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Vote for your favourite dog-friendly pub in Bristol, Bath & Somerset

PUBLISHED: 15:50 19 August 2019

Pub-goers with dogs enjoy their visit even more if their canine companions are made welcome

Pub-goers with dogs enjoy their visit even more if their canine companions are made welcome

Archant

New awards launched in the South West aim to recognise the region's most dog-friendly pubs

Many of us enjoy visiting pubs with family and friends after a long walk or for a sociable Sunday lunch and where possible it's lovely to bring along our canine companions too, but for many dog owners finding a great pub that welcomes four-legged friends can prove a challenge.

However, this summer the prestigious South West Tourism Awards has teamed up with Somerset Life and dog lovers Forthglade, makers of natural dog food, to launch a brand new award that is sure to set tails wagging - Bristol, Bath & Somerset's Most Dog Friendly Pub of The Year Award 2019/20.

Pubs across the county of Somerset, as well as Bristol and Bath, will be counting on you to nominate them for their chance to win this new coveted award.

Pubs across the other South West counties of Dorset, Cornwall and Devon will all be battling it out for the public's precious votes, as not only is there an award to be won within each county, but a trophy and plaque for the South West's Pub of the Year is also up for grabs.

As a widely recognised and respected awards body, the South West Tourism Awards have recently received the Gold accolade in the Awards Trustmark scheme, the only winner of this accolade in South West England. The new Dog Friendly Pub accolade is one that'll be widely recognised and respected by businesses across the region, as well as highlighting to both local and visiting dog¬-owners the best pubs to visit with their four-legged friends.

The Tourism Awards nomination process relies on you, the general public, to nominate your favourite dog-friendly pub. It takes only a few moments to complete and once your nomination has been submitted, the venues with the most votes will be selected for mystery visits.

Once you have nominated your favourite dog-friendly pub, you'll be automatically entered into a competition to win an amazing selection of goodies worth more than £1,000, including a tw-o¬night break (dog friendly of course) and more than £250 worth of delicious Forthglade natural pet food.

Check out our list of things to consider in the panel on this page that may help you pinpoint how your chosen pub goes the extra mile to be truly dog-friendly, and why they deserve to be crowned Somerset, Bristol and Bath's most Dog Friendly Pub 2019/2020 - or the best dog friendly pub in the South West.

There are four county awards in total, along with an overall award for the South West. Each region will have up to three finalists, bronze, silver and gold - with each receiving a Tourism Awards trophy to proudly show off their achievement and recognise the great work they're doing to welcome four-legged visitors into their establishment.

The winners of each of the county awards will go through to the overall South West Award's event.

All Dog Friendly Pub nominations must be made by mid-August 2019. For pubs interested in learning more about how best to promote themselves for the awards, simply visit forthglade.com for more information, plus details on how to order the award's Dog Friendly Awards promotional pack.

Promotional packs will be limited to the first 50 pubs that get in touch.

Whether you're a pub after more info or a member of the public wanting to vote, learn more about the awards at forthglade.com/campaigns/dogfriendly.

The bare bones:

These are the things we'd hope all dog-friendly pubs have on offer for four-legged visitors:

- Obvious signage that the pub is dog-friendly

- Fresh drinking water

- Outdoor area for dogs

- Indoor area for dogs

- Easy to identify where your dog is allowed on the premises

- Easy to identify what the 'house' rules are e.g. dogs on leads

- Dog waste bins

- Healthy dog treats

- Dedicated shaded outdoor area for dogs

- Quieter area inside for dogs

- Clips/hooks to secure dog leads

- An especially warm welcome from staff

- Nutritious dog's dinner menu

- Dog toys made available

How are the awards judged?

As with all Tourism Awards, once the nominations have been completed - there is a thorough process of mystery shopping to choose the overall winner from three finalists in each county.

For the Dog Friendly Pub category, mystery shoppers will aim to score each venue on its dog-friendly credentials and look for any differentiating factors which really make finalist pubs stand out. Considerations include whether there is clear signage to welcome dogs, drinking water made readily available, and whether staff greet visitors with dogs with a warm welcome.

When are the finalists announced?

The three finalists for each county award will be announced between mid-September and mid-October, with the South West regional finalists announced at the end of November

When are the winners announced?

At the awards evenings on the following dates:

Bristol, Bath & Somerset - November 21

Cornwall - November 7

Dorset - October 17

Devon - November 28

South West overall - February 6

Who are the judges?

The mystery shoppers who visit each of the pubs, will amongst themselves confirm the three finalists and ultimate winners of each county award - based on their level of dog friendliness.

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