are relatively new to the scene – we’ve been in Nottingham for four years, but only open for two of those, with the pandemic, so being here amongst the other accredited venues, is something we’ve worked towards.

“Even to be shortlisted is a nice thing, it proves to us that we’re doing the right thing in how we operate, it’s really humbling actually.

“We’re really proud of where we work, and who we work with and feel honoured to be part of it.

“It’s down to the team, they’re amazing people to work alongside.

“We came out of the pandemic with 14 staff, and now we have 25, so we’ve grown, which we feel very lucky to be able to say. We’re looking forward to the future, to taking over the world but starting with Hockley!”

In addition workers within the industry got the opportunity to nominate a colleague for the  Community Champion award, which was won on the night by Jess Wakefield-Boyd from The Cosy Club.

Jess was praised for always going above and beyond her role, bringing positivity to the job and for always showing patience and respect to everyone she interacts with.

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Results were announced at a glamorous black and white themed event attended by all accredited venues and hosted by radio presenters, Tom and Claire from Capital FM.

The businesses that gained the highest scores in their Best Bar None assessments were named as finalists. All of these then proceeded through to a mystery visit and judging stage in order to arrive at the winners.

The other finalists in the various categories were:


Best Club: Pryzm, Ink, NG1, Popworld

Best Restaurant: Annie’s Burger Shack, Crowne Plaza, Hilton Hotel, Wildwood

Best Live Entertainment Venue: Rescue Rooms, Stealth, Rough Trade

Best Large Pub: Joseph Else, The Roebuck Inn

Best Small Pub: Six Barrels Drafthouse, The Ned Ludd, O’Neills, The New Foresters

Best Large Bar: Revolucion de Cuba, Lloyds No. 1

Best Small Bar: Cock & Hoop, Icon Bar, Mojo, Route One, The Alchemist

Best Entertainment: Alea Casino, Lost City Golf Adventure


Alex Flint, CEO of Nottingham BID, said: “Congratulations to all the category winners. It is a great achievement for all the venues who have worked exceptionally hard, above and beyond the required standards, to ensure a better, safer social environment.


“Not only does Best Bar None acknowledge all the efforts and hard work that venues put into achieving high standards of operation, but it also conveys a positive message that Nottingham is a safe and responsible place for a night out, encouraging more people to visit.”


All venues that were successful in gaining the accreditation will receive a certificate and window sticker for them to display to show that they are a Best Bar None venue.

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