Bars await the public’s verdict in top awards

ipswich: More than 600 people have already voted for their favourite pubs, clubs and bars in the town.

Ipswich people will find out which pubs, clubs and bars have won a prestigious award when the long-awaited Best Bar None awards night takes place later this month.

Nine awards are up for grabs – including the People’s Choice (sponsored by Archant Ltd, publishers of the Evening Star) and the overall winner (the Best Bar None Award) – and all will be revealed at the Sir Bobby Robson Suite at Ipswich Town Football Club on March 23.

The idea behind the awards is to reward good practice by licensed premises in the town and to put Ipswich on the map as Suffolk’s premiere destination for a great safe night out.

Ipswich BestBarNone officer Caroline Elias said: “This is going to be close and I don’t envy the judges their task.

“We are all really pleased with the way Best Bar None has taken off in Ipswich and by the very positive reaction of the licensed trade.

“We should remember that all the accredited premises are winners, whether they have an award or not, because they all have demonstrated high standards.

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“Of course, the scheme won its own award late last year when we were voted the Most Innovative BestBarNone scheme in the country.”

The judges are: Liz Harsant (leader, Ipswich Borough Council), Russell Williams (chief executive, Ipswich Borough Council), Stuart McCreery (Archant managing director), Supt. David Skevington (Suffolk Constabulary) and William Coe (chairman of Ipswich Central).

So far 600 people have already used the link on the Star website to register their vote – and postal votes still have to be counted.

Organisers are hoping that a total of more than 1,000 people will take part in the voting by the time it closes on Tuesday.