Pub owners ‘proud’ after being named best in the north west

(L-R) Callam Hartley, company food and beverage manager; Erika Kuti, director; and Sean Forshaw, chef-proprietor <i>(Image: Thwaites)</i>
(L-R) Callam Hartley, company food and beverage manager; Erika Kuti, director; and Sean Forshaw, chef-proprietor (Image: Thwaites)

A pub in Oswaldtwistle is just one of the East Lancashire winners of the North West Family Business Awards.

Thwaites-owned pub, The White Bull, is celebrating victory after battling it out against businesses across the north west to be crowned best food and drink establishment  in the region.

Other East Lancashire businesses, including Threlfall’s Farm Dairies in Rishton, Mrs Dowsons Farm in Clayton-Le-Dale and Honeyberry International in Burnley, also won awards.

The multi-award-winning gastro pub celebrated the win at the packed-out awards ceremony at Toughsheet Community Stadium in Bolton.

Organised by The Family Business Community, and with more than 430 guests in attendance, the evening celebrated the successes of family-owned businesses across the region.

Commenting on the win, independent operators Sean Forshaw and Erika Kuti said: “This is an incredible achievement, and we’re so proud to have won. We’d like to dedicate this award to our brilliant team and customers who have continued to support us over the years.

"Without them, none of this would be possible. We’d also like to thank the wider Thwaites team who have been instrumental throughout this journey.”

This is the second consecutive month for Sean and Erika to be celebrating their achievements, with their other property, The Britannia Tap and Grill in Oswaldtwistle, announced as the Lancashire pub of the year at The National Pub and Bar Awards 2024. The White Bull was also crowned the winner of this category in 2023.

Threlfall’s Farm Dairies in Rishton won best agribusiness. A spokesperson said: “We want to say a massive thank you to all our team - it wouldn’t have been possible without every single one of you.”

Honeyberry International was named best wholesalers.

A spokesperson said: “We only went and won an award!

“This award is testament to the super team we have working with us every day. Without the dedication and hard work from them, we wouldn’t be here today.”

Mrs Dowsons Farm was named best large leisure and tourism business. Sarah Ainsworth, guest services manager, was named employee of the year.