Rolling out the 'Barrel' in Brig

A micropub has been named “best bar in town” even though it is being forced to shut earlier than rival alehouses.

The Brig ‘N’ Barrel is the only pub in Bamber Bridge to make the 2020 Good Beer Guide, despite having to call “time” at 9.30pm during the week.

Owners Graham Roberts, 38, and Chris Armer, 39, are toasting the honour after being in business for only 15 months.

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But now they are urging councillors to relax their opening hours to bring them in line with other pubs in the area.

“For some reason we have to call last orders at 9.30 tonight while others around us can stay open longer,” said Graham.

“It was a condition of our planning permission and we think it is only fair that it should be removed to bring us in line with everybody else.”

The Brig ‘N’ Barrel opened its doors in June last year in a former TV repair shop in Station Road.

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Another micropub, the Beer Box, was launched three months later on the opposite side of the road, which councillors allowed to open until 11.30.

Despite the disadvantage, the Brig ‘N’ Barrel has been recognised by the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) in its 2020 beer guide.

Graham explained: “We didn’t even know we had been nominated. This was our first opportunity to get into the guide and we made it. It was a shock, but a good shock.

“Chris and I have known each other since we were kids and we have always wanted to do something together business-wise.

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"We hit on the micropub idea, put our own money into it and so far so good. Both our wives, Kasia and Anna, are part of it too, so that’s great.

“We have plans for the future. Maybe there will be another, but it would depend on location and funding.”

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