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Last Updated: Friday, 17 February 2006, 01:49 GMT
Village pub wins top award again
Top pub
Valerie and John Pascoe have won thetop pub award for the second time
An Essex pub once threatened with closure is National Pub of the Year for the second time in three years.

The Swan, a 16th Century pub in Little Totham, owned by John and Valerie Pascoe for almost a decade, also scooped the coveted 2002 award.

Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) judges were impressed by the friendly atmosphere and range of ales.

Mr Pascoe said: "It is unbelievable. I feel so pleased. This is like being awarded 10 Michelin Stars."

Community asset

Camra pubs director and competition judge Bob Stukins said the cottage-style pub deserved its second win.

"Through their devotion to maintaining the very highest quality in all aspects of the pub John and Val have prospered and shown others what a marvellous asset the community pub can be," he said.

The National Pub of the Year 2005 competition was judged by Camra membership with 200 branches voting for their favourite pub. Branch winners were then entered into regional and then four went on to compete for the national title.

The other three finalists were The Check Inn at North Wroughton, Wiltshire; Old Coach House, Southwell, Nottinghamshire, and the Robin Hood, Jarrow, Tyne and Wear.

The award is being presented to The Swan on Friday.

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